Bryston BP 17 Cubed with DAC card fed by Mac mini via Optical

I hope someone can help…

I have Roon server set up on my Mac mini. I recently got my BP 17 upgraded with the DAC card which gives the preamp two optical inputs and two coax inputs.

Roon sees my Mac mini as “Connected to Core. These devices are connected to your Core directly.” Two options are available: System Output and CoreAudio. I enabled CoreAudio and Roon seems to be playing, my optical cable glows red, but I get no sound out of my speakers!

Do I also need a digital player like a BDP-1 or something of the sort?

bottom right corner what is the number above speaker should be 100? Before you turn up turn down your preamp
In device setup I select fixed volume prefering to adjust volume with my preamp.

Other than the volume setting in Roon and on the BP-17^3 preamp, you might want to double-check the correct input is selected on the BP-17^3. You could also try using “System Output” to see if that works as a troubleshooting step.

I have it set to fixed volume in Roon and trying to control volume with BP-17^3.

I added System Output but that one won’t always play - the blue progress bar just quickly rolls back and forth as if loading, takes forever if it even plays but if/when it does, it never sounds through the speakers though Roon says it’s playing.

Do you have another device with optical output in house? You seem to have light. Some bluray players might use optical.

I am sure you would have tried reseating cables at both ends.
Power cycle MAC then Power cycle preamp? Careful of volume while rebooting.

I’ve done many instances of reseating cables, power down and up cycles of all equipment. My Bluray player is already connected via one of the coax inputs and that works fine…of course that is not Roon. I do have a TV that I will connect tomorrow when I get another Toslink cable, plus a new mini Toslink to Toslink for the Mac in case it’s the cable.

I’m worried it could be my Mac…it is a mid 2011, so just about ten years old! I didn’t get sound even trying to play from iTunes.

I’ll up date again tomorrow afternoon/evening.

I have a Mac Mini (Late 2012) i5
For the MAC-DIGI connection In device setup under advanced, limit it to 24bit 96khz for PCM that would be near bottom of screen. This is limit of Toslink if I remember correctly. Make sure under multi channel mixing downmix as needed is chosen. I have Exclusive mode selected so I don’t hear noises from MAC.

I had trouble until I did away with HDMI port out of MAC, I used Mini Display port (now called Thunderbolt) to HDMI cable I purchased at computer store. Ask for Mini-Display Port to HDMI cable this Mac only supports 1080p. Sure I have had this before with trying to connect Mac to Optical port on Self Powered speakers. I did confirm in Sound Preferences that I had both HDMI and Digital options. Assuming Mac detects this.

A very handy app is call Mactracker

If a DAC doesn’t like something it often needs to be power cycled before a change can take affect so don’t eliminate that.

I’ve gotten these settings in, plus I’ve changed the midi Audio settings in the Mac to 96k, 2 ch 24 bit…most likely that was the culprit!

I won’t be able to test it until tomorrow though.

Thank you all. I will report.

Check the upsampling rate. Try shutting off Roon DSP. SPDIF coax is limited to 24/192 and Toslink 24/96 or 24/176.4.

I setup just per your screenshots, and restarted mac, powered down and powered up Preamp / DAC…still no sound.

DSP was not on- no upsampling, no filters, nothing.

What’s the “output device” setting on your Mac mini?

I noticed you mentioned that you are selecting the Mac Digital connection and using its Device Setup otherwise how could you confirm your bit rate. Did you check under volume preferences to see if you had both a digital connection and HDMI?

Go system preferences. Click on speaker (volume) near bottom of window that pops up make sure show volume control in menu bar is checked. you need to plug digital jack into port with headphones.
Then left click over speaker icon on menu bar make sure Digital out is there. As mentioned I could not get it working while connected HDMI. Started working when I used Mini DP to HDMI cable. The Mini Dp end would plug into mac. Have you connected the TV with another optical cable?

There is no TV plugged in to the Mac mini. HDMI and all other video ports are unplugged.

The volume icon is grayed out. I unplugged the optical cable and plugged in a headphone…the output device changes from digital to analog, then I plug it back it and goes back to grayed out but I still don’t get any sound through Roon. I might have to move my Macbook, or iMac to confirm that my mini is the culprit.

I will report.

OK, I moved my iMac over to the stereo and plugged the optical cable into the combo headphone/optical jack…the Macbook only has headphone!

The settings on the iMac are 2-ch 24 bit 44.1k and I was able to play and hear 16/44 - 24/96 through the finder with no problem; same cable, same optical input on the preamp.

I tried replicating the settings on the mini and nothing. At this point, I’m assuming there is something wrong with the optical out on the mini. What I didn’t try and should before I go and replace my mini, is leave the mini on because that is where the Roon Core and server live, then try play from Roon on my iMac…then I’ll know for sure it’s my mini and not some missing setting.

I succesully played Roon through the optical out of my iMac…it’s my mini.

Thank you all for taking the time to help me figure it out!

Definitely not the BP17 cubed then which is why I asked about the TV connection. To see if you had already tested preamps DAC.

Do you have a monitor or TV connected to the Mac Mini?

No, nothing connected to the mini except the optical cable and an external usb hard drive.