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Question What is the best small amplifier that has optical input?

pyc

Novice Member

Rambles

Distinguished Member
The optical input is to access a DAC inside the amplifier. You don't need to have a DAC in the amplifier, you could use any amplifier with a separate DAC.

What DACs / sources / amplifiers do you have at the moment? How much do you want to spend? Are you planning on adding any more speakers / subwoofers?
 

pyc

Novice Member
I want it to be small so I want DAC to be integrated with amp. Anyways, if you think this is impossible combination for good quality sound, tell me.

Right now, the only option I have is to connect headphone output of Philips 49" TV to NAD 312 amplifier, but I don't want to use analog output but optical output from TV, and the amplifier is too big for the shelf I plan to install over the TV.

Money is not a big issue. I'm looking for quality. I'm do not plan on adding more speakers and subwoofers.
 
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Rambles

Distinguished Member
The Yamaha WXA50 is a bit smaller:

 

pyc

Novice Member
These two are kind of big to me, is it possible to go smaller? More, I realized real IR remote control is a must. I don't want it to be BT app-based like ones you mentioned (too cumbersome to load app every time). Probably, optical output from TV is not volume sensitive, and maybe it's the same with Android tv box I plan on connecting too. Also, I really don't need phono input nor the streaming option is really important because I plan to stream only from Android tv box. Sorry I'm so hesitant, I don't want to make a wrong move because this needs to serve for many many years. :)
 
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Rambles

Distinguished Member
You are currently using the DAC in the TV and the headphone output into your Nad amp. There is nothing wrong with that, an unknown DAC in an unknown amp is not necessarily going to be better.

The fact that you have an optical output from your TV is handy, so further down the line you might want to try some external DACs to see if they sound any better.

Ideally, for best quality sound, you would want to cut out the TV altogether and go from source to DAC to amp. But to hear the difference you might need better speakers. If you are happy with how things sound now, then perhaps let's just stick to your original plan.

Why not check your TV, some have the option of fixed or variable volume when using external audio devices. Certainly with the headphone out the TV will control the volume, it might do the same with optical output.

Are you sure the Yamaha amp is too big? It can be oriented vertical or horizontal.

Also look at Pro-Ject amps, they are good amps with a small footprint:

 

Dunners

Active Member
The Yamaha comes with 2 x little plastic stands so you can whip the feet off and place it upright, rather than lie it down.
It has IR, it has an app if you want (sounds like you don't though) and sounds rather good.
 

Dunners

Active Member
The one Rambles linked to, the WXA50.
It's 55W @ 8ohms, has a good DAC on-board and it's 1/2 rack width and low profile.
Nice piece of kit.
 

pyc

Novice Member
Yeah but no remote control there except from the smartphone and that was the deal breaker...
 

Dunners

Active Member
It has a credit card sized remote in the box.
If you want you can hide it in a cupboard and use the IR input on the back to incorporate an IR blaster arrangement.
 

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