Bit Perfect Streaming Recommendations, Please!

I’ve seen that Chromecast Audio devices (still available on Ebay for abut $30) can deliver a bit-perfect stream to a DAC - is there anyway to configure Audirvana 3.5 to play to Chromecast via Wifi?

If not, AirPlay seems to be a good option - what minimalist devices can achieve this objective (not looking to use a $2,000 to do what a $35 Chromecast could do :slight_smile:)

Thanks!

To get the full benefit out of Chromecast Audio you need a media server; Plex is a reasonable and cheap (or even free) option, it also has a good remote for every platform. Maybe Audirvana could expand to play this role as well, but currently it’s not an option. I’m actually looking into Audirvana for the exact opposite reason; I want to play stuff via an USB DDC/DAC with the best quality possible - but I still want a remote. The MacOS app for Plex isn’t able to use exclusive mode and switch DAC rates, at least not currently.

My only gripe with Plex+CCA is that it doesn’t do gapless FLAC album playback. CCA limit, I suppose, but with certain kinds of music and more concentrated listening it’s a really annoying tiny pause; The beat doesn’t go on…

Grouping works amazingly well, we have five CCA’s at home and can rock the whole house down, or just parts of it and play something else at the same time.
I’ve even used a CCA in a car just to try it out and it worked perfectly until we reached limits of civilization… One travels with me everywhere - with a 4G/wifi router though.

It’s a real shame that Google killed the product, there’s just nothing like it at any price. Even the closest competitors require something like Roon ($$$) and several times more expensive rendererers.

Oh… and the CCA DAC itself isn’t that bad. Only one of our five has an external one connected. $35, €39, whatever… What a steal.

When you say “media server”, is that not provided by the DLNA server on my NAS? I may be confused here.

An inability to do Gapless FLAC is a dealbreaker - but that’s Audirvana’s job, right?

In any case, I do use Audirvana on a MacBook/NAS via USB to my DAC and the quality is outstanding. I’m not in love with the v3.5 user interface, though. The previous one was actually much better, but I put up with it due to the superior sound quality.

A Raspberry Pi is my choice of streamer. Just a simple one if all you need is USB or with a ‘hat’ (E.g. HifiBerry) if you need anything else as output.
I have both RPi Model 2 and 3 all running DietPi (dietpi.com).
Once they are up, Audirvana will show them in the list of outputs.
If you want to something that is plug and play, you can opt for a transport from Allo (allo.com). They come ready to play. I have 2 Allo USBridge as well and they are awesome although they got more expensive recently.

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Thanks, dabizi. Do you have a link to the RPi that you recommend? What do you mean by a “hat”? I was thinking of using Volumio software. is that a replacement for HifiBerry? Pros and cons?

The RPi is a little bit of a DIY. You need to buy the parts and mount everything yourself. I’m in Canada and I buy from a company in Ottawa: https://www.buyapi.ca
I would recommend a starter kit since it has everything you need.
Once assembled (very easy) you need to download in install the operating system (DietPi) and enable the streaming software (included with the OS).
After that, you don’t need any other software. Audirvana will recognize the RPi and you can select it as an output. Connect your DAC to the USB of RPi and that’s it.

Hats are small boards that fit standard on the RPi’s extension slot. You will find lots of examples on the web site above. There is a hat for anything you want to do with the RPi!

Aha, thanks for that translation! Super useful.