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Review and Measurements of Chromecast Audio Digital Output

dkinric

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I suggest you download and install Audacity, foobar2000 and the ABX plugin for foobar2000 (all free). Use Audacity to convert your favourite "hi-res" albums to 44.1/16, and do a double-blind ABX - it might prove to be an eye opener. No need to believe random people on the Internet.
No thanks.
FWIW, my thinking is FOR ME, lossless 16/44 is outstanding and I would grant you I likely cannot tell the difference above that in a test. A more interesting test to me would be Redbook vs 384 mp3.

My point was that it is perfectly reasonable to want to try out 24/192 on your system and hear it for yourself, especially since those numbers are being touted in marketing materials all over. Not everyone in our community has read the same articles and done the same research and they are at different points in their personal audio journey. I don't disagree with your conclusion, just the tone.

If your way to win a point is to degrade and call people names, then you haven't really convinced anyone of anything, other than their thoughts about you. This ASR community is better than that - I'd like it to stay that way for a little longer.
 

Julf

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If your way to win a point is to degrade and call people names, then you haven't really convinced anyone of anything, other than their thoughts about you. This ASR community is better than that - I'd like it to stay that way for a little longer.
Point taken.
 

oldsysop

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My configuration is: Chromecast Audio - Smsl Sanskrit 10th - Sansui AU9900.
I can't send 2v to Sansui. The question is what is the optimal way to adjust the volume? Decrease from Chromecast (digital) or from Sanskrit (analog)?
Thank you.
 

GGroch

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.......The question is what is the optimal way to adjust the volume? Decrease from Chromecast (digital) or from Sanskrit (analog)?
There would be absolutely no audible difference in sound. Both components have superb measurements and digital volume controls. As long as you use a separate 5V power adapter when you are using the USB input on the Sanskrit it will sound great and any difference would be imaginary.

So, do the one that is more convenient for you. Control the volume with your phone on the Chromecast, or the included remote with the Sanskrit.
 
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There would be absolutely no audible difference in sound. Both components have superb measurements and digital volume controls. As long as you use a separate 5V power adapter when you are using the USB input on the Sanskrit it will sound great and any difference would be imaginary.

So, do the one that is more convenient for you. Control the volume with your phone on the Chromecast, or the included remote with the Sanskrit.
Hey. I want to ask by the way because I don't understand the measurements well.

Is the USB input in SMSL 10 good quality (connection to a laptop)?
Can the USB-SPDIF converter improve the sound quality?
Is CD transport (via SMSL) better than FLAC / WAV files via USB?
What is the sound quality of this device compared to other drivers?
What is the sound signature in practice?
Is it good value for money?

Greetings :)
 
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My configuration is: Chromecast Audio - Smsl Sanskrit 10th - Sansui AU9900.
I can't send 2v to Sansui. The question is what is the optimal way to adjust the volume? Decrease from Chromecast (digital) or from Sanskrit (analog)?
Thank you.
Are you satisfied with this DAC device? What is the audio characteristics of this device and the quality of the music?
 

Wombat

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Hey. I want to ask by the way because I don't understand the measurements well.

Is the USB input in SMSL 10 good quality (connection to a laptop)?
Can the USB-SPDIF converter improve the sound quality?
Is CD transport (via SMSL) better than FLAC / WAV files via USB?
What is the sound quality of this device compared to other drivers?
What is the sound signature in practice?
Is it good value for money?

Greetings :)
Qvestions, qvestions. Subjective minutiae. ;)
 
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Wombat

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Are you satisfied with this DAC device? What is the audio characteristics of this device and the quality of the music?
More subjective qvestions. :facepalm:

Do a search on this forum or elsewhere first. Probably easier than members re-iterating old ground. Groundhog Day stuff.
 
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Need ansvers :)

---------------
Hey. I want to ask by the way because I don't understand the measurements well.

Is the USB input in SMSL 10 good quality (connection to a laptop)?
Can the USB-SPDIF converter improve the sound quality?
Is CD transport (via SMSL) better than FLAC / WAV files via USB?
What is the sound quality of this device compared to other drivers?
What is the sound signature in practice?
Is it good value for money?

Greetings :)
 

Willem

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Ok, here for some answers:
1 the digital output of the Chromecast Audio is excellent, but it is optical and there is no point in converting this to usb (why would you do that?)
2 the digital output of a CD drive will sound the same as a lossless 16/44 FLAC file if played through the same DAC.
3 There are better budget usb/optical DACs than the smsl 10, such as the JDS Lab OL Dac, (the usb plus optical version) or the Topping D30.
4 As for general sound quality, much will depend on the rest of the system. The internal DAC of the CCA is pretty good, and the same applies to many CD players, so getting a separate DAC is only worthwhile if the rest of the chain is rather good.
 

Wombat

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Last edited:
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Well as usual I am just looking for the bus as it has been gone from the station. I see some Chrome cast audio devices on ebay ( I believe that they are Chinese knockoffs) but not sure. Anyone can point me to the right direction? I was going to be making a raspberry pi for this but I am not sure if I am going to be able to do the code for SD card. I do have a usb class 2 dac (JDS el dac ii) . Should I go chrome or pi? I am streaming Tidal ( premier or whatever).
 

gvl

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I don't think they are knockoffs. Some sellers stockpiled on them when Google announced they will stop making them and were dumping them at $15 a piece end of 2018. The Pi may be more flexible and supported long-term. The chromecast will be limited to 44.1 kHz on Tidal, but the Pi probably is too. I'm having stuttering issues with Qobuz hi-res streaming at 96kHz through Chromecast, seems to be a common issue.
 

Jimbob54

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OK- question @amirm or anyone else familiar with Roon and (chrome)casting. I have both CCAs and also a Cambridge Audio CXNv2 streamer.

The CCAs take MQA or upsampled via Roon DSP signal to 24/96 as advertised and tested elsewhere.

The CXN V2 (roon ready and with Chromecast Inside) seems to top out at 24/48 via roon or other sources via Cast. This is actually contrary to manufacturer info via Roon partner links which says 24/96.

I can see this two ways:

1. When I try and DSP upsample in roon DSP for the CXN via Cast, it tops out at 48 option (Not so when select it as a USB endpoint)
2. The CXN doesnt display its sample rate via internal cast but I've linked an SMSL SU8 out from the SPDIF on the CXN and that does display the signal sent. When I do this with CXN on USB at 96, the SU8 displays 96. When using Cast to CXN- SU8 displays (max) 48.

Am I right in thinking this is a limitation of the Cast protocols baked into the CXN rather than a Cambridge Audio setting/ limitation to update? Just wondering , now CCA's are no more and "Cast inside" is the new world order whyit would have such limitations on sample rate.

Any yes, my CXN is updated to latest firmware (Cambridge update regularly, well done!) and I believe some firmware updates include updates to Cast protocols.

Any other members use any Cast Inside devices and what sample rates can they achieve?

Thanks in advance.
 
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