I use Roon on a NUC, and I mainly stream to either of these paths:
NUC=(RAAT)=> PC => USB => Topping DX3pro => Either Audioengine A5+ powered speakers or AudioQuest Nightowl carbon speakers.
NUC=(RAAT)=> Macbook => AudioQuest Dragonfly Red => Audioengine A5+ speakers.
I use AQ Red River / Cinneamon cables.
I bought the DX3 pro for it’s multiple inputs so I could consolidate the DAC’s and get the AQ DF back for use on my tablet or phone. To do this I could buy either a Thunderbolt 3 docking station like a Caldigit TS3+ or OWC one who have optical out, and pipe that into my DX3, or alternatively add a Digione for a bit less or a Digione Signature for a bit more money and have a streamer as well. Both the Mac and the PC also use their respective external DAC for non-Roon audio like Youtube which is a big plus, but untill now I still need to power up one of both to play music through Roon which I eventually want to be able to avoid.
I think either upgrade would improve the sound quality during Roon-listening (mostly redbook and Tidal Masters with the odd high res album up to 192/24 and DSD 128), I am not sure which of those upgrades would give me the most ROI. Currently I feel the topping is better than the AQ DFR. I’m leaning towards the dock with Toslink now. I also fear a DigiOne signature (while being able to scale better with future gear). might need a more resolving pair of speakers and amp to let me resolve the difference… On my headphones I might be able to discern the difference…
Aldo, instead of changing things on the source side, I might be better off looking for better speakers and upgrade those first? I think I want the LS50W’s over time, but I am not willing to spend 2300 on those just yet.
So, Should I go DigoOne (signature) yet or do other options first (Thunderbolt dock with Toslink out or new pair of speakers?