That may be a tall order. I checked a couple of low budget DACs that do MQA, but they don’t have a toslink connector. Of course there may be one, but the $400 budget will limit your selection. You may consider something like the meridian explorer 2 DAC and a toslink to USB or toslink to SPDIF converter.
hi, the source is Tidal and FLAC, transmitted over WiFi to multiple Airport Expresses, which feature an mini-Toslink output.
They currently go via Toslink into Fiio D03 DACs and then to the integrated amps via RCA.
I’m looking to improve the DAC section of the chain. My goal is a more 3D soundstage. The Fiio DAC sounds great in tone, rhythm and separation. But it doesn’t have the depth/texture I desire. Budget is $200-$400
Does the airport express also have the option to output via ethernet and even USB? This will remove your toslink limitation. Toslink is not particularly desirable by the way. Something like the Meridian Explorer 2 can accept a USB signal from the Airport if the airport can use the USB port to output audio. Usually hifi via ethernet is more desirable. A previous poster mentioned Bluesound Node 2. This is a killer option for you. Forget toslink, go ethernet, and use the Bluesound. The version 2 is $500 new. You just have to find a deal on one, which seems possible. Bluesound has a great control app for android and iOS so you can control with any device and stream Tidal, etc.
It looks like the Mytek Liberty DAC should do it, it has an optical input and says it has a hardware MQA decoder (and a light on the front that will light up when MQA is being decoded).
The manual doesn't explicitly state MQA decoding via optical, but it doesn't say it doesn't (like the Pro-ject DAC).
The ifi SPDIF iPurifier is once such reclocker. It supports 24/192 even through its optical connection and is bit perfect.
The Wyred 4 Sound Remedy Reclocker is another, however, it reclocks everything to 24/96.
I found a high-quality glass optical cable a necessity to pass higher than 24/96. I’ve used Lifatec glass Toslink cables for years. Nice cables.
The Bluesound Node 2 can indeed pass an MQA signal via optical. From their website:
After digging around iFi, I think that the iOne DAC actually does everything I’m looking for $200. Toslink Optical with MQA unfolding. Their input is a Hybrid Toslink/Coaxial connection, which is really slick, and looks like it just has coaxial! They should make this more clear! I sent them an email to confirm.
Anybody hear this little box?
Heard back from iFi - unfortunately MQA does not unfold through Toslink or Coaxial. Apparently the "MQA Renderer", which is engine these smaller/mobile DACs use to unfold MQA, only works through USB. So that's why all the AQ, Pro-ject, and iFi DACs that do MQA can only do it through USB connection.
So back to other idea - anyone have a Toslink-to-USB Converter?