1 Step forward
Found a few odds and sods and reassembled a Raspberry Pi 4 with a case/heatsinks/fan which had previously been plonked bare on the floor running Gentoo Player, it worked for the most part.
1 Step backward
Backed up the old SD card (hopefully) and decided to install Volumio which looked quite nice, but completely missed the fact it was a player and did not support DLNA rendering to the Nova.
2nd step forward
Bought an old Apple Airport Express for a fiver from CEX - in hindsight I’d stupidly updated the final version made which I had to enable Airplay 2 - great for multiroom (only if you’d use it of course) but makes it play AAC rather than CD quality as far as I can tell from various web analyses, unlike the original Airtunes/Airplay 1 on older Express models.
A bit of tinkering and bizarre to find that Alley_Cat’s new secondhand Express was named Alley’s Airport Express - spooky.
A bit of faffing and got it to extend my downstairs Time Capsule with a simple configuration selection - wow, had I known these things integrated that easily I’d have bought several years ago.
2nd step backward
Great, so now I have a CD quality capable Airport Express with optical out for £5 ‘alive’ on the network, so hooked the mini-Toslink>Toslink optical cable up to the Topping 10Ds.
No sound at all selecting it as the Airplay destination.
Silly me of course.
10Ds only has optical out, and removing the USB cable hoping it would work via optical just shut it down as the 10Ds is USB bus powered.
3rd step forwards:
Decided to peek at Audirvana again, don’t like the current subscription model, and had unsubscribed.
In my account I managed to download a paid/purchased version of older Audirvana 3.5 which works on Apple Silicon. In fairness, it was easy to de-register the older installations on older Minis to enable it to work and to my surprise it’s a hell of a lot more stable than a couple of years ago.
So now have it playing via USB to the Topping 10Ds in the study and it’s sounding pretty nice with local files or Qobuz streams.