It has great sound in combination with headphones; there is a lot of detail and a good sound stage. On my car radio there is an unbelievable gain in detail, especially in the low end.
However, I am having issues with the iPhone 6s, there is jitter every few seconds making it impossible to enjoy. It works quite well on my Dell E5570, but there still is jitter, though very little. No jitter on my desktop, but the highs are too harsh on my sound system and the sound stage is more compact compared to my Asus Essence STX II + OPA627 as buffer + LT1498 in I/V. It does yield more detail, but I know that is the trade-off by using the LT1498 in I/V; they are very open at cost of a little detail. The most obvious difference however is how voices and string instruments are very soft in comparison, they are blended into the background and therefore more difficult to perceive compared to my current setup.
Overall, I am enjoying it very much in combination with my Sennheiser HD449 headphones!
This is a great DAC. Used in a Linux system with QED interconnects, Linn amplification and Rogers Floorstanders. No issues with firmware. I played 24/96 masters FLAC, CD quality 16/44 files and radio streams up to 320 Kb/s. I listened to Jazz, Blues, Classical, Rock, Choral, Operas, Folk, Pop music.
The experience is wonderful. Badly recorded music are exposed, but this DAC is somewhat more forgiving than other I experienced. Well recorded music is close to perfection: extremely detailed and accurate at all frequencies, Bass have great extension, precision and accuracy. Mids are wonderful, highs detailed, agile and truthful. No harshness nor graininess. Dynamics is outstanding. Pace is superb. Incredibly revealing but beautifully musical. Soundstage truly shines: wide, deep and incredibly precise.
It works great with my PC (with a $50 motherboard) and android smartphone (OnePlus One). Plug and play. It added a bit of warm to the sound while expanding the soundstage. The clarity is also improve. It is however sounded a bit congested if you have a warmer headphone. The power output is okay, I'm only using like 30-40% of volume most of the time with my 64ohm earbuds and <50ohm IEMs. I usually at 80-90% on my smartphone before so it does have more than enough power to drive sensitive headphones out there. The build quality of the enclosure is okay but the integrated USB cable is somewhat worrying if you use this on the go a lot.
AMAZING!! I was about to change my Edifier D530 2.1 desktop speaker setup because of it not sounding right! Good that I didn't :D When connected through this little wonderful DAC the sound became so much more musical and dynamic (flat eq before and after)! Accoustic guitars sounded live, bass was tight and much more in sync with the speakers. Lower mids got the much needed emhasis. Treble no more sharp but silky musical. I am amazed! Thank you! OSX El Capitan 10.11.4 recognized the DAC straight away! All music sounds so much more alive! Like it was supposed to sound!
Pros: Sound quality, no hiss, great value, optical output
Cons: Won't win any design awards, no physical volume control
The HiFime Sabre9018 USB DAC is a great “no nonsense” product with a sound quality identical to the much more expensive Geek Out720. It’s not going to get any design awards but it does what it should and it does it very well.
The HiFime Sabre9018 USB DAC has really impressed me both with its performance and its excellent value. The fact that it works with (many) Android devices without an external battery, works very well (without any need for drivers) with computers and also offers an optical output option makes it very versatile as well.
For full review see: