Wirelessly streaming music around your house is great, but for audiophiles, the middling audio components in wireless devices are a drag. But if those devices output a digital signal, you can bypass those components and let a device like NuForce’s Dia handle the audio processing.
Why does such a product matter? I dare you to try and find an audiophile device under $US500 that combines an amplifier, digital-to-analogue conversion interface and digital inputs. The Dia only costs $US300. Devices like the Airport Express, Apple TV and Roku 2 all output digital audio. If your computer or TV outputs an optical signal those you could hook those up as well. But given that the amp pushes 24 watts to a pair of speakers (and a sub), the Dia is primarily geared towards playing music in a smallish room.
That said, the Dia’s focused price comes at the expense of flexibility. There’s no headphone output, line out, or inputs besides the Toslink connections. If you exactly what you need out of your audio gear and are on a budget, the Dia may be up your alley. [NuForce]