(edited down because of the 1000 characters limit)
Purchased this for inputting optical SPDIF to a Linux PC in a test setup because it mentioned needing no drivers. Indeed it's a USB Audio Class (UAC); even the volume knob is a standard USB HID.
Basic operation is quite fine. I don't have the equipment to perform an in-depth technical analysis (jitter, noise level, etc.) so I'll only mention a couple of things I noticed:
- SPDIF only supports up to 48kHz; the advertised 96kHz are only for the DAC
- There's some quiet, but noticeable pink noise on the analog output.
- Rather basic mixer controls; mute functionality (SPDIF, line out, headphone) would have been nice
- When changing sample rates first few samples are lost
Not studio class equipment but good enough for my purpose.
I've had trouble at first will full-duplex mode but that was caused by a buggy USB hub.
(Merged two reviews)UPDATE: It seems SPDIF output works with 96kHz sample rate when selecting the "analog" output device on the PC (which outputs to both analog and SPDIF output). Only the SPDIF input is limited to 48kHz.
Works like a charm, plug and play on both Windows 10 PC & Android 7 Smartphone. Sound quality is great, more airness, better soundstage, deeper bass, better clarity. Not day & night difference compared to the pc headphone out, but you can hear the difference, specially with a little bit hard to drive over-the-ear headphones. On the smartphone, the difference is HUGE in both volume & sound quality.
Amplification-wise, the volume is like 25-30% louder than my PC headphone out and 40-50% louder than my smartphone (Xiaomi Mi 5). I don't know if it's enought for high impedance headphones, but for a wide variety of IEM's and my ATH-M50x headphones they deliver more than enought power. Huge improvement on the bass and soundstage of the M50x, now they sound as good as they're supposed to!
I found that the sound improved by a huge amount using ASIO drivers, with Windows 10.
I am using one of these on a Google Pixel XL running Android 8.0. Everything works perfectly with the integrated system applications, and as expected exclusive mode USB Audio applications work perfectly as well. Literally just plug and play.
Highly recommended accessory for those who miss a headphone jack, or those like me who are not satisfied with the onboard audio chipset.
This DAC works well. Very good sound for the reasonable price. My old laptop's dac and headphones amp were so bad, and this is a good substitute.
Absolutely amazing product! I run it with the USB Isolator + Objective2 amp + Beyerdynamic DT-770 Pro (32 Ohm) headphones.
On its own, it's just mind blowing how much better music sounds compared to an ordinary headphone output from the integrated card in my laptop... But coupled with the USB Isolator, it takes the sound to a whole new level! Playing a super high definition FLAC file (192/24), I realise that the only thing limiting the sound are the headphones. The Isolator + DAC produce a crystal clear, bit-perfect sound, no distortion whatsoever.
Basically, with the Isolator/DAC combo, a high quality needle drop FLAC will sound just as good off your computer as if it were being played from the vinyl itself, with the only limitation being the quality of the speakers/headphones you're using to listen to it...
MOST DEFINITELY RECOMMENDED for audiophile sound at a fraction of the price!
This dac is amazing for the price. Gets close to the dac in the ifi iDSD and the Mojo. You probably cant get a dac better than this for under 200. Also its small size makes it perfect for using it with your phone. The power coming out of it is enough to drive the LCD-X's and iSine 10's without any added amp, making my portable setup super compact.
I bought the full speed isolator which works perfectly when just playing back music but is too slow for multi track recording. I decided to buy this high speed isolator with a much higher transfer rate but it did not work at all with M Audio Fast Track Pro on a widows 10 computer. Windows flagged up a warning message:USB device not recognised. The last USB device connected to this computer malfunctioned and windows does not recognise it.
They asked me to send the unit back and they would send me a new unit - that was six weeks ago and they have stopped replying to my emails. So they have £70 of my money and I have nothing.
HIFIME REPLY: We are VERY sorry that you didn't get any reply in time. We have refunded your payment in full now. (duplicate reviews merged).
Great product, great value of money and the BEST customer service you will ever have!
Noise through my sensitive headphones is gone. Before I could hear mouse and network, now it's dead silent. Not to mention an increase in overall detail. A definitely must have!
I bought mine a few years ago. Used it on a Macbook Air and always worked great. Today I tried it on a new (2017) Amazon Kindle HD 8" (with a USB - mini-USB adapter) and it the connection is perfect! Great sound and the tablet volume control works.
I use my medium range ASUS laptop with jriver media center with high resolution flac files , I bought this device for sound upgrade but unfortunately it's just an amplifier , no quality upgrade .
if you are looking for headphones amplifier buy it , but if you think it will make your music sound better don't .
This is brilliant product. A good DAC implemented and paired with excellent components and on top of that made USB audio driver compliant at up to 96 KHz / 24 bit for ease of use. This is all you could ever want regarding the sound quality for such a small, portable and affordable device. Nobody need more than thisdevice can output anyway unless you need to drive an extremely low sensitivity headphone loudly. 24 bit is more than enough for any practical uses that is way more important than to have 96 KHz. 32 bit sound for distribution and listening to music is utter pointless, even if the DAC-chip supports that, so nothing is lost by standards of what you can realistically perceive. Excellent details in the sound without needing to be artificially fatiguingly bright if played with revealing/detailed headphones. The output driver handles just about what you can throw at it at a decent volume. Hats of to the makers of this one!
I bought this to use with my phone, at first it didn't work at all on Samsung S7 running Android 7.0, then I tried it plugged into a usb hub connected to the phone and it works fine. Hub doesn't matter if it's powered or not, I tried several hubs with and without external power and they all worked fine. I'm keeping this DAC to use on my windows computer, sound quality from Foobar2K with ASIO drivers is outstanding. Going to try using a Tiny DAC with the phone and hopefully avoid the need for a usb hub.
Cord connection to the case worries me, I can feel it twisting and the wires soldered to the board are limiting how far it twists. I'll probably pop the case open and put some hot glue in there to stabilize the whole connection. HIFIME comment: Thanks for your review. The latest batch has the cable already glued to prevent any issues with this.
This device gifted me a lot of great moments. On long flights or just away from home it gave me comfort, the music that makes me feel. It still is my DAC of choice, I test my tube stuff with it as a source. The quality is amazing.
It just works. On android, on windows, on Linuxes... I modified it to fit my phones micro usb with a short flexible cable, and use adapter to connect it to PC's. I replaced the box with a heatshrink and made LED to shine through the phone jack, no light is emitted when jack is inserted. This little cheapish thingy has evolved with me, grown on me and became one of my most beloved possessions, together with my ATH-M50(which is driven excellently). It is next only to my paraglider (a thing that lets me fly like a bird in the air, amongst real birds for hours).
I want to sincerely thank anyone who conceived this wonderful device and guided this little project to fruition. This is a great achievement. Thanks for all the hours of eargasms!