ayre codex will work with any of a number of dedicated streamers... need Toslink or USB in though... no coax RCA or BNC
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The Zen mini mk 2 only has USB out. I also assumed it would work when I bought a used Codex. But I am having problems. I thought I had found the solution when I reset the latency of the Innuos to normal instead of low, but still have USB communication loss before I can finish one movement of a classical work.I am now using a very basic USB cable in place of the Straight Wire USB-Link, and it has lasted 90'.
I stlll would like to hear from any users with actual experience.
Ryan Berry suggested I try a very basic USB cable in place of the Wire World USB-Link cable I had bought from Schiit. I used the very basic 6' cable in the Codex box which had never been unwrapped. This solved the communication problem with the Innuos, and I was even able to go back to the low latency setting. He said using a USB upgrade cable is hit or miss.For those who have had some issues with USB communications, it might be worth a retry to go basic.A basic design feature of the Ayre USB DACs is the asynchronous Streamlength USB input.
Updating this thread...I did get the Innuos Zen mimi mk2 to work with the Ayre Codex. After the Innuos 1.4.6 firmware update the USB connection appeared to be less touchy and all cables worked through the USB 2.0 jack.I sent the Codex back to Ayre to resolve several other problems, which they remedied under warranty. When it returned, it would not work at all from the USB 2.0 jack of the Mini, but happily did work on the USB 3.0 output.Happy with the sound, I was able to find a used Innuos Zen mk 2. Unfortunately it does not link at all with the Codex. Not with any cable I have, nor at either latency setting. The Zen mk 2 has only one USB output, no Toslink. The Zen does link correctly with the USB input on my Oppo 105, and through a Schiit Eitr into a Theta Gen Va. The sound of the Zen is better than the Zen mini.I have been in touch with both Ayre and Innuos. interestingly, both inquired as to whether the problem was the same with a generic USB cable.(the answer is same problem). The only special cable I have is a Straight Wire USB Link, which is not exotic, simply made with "better" materials.Since the Zen mini mk ii still works into the Codex (but only thru the USB 3.0 jack), and since it was just recently serviced by Ayre, they maintain it is operating correctly. They have communicated with Innuos, confimed their USB input is "class 2 compliant", and offered to work with them to resolve this type of issue. In talking further with them about cables, they confirm that because their input is asychronous, with 2-way communication, there is a requirement for high speed data transfer.The Codex does need the 5V power, and they suggested the Cardas Hi-Speed USB cable. This is a dual cable, but with only one A input plug.Not wanting to spend $400 on a possible solution, I have found a Pangea XL USB dual cable with seperate A plugs for power and data (I plan to put the power plug into the backup jack on the Zen).To summarize, it appears that some USB connections can be very cable sensitive.
It is a shame that such difficulties can arise between equipment brands, for which each manufacturer has a reputation for attention to good sound.If any Audiogoners have direct experience with this type of problem, I would appreciate their information.
Interesting suggestion, so I looked them up. Don't think it would help. My understanding is that the asychronous USB input on the Ayre depends on the clock in the Ayre dac to control the timing by calling for the data from the server to keep a buffer full. This means there is a 2-way transfer of data, which seems to be the disturbing difference. The Zen also seems to have a 2GB RAM cache, storing the data before transfer, which may be complicating the situation. Its beyond me. I can't believe I'm the only one trying to use an Innuos server with a Codex.