Hi have a Trinnov ST2-HiFi and using Roon in a dedicated mac mini, connected by USB to a Bekeley Alpha USB, and connecting to the ST2 by AES.
I am now considering moving to a Roon Server setup and need a roon ready network player. I have three options:
- Upgrade the Trinnov ST2 to an Amethyst that has a roon ready network player,
- Buy a Sonore ultraRendu, connected by USB to my Berkeley Alpha USB and them by AES to the Trinnov ST2
- Buy a dCS network bridge connected by AES to the Trinnov AST2.
Would the fact that the Amethyst as an internal network player be an advantage, reducing jitter by avoiding a digital connection? Or would a external network player have advantage due to being a high performance dedicated player?
What do you believe would be the setup with the highest sound quality?
Note that I am not planning to use any of the Amethyst pre-amp features as I am using the digital AES out of the Trinnov to feed a EMM DAC2X and after a Audio Research Reference 5.
Thanks for your help
Asynchronous USB itself doesn’t introduce jitter because there’s no embedded sample clock–that said, clocking it out as AES or S/PDIF does establish a sample clock. The extent to which you have to worry about jitter in that signal depends on what your downstream gear is doing, most importantly the EMM DAC.
Of those three, I’d go with the single-box Amethyst solution. Simpler, less moving pieces.
It’s a shame you can’t slave the Trinnov to the EMM DAC…but I just checked and the EMM DAC2X doesn’t have a wordclock output (the Trinnov Amethyst has an input…).
The option to Upgrade to the Amethyst is the most expensive . Should I understand from you answer it would not make much difference vs using a microRendu or ultraRendu?
Some people may try, but no-one can tell you what it’s going to sound like in your room and how you’ll feel about the sound based on theoreticals. I see no reason to believe that there’s going to be a major SQ difference between the three options. The gear you are considering is all at a pretty high level.
I recommended the single box because it’s the simplest solution. Least moving pieces. Fewer sample clocks. Least opportunity for unexpected interactions. Less potential for unreliability. And it gets you access to the Trinnov’s volume control from Roon, which I don’t think happens in the other scenarios.
I am ready to move forward with the Trinnov Amethist which is Roon ready. I have one question about the volume control.
Is there any loss of quality if I control the the volume from the Roon app, instead of putting the volume fixed and using my AudioResearch preamplifier to control the volume?
Thanks for the help.
That’s not really an area where I can comment–you’re asking whether or not the Amethyst or the AudioResearch has a higher quality volume control, since in neither of your options is Roon doing any work to change the volume of the signal. Having Roon send volume commands to a device doesn’t do anything to degrade quality.
Personally, I’d probably set it up with volume control from Roon because I don’t like having to walk across the room or pick up a separate remote. I’m sure both volume controls are very good in terms of sound quality.
I understand. Thanks for your help
Brian, today I am running a fairly powerful (i,e recent) Mac mini setup simultaneously as a a Server and as a Roon end point. The Mac mini has been modified (it has an externa core audio power supply) and is connected to a Berkeley Alpha USB (to convert USB to AES) and them by AES to the Trinnov ST2.
Since this is a quite high end Mac mini setup, would you expect any sound quality benefit from bringing in a Roon Ready end point (like the Sonore UltraRendu that would substitute the Mac mini and connect to the Berkley Alpha USB). The benefit could be form separating the server and the end point and/or for the Sonore Ultra Rendu being a better end point.
I would go for the Amethyst.I have a Meridian surround setup and bought the ST2Hifi, but exchanged it then to the Amethyst.Reasons are that i cant get digital channel out of the ST"hifi, only analogue.As my speakers have digital inputs and active and…and, my interest was is just to get a digital signal.
Finally i ended up to give the ST2 back and bought the Amethyst.Now the streaming with stereo and Amethyst ROON/TIDAL is much better to my ears as with the Meridian.I don use analogue at all, just read multiple time how good the analogue part is.Important is that you know what/how to adjust the Room-correction and how to handle the(possible) up/downsampling of the music with ROON.
I only can recommend the Amethyst as a wonderful tool to enjoy for music listening.
I would not hassle with other solution as with the Amethyst you have all in and sounds wonderful-means real and live like, no coloring or super zoomed sound, its all of natural harmony.
Try it out with a trained and experienced Trinnov dealer, not just a seller, what have no idea what he is doing. robert