Question Connecting laptop to digital input on Arcam SA10

TUllman

Standard Member
Hi all, apologies in advance for perhaps a silly question, but what's the recommended way to connect my laptop (via USB) to one of the digital inputs (coaxial or optical) on Arcam SA10 amp so that I can take advantage of Arcam's built-in DAC?

If there is no good way to do it, I can always default to using my separate iFi ZEN DAC to sit between my laptop and Arcam's analog inputs (but then I can't compare IFi's DAC with Arcam's built-in DAC).

Thanks in advance!
 

TUllman

Standard Member
Something like this? CYP AU-D6-192 USB Digital Audio Converter (192KHz/24-bit)

Cheaper units are available, but this is likely to be stable and to not degrade the quality to any great extent.
This indeed looks like a great device and what I need. Subsequently, I also found out that my laptop (MacBook Pro) is capable of outputing digital signal through the headphone jack so I will give this a go first -- much cheaper to get a jack -> optical cable.
 

TUllman

Standard Member
Unfortunately, as I've found out, newer MacBooks are no longer capable of outputting digital signal through the headphone plug, so back to the idea of using USB.
 

madfiddler

Active Member
You could check out Fiio devices also. I have a headphone amp that doubles as a USB DAC, as it is a little older no digital outputs but some of the newer devices do have this. Such as the Fiio K3
 

karlsushi

Active Member
In a similar vein, there are also plenty of usb to spdif converters out there and many arguments about certain converters improving sound quality significantly over others.

In doing searches for an appropriate device, these are also referred to as 'usb bridge' or 'digital interface', terms which may help your search.

I used an M2tech Hiface Two for quite a while, which is quite a neat solution.

I recently upgraded to a Singxer F-1 and whilst I had previously been very dubious about one converter actually sounding better than another, I can honestly say there was a marked improvement in sound in my system at least. The main improvement being a reduction of digital sharpness/glare in the treble.

The Singxer units use the newest xmos chips (XU208) and you can get cheaper versions using those same chips, but with lesser quality 'clocks'.

I don't know how much you're looking to spend, but these would probably be a good budget option:

 

TUllman

Standard Member
Not sure how I just managed to respond to a post from months ago :facepalm:

Hope it helps anyway

Haha, yes, this is indeed an older thread and I have moved on a couple of stages. Soon after this I got a Behringer UCA202 that did the conversion from USB to optical and it worked just fine for me.

However literally earlier today I added a Yamaha WXAD-10 streamer to my setup that replaces the need for my laptop to be connected. So it’s all a bit more simplified now with no loss in sound quality. :)
 

karlsushi

Active Member
I'll chalk that down as the least useful response in avforums history then.

Glad you're all sorted and enjoying music.
 

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