I2S Roon Bridge?

We need some recommendations for a high quality I2S Roon Bridge for the Nagra HD DAC.

We like the idea of using an Intel NUC, either as a ROCK/Core or as a Bridge. We build and use ROCK/NUCs, so it’s our preference, but I’m not sure how to convert/adapt to I2S.

There’s also some I2S options available, but all of them seem to be HDMI.

Nagra HD DAC: http://www.nagraaudio.com/hd-dac/


Email Jord at info@pinkfaun.com and see if they have adapted their I2S card/cable to Nagra format. They are just pins so the connector on each end doesn’t much matter, it’s the arraignment that is different between those implementing I2S.

Nice DAC, it screams for their 2.16 server.

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Thanks for the recommendation!

We will send him an email. Do you have a relationship with Pink Faun or own their gear? Just curious. I have come across their name/website a few times, but I am not familiar with them.

We appreciate your help!

The Intel NUC is too much of a general purpose machine to make a quality endpoint. There is going to be too much noise generated. I think you are much better off with a more task specific device. Something like an ultraRendu but with I2S out.

I recently had them build me their flagship 2.16x server, otherwise no connection. They are stand-up, do what they say, and build a fantastic machine. I use I2S to a DirectStream DAC.

What exactly is the Nagra format? The two primary methods of delivering i2S are via a HDMI connector or a RJ45 (Ethernet) connector. Pin out differences are confined to polarities mostly. There are excellent USB to i2S bridges out there that will isolate and convert for you so long as the delivery method is known. I use the Hydra Z into a DAC by the same manufacturer so there is no issue with compatibility. I have also used a standard Singxer SU1.

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NUC with an xmos USB to I2S card will do the trick. Look for Singxer F1 card, for example. Latest xcore chip, galvanic isolation, and I2S exposed…

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I think “Nagra’s Format” is RG45/UTP/Ethernet. I am verifying this with Switzerland.

If the Nagra uses an unbalanced RJ45 connection, then chances are a Metrum Acoustics Ambre might work. Worst case, you’d have to specially-craft a UTP cable to get the wiring “just right”.

If, on the other hand, the Nagra uses LVDS (differential) signalling, then this won’t work.

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Thank you! We are verifying the interface with Nagra.

I can get my hands on a Nagra HD DAC, although it’s incomplete at the moment - it lacks a power supply. I’ll see what I can find out from the actual physical unit…

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Apparently Metrum Acoustics uses the M2tech standard, see their “M2tech HiFace EVO” documentation at http://www.m2tech.biz/public/pdf/App001%20Using%20hiFace%20Evo%20I2S%20Output%20-%20PrB.pdf

If i’m informed correctly there are two types of I2S delivery: TTL and LDVS regardless of cable termination (HDMI or others). Pink Faun uses TTL and PS Audio uses LDVS for example. Both could be used simultaneously, but only with a converted cable custom repinned for both.

Hope this helps.

Pink Faun gives you a choice and can be configured for compatibility with specific manufacturers.

Good to know, thanx.

I known this is an old thread but it did not come to a conclusion.

I also would like to use the i2s port of a Nagra DAC I bought used, but I cannot get any info on their pinout or “standard”.

Help will be much appreciated.

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