How to link a streamer to my home system.

jamieu

Active Member
My AE doesn’t look like the one above. As well as the connection, presumably Ethernet, as above with <....> it also has one with a circle made up of dots above another connection. I presume this is also some kind of Ethernet. Will the cable shown above work for mine please?

Can you find a link for it or post a photo of it?


If it has a 3.5mm headphone socket (and your using that to connect up currently) then I'd assume that socket would double as an optical connector too, that its how nearly all 3.5mm sockets on Apple devices work.

apple-airport-express-a-5bb52a0e4cedfd0026d362bd-1aa47f498b8249e89951d99449997bcf.jpg
 
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shep1968

Active Member
It does look exactly like the picture you posted above. I’m currently using a 3.5mm to rca to get the sound to the amp. This is the older version I presume which won’t sound as good as the newer one and will benefit from the topping upgrade. I’m pretty certain what to do now and what I need.

1614251770608.jpeg
 

shep1968

Active Member
It does look exactly like the picture you posted above. I’m using a 3.5mm to rca to get the sound to the amp. This is the older version I presume which won’t sound as good as the newer one and will benefit from the topping upgrade. I’m pretty certain what to do now and what I need. I’ve also looked at the manual and it says it is also optical out.
 

jamieu

Active Member
It does look exactly like the picture you posted above. I’m currently using a 3.5mm to rca to get the sound to the amp. This is the older version I presume which won’t sound as good as the newer one and will benefit from the topping upgrade. I’m pretty certain what to do now and what I need.

View attachment 1466564

Yes, you'll be fine with the cable I posted :)

That's actually a newer model than the one I posted, but I'd still expect the sound to be improved via an external DAC. Especially if you currently think the physical CD's sound better. That site above is just measuring the output voltage (which doesn't matter as long as it's in range) and the signal to noise ratio or 'noise floor' (which is admittedly good for such a budget device). But he isn't measuring the actual quality of DAC ie. how (sonically) well it converts the digital stream back to analog (think of this as the sound signature caused by the filters used in the DAC) and that is where you're likely to notice the difference.
 
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shep1968

Active Member
Well here is the update i promised. I'm still waiting on the conservatory to be built and havent got the replacement TV for the lounge yet. To tide me by ive spent £15 on a DAC and am now using the optical out to the DAC and then on into the amp for the TV. I can stream from my phone to the TV so that sound is at least using the new DAC on its way to the speakers as opposed to the airport express. I'll g ofor the better DAC when everything else is in place. Thanks for all your help.
 

dinga

Standard Member
Hi All,
Just a note to let you know I have an airport express connected via optical cable to my audiolab 8200 CD which has DAC input. Sounds amazing. This was confirmed when I bought a new iFi zen Bluetooth streamer V2 for fun to see if would sound any better. It didn’t at all when I tried it today.

Was so surprised at the iFi audio quality being so reserved and unengaging after plenty of good reviews online. Conversely the AE connected to the DAC was absolutely amazing with crystal clarity.
I would definetely recommend the AE with an external DAC even in today’s market!
Cheers
Alan
 
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