Can you recommend a high quality DAC less music streamer

Discussion in 'PCs & Music Servers' started by DangerBoy, Sep 18, 2017.

  1. botrytis

    botrytis Trying not to be a Small Speaker Hoarder Subscriber

    You Still need a DAC somewhere - The chromcast is a DAC. You have to convert the digital information to analog and that is a DAC. I would prefer to have a DAC of decent quality compared to an all in one chip set, like the chromcast. it is not much better than UCA202. That is basically throw away junk (I have one BTW - I also had a UCA202).

    The streamer is just a dedicated computer. Most use dedicated linux systems, but they are just basic computers (unlike a regular linux system, they may not get security updates like a regular PC).


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  2. E-Stat

    E-Stat Super Member

    Neither my microRendu nor Raspberry Pi/Allo DigiOne do. And the quality of the audio board does make s difference. I found that an Allo DigiOne offers more transparency than the HiFiBerry + it replaced.

    They connect to external DACs.
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2017
  3. cpt_paranoia

    cpt_paranoia Active Member


    Yes, I know.

    A CCA provides the network service, and the renderer, and the DAC. But it also provides an optical S/PDIF output, which you can connect to an audiophile DAC. You can use the CCA's DAC, or you can use it as a DAC-less streamer, and connect it to a better DAC.
    bigx5murf likes this.
  4. botrytis

    botrytis Trying not to be a Small Speaker Hoarder Subscriber

    No optical is digital. It is the CCA that is doing the Digital to Analog conversion. This is like putting a Pinto engine in a Corvette. You can still get there but how fast is the question.

    The more connections and conversions you do, the more jitter you introduce.
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2017
  5. cpt_paranoia

    cpt_paranoia Active Member

    That's not correct.

    S/PDIF is a purely digital PCM stream, carried by either an optical or coax bearer. Quite easily confirmed by a simple Google search.

    You may be confusing the conversion of a file into the digital PCM stream carried by the S/PDIF interface; that is performed by the rendering engine, converting the streamed FLAC or mp3 file into PCM. But that is still digital, not analogue.

    One of the great things about digital audio is that jitter can be reduced by a good clock recovery circuit. A good S/PDIF DAC should also have a good clock recovery circuit. That's why you can buy 'audiophile' S/PDIF or USB clock recovery devices, that are supposed to make a difference. I'm of the opinion that these should be redundant, provided the DAC has a decent clock recovery circuit.
  6. botrytis

    botrytis Trying not to be a Small Speaker Hoarder Subscriber

    Yes that is the issue 'A GOOD' converter, not sure is Chromcast is one. I mean they have to make a profit on them, so how good could the circuits be?

    I just didn't think the CCA was that impressive as a dac and I have one (always try things with open mind).
  7. cpt_paranoia

    cpt_paranoia Active Member

    Have you accepted that the optical S/PDIF output from the CCA is digital? And can therefore be fed into an audiophile DAC, as per my original suggestion (because I know that the CCA audio is only average; I have three, but I don't expect miracles for £15).

    To save you the trouble of doing the Google search, here's the Wiki entry:
  8. SeventyNine

    SeventyNine New Member

    My SOtM sMS-200Ultra is DAC-less, and works great. I use Roon, so it integrates my FLAC collection and Tidal subscription into one simple app. I control it using an old iPad.

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