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Getting audio from multiple sources to hi fi speakers

admin_exported

New member
Aug 10, 2019
2,556
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0
Hi! New member here, so I hope this is the right place for this query.

I want to route the audio from a mixture of old and newer equipment to my hi fi speakers. I have a Cyrus 2 amp, digital television, DVD recorder, Freesat box, and a networked (ethernet) Mac Mini. Radio is from the DVD or the Mac. The TV, Freesat box and DVD recorder all have stereo audio connectors. Speakers are currently cheapos - my Spendor BC1s have come to the end of their life and I'm shopping for bigger replacements.

Presumably I need a dedicated audio switch to route the signals, but I'm not sure what I should be buying. All the searches I've done come up with KVM switches, or switching video, not audio. I'm not necessarily looking for a budget solution, I want the best possible sound quality from all sources. It's probably not necessary to connect the TV to a switchbox because reception via aerial is so poor here, so it would be audio from four sources to be routed to the speakers.

I really need some help on how to achieve this, please; would really appreciate links to relevant articles and pointers to what to buy.

Thanks in advance!
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Professorhat...

The supposedly tech-knowledgeable college student next door, said the months-old digital kit wouldn't be compatible with the golden oldie 25-year-old Cyrus amp, which I expected, but I'll ask Cyrus, to make sure.


I was really hoping that there's an amplifier/digital to analogue converter box that would let me connect the digital equipment to the speakers; with the Mac Mini connected I could access the music and video files on my file server. I have 8Tb of space for music since I sold my business last year. I'm having to buy new speakers, my Spendor BC1s have finally died and I want to upgrade from those, so there's no budget for anything apart from what I'm trying to achieve.
 

professorhat

Well-known member
Dec 28, 2007
988
16
18,895
Gotcha - you just need an external DAC - this will accept your digital sources and convert the signal to analogue which can then be fed into your Cyrus amp. How much were you looking to spend?

ÿ
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Would £300 cover it? I want the best quality music from digital radio and TV I can get. I'm willing to forego having the Mini in the system; I really should put the stuff on the server, onto DVDs anyway.

Would a DAC convert VHS to a format I could play on the DVD recorder? I have 500+ VHS files that I'd love to have on DVD but the commercial cost is prohibitive. The budget would stretch for something that would do both jobs.

Cheers.
 

The_Lhc

New member
Oct 16, 2008
1,176
1
0
Amasis: Would £300 cover it? I want the best quality music from digital radio and TV I can get. I'm willing to forego having the Mini in the system; I really should put the stuff on the server, onto DVDs anyway.

Why do you want it on DVD? You've got plenty of storage, use it, DVD is yesterday's technology.

Would a DAC convert VHS to a format I could play on the DVD recorder?

Err, no. A DAC takes digital AUDIO signal and converts it (in real-time, it's not going to store anything) to an analogue audio signal (hence the name) and chucks it out to an amplifier. It won't do anything with video.

I have 500+ VHS files

What does this mean? VHS tapes or VHS transferred to a computer? If the later just write it to DVD-R on the PC, yeah it'll take a while but if you do it yourself you'll only pay for the cost of the DVDs. If they're on tape you'll need a working VHS player, plug it into the DVD recorder (use a scart cable) and record it that way, that will take even longer though.

that I'd love to have on DVD but the commercial cost is prohibitive. The budget would stretch for something that would do both jobs.

There's no such thing.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Sorry! Yeah, VHS tapes. Long time since I thought about those. DVD seems less vulnerable than electronic files, somehow. I have a working VHS player. It doesn't matter how long it takes, I'm retired, I have time for this stuff now. :)

I did see a web page for a D to A converter that did audio, and to VHS to whatever, but it had a firewire connection and that's old technology, too. Apple are abandoning it.

I've seen the Cambridge Audio DAC review, something to think about. Can that cheap in comparison with the competition be good enough? I'll have a chat with some people when I'm auditioning those new speakers next week.

Thanks for your help - much appreciated.
 

professorhat

Well-known member
Dec 28, 2007
988
16
18,895
I think I'm confused now as to what you're wanting to do exactly! The Cambridge Audio DAC will allow you to take a digital optical cable from your Mac Mini, plug it into the DAC and then connect a pair of analogue RCA audio leads from the DAC in to the Cyrus amp. You can then play audio from the Mini Mac through your hi-fi speakers.

I'm not entirely sure what you're trying to do with VHS tapes and DVD - do you want the VHS tapes stored on the Mini Mac or do you want to make DVDs of your VHS tapes?
 

Gerrardasnails

Well-known member
Sep 6, 2007
295
1
18,890
Amasis:
Professorhat...

The supposedly tech-knowledgeable college student next door, said the months-old digital kit wouldn't be compatible with the golden oldie 25-year-old Cyrus amp, which I expected, but I'll ask Cyrus, to make sure.


I was really hoping that there's an amplifier/digital to analogue converter box that would let me connect the digital equipment to the speakers; with the Mac Mini connected I could access the music and video files on my file server. I have 8Tb of space for music since I sold my business last year. I'm having to buy new speakers, my Spendor BC1s have finally died and I want to upgrade from those, so there's no budget for anything apart from what I'm trying to achieve.

You would be better off getting a new amp than buying a DAC. Then, if you are not happy with the sound, you could add a DAC at a later date. You can get a decent amp for £300 and connect your tv, VHS, freesat, mac mini et al to it with rca interconnects.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Snap! I decided overnight that a new amp would be the best way to go; adding that extra layer of processing isn't a good idea, especially for an amp with a limited lifespan. I haven't done any research yet, so thank you for the suggestions, I'll look into those.

I'd be happy with a good secondhand amp, if it came from a reputable supplier and had a decent, say three-month, guarantee. That budget is stretching even more, I see more baked bean dinners in my future.


Many thanks for the advice - I appreciate it.
 

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