Help settle a streaming argument!

This is a SQ argument and is as follows-  I argue if you connect your streamer to an outboard DAC the streamer does not matter it’s just serving the music to the outboard DAC to do the work.  Therefore, buy a basic streamer.  The other is that you need to buy a top quality streamer and DAC to get great SQ. 

I liken it to cd players or the more pretentious cd transport argument- if the intent is to connect to outboard DAC the cd player doesn’t matter the outboard DAC DOES!

features and functionality aside!  Thoughts…..


Do you really think all those folks are fooling themselves into thinking they’re hearing something better

@soix well actually yes, if they didn’t hear humming or cracking sounds with original streamer. Do you really think none of those folks were fooling themselves?  Hey maybe you are correct, but based on evidence presented to me, most streamers have identical SQ. I need more than “He said, she said” to convince me otherwise.

curious why you would think we would fool ourselves...though certainly, if you hear no difference, so be it - you save a lot of money...

@desktopguy  The analogy was about what's upstream of the DAC, irrespective of DAC type. In other words, not about the DAC.

I have been really happy with both R2R and Delta/Sigma DACs. Currently using Delta/Sigma.

I have had 4 streamers and 3 of them are as it gets.

- Sonore microRendu

-Sonore OptcalRendu using fibre

- Lumin X1 using fibre and testing the streamer section only

- PlayBack Designs Streamer-IF (using SPDIF for now, once I get a PDB Dream DAC I will use the fibre output of the streamer)

None of these 4 streamers sound the same. The microRendu is way behind in terms of sound quality to the other 3. I believe the reason is analog noise traversing the streamer from the Ethernet and then through USB into the DAC.

The surprise for me was how good the Streamer-IF sounds. It is good as the Lumin X1 and the Sonore OpticalRendu. I think the reason is that there must be a fibre wire inside the Streamer-IF that both the Fibre and SPDIF outputs use.

Listen to a stream that uses Fibre and one that does not. It should be very easy to hear a difference, even on a good network.