SMS 200....Is it a good upgrade?

I think i will get a PI on order today ,which model do you suggest ?
What are the other bits i need, case,card PSU ?
Should i order a better PSU for the NUC also(sbooster) ?

I’d have a bit of a read on the forum first.
There is a basic Pi bundle that includes a plastic case, Pi board and power supply.
Next step up is to add a board that clips onto the Pi and adds functions. There are many types, ceans up power, DAC, spdif, reclocks the USB etc.
One of the contentions with the Pi is that the network and USB bus is shared. I would listen first before going off on the improvement trail.

Personally I think adding “better” power supplies to a PC is an example of the placebo effect. If it makes people happy then that’s fine but I’d get everything working first.
Entirely my own opinion.

How about a Allo USBridge ?

I’m also curious about the benefit of going from RPi to an Allo USBridge

Been reading up on the allo seem a little better than the Pi.One box plug and play, virtually everything already set up.
Looking at 2 models USbridge is USB output and Digi one is s/PDIF output.
My 851n will accept both, but i don’t know which is better.USbridge £169…Digione £95

As has been explained before, Cambridge devices are a bit weird USB-wise, so getting more then USB 1 (or 24/96) might depend on which version of Linux you run on the Roon endpoint (i.e, Allo, Sonore, ROCK/Nucleus, etc…) feeding your Cambridge device.

Want to be certain to get better than 24/96, without having to worry about Linux drivers ? Either use SPDIF in (so, to answer your question above, a DigiOne, Ropieee is good with those if you’re confident enough to install your own system), or, if you want USB, use a computer with support from Cambridge as an endpoint.

The USB issues include the USBridge AFAIK, and it isn’t really Allo’s (or Roon’s, or DietPi’s, or Volumio’s) fault, it’s mostly that Cambridge doesn’t seem to have taken that most streamers run Linux into account at the time they built their streamer line: all the other devices you’ve mentioned in your previous posts run some flavor of it, and so you’d have to be careful with any and all of them to make sure they have the driver that’ll allow them to make use of your Cambridge device’s full capability.

The advantage of the DigiOne is you can try USB off the Raspberry board, and see if that connects at USB 2 speeds which are needed for >96khz audio. This said, do keep in mind any result will be specific to your distro (or “flavor”) of the system - so if you get >96khz from Ropieee over USB, you won’t necessarily get it from DietPi, and vice-versa, and no, Ropieee doesn’t run on the USBridge.

All i need is a simple plug and play unit between my NUC/ROCK that will play hi def files and improve the NUCS sound.I don’t want to be messing about with extra add ons, different power supplies ,needing extra drivers and software etc.Which reading up on the Pi i will have to do.The 851n will take all the digital inputs.


I did see that earlier and tried the USB 1/2,but because im using NUC/ROCK i dont get an USB output from the NUC.
I can run a HD direct into the 851 and get hi res.
I don’t want to loose the 851 screen either which i do with certain layouts


Building a pi is simple, especially if you use ropieee as the os. If you built your own NUC with ROCK, I would say it is easier.

There are step by step instructions on the ropieee site and on this forum. It’s as close to plug and play as you can get.

Harry @spockfish did a great job with ropieee to make it simple to use, much easier than volumio and dietpi, and he is regularly on this forum helping to get DAC’s working.

The one thing about going with Allo is that they will flash the SD card for you, but you then have to configure the OS.

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Then the short answer is probably “network streamer from Allo”. Pre-built, software comes installed, your pick of DigiOne regular or Signature. Beyond plugging a couple of cables in and reading the manual, it’s about as simple as it gets. If you ask me, any other streamer with SPDIF out will work just as well, those happen to not be too expensive, and if you’d like more of a white-glove treatement, there’s a whole range of options from Roon partners.

Improving on ROCKs sound (beyond playing back HiDef) verges on religious belief, so I’ll stay out of it. Same applies with PSUs, so apart from mentioning the iFi 5v offering as likely a good way to allay audiophilia nervosa at a reasonable price, I’ll let the LPS / battery / windmill folks evangelise to their hearts content.

If by this you mean HiDef and “cover art display” or “playback info display”, that’s not going to happen AFAIK, unless Cambridge makes the 851n into a Roon endpoint, which is unlikely.

If you really want a display for your streamer, you can get a RapTouch from Audiophonics, which is a box, a DigiOne (non-signature, though I’m sure there’ll be a way to get the signature in there), and a screen. You’ll want to install Ropieee on that if they can’t do it for you.

So if I go the DigiOne route I need a PI aswell ?
Both mounted in some form of box, then I can try USB out or spdif /
Am I correct ?

What kit do I need to buy to go this route,Pi ?


If you get the DigiOne player / DigiOne Signature player from Allo (or the AudioPhonics bundle with the screen, depending on how badly you want artwork display), the Pi comes bundled.

If you get the bundles, you’ll have everything you need, it’s pretty much plug and play.

If you want to change the operating system to Ropieee, it involves unplugging your device, and replacing a memory card (if you have two of those, you can switch between the bundled operating system and others relatively easily, it essentially involves copying the system you want over to the spare card).

You are correct that having a HAT doesn’t kill USB out on the “underlying” raspberry. This said, there’s issues with the way USB is implemented (which is why people get USBridges), but the worse that can happen is being disappointed with how USB from a Pi sounds, or finding the DigiOne redundant.

You can also get a Pi separately, and later buy the HATs (so the SPDIF soundcards) from Allo, along with a case. If I’m not mistaken, Allo don’t have a metal case for the DigiOne signature yet, but they do have one for the regular DigiOne (and that’ll fit both the Pi and the DigiOne).

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Rather buy from the UK
Digione £95
Case £15
Would this be all I need ?

Nope you need the pi as well. If you want it wireless then go for pi3 b+

Where can i buy the bundle from in the UK ?
With everything i need and installed

And this

Couldn’t i just buy a usbridge

If you want to be frustrated with it then yes. The Cambridge audio streamers have been mentioned many times on this forum as not working well with Linux USB endpoints so your best sticking with spdif.

Dont be put off assembling it yourself it’s easy.