Any benefit to adding master clock to dCS Network Bridge with Devialet?

I have a dCS Network Bridge which is wirelessly connected to a Roon nucleus plus music server. The network bridge is then connected via a digital XLR cable to a Devialet pro 1000. Would I see any improvement in sound quality if I would to connect the network bridge to dCS master clock? There are no master clock inputs on the Devialet.

In order for a master clock to be of benefit all devices in the chain need to be synced to the same clock. As Devialet has no word clock input there’s no benefit in adding one.

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I like to keep things simple, and the box count down! Have you tried networking your devialet (also wireless) and streaming directly to it? And this way, the Devialet controls the clock.

Isn’t the idea behind RAAT that the renderer controls the clock?

Well, it is possible that the external clock would have less phase noise than then internal clock and thus produce an SPDIF signal with less jitter. But the Devialet would still need to recover the clock from the audio signal itself as opposed to what happens in a full-dCS system where the clock is distributed independently. Did I get this right?

Yes, but the RAAT device in this case is the dCS network bridge. The bridge still connects to the Devialet over SPDIF, which means the Devialet clock is not the master.

Yes…but… (there’s always a but)

In the simplest case where the S/PDIF receiver feeds directly into the DAC circuit then this can be true, but any quality improvement is going to be heavily dependent on the quality of the receiver design and the associated PLL. If the PLL has more drift than the error in the incoming signal then you’re gaining nothing at all.

In the more common case the DAC is doing some sort of processing before rolling the bits into the DAC circuit. Typically the DAC does some sort of ASRC (asynchronous sample rate conversion) where the input is buffered and then converted to some common sample rate which is preferred by the DAC. There may also be some DSP steps in here as well. In this case the quality of the input signal is pretty much irrelevant as the conversion process is not synchronous with the input. The Devialet falls into this category.

Understood, but in general, all else being equal I would expect an SPDIF signal with less jitter will sound better regardless of the peculiarities of the receiver.

My Roon nucleus is connected wirelessly to the dCS Network Bridge. Is it possible to connect the two devices via USB cable? Can it be done and would there be any benefit to it? Thanks

I see, so the connection will work…

This isn’t actually the case…

The network bridge takes ethernet or wifi as input (either via RoonReady’s RAAT or a streaming input) and delivers SPDIF or double-SPDIF out (in toslink, coax, or AES forms).

Firstly, no, I don’t think it is obvious a wired connection is better than a wifi connection, as the wifi connection is effectively a galvanic isolation, and the wifi unit in the network bridge is done carefully so as not to introduce noise in.

The option for a wired connection is via ethernet to the network bridge to any ethernet in your network. If what you want is an ethernet connection to the nucleus, well the nucleus has only one ethernet port. It is possible to have two ports generally in a bridged configuration (I do this with a mac) but I don’t know if the nucleus would understand this if you plug a USB/ethernet adapter in its USB output.

USB directly to the network bridge is a non-starter, there is no such interface in the network bridge.

If your DAC allows for a USB input, then you could remove the network bridge altogether and connect the DAC to the nucleus via USB. I don’t know because I don’t know what DAC you’re going into.

But honestly, wifi or ethernet to the network bridge is likely to be the best Roon sound you will get.

Ok I see. As far as I can tell, this device does have a USB input. So try USB from the nucleus directly into the Devialet.

However, I would venture that the network bridge, either via ethernet or wifi, then AES to the Devialet, is the best solution. I would not assume at all that wifi is any worse, unless you get dropouts or similar.

Certainly bad wifi configs can cause issues. But at home for example I have wifi that runs at almost 1Gbps within the LAN and I have never had any issues streaming Roon to devices over wifi. My main system is wired.

I dont think the Network Bridge does wifi right now just LAN.

This is from the manual.
WiFi antenna connector
Antenna socket (F) for the internal WiFi feature – this is for possible future development and is not
currently supported.

@Salman_Kazim where in the chain are you using wifi? I asume you have LAN connection to the Network Bridge?

As a former owner of Devialet I think the AES input gave the best sound perhaps the latest models that does Roon RAAT directly is at the same level but I asume as you are using the Network Bridge that you have not a D1000 with the Ci upgrade to do Roon directly?

I currently enjoy my Network bridge connected with AES to a TAD dac using Roon on a NUC.

dCS themselves answered the OP’s original question in the second post… Answer: No.

Second question, would connecting dCS and Nucleus with a USB cable improve things? Answer: No.

There is a clue in the name: dCS Network Bridge. The device is Roon Ready via wired ethernet, the USB port streams music files from a connected hard drive.

The user guide is here: dCS Network Bridge - User Guide

So this is how the the signal chain is set up right now: The cable modem feeds an AQVox SE switch via audioquest forest ethernet cable. From the ethernet switch one ethernet cable goes to the Roon nucleus+; the other cable goes to the Devialet and the third one goes to dCS network bridge. The dCS Network Bridge is connected via digital XLR to the Devialet. I control the Devialet from my iPhone app and therefore the reason the ethernet cable is connected to the Devialet. Somebody objected to it because he felt that there is an ethernet “leakage“ as he put it if I have the ethernet cable connected to the Devialet. The roon nucleus+ connects wirelessly over the network with the dCS Network Bridge

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Yes my Devialet is an expert pro 1000 with Core Infiniti upgrade

Rubbish… you have a top class setup. I’m not quite sure why you feel you need the dCS Bridge as the Devialet is Roon Ready, but I’m sure it sounds wonderful setup like it is.

Thank you for the compliment; after doing an A-B comparison at least I felt that the sound was better going through the network bridge rather than directly to the Devialet.

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