Would you like to play music from your mobile phone on your hifi or amplified speakers, wirelessly ? Thanks to this Google device we can not only send audio to some speakers through the Wi-Fi network, but also assure us that it will do so with a great quality . For 39 € I have released mine a few days ago, and I want to share with you what I have seen that it is able to offer.
How Chromecast Audio works
When we take it out of the box, we simply have to connect the two cables it has: one for the power supply and the other for a 3.5mm jack to send the audio to the auxiliary input of any stereo or powered speaker. Having RCA input we will need to purchase an adapter).
Once connected, we will only have to install the application Chromecast in the mobile, which will detect and will follow the simple steps to connect to the wireless network in our home. From that moment, we will be able to send you the music of multitude of applications from our mobile or tablet Android, as well as from an Iphone, an Ipad, a Mac or a Windows computer.
That is, we have a wifi DAC that allows us to transform any music equipment, whether high fidelity or PC speakers that we had forgotten, into a high performance wireless player.
Lossless and High Resolution, hi-end features for little money
The sound innovation of the Chromecast Audio compared to what we found so far in similar prices is that unlike the devices by bluetooth or radio, it is capable of receiving the transmission of music over Wifi without any loss of quality. That is, if we play music in lossless formats (flac, alac, wav, etc …), it will be transmitted bit by bit in an intact way preserving the original quality.
Not only that, but it is also capable of receiving high-resolution audio formats up to 96KHz / 24bit, which will meet the expectations of more purists and fans of services like Tidal.
How about the sound quality?
The real determining factor of the sound experience will be the quality of the equipment to which we connect (the speakers and their amplification), as well as the quality of the origin format that we are reproducing.
Chromecast’s only influence on the sound will be its internal digital-to-analog conversion, and I’d say it’s done with more than decent quality. My tests have been mainly on a stereo where I connect other sources through the same auxiliary input, and the sound coming from the Chromecast surprised me positively by its detail, sharpness and cleanliness.
Pointing, also digital output!
Although it seems incredible, with a mini-toslink to toslink adapter cable, it also allows connection to equipment with digital optical input , so that we stop using the Chromecast internal digital-to-analog converter to switch to use a higher quality as it can Be the one that incorporates a hi-fi equipment or a digital processor .
In this way, the Chromecast Audio will continue to play its role as receiver with all its advantages, but the quality of the last conversion of the audio to analog format depends on the other equipment. Therefore this option will only be worth it when the digital-to-analog converter of the equipment to which we connect it is of better quality that the one that incorporates the Chromecast, as it can happen in advanced hi-fi equipment.
Other interesting functions
The application allows the control of several Chromecast, so that the same content can be played simultaneously in many speakers of the house, or to sound those of different rooms as we need.
Another interesting feature is that anyone in the house or friends can send music to the speakers with their own phone without the need to link devices or any additional settings, thanks to the guest mode.
It is also appreciated that while sending content you can talk on the phone, surf the internet or leave the room without interrupting the music that is ringing in the speakers.
With Google support
In my opinion the great advantage is what is behind this device: Google and its Google Cast technology for content transmission. This implies a growing development community with a multitude of compatible applications that increases every day.
The guarantees of a company mole betting on a device of this type are also manifested in the good support and firmware upgrades with improvements as happened recently, adding the multi-room function.
If after reading this you can think that I can fulfill any of your needs, I certainly think it is a good choice. We have a very complete wireless DAC with surprising advantages at a tremendously democratic price. What more can you ask for?
I was curious to try it and once made the truth is that I take off my hat … What do you think? Any question about its use you can leave it in the comments and I will try to help checking it with mine 😉