Originally Posted by pigmode
*I* said USB input. Perhaps not clearly enough because the inference was (and I may very well be wrong) to the fact that these components have integrated dacs? Really the point is the Offramp occupies a different point in the audio chain than all-in-one
Actually, several companies are starting to offer dedicated PC derived music servers that have USB outputs designed to be used with USB DACs, such as the Auraliti PK90USB and the Sonore servers. As USB audio continues to improve, this will likely become more common as well implemented USB can outperform just about any sound card.
I'm not a fortune teller, but I don't think any single technology or method will take over and eliminate others from the market place. A system like the Sooloos doesn't appeal to me, but for some it's perfect. That's one way to go. Another is to have remote network attached storage, and something like the PS Audio DAC with its network bridge. A few other companies are exploring that direction as well. Then there's servers from companies like Linn, Naim, and Bladelius, or you can buy something like a Mach 2 Music Mini, or you can build your own computer and run a Linux build designed for audio use, or Windows and JPlay. I don't think any choice is right or wrong, it's what works for the individual.
This is what's so nice about digital storage and FLAC or wave files. With SACD and DVD-A, the content companies could dictate to the manufacturers what kind of outputs were allowed, and where and how you could listen to the music you own. Not anymore.
Edited by DaveBSC - 1/30/12 at 8:23pm