Input Buffering and Lip-Sync?

As very many other audiophiles, I use my HiFi system not only for music but also to improve the sound of movies from TV and Blu Ray player. So, I connected my new Vega G2 not only via Ethernet for music but also with my TV via Toslink and my Blu Ray player via Coax, in just the same way as I did for last seven years with my PS-Audio PerfectWave DAC. But now the sound is totally out of sync with the picture. Not just a little bit, but WAY out of sync!

The reason for this is of course the input buffering of the Vega G2 which undoubtedly is one of the main reasons for its great almost jitter-free sound. While this buffering is no problem for audio-only listening, it makes every other use of my whole HiFi system now impossible – from watching Netflix to enjoying a concert from Blu Ray.

Even Stereo Magazine mentions this explicitly in its May 2018 test (which is also listed on the Auralic web page). Quote: ‘… not a problem for listening to music, the already strictly two-channel Vega G2 fails when it comes as means of listening to TV sound, for example, where synchronization with video is required.’ End quote. I wonder how many potential buyers interested in the Vega G2 stopped right there when reading this, thinking ‘Oh! That’s too bad. But then, this is not the right one for me’. I certainly would have… but I bought the Vega G2 already before I read that test.

Now I am asking you @Xuanqian, please in the next Firmware update give us the option to reduce the buffer time all the way to zero (instead of just down to 100 ms) so that we have a chance to watch movies again! Even better, if we could select different buffer times for different inputs. Then we could for instance set the buffer time to 300 ms for Ethernet and USB and 0 ms for Toslink and Coax and everybody could be happy again.

Unfortunately, there is no way to reduce buffer time to zero, that’s how the entire platform has been designed.

Hello @Xuanqian,

I’m a new Vega G2 owner. I will post further my positive feelings about the sound quality, as well as I will precisely report bugs and wishlit for future firmware upgrade.

But for now, I’m in the exact SAME situation as @HifiImWald !
Quite upset about this HUGE “lip-sync” issue !
How did you build the platform whithout thinking about this ?
It simply means that the Vega G2 is unsuable for watching video, which is also part of my every day use.
In post production studios as well as audiophiles home who want to watch concert on TV or blu-ray, the Vega G2, which is a wonderfull machine, will be OUT of the game ! What a shame.

You should check ITU (International Telecommunications Union) about this standardization https://www.itu.int/
Their official recommandation about delay between sound and image is as follow : between +22,5 ms and -30 ms. Positive value means that sound is in advance over image.

You say Tesla platform is designed as the buffer cannot be reduced to zero.
But may be it can be reduced to around 20ms ?
I hope there is a way to do so, then you could add a “video mode” to around 20ms to the buffer list.

YOU JUST CANNOT IGNORE THIS PROBLEM !!

We hope that you and your team should find a quick answer to this technical issue.

Thank you.

There is no fix, this is how the this DAC has been designed. There is not something for ITU standard, if you can not accept, please return it to your dealer.

Indeed, that is very unfortunate. Is there at least a work-around? I am thinking of the analog inputs: Are they bypassing all the digital processing and go directly into the analog stage? Then they would have zero buffer-time and I could buy some less expensive 2nd DAC, put the TV’s and Blu Ray Player’s digital outputs into that DAC and the analog output of that DAC into the analog-in of the Vega. Not pretty, but at least it would save the day. So, @Xuanqian, can you please confirm that the analog inputs of the Vega do not suffer this buffer-time issue?

There are two workarounds here:

1, Use analog input of VEGA G2 which do not go to digital domain
2, Upgrade your TV with a model which can delay the picture, which I think is not normal for most people…

Choosing the Vega G2 for its analog in was one of the reason I waited and did not buy the original Vega.
I need analog in for Turntable.
Of course I know that analog is not buffered so I can use it for video. But I need to buy a RCA switch or siwtching cables each time I need to listen vinyle or TV. This is not convenient at all ! And adding a switch on a gear like Vega G2 is a pitty.

The second solution is a way to get rid of the problem, which is inside the Vega G2.

Can you affirm that there is absolutely NO WAY to add a new 20ms delay inside the firmware ?
If so, can you please explain why ? Is it inside the hardware core of Tesla ? Is there any way to flash it ?
I’m pretty suer there is a technical way to treat the problem… no ?

There is ABSOLUTELY NO WAY TO REDUCE TO 20ms as you have requested and this is how the software platform has been built to handle complex processing and to eliminate the jitter.

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Oupsy ! :frowning_face:

This is a very bad news for me, but unfortunately I think also for many potential buyers…

Yep. That issue will cause Auralic to lose a lot of potential buyers, and a lot of market share.

In the real world, most people don’t have a separate listening room but combine the HiFi with the TV in the living room. But even those who have a separate room most likely also have a big movie screen in there. Those who are really solely listening to stereo without ever wanting any picture are a rare species…

Kii Audio thought of this in a better way. Their Kii Three (a fully active DSP controlled speaker with separate amps AND DACs for each of the six drivers in each loudspeaker) needs a full 90 ms latency to achieve their best possible sound. That’s not for buffering but just the time the DSP needs to do all the calculations. However, they are aware that this is no good for TV. Therefore, they provide a latency setting in their menu where the user can choose between EXACT (best sound) and MINIMUM. In MINIMUM the latency is only 1 (one!) ms but the sound is a bit compromised, mainly because there is not enough time for a complete phase correction over the full audio band. But, of course, there is no more problem with Lip Sync.

Too bad that Auralic cannot do something similar. Indeed, that will cost significant market share…

Other solution, get a soundbar :grinning:

I do not think that Auralic will lost market share, i’m pretty sure that 95% of people that will buy a VEGA G2 (6300€ to remind you the price) will use it in a Hifi system, not in a HC way … And less than 0,1% to use with TV for TV shows … It’s like giving marmelade to pigs :slight_smile:

I can not imagine using a DCS full stack to have a better sound during the news or Coca-Cola ads :slight_smile:

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I too am holding off buying the vega g2 because of the latency issue. Not because I want to watch coca cola ads but there are many excellent opera videos on bluray and online concerts. As far as I can see the only option is to use an external video delay gadget - something like this:
https://www.proav.co.uk/vc-1-dl-video-converter-fs-delay
Another box and more money though - and my original vega is still pretty good especially tricked out with totaldac and regen filters. Come to think of it - can the g2 be that much better?

This is also causing me to rethink my upgrade path, if I go ahead with a Vega I will need a cheap DAC for the TV and a proper pre-amp for everything instead of using the Vega G2 as a pre. So I’m looking at other DACs which is a shame as I’d like to take advantage of an Aries/Vega stack.

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Do you check if you can set the delay of the output with your TV. This settings exist on some model.

Eg : https://www.lg.com/ca_en/support/product-help/CT20098005-1399374324873-audio-out-of-sync

No, unfortunately I don’t have that feature on my TV.

Hi Chris,

I’ve just been through this myself. I purchased the Vega G2, and it didn’t even cross my mind that there’d be issues with audio delay from AV sources. It just didn’t happen on my previous DAC (ps audio) so it never occurred to me to research its compatibility in this regard.

I have an integrated amp. I ended up purchasing a Cambridge Audio DAC Magic, which is just for processing audio from my TV output and viola, no lag/latency issues anymore.

Does it sound as good as the Vega for SQ? No of course not but it’s good and hassle free.

The Vega G2 is awesome as a streaming music player / DAC but is not purpose built to integrate into a system which handles both 2 channel music and Av duties. I found out the hard way as it seems so many of us have.

My original intent was to upgrade SQ for music playback and still handle AV audio processing as well and reduce box count from 2 to 1. I achieved one of out of three, which is disappointing, as good as the Vega G2 is for music playback, I’m still annoyed that I’ve increased my box count rather than reduce it, and can’t even enjoy the Vega’s SQ for movies.

I’ll get over it eventually I am sure. :slight_smile:

Yes you will for sure :grinning:

Thanks David. I was thinking of using the Vega as both DAC and pre-amp but will probably now go for an integrated amp with an onboard DAC, or Vega + int analog amp + a small extra DAC, or Aries + a non-Vega DAC. Like you, I’m trying to keep the box count down.

Did you try the analog output of the TV to the analog input of the Vega ?

Maybe the buffering is only for digital DAC board when using the internal dac board.
With the analog input, it it send to the preamp part directly or not ?