To Pi or not to Pi there’s the question

I have a Cambridge Audio CXN which is not Roon compatible

I have 2 alternatives

Live with AirPlay and lose any HiRes content

Use my RPi / Roipeee set up to the CXN and keep hi res and RAAT

My hesitancy is the thought that $100 DIY piece of kit can’t be that good, any any extra components in the signal path can’t be good

What should I do ?


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Spend just a little more to get this for your RPi (and add a case):

And get a Belden 1694A cable from here (BNC to RCA):

And thank me later :slight_smile:

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I see a online store in SA that does Allo, I’ll give it a whirl

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Sounds like a plan.

You can still use RoPieee of course, with your existing RPi.

In RoPieee, just select the Allo DigiOne HAT option, for the audio output.

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An RPi and Ropieee with a digital-out HAT sounds great. Definitely better than AirPlay! And since its all digital the impact on your signal is minimal, if any.

It was more like $164 for the Rpi/DigiOne kit if memory serves. But, whatever.

As for the SQ question, let me ask the question this way: would you rather have $100 now or take what’s behind door number 3?

Airplay and similar quality systems work well for 95% of music listeners. And none of those 95% frequent this billboard. You may be able to discern the difference between your alternatives; you may not. What are the odds? No way to determine. What are the odds you’ll be satisficed with Airplay? 100%, but only if you don’t try the “better” stuff.

Everyone here will tell you not to use Airplay. Virtually guaranteed.

Hate Airplay. I definitely can hear the difference.

I have a couple of RPis and also an SMS-200. I definitely can’t hear the difference.

Ah, but if you don’t listen to the difference, you can’t hear the difference.

It’s a kinda “tree falling in the woods” argument. :slight_smile:

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While direct driving a USB DAC that is as good as the CXN will be better, I guess a digital out HAT into the CXN will probably be your next best. Might be worth ensuring you have a quality PSU for the PI.

What do you mean driving direct

I have the CXN Ethernet to my network, I use JRiver as well to feed it but Roon won’t go direct except AirPlay hence the question

I suppose Q 2 is will my JRiver direct beat Roon via RPi


Mike, another decent and not too expensive option…RPI with dietpi, and connect an Audioquest Dragonfly Black to one of the RPI’s usb ports. Connect the DF Black to your amp with a 3.5mm RCA cable. DF Black can do MQA rendering. Jacob.

Hi Jacob

Thanks for the suggestion

I already have a Dragonfly Red which I use for mobile

I want to get the best out of my CXN


:+1:sounds good Mike

Here is the official THANK YOU :sunglasses:

the Allo Digione is winging its way as we “speak” , just a couple of questions as I cant see a formal answer to anywhere.

I have my RPi set up with Roipee , you say I can use that , just as it stands or is there some config to do if so is it in Linux or in Roon ?

I was looking for an idiots guide but I can only find one for DietPi. I can change to DietPi (Sorry @spockfish) if needs be but I would rather change as little as possible of the winning horse. Is it literally plug & play ?

I have found a YouTube video of the case build and hardware bits that looks relatively straightforward even for a fumbler like me

The second question , when running this via CoAx as is my plan, can I still use the USB out as well *I cant see why I’d need that at the moment as I can run either my Cambridge Audio CXN or Audiolab M-DAC through the coax

Just a thought.


Hi Mike, yes go to the ropieee.local config page on your browser. I’m assuming you currently have USB audio setup? If you look at the menu of options where USB audio is selected, even now you will see the Allo DiGiOne option. That’s the one you will select when the DigiOne is installed and ready to go. Nothing else to do in Linux. In Roon you will see the DiGiOne popup in Audio devices. Just enable that and configure as you like.

Yeh the same way you select the DiGiOne above, just select USB audio if you want to use that again later. Very easy to do via the ropieee.local config page.

Thanks again

It should arrive Tues so I’ll report back


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Hi John

Our prices in SouthAfrica are horrendous , we don’t have Amazon (yet) but we have massive import tarriffs on “luxuries”

The Allo Digione was R 1300 , a bit under $100 , not sure how that compares , the case was around $15 . As far as I can find there is only one supplier.

Some things (basics) here are cheap but electronics isn’t one of them many of the brands discussed on the forum simply don’t exist here

The good thing is Beer (alcohol in general) is cheap !! 750ml 5% abv can be as low as R10 (= $0.75) in the cheaper taverns

But never mind the sun shines every day , even in winter …:sunglasses:


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You need cheap beer if you are going to support the Springboks :joy::joy::joy:

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Ouch! :grin:

I am surprised you are not considering buying overseas and shipping to youself. For example ships this RPi 3B+ to South Africa and the shipping and import fees are only $13.86. That means you won’t have to pay any customs charges when you receive it - they will be prepaid. I am in Canada and it works like this here. I shop internationally all the time, mostly US and China.