Phono pre amp with digital output?

Having switched to an RME ADI-2 DAC as my DAC pre amp I have committed to digital only, it can accept spdif,usb & toslink, sources.

I am broadly happy with this as 99% plus of my listening is now by streaming, but my turntable still sits proudly atop my rack and it would be nice to be able to spin a record from time to time.

Is there a phono stage which can be connected to one of my digital inputs? I could buy a line level ADC to use with my current low cost phono stage, but I would prefer just one box if possible. I appreciate that best quality is unlikely to be on the agenda, but something like the Rega fono mini mk II would be ok, except I think that the Rega relies on the usb out being handled by a PC?

I think Project may do one. They certainly have a TT with a built in phonostage that also has a Toslink output so may have that as a separate item too.

Try Project Optical box E Phono

Is it too late to suggest one of the RME boxes with an ADC included? Or do they only work with a computer attached?

Thanks for the replies all, the project one looks like it might be ok, I will check reviews.

Yes there is an RME box that does ADC and DAC although that would cost a fair bit and I would still need a separate phono stage with the RIAA EQ.

It would be interesting to see if there are alternatives to compare to the project offering.

Rega do a Phono box with a usb output, well recommended on the forum.

Hi @JR007 Do you know if you can use the USB out put directly into a DAC? If it can the little Rega would certainly be of interest to me.

The Rega web site only mentions that the USB port allows interface with a PC for digitising vinyl.

I had just read an article on the forum asking more or less the same as your original question. I may be wrong, and I’m sure someone will be able to confirm, the replies suggested the rega for that op.

To me ‘digital out’ is exactly that, logically it should be able to go into a dac - c’mon guys; help us out here :relaxed:

I purchased a cheap ADC to digitise some of my vinyl, but haven’t got round to doing it yet, which is of course the opposite to what you’re wanting to do - let’s see if some kind soul will be able to confirm my assumption :grimacing:

That’s the link (I hope) to the other similar question

Ah yes I saw that response, I was not convinced.

It would be good if it does work, I may contact Rega for confirmation

rega fono-mini-a2d
I’ve read good things about the MK I version

I have actually tried the mkI I remember borrowing one from Audio T in Bristol, I also tried the USB interface with a pc running audacity and it worked but my goodness I wouldn’t want to rip my vinyl collection like that, it was hard work. The Rega mini worked fine as a phono stage though, so when I returned the demo unit I asked to buy one, only to discover that they didn’t have any!

At that time I didn’t have a reason to feed the USB output of the mini into any thing other than a pc so I don’t know if that would work.

Parks Audio Puffin is a fantastic phono stage that processes the signal in the digital domain. It can run MC and MM carts, optional eq adjustment, optional click reduction, an azimuth adjustment setting, volume control with cue muting, a lot of cool functionality. It’s available with a SPDIF coax output. I use mine with a Schiit Modi Multibit DAC into a Naim 1, or at times in my main system into the NDX2. Good stuff.


Thanks @jhsnider the puffin looks nifty. Perhaps a little pricey considering my TT cost about half that albeit in 1982-83!

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Up date, Dealer contacted me with his suggestion, Project Optical Box e phono. This seems to have a toslink output, which I expect would work. Apparently he rang round a few distributors to see what might do the job and came up with this.

He hasn’t said whether the Rega would work directly into a DAC usb input.

My dealer got back to me on the Rega fono mini, he tells me that it only works with a PC to digitise music from vinyl.

He has suggested that the Project Optical box e would provide the functionality, i.e. phono/RIAA to digital out into a device incorporating an optical digital input, Toslink.

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