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Pico - USB DAC/Amplifier From HeadAmp - Page 9

post #121 of 711
Quote:
Originally Posted by milkpowder View Post
Am I the only one here who actually can't believe what he's reading? A $500, MiniDAC-rivalling, super DAC/amp the size of a Tomahawk?! God help my wallet...

On a more serious note, won't the Pico be limited to an input sampling rate of 48kHz since it's using USB? It's not really an issue since the DAC apparently upsamples to 24/96 anyway. Also, I wonder if anyone has impressions of using sensitive IEMs with the Pico both as a standalone amp and DAC/amp combo. (ignore if it is covered in meet impressions thread)
When I listened to it at the Nor Cal meet I used my ES2's (which are uber sensitive) and it was dead quiet as an amp and through the USB/DAC.
post #122 of 711
PS. do let us know how it sounds compared to tomahawk/hornet (esp. with ES2, that combo was magical.. wouldn't mind a HD25 thrown into that as well)
post #123 of 711
Quote:
Originally Posted by tyrion View Post
I am looking forward to hearing the PICO at the upcoming Florida meet. I don't know if I would ever go back to a portable rig beyond my nano or iPhone (if I get one) but I am curious to hear how good the DAC is.
the iphone headphone jack doesn't work with most IEM jacks. it's mentioned in the cnet video review and also call quality is a concern.
post #124 of 711
yesterday i went to the apple store for a scheduled appointment with a mac genius afterwards i checked out apple's newest offerings such as the iphone, imac, etc... the iphone, imac and new nano were really cool.

the nano is incredibly small and wafer thin--it's an ideal portable. plus the screen, although, tiny provides fairly decent video. later in the evening i checked apple's website for the specs and it sizes up perfectly with the pico.

sizeasy: nano & pico displayed together
post #125 of 711
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrSlacker View Post
Sometimes size doesn't matter. I for one, planning to use Pico as a DAC for my PC. I have plenty of space... Pico DAC just sounds damn good! It doesnt matter if it would size of a matchbox or bigger than a desk... if it sounds good, who cares how small it is?
Agree with you, especially with the last statement.

Where I was coming from was that it seems that the optical-in would not be included because of size constraint - and to me it would be more logical to have optical-in rather than USB in for super small DAC/Amp.
post #126 of 711
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lad27 View Post
Agree with you, especially with the last statement.

Where I was coming from was that it seems that the optical-in would not be included because of size constraint - and to me it would be more logical to have optical-in rather than USB in for super small DAC/Amp.
There are a few problems with this logic, first if you were to use optical the size of the amp would have to increase significantly because the DAC itself would then have to rely on battery operation, therefore the battery would have to be significantly bigger. Second, I believe there is a much bigger market for people who are looking for portable DAC's to use with a laptop or desktop computer at work than there are those that have a portable source with an S/PDIF output. I don't think Justin made these decisions lightly, I believe he assessed the requests of his customers, what has been written in these forums as well as what has been selling in the marketplace.
post #127 of 711
The Pico sounds perfect for my needs, I wouldn't change a thing about it's intended design. A portable amp for the imod, and a DAC for any PC I use.
post #128 of 711
Curious...
Is there any plan to release just the DAC?
Might make for a killer little desktop "Stack" with the AE-2.

???
post #129 of 711
Quote:
Originally Posted by kramer5150 View Post
Curious...
Is there any plan to release just the DAC?
Might make for a killer little desktop "Stack" with the AE-2.

???
I'll 2nd that. imod AE-2 for travel and AE-2/pico DAC/laptop for the office.
post #130 of 711
Quote:
Originally Posted by kramer5150 View Post
Curious...
Is there any plan to release just the DAC?
Might make for a killer little desktop "Stack" with the AE-2.

???
Keep asking Justin about that. May be we will be able to convince him to make one!
post #131 of 711
I do not see how adding the optical in would increase size very much at all. I did this for my Monica II, which was not designed for an optical in but kept all within the constraints of an altoid tin. The current use is very little and it works fine. The optical in requires very little space but you have to have a dac that can use optical.
post #132 of 711
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by jamato8 View Post
I do not see how adding the optical in would increase size very much at all. I did this for my Monica II, which was not designed for an optical in but kept all within the constraints of an altoid tin. The current use is very little and it works fine. The optical in requires very little space but you have to have a dac that can use optical.
From my understanding it's because right now the DAC is powered via USB not battery. If you add optical the DAC then needs to be powered via battery which would lower the battery to unacceptable levels which then means a larger battery needs to be used. A larger battery means of course means a larger case. There are also other issues with selection and such which will make the design more complex and again require more room.
post #133 of 711
Quote:
Originally Posted by jamato8 View Post
I do not see how adding the optical in would increase size very much at all. I did this for my Monica II, which was not designed for an optical in but kept all within the constraints of an altoid tin. The current use is very little and it works fine. The optical in requires very little space but you have to have a dac that can use optical.
I don't know but I think that's it. The Pico DAC doesn't accept SPDIF, but whatever the format is that comes up the USB cord (I2S?). An optical (SPDIF) input would require a converter inside the Pico to convert the signal from SPDIF into a format the DAC can use. Maybe that's what would take up the space?
post #134 of 711
Quote:
Originally Posted by jamato8 View Post
I do not see how adding the optical in would increase size very much at all. I did this for my Monica II, which was not designed for an optical in but kept all within the constraints of an altoid tin. The current use is very little and it works fine. The optical in requires very little space but you have to have a dac that can use optical.
To fit an optical connector, a switch to select the digital input, and components for a SPDIF receiver, the length of the Pico would have to be increased by about 20%. But what's more significant is the DAC circuit in the Pico uses about 100mA of current, and the headphone amp 25mA, if all of this ran off the battery w/ the optical input it would only last 4.4 hours! There are low power DAC chips out there, like what is found in MP3 players, those would give a good battery life but I am trying to do something special here and sound quality is most important...otherwise why bother? To keep the 20 hour play time using optical the battery would need to be physically 4 times larger. It would also be difficult to add an optical input and preserve the USB performance, the Pico is unique because it does not convert USB to SPDIF and then to I2S as most if not all multiple-input DACs do. It goes straight to I2S there is no SPDIF conversion

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post #135 of 711
Quote:
Originally Posted by justin w. View Post
To fit an optical connector, a switch to select the digital input, and components for a SPDIF receiver, the length of the Pico would have to be increased by about 20%. But what's more significant is the DAC circuit in the Pico uses about 100mA of current, and the headphone amp 25mA, if all of this ran off the battery w/ the optical input it would only last 4.4 hours! There are low power DAC chips out there, like what is found in MP3 players, those would give a good battery life but I am trying to do something special here and sound quality is most important...otherwise why bother? To keep the 20 hour play time using optical the battery would need to be physically 4 times larger. It would also be difficult to add an optical input and preserve the USB performance, the Pico is unique because it does not convert USB to SPDIF and then to I2S as most if not all multiple-input DACs do. It goes straight to I2S there is no SPDIF conversion
thanks for clearing this up, justin. for portable purposes i agree that maximizing battery life while retaining excellent sound quality are of utmost importance.

while we have you here, do you have an updated timetable for when you will start selling these? thanks...
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