Adding Convenient Audio Streaming Using Chromecast

I have been running an Oppo BDP-105 for a couple of years now as my sole digital playback in my main system. There are times I have wanted to use this system for general streaming playback, but did not have an easy way to do so.  In most cases, I prefer not to turn on the attached HDTV just to switch to, say, Pandora streaming.

The 105 has switchable inputs–you can select from the front or rear HDMI jacks, as well as an optical or coaxial digital input, or the USB input.  This allows you to use the player as a DAC.

Enter the Chromecast. I had an original CC laying around as it did not work with either of the TVs in the house. I plugged it into the rear HDMI input of the 105, and selected the rear HDMI input, and immediately got the CC background on the TV.  With more recent versions of the apps on my tablet or phone, there is a Cast icon (pictured at right), and I am happy to find out that the few streaming apps I use (primarily Pandora, TuneIn Radio and Tidal) all support the Cast feature natively.

The nice part is that I can switch inputs on the 105 simply by tapping the “Input” button on the remote, then the number “3” on the keypad, to switch to the rear HDMI input.  To go back to the main player, “Input” + “1” gets me there.  Thanks to Oppo having their Media Control App, I don’t even need line-of-sight capabilities–I can switch inputs anywhere I can reach my network from the tablet or phone.

I could also connect a Chromecast Audio using that unit’s built-in optical digital Toslink output, and it works just as easily with Cast.

Have you found other clever uses for the Chromecast, or other unique ways to get streaming audio to your DAC? Have questions about this setup? Let us know over in the forum!