Hard to say. The little DAC in the Rpi is a decent DAC.
Probably something like the ProJect or a Topping DAC would make some difference. They would definitely give you some flexibility and some of these DACs have a display. For $400 the S2 and the Topping DACs are very good. Check prices, eBay, etc - you can often find them at a significant discount.
The Yamaha RX-V2085 is an AV amp, so the analog inputs are probably not the most resolving, and that’s assuming it doesn’t digitize it anyway - most AV amps do. The digi+ will output 192kHz/24bit but S/PDIF normally only goes up to 96/24, so it’s rare to find an S/PDIF input that takes above that. And then there’s the argument, can you actually hear a difference with 192/24? My ears can’t.
Combining what Mike and Slim said, I don’t think an external DAC is going to do you much good or make much of a difference. Your AV receiver is operating here as an integrated amp, so you both control the volume and amplify the signal for the speakers. But it almost certainly does that by converting the analog inputs to digital internally, doing some DSP to do the volume control, and then outputting that signal through its internal DAC. So you wind up using the internal DAC even if you also use an external DAC to provide an analog signal as input to the receiver. And you’ve probably got a perfectly adequate DAC in that receiver, too.
Definitely! I am currently bypassing my DAC with an external DAC and it has made some improvements to my listening experience with my headphones. Check out the Denafrips Ares II, highly recommended. Cheers!
This has no headphone out so I assume you are using an external headphone amp. I have a Drop THX AAA 789 hooked up to an Ares II currently (on review) sounds very good but not sure if its a big difference from my Soekris DAM 1021. One thing to note if the XLR outputs run ~+6db hotter than the RCA outputs on dual output (XLR/RCA) DAC’s
Good external DAC’s are highly likely to be better than an internal AVR DAC IMHO.
As @Mike_O_Neill has done, so did I.
The input on my Onkyo that I have used is marked CD.
I assume, because most “non-audiophile” CD drives (such as one that might be connected to a receiver) already have a DAC built in, that by labeling an RCA input as CD there is no internal DAC circuit on that connection.