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Thread: bluenote 2i feeding Allo Katana DAC?

  1. #1
    Join Date: Aug 2009

    Location: Kent

    Posts: 493
    I'm Twisted.

    Default bluenote 2i feeding Allo Katana DAC?

    Hello

    I'm a bit confused and wondered if anyone can help me get something straight. I do a lot of streaming and have a full bling Allo Katana feeding a power amp. I use picoreplayer on the Katana Pi, which accesses music - both internet streamed and that stored on my Synology NAS via LMS on said NAS, and which also serves as a digital preamp. I control the whole shebang with ipeng. It's great.

    Now, setting aside music on my NAS, I have access to Spotify and Tidal (and Qobuz if I wanted). However it doesn't unfold Tidal MQA and it doesn't access Amazon HD. I'd like to try these because, well, they exist and I am quite bored.

    A Bluenote would seem to do this HD stuff for me. I presume it would slot in, in place of the katana and NAS. But (finally I get to my question) can I bypass the Bluenote DAC to use the Katana DAC to get the benefit of Katana DAC loveliness, or no? And if yes, what software would I need on the Katana Pi?

    Ta
    Simon

    Pi, Allo Katana+Isolator; Longdog 300b; Reiver Fenwicks & Edingdales; Mark Grant G1500; Colin Topps wires; dedicated mains, chair.

    Twitter @siashmore

  2. #2
    Join Date: Feb 2016

    Location: Melksham, Wiltshire

    Posts: 651
    I'm Peter.

    Default

    Iím not familiar with the bluenote 2i streamer but I do have the Allo Katana. Neither will unfold MQA Files, as this relies on the device having an installed hardware chip to fully unfold MQA Files

    Roon will do the first unfold but you will need something like the Mytek Brooklyn DAC (Which does have the necessary hardware) to fully unfold these Files.

    There are of course many other devices that also have the necessary MQA hardware on board but the Katana does not.

    For what itís worth MQA Music Files are not all their cracked up to be and can sometimes sound a little sterile and although I do have a DAC that can play these Files, I find the high res Files from Qobus more realistic / musical.

    Of course, there may be others on the forum with more knowledge than I. Sorry I canít be more helpful and it hasnít really answered your initial question.


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  3. #3
    Join Date: Dec 2017

    Location: Lincolnshire

    Posts: 226
    I'm Martin.

    Default

    Yes, you can use either the internal DAC of the Node or feed a separate DAC, your choice.

  4. #4
    Join Date: Mar 2014

    Location: KY - Scotland

    Posts: 4,631
    I'm Mike.

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    Easier to sell your Katana and buy a new DAC, I can't see anything to suggest that it can be used as an input, and even if you could I'm sure it would be USB in only which the Bluesound Node won't do.

    Have a look at the Topping or SMSL DACs not sure if they do MQA but that's pretty much a waste of time anyway.

    Very few ways of streaming Amazon HD direct as there are so few devices that will play it natively ie: not Airplay or Bluetooth.

    Bluesound is one of the few that will do Amazon HD directly so the easiest solution is to output the BS Node to a separate DAC.

  5. #5
    Join Date: Feb 2016

    Location: Melksham, Wiltshire

    Posts: 651
    I'm Peter.

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by mikeyb View Post
    Easier to sell your Katana and buy a new DAC, I can't see anything to suggest that it can be used as an input, and even if you could I'm sure it would be USB in only which the Bluesound Node won't do.

    Have a look at the Topping or SMSL DACs not sure if they do MQA but that's pretty much a waste of time anyway.

    Very few ways of streaming Amazon HD direct as there are so few devices that will play it natively ie: not Airplay or Bluetooth.

    Bluesound is one of the few that will do Amazon HD directly so the easiest solution is to output the BS Node to a separate DAC.
    You are correct, you cannot input to the Katana from the Node, apart from the fact that the Katana cannot unfold MQA Music Files and is not a certified MQA DAC

    I also agree... MQA is a bit of a waste of time.

    However, I found this on the Bluesound Question & Answers, Which doesnít much help but does answer the question about using an external DAC.

    ..........................................

    When streaming MQA content there are 3 unfolds which must occur to receive fully rendered 192khz/24-bit MQA. The first of these unfolds is handled by the BluOS app and will output up to 96khz/24-bit audio. The next 2 unfolds are handled by the internal DAC of the Node to provide 192khz/24-bit audio. If you have an MQA certified DAC connected to your Node 2i, you can enable this MQA External DAC option to have MQA content pass through the Node 2i untouched and allow your external DAC to handle all 3 of these unfolds. For more information on how MQA works, please see the web page below.

    https://www.mqa.co.uk/how-it-works


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  6. #6
    Join Date: Aug 2009

    Location: Kent

    Posts: 493
    I'm Twisted.

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    Thanks very much for the replies gents, much appreciated. I note the shared view about MQA; maybe I shouldnít see it as a goal worth striving for.
    Simon

    Pi, Allo Katana+Isolator; Longdog 300b; Reiver Fenwicks & Edingdales; Mark Grant G1500; Colin Topps wires; dedicated mains, chair.

    Twitter @siashmore

  7. #7
    Join Date: Feb 2016

    Location: Melksham, Wiltshire

    Posts: 651
    I'm Peter.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ashmore View Post
    Thanks very much for the replies gents, much appreciated. I note the shared view about MQA; maybe I shouldnít see it as a goal worth striving for.
    Just to summarise (not all would agree)

    I use both the Allo Katana (£400) and the Mytek Brooklyn / MicroRendu (£2600) DACís, via ďRoonĒ and to be quite honest, there is very little in SQ between them.

    Thatís how good the Allo Katana is !!! Regardless that it canít unfold MQA Music Files.


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  8. #8
    Join Date: Jan 2010

    Location: Brighton

    Posts: 173
    I'm Matt.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boyse6748 View Post
    I’m not familiar with the bluenote 2i streamer but I do have the Allo Katana. Neither will unfold MQA Files, as this relies on the device having an installed hardware chip to fully unfold MQA File
    The Node 2i when used as a player (analogue out) will fully unfold and play MQA music files.

  9. #9
    Join Date: Feb 2016

    Location: Melksham, Wiltshire

    Posts: 651
    I'm Peter.

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by matt2007 View Post
    The Node 2i when used as a player (analogue out) will fully unfold and play MQA music files.
    Matt, I gathered that some posts ago.... sorry if I was not on the ball about this player. I never doubted it was not a good player!

    Sorry, but Iím not into streamers!! Iím a Roon Man


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