This is a non Roon subject but because there’s a good cross section of audiophiles dedicated to high quality streaming here I feel it’s probably not a forbidden topic …
From my turntable I’m running a Project tube pre-amplifier into a Sonos Connect and then using the optical output from the Connect to connect to one of the Devialet Phantoms.
To me the Sonos Connect is the poor link in the chain, limiting the audio quality. I’ve half heartedly looked for other solutions but nothing of high quality and/or configurability has jumped out at me.
Have you considered the Linn DSM platform? They provide full 24/192 PCM with their integrated SongCast protocol. Linn even have a digital phono stage (Urika II) that performs the phono EQ in the digital domain. We can send the source signal from a Klimax Sondek LP12 through our networks to any Linn DSM player without any loss in signal and with pristine performance. www.Linn.co.uk
I realize this is controversial with some people, but digital processing is a powerful tool when applied properly, especially when working with analog sources.
If I was starting from scratch right now I would certainly consider Linn DSM. Back a few years when I decided to make the leap to digital speakers I feel I was taken down a rabbit hole that gave me a compromised signal path for my vinyl. Recent “upgrades” to software by Devialet clobbered my ability to play high definition streams from Tidal to my speakers (hence me showing up in the Roon world).
Recent software fixes and the step to Roon has dealt with all of my outstanding issues aside from the signal journey from stylus to Phantom Golds. I’m certain the signal coming out of my phono pre-amp is good and the Phantoms are putting out beautiful tone when they have a good source (be it Tidal or my library via Roon or CD through the OPPO deck) … its just the Sonos Connect lobotomy I feel is the last chink in an otherwise decent setup.
$6K (in Australia) is a brutal price to pay to get a signal from the turntable to the network, but if I was looking to do a lot more the DSM would be very nice indeed!
I wanted to point you in the direction of Devialet’s Arch since you say you use Phantoms. Now you’ve spotted it yourself. The Arch is a new product so there are few users, but we know that Phantoms must be running 2.12.x to work with Arch. AFAIK Arch delivers its output directly over the network, wired, wifi or PLC with an undisclosed protocol . It can be a phono pre, line stage or (dual) SPDIF input. It is said to be based on the input stage in Expert amplifiers.Most likely 24/48 since this is the new spec of Phantoms, but this is unknown
Never tried it myself, but you could use a Rasberry Pi with an appropriate HAT to take the analog output of your preamp and convert it into a lossless FLAC stream on the fly. Which you could then add to Roon under 'My Radio Stations".
A bit involved, but it would mean you could control volume and switch to and from it (as an inout source) from within Roon.
That is a good method and I have some albums digitized at 24/48 in my library. Sounds very good. There are some weaknesses though:
Let us say I rip 150 albums. It would take some time to do it even if I use an excellent program like VinylStudio. Then I upgrade my vinyl rig. New player, arm and cartridge. The new kit sounds much better than the old so I should now re-rip the 150 albums I’d prefer to be able to play my vinyl instead of ripping even if the albums require lots of shelf space.
There’s a certain ceremony in listening to vinyl that you don’t get with digital sources (even though I’m taking it through a digital processing phase). The anticipation of the sound of the stylus drop … it has a magic to it.
Think I’m going to try and get my hands on an Arch. From what I understand I can still use my Project Tube pre-amp in line from the turntable on the way to the Arch ADC.
It’d be nice to capture the digital streams from the Arch and the Connect and see how they differ.