This seems like a good place for people to share their experiences of using Roon 2.0 and Arc on DAPs. The devs have asked for feedback….!
Maybe people can post their experiences of DAP usage here and the OP will get the feedback he requires to choose his DAP!
I’m going to kick off with iBasso DX240, a fantastic sounding DAP with good Wi-Fi and Android 9, and native support of hi-res, so should be compatible with Arc and Roon 2.0.
The DAP sounds much clearer and more spacious than my other headphone rig (RPi and Allo Boss to Schiit Valhalla), and it has taken top spot for late night headphone listening. The problem I have always had with it is slightly converse to what other people struggle with with Roon over Android. The DAP reports to Roon the default output is 192/24 so my ROCK core coverts all music to this very high sample rate before RAAT streaming. Surprisingly (and I believe to keep things simple for Android users) there is no way to adjust this. My home network just cannot support this bandwidth so the songs always skip/crash/report as loading slowly after a bit. Essentially, Roon is unable to run on this DAP.
So I was quite excited to see how Arc might work. This does things slightly differently. The music is streamed in its original format (or can be downsampled to CD format or lower before it is streamed) so bandwidth is less of an issue. Once the signal arrives to the DAP I believe it is upsampled by the Arc software to 192/24, as reported by the DAC to Arc. At least, that’s what the signal path says. I was hopeful therefore I could actually use Arc in the home situation to use my DAP to play my Roon library……
Alas it was not to be….after a successful install of Arc on the DAP, I attempted to download some local files, which worked until I tried to play them -“playback error”. I then tried playing other music on my core and Qobuz. I got through about 10 secs of a song before Arc crashed. After that, every time I try to play a song Arc crashes.
So, no the iBasso DX240 is not ready for Arc yet. And incredibly annoyingly, it remains useless for Roon. Now, if Arc actually worked on this Android 9 DAP or there was some way to prevent the core up sampling to 192 when using Roon Remote, that would be handy…. And surely this can’t be difficult to implement….?!
UPDATE: persevered with Arc - updated the App, restarted my core, reset Arc. Now it seems to be working great. Not tried downloading anything yet. Currently streaming a 44.1/24 track, which then gets upsampled on the DAP to 192/24. Sounds really good. Finally a way to use Roon on my DAP. Delighted!