DAC/Streamer alternative to OPPO Sonica DAC!!! HELP !!!!

It has been about one year that I been looking for a decent DAC to play FLAC files in my current system and remove the noise currently coming from my receiver, I only have one room available in the house to use it and it is shared for both movie watching, playing games and listening to music.

I mostly listen to video game soundtracks and similar instrumental soundtracks with occasional classic rock and pop, I have Focal Chorus 836V running on dual Parasound A23 in mono, but my current Onkyo receiver has some annoying noise floor, so whenever I plan to listen to music for a while I unplug all the HT cables and run some balanced XLR from my computer DAC directly to the amplifier which solves 99% of any issues, its not a particularly good DAC but good enough considering the scenario, SMSL SU-8.

Due to the hassle of switching cables all the time, I some times try to ignore the quality and just listen to music from my HT receiver which makes it really unpleasant experience, so I started looking for alternatives but never found a good price for my purpose.

I am looking for a DAC with some streaming capabilities, that features an analog auxiliar input or some sort of bypass feature, the best solution I was able to find was the OPPO Sonica DAC which unfortunately got discontinued, it does not have the best interface or streaming app but it does all and features an aux-in with HT bypass, however, it's really hard to find one and most times it's over the 800USD MSR.

another alternative is the miniDSP SHD with features a built-in Volumio player, balanced analog inputs with room correction software which I don't plan to use and costing 1200usd is a bit on the pricier side.

a great choice with too many compromises would be Benchmark DAC3 featuring an aux-in and an amazing DAC but I would need to a quality streamer to pair with it and it would cost me over 2000usd.

Therefore I am asking for the community suggestion to have this streamer DAC combo with aux-in for my home theater.

any suggestions are welcomed.

have a great day and stay safe.


Showing 1 response by nekoaudio

I'm afraid I don't have a particularly good recommendation within what I think your budget is, but one thing to be aware of with the SHD products is you cannot input or output above (it's notion of) 0dBFS on either analog or digital I/O otherwise it will clip. This may be a problem if you are running your home theater receiver analog outputs to the SHD.