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Echo Dot vs. Chromecast Audio for simple application

Discussion in 'Digital Sources' started by gprels, Sep 20, 2018.

  1. gprels

    gprels AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    48
    Sometimes, I connect my phone to my amp via a 3.5mm-to-RCA cable and play things on Spotify. I'm not much of an audiophile, so I don't really care about other sources at this time. I don't want to have my phone tied to the amp whenever I do this.

    Would there be any real difference between a Chromecast Audio connected to the Aux via the same cable I'm using and the Echo Dot connected in the same way in terms of sound? I was reading this http://blog.petersobot.com/echo-dot-vs-chromecast-audio-an-evaluation and thought it was interesting. Would it come down to voice control versus controlling via my phone?
     

     

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  2. uofmtiger

    uofmtiger Super Member

    Messages:
    4,838
    Location:
    Memphis
    The Chromecast Audio can send out a digital signal, so it can be used with any DAC. With the Echo Dot, you only get analog out and my guess is that there are a lot of DACs that surpass it. That being said, unless you pair the CA with a Google Home device, you won't get the simplicity of just telling the Echo Dot what you want to hear and having it play.
     
  3. chicks

    chicks Lunatic Member

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    17,990
    Location:
    The Big Valley, CA
  4. gprels

    gprels AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    48
    Hmm, I hadn't heard about that yet. The Echo Input seems interesting, it'd be smaller and less noticeable than a Dot.
     
  5. chicks

    chicks Lunatic Member

    Messages:
    17,990
    Location:
    The Big Valley, CA
    Missed that one, so many other new toys. Yeah, that’s a great little device.
     
  6. transmaster

    transmaster AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    8,307
    Location:
    Cheyenne, Wyoming
    I have Chromcast, Google Home assistant, a coupe of Echo Dots, and a Amazon firestick. By comparison the Google system is a Dog as it is presently configured. Compared to the Apple TV, the Amazon Firestick, and the Roku Chromcast is worthless. I can cast from my iPod to the Chromcast, but my Yamaha has Apple Airplay, and the Echo Dot hooks up to the Yamaha via Bluetooth. The Google Home Assistant, I have the small one like the Echo, it is very good with google functionality like data base questions, Google map stuff but it does not have Bluetooth, nor does it have a 3.5mm audio out like the Echo. My advice get the Amazon Echo Dot.
     

     

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  7. Flhrich

    Flhrich AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    45
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    Well, I wouldn't call Chromecast a dog. It depends on the system you have setup. I have CA system, that I created, I bought pieces that works together. I can have my whole house playing music, and it's seemless from room to room, with CA. Try doing that with dot, maybe this new update will solve that. Each system has it's plus and minus, system synergy is key. If you're starting new, CA, is a low cost solution that's not tide to one ecosystem.
     
    OutlawSun, GChief and BDylanThomas like this.
  8. Wildcat

    Wildcat Audio Sommelier

    Messages:
    5,105
    Location:
    MI, US
    The Chromecast Audio (CCA) is handy--I have three of them in the house at the moment. I don't consider them to be "audiophile" devices but hey, they serve a purpose for my background music and are easy enough for anyone to use in the house. They also have the feature where you can enable higher-quality "Full dynamic range" and stream lossless files to it. So it is more flexible than the Echo. I also found it handy to attach to my Oppo 105 with a digital optical cable, when I just want to play background music. Again, not critical listening, so it is what it is. Using Google Home will give voice control through a phone, or like we use here, a Google Home Mini in the kitchen so that I can do things when my hands are covered in food.
     
  9. uofmtiger

    uofmtiger Super Member

    Messages:
    4,838
    Location:
    Memphis
    From just a sound quality perspective, the Chromecast Audio's digital output and ability to play lossless (up to 24/96 if my memory serves) puts it in another league. If your focus is on convenience at a low price point, the Dot's Bluetooth, Analog out, and ability to take voice commands is something to consider.
     
  10. transmaster

    transmaster AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    8,307
    Location:
    Cheyenne, Wyoming
    Finally taking the time to get into the Google Home Assistant/Chromcast. It does not seem to integrate with the Chromcast as well Echo does with the Amazon Firestick. By itself it does have a little better built in speaker but both of My Echo Dot’s are plugged into external audio amp’s and much better speakers something I cannot do with the Home Assistant.

    What would be interesting is to compare all of this with the much more sophisticated, and expensive Apple HomePod.
     
  11. uofmtiger

    uofmtiger Super Member

    Messages:
    4,838
    Location:
    Memphis
    The combination of a Chromecast Audio with a Google Home Mini has the advantage of putting the microphone on the Mini next to your listening location and plugging the CA in across the room. This is beneficial when compared to screaming so that the Dot across the room can hear you.

    My personal preference is for HomePod and AirPlay 2 devices, but that can get expensive if you want to spread them around the house. Amazon is a much cheaper alternative. Personally, I prefer Amazon to Google, so I have Dots around the house. I have the Google Mini and CA mainly out of curiosity.
     

     

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  12. transmaster

    transmaster AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    8,307
    Location:
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    Ditto here I was curious about the Google mini, and Chromcast. Now I know why the Echo system rules.
     
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  13. chicks

    chicks Lunatic Member

    Messages:
    17,990
    Location:
    The Big Valley, CA
    This little Insignia speaker is on sale for just $20 right now. Perfect for the nightstand, with clock display. Google voice assistant built in. Can be set to cast to any Chromecast device, including CCA. USB port to charge your phone. Damn nice device for the money.

    https://www.insigniaproducts.com/pdp/NS-CSPGASP-B/5865801
     
  14. +48V

    +48V hi-fi or die

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    2,837
    Location:
    Tega Cay
    $99.99 now. :idea:
     
  15. OutlawSun

    OutlawSun Active Member

    Messages:
    352
    Location:
    Dallas, Texas
    I'm currently using a chromecast audio it works perfectly fine for my music listening purposes I toggled it to hifi output in the settings and run it with spotify. It's nice to be able to just lay on the couch and skip around. I tend to leave it unplugged when not in use though as it can hog bandwidth after a while. I'm sure there's some way better options for network streaming but it's a good one on a budget for now. Especially considering I snagged it for 17 bucks because Target had them on clearance.

    Edit: Also I appreciate that the Chromcast audio is extremely small and can be placed pretty discreetly.
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2018
  16. chicks

    chicks Lunatic Member

    Messages:
    17,990
    Location:
    The Big Valley, CA
    Wow. That sale didn’t last long! I ordered online yesterday for local store pickup. I noticed the shelves had been cleared of them, and there were dozens waiting to be picked up. Ya snooze ya lose. They apparently drop to $25 fairly often, but $20 is a new low.
     

     

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  17. uofmtiger

    uofmtiger Super Member

    Messages:
    4,838
    Location:
    Memphis
    I think Google messed up by not putting that aux output in the mini. If was deciding between the two, and didn't have a preference for Amazon, I would choose the Dot for only that reason.

    In the case of the OP, the fact that the mini can control the CA, it is hard to argue that the combo doesn't offer the opportunity for better SQ.
     
  18. transmaster

    transmaster AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    8,307
    Location:
    Cheyenne, Wyoming
    That is the huge problem I have with the Google mini I have no aux output. I have both of My running through audio amps into good speakers.
     
  19. +48V

    +48V hi-fi or die

    Messages:
    2,837
    Location:
    Tega Cay
    GFY. A big deal I assume indeed.
    :beerchug:
     
  20. chicks

    chicks Lunatic Member

    Messages:
    17,990
    Location:
    The Big Valley, CA
    Now $40. Yo yo pricing, lol.
     

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