Torn Between Two Raspberry Pi Options

I’m moving away from a headless Mac Mini and a Sonore/SOtM product is a bit out of my price range (I just spent a lot on new speakers so I’m interested in going budget for a while).

So, I’m considering one of these two directions for use as a dedicated endpoint:

  1. Allo DigiOne Signature

  2. Basic Raspberry Pi board and a USB/SPDF converter such as Schiit Eitr.

Any advice is appreciated.

Are you looking for a RPI with SPDIF coax out?

Take a look at the following articles. They may help you decide.

Yes, coax. I am under the impression that the Allo product is superior to other coax hats but I’m completely open minded so I will check this out.

I can’t comment on other coax hats since I’ve not used them, but the DigiOne is very good and Allo’s measurements are independently verified.

Do you have the DigiOne or the DigiOne Signature?

Maybe the Baby Ambre would also be an option?

I have the Allo DigiOne and the Schiit Eitr. I tried them back and forth and couldn’t really detect any changes in the sound quality at all. You may get some improvement from the DigiOne Signature, but Audio Science Review didn’t find much measurable difference between the DigiOne and the DigiOne Signature.

I have the larger Ambre and it’s fantastic especially using the I2S connection.

There’s a good Dutch (use google translator) review on the Baby Ambre>

you also don’t need extra power supply and all that jazz. just plug and play!

I use a 502Dac hat for coax and aes output. It seems good to me.

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DigiOne, not the Signature.


Review and additional comments on DigiOne Signature vs other options, by a reviewer that I’ve found reliable:

I’ve used another Allo streamer, USBridge, but mainly in a setup (USBridge>Singxer SU-1>I2S>Holo Spring) that I no longer have. At some point I coupled it with an Eitr, solid performance but I prefer the next setup in terms of simplicity and overall quality.

I own a Pi 3+502DAC (single Audiophonics LPS) setup that works well (AES>Soekris dac1541). I’ve compared its S/PDIF output with the Metrum Ambre into Holo Spring (which I no longer own), soundstage/instrument separation were just a tad worse.

If the Baby Ambre gets anywhere near its bigger sibling, it would be a great package, with the advantage over the other Pi options of not needing separate external power supplies,

I have the HiFiBerry DAC + Pro. Bought the kit direct. Great little device.


Keep it simple - they measure well, they’re affordable, and they come up second hand now.

You could look at ‘better’ options but bear in mind even the manufacturer admitted they couldn’t measure an improvement at the analogue output of a system, so the Signature is only ‘subjectively’ better.

I have the standard version. It’s been rock solid - best hifi purchase made. I changed to a linear PSU only because others said it made a difference but I honestly couldn’t detect a benefit.


STD Pi , Digione Roipeee just works

Nuf said

Hey Thomas,

I use Raspberry Pi endpoints exclusively with Roon, and over the past six months I’ve been switching all of my connected DACs from USB to coax or Toslink SPDIF (not for concerns over audio quality; I just have lots of nice SPDIF cables).

I’ve been buying HiFiBerry’s Digi+ Pro exclusively and have been very, very pleased with them. The “Pro” version offers its own on-board clocks as well as galvanic isolation, if those are of concern to you.

I’m sure I’d be just as pleased with the Allo DigiOne if I had gone with that brand to begin with.

I also have one Schiit Eitr unit; I can give my recommendation to it as well, but the cost of one of those units with shipping to Canada far exceeds the cost of a Raspberry Pi 3 B/B+ (with case, SD card and power supply) with a HiFiBerry Digi+.

So far kept the endpoints sensible have experienced a high return on my strategy. The performance is well beyond my expectations. I use an RPI3b+ And Ropieee going to a project S2 Digital endpoint sourcing Adcom GFP 750, Adcom GFA 555MK II, Klipsch KPT456’s. Fantastic!

+1 for the RPI3b+ and Ropieee. im so glad I dumped the USBridge, not sure what all the fuss is about over that device. Ive never had any problems with USB bandwidth on the rPi, I’ve used both gigabit ethernet wired and WiFi, and cant hear any difference. What finally decided it for me is the fact that the USBridge kernel is ancient and doesn’t support the latest DACs (HID and DSD), and may never be updated. The main reason I prefer USB over SPDIF is I get HID control of the volume control right in Roon so my Brooklyn DAC drives my power amp directly. Less boxes FTW.

Im running my RPI3b+ with the Navolabs PoE hat, works a treat. Another wall-wart eliminated.

I have 2 DACs connected to the rPi, and both show up and work perfectly in Roon. Im guessing I could run more. Along with the Brooklyn for the power amp and speakers with room correction convolution, for headphones I have a Little Dot fed by a Topping D10 thats even powered by the rPi USB port. I may try a iDefender on it and inject a LPS to see if it makes any difference. The USBridge wouldn’t even reliably power up the D10 off its special USB port.

Maybe my ears cant tell the difference one USB port to another, for me the functionality wins. Its likely that a quality DAC like the Brooklyn has an excellent USB stage so largely is immune to jitter or noise from the source.

Plus its tiny and $35. win win win.