I have a stereo set of Devialet Phantoms that are hardwired to my LAN including the Mac Mini and Devialet’s Dialog. Theoretically this should support HiRez transport. However, at present the streaming protocol is AirPlay limiting output to CD quality. Consequently Roon downsamples HiRez music.
Is there a way to define a target in Roon or MIDI-setup to accept higher than CD quality files?
You’ll need to use an intermediate Roon endpoint that has an optical out connection that you can then link directly to your Dialog or one of the Phantoms. I currently use an Auralic Aries Mini but have previously used a SonicOrbiter. Both are capable of feeding your Phantoms with 192Khz 24bit hi res music.
Could I optically connect the Mac Mini to Dialog? Devialet support says that Dialog optical has issues and is limited to CD.
If I connect to one Phantom via optical, how is that one going to communicate with the other Phantom?
You can make a direct optical connection between the Mac and the Dialog or a Phantom but my understanding is that the connection from the Mac is limited to CD quality.
A single optical connection to one Phantom is all you need, it then shares the signal with the other paired device.
Depends on the Mac, AFAIK many can do 192 over mini toslink.
So to be clear, the only way to get Roon audio into the Phantom/Dialog combo is via an endpoint with optical output (I have a Sonic Oribter and a Squeezebox Touch)? And I assume that its PCM only no DSD?
No, that’s not true. Roon plays perfectly into Dialog if you configured it to use AirPlay (both, in Dialog and in Roon/Mac’s audio setting). That’s the ‘easiest’ way. The only disadvantage with this setup is that it only plays CD quality. Which is good enough for most purposes.
If you want to play HiRez files (PCM not DSD), you must go via optical into Dialog and disable Bluetooth. You also need to configure your Mac’s audio respectively.
I guess I wasn’t clear enough: I’m only interested in high resolution audio and the server running Roon is nowhere near where the Phantom system will be. The only link between the room where the server is and the room where the Phantoms would be is either wired or wireless Ethernet. Knowing that, what are my options?
I see. In my understanding a LAN, WLAN connection will make the protocol revert to Airplay with its limitations. Maybe I am wrong, though. Other opinions out there?
Some time ago I used a 15m optical cable to connect my Mac to my music system. Hence, optical is possible also over longer distances and if you hid the cable behind/under the parquet/-finish, it’s even WAF-able.
If you already have a SonicOrbiter connected by ethernet then you can use its toslink optical out to connect directly to your dialog or one of the phantoms (preferable). The SO is seen as a Roon endpoint and can play up to 192Khz 24bit PCM.
AFAIK the Phantoms will only play PCM up to 24/192 anyway so DSD needs to be converted to PCM regardless. If you want to use Roon then the Sonicorbiter would be your best bet via optical. I find the Squeezebox touch a bit sluggish with hi-res. The Devialet Spark software will also play hi res via wireless or ethernet but its very basic.
Cool. That’s what I thought. I was just looking for confirmation. But out of curiosity, why is it preferable to connect the SO to the Phantom rather than to the Dialig?
There’s some known issues about the instability of the optical input on the dialog and some suggestion that it doesn’t support 192KHz as well as the input on the phantoms. I had problems previously when connected to the dialog but now have no issues with the phantom connection (other than initially getting a cable into the socket!).