Budget Headphone Dac/amp - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 14 Old 08-28-2012, 09:40 AM - Thread Starter
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Are there any dac/headphone amps that are in the quality/price range of the nuforce udac-2, maybe a bit cheaper? All it needs is USB input, and a headphone output with a headphone amplifier and decent quality dac.
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post #2 of 14 Old 08-28-2012, 10:12 AM
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Check out Fiio's website. They have a range of dac/amps. If you buy from Amazon, make sure it is a legit dealer. There have been a few fakes.

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post #3 of 14 Old 08-28-2012, 11:08 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CHAVAN30 View Post

Check out Fiio's website. They have a range of dac/amps. If you buy from Amazon, make sure it is a legit dealer. There have been a few fakes.

cool thanks
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post #4 of 14 Old 08-28-2012, 11:34 AM
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Check out the Audioquest Dragonfly. It's not real cheap ($250), but it's the size of a USB thumb drive and meets your other requirements.
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post #5 of 14 Old 08-28-2012, 01:13 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by saeyedoc View Post

Check out the Audioquest Dragonfly. It's not real cheap ($250), but it's the size of a USB thumb drive and meets your other requirements.

size doesn't matter. Price does though wink.gif
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post #6 of 14 Old 09-25-2012, 09:16 AM
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Fiio E10 or Fiio E17. Both are amazing! I own the E10, and to my ears it is much better than the NuForce.

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post #7 of 14 Old 09-25-2012, 09:17 AM
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Deleted.

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post #8 of 14 Old 09-25-2012, 08:36 PM
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The E17 is great. Size of a smaller smart phone. Good sound. I use mine with my computer in my office at work.

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post #9 of 14 Old 09-26-2012, 06:38 PM
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Do any of these units connect directly to iphone? I mean do they bypass the Iphone's built in DAC?
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post #10 of 14 Old 09-27-2012, 06:36 PM
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With a lod. It will bypass the internal DAC. Fiio sells them also on Amazon.

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post #11 of 14 Old 09-27-2012, 06:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CHAVAN30 View Post

With a lod. It will bypass the internal DAC. Fiio sells them also on Amazon.

I'm not an iPhone owner, so I'm not positive about this. But I'm pretty sure the LOD bypasses the headphone amplifier in the iPhone, not the DAC. LOD=LINE OUT DIRECT. So it would be an analog signal that has already been processed by the DAC in the iPhone.

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post #12 of 14 Old 10-31-2012, 04:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pkoko View Post

Do any of these units connect directly to iphone? I mean do they bypass the Iphone's built in DAC?
Unfortunately, no. Even a Line-Out Dock connector wouldn't do much. Only iDevice approved DACs can bypass the internal DAC inside an iDevice (iPod, iPhone, iPad). The only other way to bypass the internal DAC is to use the Pure i-20 dock and set it up with an external DAC. However, this eliminates any possible chance of portability.

If portability is what you want, check out ALO Audio as their DACs are iDevice approved. However, if you are on a tight budget, these may not appeal to you.


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post #13 of 14 Old 11-01-2012, 07:29 AM
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Originally Posted by maxweber View Post

Any resource to get detailed specifications of E17?

http://supercurio.project-voodoo.org/audio/for-engadget/E17-iPad-NexusSVoodoo.htm

Test FiiO E17 USB DAC

Frequency response (from 40 Hz to 15 kHz), dB: +0.01, -0.57
Noise level, dB (A): -97.2
Dynamic range, dB (A): 97.5
THD, %: 0.0015
IMD + Noise, %: 0.036
Stereo crosstalk, dB: -93.7
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post #14 of 14 Old 11-01-2012, 07:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pkoko View Post

Do any of these units connect directly to iphone? I mean do they bypass the Iphone's built in DAC?

Which iPhone?

The first iPhone had serious bass losses with typical 16 ohm headphones, but later models not so much:

http://www.swedroid.se/rightmark/x10_mini_comparison/x10miniaudicomparison.htm

iPhone 3GS

Frequency response (from 40 Hz to 15 kHz), dB: +0.31, -0.20
Noise level, dB (A): -83.7
Dynamic range, dB (A): 83.6
THD, %: 0.0095
IMD + Noise, %: 0.045 0
Stereo crosstalk, dB: -79.9

Apple upgraded their IOS device headphone amps in general about his time so later models should be no worse.
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