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What is the best Portable DAC for iPod Classic 160GB to buy? - Page 2

post #16 of 67
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by shrimants View Post

Just to let you know, there are only 2 portable products in existence that will bypass the ipod's internal DAC chip. Those are the ALO Solo and the HP-p1. The NuForce iDo MIGHT do it but im like 90% sure it is just an amp, like the portatube.
I'd go with the alo solo over the hp-p1. Those two products though will make the biggest difference. If you get an LOD cable for the ipod, you can bypass the ipod's volume control circuitry and internal opamp, send that pre-amped post-dac'd signal to a portable amp, and that will accomplish an audible increase in sound quality/signature. However, the portable DACs will make the biggest difference.


Thank You for your advice.  I will definitely take a closer look at the ALO Solo.  I just got my Shure se535 today and it sound pretty good but I know it can be better with the right portable amp.

I will keep you posted on which amp I decided to go with.  Many Thanks.

post #17 of 67
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by pimmedoris View Post

Ah, I get it. Thanks for clearing that up!



Thank You everyone for all your great feedback.  I am learning so much about these hi-fi headphones.  Many Thanks.

post #18 of 67
EDIT: nvm, read the post on the wrong page. Thought you still didnt get it. my bad.

EDIT 2: You DO realize that theres differences betweem AMPS and DACS, right? You keep saying "you'll try out some amp". the alo and hpp1 both have amps IN them, but both are DACs. Dont get them thinking they are purely amps. They are more expensive and a better purchase. If you are after an AMP ONLY, though, then just go with one of Fiio's things. E11 or E6.

Once again, just for clarification: Amp is NOT dac.

ALO solo = dac
fostex hpp1 = dac
EDIT 3: NuForce Icon iDo = DAC, nonportable.

fiio e11, e6 = amp

HUGE difference in the two, both price-wise and functionally.
Edited by shrimants - 11/3/11 at 8:48pm
post #19 of 67
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by shrimants View Post

EDIT: nvm, read the post on the wrong page. Thought you still didnt get it. my bad.
EDIT 2: You DO realize that theres differences betweem AMPS and DACS, right? You keep saying "you'll try out some amp". the alo and hpp1 both have amps IN them, but both are DACs. Dont get them thinking they are purely amps. They are more expensive and a better purchase. If you are after an AMP ONLY, though, then just go with one of Fiio's things. E11 or E6.
Once again, just for clarification: Amp is NOT dac.
ALO solo = dac
fostex hpp1 = dac
EDIT 3: NuForce Icon iDo = DAC, nonportable.
fiio e11, e6 = amp
HUGE difference in the two, both price-wise and functionally.


Great,  I mean Amps and DACS.  I really like the Fostex HP-P1 due to portability.  However, it is not in stock in most stores yet.  I found in one in Moon Audio and tempted to order one.  Thanks again for clearing up the details.

 

post #20 of 67
Both fostex and ALO solo are portable. The alo solo is in a smaller form factor than the fostex hpp1. i recommend you take a look at Jude's head-fi TV videos. he covers the ALO Solo around ep. 4 and the HP-P1 around ep. 8 or so. He found that he greatly prefered the ALO Solo's greater array of features and sound quality over the HP-P1. the HP-P1 also has a rather unwieldy volume knob.

700 bucks is not a small amount of money for any audiophile. Unless you're filthy rich and can afford to randomly throw around money I suggest you really do some research on your own. I'm kind of getting the vibe that you'll just buy whatever people tell you to.
post #21 of 67
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by shrimants View Post

Both fostex and ALO solo are portable. The alo solo is in a smaller form factor than the fostex hpp1. i recommend you take a look at Jude's head-fi TV videos. he covers the ALO Solo around ep. 4 and the HP-P1 around ep. 8 or so. He found that he greatly prefered the ALO Solo's greater array of features and sound quality over the HP-P1. the HP-P1 also has a rather unwieldy volume knob.
700 bucks is not a small amount of money for any audiophile. Unless you're filthy rich and can afford to randomly throw around money I suggest you really do some research on your own. I'm kind of getting the vibe that you'll just buy whatever people tell you to.


Thanks.  I'll do some more research and see which one is best.  

post #22 of 67

Have you run across the fiio e7 amp/dac or e11 amp? These are well regarded units and they are reasonably priced. You'll want a fairly powerful amp to drive the HD650 with any authority.

post #23 of 67
E7 is a dac only via USB. E11 is an amp standalone. The ALO and the Fostex HPP1 are both dacs that work for a standalone ipod.

E7 attached to IPOD via LOD is ONLY ANALOG.

E11 is ONLY ANALOG no matter what.

ALO and Fostex are DACS.
post #24 of 67
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by shrimants View Post

E7 is a dac only via USB. E11 is an amp standalone. The ALO and the Fostex HPP1 are both dacs that work for a standalone ipod.
E7 attached to IPOD via LOD is ONLY ANALOG.
E11 is ONLY ANALOG no matter what.
ALO and Fostex are DACS.


Do you think the ALO and Fostex amp is a good match for the shute se535 and the HD650?  Many Thanks.

post #25 of 67
Both ALO and HPP1 will drive those headphones just fine. They will only have trouble with the infamously hard to drive ones, like audeze lcd2/3 or Hifiman He6 or 600 or whatever that one magneplanar was. I dont own either one so I cant say based on experience.
post #26 of 67
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by shrimants View Post

Both ALO and HPP1 will drive those headphones just fine. They will only have trouble with the infamously hard to drive ones, like audeze lcd2/3 or Hifiman He6 or 600 or whatever that one magneplanar was. I dont own either one so I cant say based on experience.


Thanks.

post #27 of 67


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by shrimants View Post
ALO solo = dac
fostex hpp1 = dac

If I may, I'd like to clarify something for jcw-mini.

 

ALO Solo  (aka Cypherlabs Algorhythm Solo or CLAS for short) is not the same as the Fostex HP-P1. I have both. I don't know if jcw-mini is aware of this cos I re-read the thread twice and it wasn't clearly mentioned but :-


CLAS = DAC mode or transport mode

Fostex HP-P1 = DAC mode, Transport and/or Amp

 

i.e. if you buy the HP-P1, it's a DAC and an Amp. But if you buy the CLAS it's only a DAC and you'll still need to buy another amp. You cannot plug your headphones straight into the CLAS. That is why the HP-P1 has a volume knob whereas the CLAS doesn't.

 

So with the Fostex HP-P1, you carry only your iPod+HP-P1+headphones. But for the ALO Solo you carry iPod+CLAS+Amp+headphones.

 

If you guys are aware of this, then my apologies but as mentioned, I don't recall this being clearly stated in earlier posts of this thread.

post #28 of 67

Sorry for intruding into this topic, but responding to the post above. So If I have a DAC, but also something like a Fiio L9 that has a line-out to headphone plug, how does that work? Or does my LOD need to be ipod connector to USB --> DAC --> regular audio jack --> amp --> headphone.

post #29 of 67

@ThomasH, Between the iPod/iPad/iPhone & the DAC, you'll need a USB LOD like this :-
 

ALO Solo Cables

 

Maybe the various combinations are best represented in pictures. Here are some examples of misc combinations. Note I can't show the CLAS or HP-P1 as transport 'cos I don't have a separate DAC that takes optical or coax in.

 

1) iPad + USB LOD cable + CLAS DAC + mini2mini cable + Pico Slim Amp + headphones

CLAS+PSlim
 

2) iPad + USB LOD cable + HP-P1 (in DAC&Amp mode) + headphones

HP-P1 in DAC/Amp mode

 

3) iPad + USB LOD cable + HP-P1 (in DAC mode) + mini2mini cable + Pico Slim Amp + headphones

HP-P1 & Pico Slim

 

4) iPad + USB LOD cable + CLAS DAC + mini2mini cable + HP-P1 (in DAC mode) + headphones ----- why would you want to do this!? P1's amp is not its forte, chunkier rig to carry

CLAS & HP-P1

 

5) iPad + LOD cable + Pico Slim Amp + headphones (therefore using iPad's internal Cirrus Logic DAC)
Pico Slim

 

6) iPad + LOD cable + HP-P1 (in DAC mode) + headphones (therefore using iPad's internal Cirrus Logic DAC) ----- why would you want to do this!? P1's amp is not its forte.
HP-P1 in Amp mode

 

Notes:

It's not recommended to do (4) & (6) 'cos the HP-P1's amp although good is not it's forte.

As you can see though functionality-wise the HP-P1 is extremely versatile - it can be used as a DAC/Amp, DAC-only, Amp-only (but why!!??)

With the CLAS you have to budget extra to buy a separate amp. Having said that, it's a very good DAC!!

post #30 of 67

Nice Demo!!!!bigsmile_face.gif


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by AnakChan View Post

@ThomasH, Between the iPod/iPad/iPhone & the DAC, you'll need a USB LOD like this :-
 

ALO Solo Cables

 

Maybe the various combinations are best represented in pictures. Here are some examples of misc combinations. Note I can't show the CLAS or HP-P1 as transport 'cos I don't have a separate DAC that takes optical or coax in.

 

1) iPad + USB LOD cable + CLAS DAC + mini2mini cable + Pico Slim Amp + headphones

CLAS+PSlim
 

2) iPad + USB LOD cable + HP-P1 (in DAC&Amp mode) + headphones

HP-P1 in DAC/Amp mode

 

3) iPad + USB LOD cable + HP-P1 (in DAC mode) + mini2mini cable + Pico Slim Amp + headphones

HP-P1 & Pico Slim

 

4) iPad + USB LOD cable + CLAS DAC + mini2mini cable + HP-P1 (in DAC mode) + headphones ----- why would you want to do this!? P1's amp is not its forte, chunkier rig to carry

CLAS & HP-P1

 

5) iPad + LOD cable + Pico Slim Amp + headphones (therefore using iPad's internal Cirrus Logic DAC)
Pico Slim

 

6) iPad + LOD cable + HP-P1 (in DAC mode) + headphones (therefore using iPad's internal Cirrus Logic DAC) ----- why would you want to do this!? P1's amp is not its forte.
HP-P1 in Amp mode

 

Notes:

It's not recommended to do (4) & (6) 'cos the HP-P1's amp although good is not it's forte.

As you can see though functionality-wise the HP-P1 is extremely versatile - it can be used as a DAC/Amp, DAC-only, Amp-only (but why!!??)

With the CLAS you have to budget extra to buy a separate amp. Having said that, it's a very good DAC!!



 

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