dac input confusion?

Discussion in 'Digital Sources' started by CT Jim, Apr 15, 2018.

  1. CT Jim

    CT Jim AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Branford, CT. 06405
    I picked up a SMSL sd793 II from a fellow member, which is a headphone amp/dac combo unit. It only has toslink and coax inputs, with headphone out, or RCAs out.
    It appears that I cannot use this particular unit with one of my laptops because it only has usb or a headphone output, ergo it can't connect to the SMSL unit.
    I like how the desktop connects to the headphone amp and sounds gooood!. I guess I'm looking for an analog input headphone amp, with either usb to x input, or RCAs to x input

    Do they make cables such as
    mini headphone jack to either coax or toslink?
    RCAs to coax or toslink?
    How about coax to RCA adaptor?
    toslink to RCA adaptor?
    Can a digital input actually use an analog input?
    Maybe I should get one of those dirt cheap external sound cards so I can use toslink or coax?
    I realize the digital in theory goes as output, and putting in an analog input isn't digital

    I do have a Schiit modi uber 2 but that only gives me toslink, coax or USB-B inputs, but only RCA outputs, so that won't help, although I could use it with the laptop, but then no headphone amp without adding another piece.

    It's getting where I'm pissed about all these combinations, but none are just simple!


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  2. GSS61

    GSS61 Super Member

    There are USB to SPDIF converters with coax and/or toslink output... some of them are pretty inexpensive, too. Just get one that covers the max processing capability of the DAC (24bit/96kHz)
  3. Hipocrates

    Hipocrates Anti-Muppet Subscriber

    Costa Rica
    You want a USB to S/PDIF adapter
  4. PianotunerNJ

    PianotunerNJ Active Member

    Central NJ
    Some laptops will actually put out an optical spdif signal through the headphone/audio out 3.5 mm jack. Sometimes it’s a dual output jack, and they make optical plug adapters to fit in the headphone jack. Check to make sure you don’t have that option first!
    prisoners likes this.
  5. CT Jim

    CT Jim AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Branford, CT. 06405
    I will check into that headphone jack possibility, but it won't help with the SMSL unit.
    I did order one of the converters/adaptor noted above, received it already, and will give it a try on Monday!

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