Arrggh... brain melted! help me with streaming solution please!
OK, this is my first post on here, but i've been a What Hi-Fi reader for 15 years and always been into my audio (and was a sound engineer/producer for some time).
Anyway, I love listening to music while i'm cooking or entertaining in the kitchen, and for a while i've just had a decent micro system hooked up to my laptop via a jack-to-rca lead. Not great quality, but good enough. I use Spotify, which again although not perfect is good enough on 320kbps to live with.
Now, i'm having the kitchen totally gutted and rebuilt. I've incorporated a pair of B&W ceiling speakers, and have an Arcam Alpha 8P power amp which will live under the units. The original plan was to mount a Nexus tablet on the wall and just connect the headphone output to the amp via a jack-to-rca. This got me looking for a decent cable. Then while looking I saw USB DAC's and thought that would be better (presuming the DAC in a tablet or smartphone to be fairly basic), so i'd use a USB cable, sit the DAC next to the amp and away I go. But then while searching DAC's I noticed wireless DAC's and that got me thinking that might be better again, because the tablet doesn't have to be fixed, I can use it whereever, and it saves me engineering i nice solution for hiding the cables.
So now i'm looking at wireless DAC's and i'm a bit baffled. Some are Bluetooth and some are WiFI. Now I assume the WIFi ones would be better? What i am a little confised by is that they all have some kind of USB dongle to act as the transmitter, but surely most mobile devices are capable of doing this anyway? I thought that is what Apples airplay was, and DNLA for that matter?
SO I guess to cut a long story short, is there a way to stream Spotify from a mobile device to a DAC of some sort without having a clumsy USB dongle hanging off it?