Squeezebox Touch (EDO) + Meridian Explorer2 : Connection failure

As mentioned in more detail on the (Meridian) HitchHikers website here I’m having trouble with the following combination, which others have apparently had success with :-

Roon (core) -> LAN (wired) -> Squeezebox Touch (EDO plugin installed) -> USB out -> Meridian Explorer2

The idea, believe it or not, is to get MQA into my Meridian 861v8 processor, in a slightly degraded form, while waiting for Meridian to release the necessary hardware / software update…

When I play normal FLAC files, with “Digital out” or “Digital + Analogue out” selected on the SBT, all is well. I have 3 SBT’s on my network, and they all play perfectly like this - independently or grouped - which incidentally just goes to show @Not_Roon what a phenomenal & flexible music player Roon really is !
All SBTs are running firmware 7.8.0-r16754 and they all have the EDO plugin installed.

When the Explorer2 is (initially) connected, nothing happens - which is fine. Go into the SBT menu & now it shows an option under Digital outputs for Explorer2 : the device has been recognised.
Select Explorer2 & the SBT reboots. Still connected to the Roon database, (now) playing has stopped - which is also fine / reasonable behaviour after a reboot.
Press play on Roon or on the SBT & I get :-

Transport : Playback has failed due to unexpected error communicating with Audio device.
I also see that - if there’s a queue or playlist - the list is rapidly / instantly run through to the last track. No sound, and then it stops.

  • If the 3 SBTs are grouped together, they all fail as one.
  • If the “problem” SBT is isolated / separated, the other 2 will play either independently or grouped together.
  • Disconnecting the Explorer2 & resetting to Digi / Digi + Analogue out gets me back to a “healthy” condition.
  • Trying this experiment on the other 2 SBTs independently causes the same result (isn’t that almost the definition of insanity ?!). Therefore it’s not that one particular SBT that’s causing the problem.
  • Connecting the Explorer2 directly to a PC or Surface3Pro results in immediate success with normal FLAC and also with MQA files (which are decoded in all their green / blue LED glory) - so it’s not the Explorer2.
  • Turning Roon’s Squeezebox support off, re-connecting & re-trying generates the same failed outcome.
  • Disabling / removing the SBT endpoints & trying almost any other combination results in the same failed outcome.

Has anyone else had success in getting an output from the Explorer2 when a SBT was in the chain ? How did you do it - specifically ?
I have only connected the Explorer2 to headphones (Etymotic earphones actually) in order to check if there’s an output. Would connecting the line-out make any difference ?

Hopefully someone can help with a solution, or idea, or spot my schoolboy-error… :+1:

This connection will not work in my opinion. EDO works only with digital converters like M2Tech hiFace (powered by SBT), but not USB DACs. I tried some time ago DragonFly, and it wasn’t work with my SBT. You can modify digital signal to SPDIF with some converters or, of course, chaining yours SBT with power DAC (yes, power DACs, powered via USB not work with EDO like I sad).

I use M2Tech hiFace 2 converter via USB in SBT without any problems, for me this is much better option (SQ) than connection to DAC via USB. SPDIF sounds better (rDAC).

I use a dragonfly with my SB Touch. You need a high speed hub and a little code to adjust the volume, if you really need to. I really like the combination. I have it running with Roon now.

I have the same problem with SB Touch and Meridian Director while using USB- “Transport : Playback has failed due to unexpected error communicating with Audio device” (and it burns through the playlist)- although I have the benefit of a second digital DAC connection . The issue only occurs when using the USB interface. If I use the S/PDIF interface to connect the two - it plays 24bit /96khz without a problem but down-samples to 96khz anything higher (The Director can otherwise natively play 24bit /192khz). I haven’t bothered to try the Digital Coax as I suspect similar results to the S/PDIF - which, if I recall correctly, is expected behavior of the SB Touch. I guess those results shouldn’t be surprising.

For whatever that’s worth.