Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Computer Audio › DAC question and ipod/portable players
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

DAC question and ipod/portable players

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 

many apologies if this is the wrong forum or simply a dumb question, but is there any good quality DAC that will take the input from an ipod (i.e. a non-usb DAC?) without going through the ipod DAC?

 

i've noticed there is a difference on some tracks between listening on my computer with a DAC, and through the ipod LOD...it's not huge and only on some tracks but it's there.

 

thanks for any insight

post #2 of 16

Shanling H1.1 can take an input directly from an iDevice, with dedicated iPod USB-A (your bundled data cable will work) and a computer USB-B inputs.

 

Portable solution will be something like the Fostex HP-P1.


Edited by ProtegeManiac - 10/29/12 at 11:14pm
post #3 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by ferday View Post

many apologies if this is the wrong forum or simply a dumb question, but is there any good quality DAC that will take the input from an ipod (i.e. a non-usb DAC?) without going through the ipod DAC?

 

i've noticed there is a difference on some tracks between listening on my computer with a DAC, and through the iPod LOD...it's not huge and only on some tracks but it's there.

 

thanks for any insight

The cheapest external DAC I know of that work with the Apple LOD port is the HRT iStreamer ($155).

post #4 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by ferday View Post

many apologies if this is the wrong forum or simply a dumb question, but is there any good quality DAC that will take the input from an ipod (i.e. a non-usb DAC?) without going through the ipod DAC?

 

i've noticed there is a difference on some tracks between listening on my computer with a DAC, and through the ipod LOD...it's not huge and only on some tracks but it's there.

 

thanks for any insight

 

Wouldn't something like FiiO L11 work for you? It's about $10 and has USB output - from there you can use any DAC with USB support.

post #5 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by PleasantSounds View Post

 

Wouldn't something like FiiO L11 work for you? It's about $10 and has USB output - from there you can use any DAC with USB support.

 

Fiio L11 USB output is for charging, or syncing, not a digital audio stream. Product photo with Fiio E7 is used with analog input (3.5mm), not USB.


Edited by ProtegeManiac - 10/30/12 at 3:22am
post #6 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by ProtegeManiac View Post

 

Fiio L11 USB output is for charging, or syncing, not a digital audio stream. Product photo with Fiio E7 is used with analog input (3.5mm), not USB.

 

 I stand corrected - thanks for the clarification.

post #7 of 16

Pure ipod dock is perhaps the cheapest I've seen at $86, http://www.amazon.com/PURE-i-20-30-Pin-iPhone-Speaker/dp/B0049MOK92/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1351599697&sr=8-1&keywords=pure+ipod+dock.

 

More than a few receivers have a usb input that allows for a direct digital connection an iPod.

 

I've always been reasonably pleased with the sound from the iPod using either headphones when traveling or the usb out (relying on the ipod's internal dac).  In fact my night radio, a cue acoustics radio, works incredibly well with an ipod using a dock connector.  The point is that the ipod works reasonably well without a digital connection.

post #8 of 16
Thread Starter 

thanks everyone! food for thought but really i'm picking at hairs about the sound (maybe i'll rockbox it for flac support) and not worth $600 for the minimal increase for portable use!

post #9 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by ferday View Post

thanks everyone! food for thought but really i'm picking at hairs about the sound (maybe i'll rockbox it for flac support) and not worth $600 for the minimal increase for portable use!

 

Rockbox won't work with transport/DAC units. Only way to play FLAC from an iDevice with a DAC is to install FLACPlayer or some other media player into an iPad, hook up a CCK, then feed a compatible USB DAC. I don't know of any transport that will work with Rockbox since the chip that enables digital audio stream needs to work with iTunes; not sure but maybe there are some that will work with any other media player on iOS, but even so you only get FLAC, not the Rockbox software soundtuning.

BTW, even with iOS some are restricted to iTunes. NuForce iDo has only a limited number of formats that will work - basically, what iTunes can play.

post #10 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ProtegeManiac View Post

 

Rockbox won't work with transport/DAC units. Only way to play FLAC from an iDevice with a DAC is to install FLACPlayer or some other media player into an iPad, hook up a CCK, then feed a compatible USB DAC. I don't know of any transport that will work with Rockbox since the chip that enables digital audio stream needs to work with iTunes; not sure but maybe there are some that will work with any other media player on iOS, but even so you only get FLAC, not the Rockbox software soundtuning.

BTW, even with iOS some are restricted to iTunes. NuForce iDo has only a limited number of formats that will work - basically, what iTunes can play.

excellent info, thanks

post #11 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by ProtegeManiac View Post

Fiio L11 USB output is for charging, or syncing, not a digital audio stream. Product photo with Fiio E7 is used with analog input (3.5mm), not USB.

Indeed true. Interestingly, though... This isn't confirmed to work with an iPod, but Headroom uses Apple's camera connection kit with iPads and their external DACs connected through the connection kit's USB port.

I'm also of the mind that the iPod's internal DAC is quite good and an external DAC would be my LAST upgrade after sound file compression, headphone, and amp. Well, $100 cables might be even lower priority than an external DAC, but you get my point (I hope).
post #12 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Evshrug View Post


...but Headroom uses Apple's camera connection kit with iPads and their external DACs connected through the connection kit's USB port.

 

Me too.

 

1000

 

Plus the dock/stand since it makes it look and function all the more like a music server and not just a remote.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Evshrug View Post

Interestingly, though... This isn't confirmed to work with an iPod.

 

Nope, I haven't seen it being used that way. I tried it with a stock iOS5 iPT4, no go; but I sort of came across some info that there's a software tweak you can do to make it happen, although I've only seen other input devices, not audio processors. Not sure, didn't keep up to date on that thread.

 

BTW - in case anyone out there wants to use Classics still primarily (if not solely) because of the storage, I am saving up for the Seagate GoFlex Satellite - has its own WiFi signal and battery so you can use it as a wireless media storage device with your iOS or Android  devices at home, or even on the go - planning to use it with my iPad2 system (see pic above), which saves me a lot of money vs setting up a real networked audio system with something like the Musical Fidelity M1Clic at the heart of it, and on my next transcontinental flight or long train ride it'll have four hours or so for my Galaxy S3. Sure it's an extra box, but it won't be a problem at home, or on the go if you're hauling a lot of stuff in a camera+laptop bag anyway (as I do on trips - no way I'm checking in my electronics).

 

If however you need to remain online via WiFi on your tablet/smartphone while streaming, this one has a pass-through WiFi system : Patriot Gauntlet Node.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Evshrug View Post

I'm also of the mind that the iPod's internal DAC is quite good and an external DAC would be my LAST upgrade after sound file compression, headphone, and amp. Well, $100 cables might be even lower priority than an external DAC, but you get my point (I hope).

 

Good enough for portable use in my book but not at home; and then some people want to be able to bring that much SQ while out and about, or at least as a transportable rig, so as much as I'd always consider the $100 Pure dock more sensible than the $600+ Fostex, I can't completely argue against spending on the latter. Oh, and instead of $100 on just a cable, the price on the Fostex if you won't need a stronger amp than that begins to be a bit more sensible, not just because it's a better upgrade to the SQ than the cable but for most headphones it eliminates the need to get another amp and a cable of any price to hook up another box.


Edited by ProtegeManiac - 11/17/12 at 7:10am
post #13 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ProtegeManiac View Post

, I am saving up for the Seagate GoFlex Satellite - has its own WiFi signal and battery so you can use it as a wireless media storage device with your iOS or Android  devices at home, or even on the go - planning to use it with my iPad2 system (see pic above), which saves me a lot of money vs setting up a real networked audio system with something like the Musical Fidelity M1Clic at the heart of it, and on my next transcontinental flight or long train ride it'll have four hours or so for my Galaxy S3. Sure it's an extra box, but it won't be a problem at home, or on the go if you're hauling a lot of stuff in a camera+laptop bag anyway (as I do on trips - no way I'm checking in my electronics).

 

 

Warning!  the goflex satellite has some issues....mine never really worked properly (3 different replacements) followed by complete burnout 9 days after warranty expired.  i also found seagate to have far below sub-par customer service.

a couple friends have them and although they are having better luck, still not even close to perfect.

 

just a friendly warning that they aren't necessarily what they claim to be :)

post #14 of 16
For expanding iPad/iPod touch/iPhone storage, I would want Maxell's AirStash the most, as it uses SD cards for storage. I am also a photographer - I have many inexpensive SD cards, so storage would never be limited. The Airstash seems the best-featured overall anyway. Second choice would be Kingston's WiDrive, mostly because of cost.

I would rather use the Apple Camera Connection Kit for connecting to a great DAC that I could also use with a computer. DACs are small, easily transported. I still feel like the engine drone and people hubbub on an airplane or bus would drown out the difference made by a great DAC, assuming the sound signature stays transparent (no freq coloration) between DACs. It's a lot of money for little return, I would still improve other things first. YMMV of course, I'm not saying I wouldn't someday buy a DAC to use at home, but money has been tight for me for a few years, and I just couldn't justify a DAC over so many other expenses.

I'm not planning on buying fancy cables, I prefer to buy anything else first.
post #15 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by ferday View Post

 

Warning!  the goflex satellite has some issues....mine never really worked properly (3 different replacements) followed by complete burnout 9 days after warranty expired.  i also found seagate to have far below sub-par customer service. A couple friends have them and although they are having better luck, still not even close to perfect.

 

Just a friendly warning that they aren't necessarily what they claim to be :)

 

Thanks, that's why I'm not rushing into it also - went for an SSD upgrade for my laptop first, and I'm waiting for reports like this. Still I'm positive that's the direction I'll take, barring a windfall of cash then I can get a Musical Fidelity M1 Clic instead (or something like it, use the iPad as a remote and magazine reader, which I do now with my desktop speaker set-up).

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Evshrug View Post

For expanding iPad/iPod touch/iPhone storage, I would want Maxell's AirStash the most, as it uses SD cards for storage. I am also a photographer - I have many inexpensive SD cards, so storage would never be limited. The Airstash seems the best-featured overall anyway. Second choice would be Kingston's WiDrive, mostly because of cost.

 

Thanks for the tip, but the Airstash seems kind of expensive. The Kingston was, too, but now I just checked the prices and it's only $50 for the 32gb! If I switch to the Sony NEX-6 (or if the E-P2 or E-M5 replacement gets WiFi) and it works properly I might get one more just to back up photos on the go without an SD cloner or laptop.


Edited by ProtegeManiac - 11/18/12 at 6:08pm
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Computer Audio
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Computer Audio › DAC question and ipod/portable players