Originally Posted by MichaelJames99
I am 90% watching movies over Direct TV. All 5.1 DD from a Genie receiver that has analog (RCA) stereo out and also has Optical out. It does have an HDMI that is going to the TV.
Question: Would it be better for me to use the stereo out of the Genie to feed my Musical Fidelity X-Can v2 headphone amp and then out to my Grado RS-1's? *or* Use the Coax Digital output to something like a Schiit Bifrost, which I think takes a coax digital in and then to the RCA analogue inputs on the MF X-Can 2 to the Grado's? I want to keep this project under $500..preferable $100-300
Originally Posted by kraken2109
You're basically asking where the best DAC is.
While it is true that you would basically just be comparing the DAC in the Genie to the DAC in the Schiit there is one other factor to consider which I will try to explain.
I have a very similar setup where I use a WD TV Live to stream video from various sources (Netflix, hard drives, etc.), an Oppo blu-ray player and a cable set top box. Since my home theater does not have any HDMI inputs or outputs I have the HDMI output from each of these three devices connected to my HDTV and I have the digital audio output from each of these three devices connected my home theater receiver. Which I, as I said is somewhat similar to how you want to set things up.
Now here's what needs to be considered: the digital audio output from each of these three different devices sends the raw digital audio to the receiver. So if the DVD/video/show that I'm watching has a 5.1 Dolby digital or DTS soundtrack that's what gets sent to the receiver and the receiver then decodes the signal and sends it the speakers. If the DVD/video/show that I'm watching has a stereo PCM soundtrack then that's what gets sent to the receiver. So what I'm trying to say is that the digital audio output from the Genie receiver most likely will need to be send to a device that can decode and play a 5.1 signal, which is something that most stereo DACs, like the Schiit Bifrost, will not decode or play a 5.1 signal.
So what I would do is borrow a stereo DAC similar to the Schiit, and connect the digital audio output of the Genie and see if it works BEFORE I spent any money.
Hope this helps.