Dac upgrade (rega dac-r), optical from pc - advice request

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Posted (edited)

Afternoon.  I'm not sure if i'm posting in correct section, I'm sure there used to be a digital music thread.  My apologies if my question is in wrong part of forum.

I have just ordered a second hand rega dac-r.  This will replace my CA dacmagic 100.  I have chosen to upgrade for the following reasons:

  1. I have not scratched my hifi itch in a while
  2. the dacmagic has only 1 optical connection  (which is taken by tv)
  3. the dac-r seems to get a good write up sub £500 (I did consider the m-dac, but seems to have a bewildering number of filtering options and has gotten average reviews)

Reviews i've seen regarding usb connectivity of the dac-r seem to be a bit meh.  I therefore would like to connect to my pc via optical s/pif.  My computer has the following motherboard: .  This is where my question(s) lie:

  1. how do I correctly connect using optical (do i activate onboard audio in bios and then output shows in control panel/sounds, allowing me to set as default)?
  2. are there any additional things i need to do in windows to get best out of dac?
  3. will any s/pif optical cable suffice for connection?
  4. what filter is best all round (i know probably subjective, but never had experience of filters)
  5. can preferred filters on dac be saved for source type?

I mainly use tidal (inc masters) for playback and have a small library of music files stored on a nas drive.  Weirdly, since ordering the dac-r, the wee dacmagic 100 is sounding better than it ever has, almost like it knows it's about to be replaced.

I expect delivery mid-week and any advice is appreciated. 

Edited by alboy1975

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