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Looking for Portable DAC that bypasses iPod DAC

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

Hello!  Ive read a few threads but nothing has answered the question i have.

 

Is there a portable unit that can take the digital signal from my iPod 7G and ouput it from an onboard (higher quality) DAC to a headphone out?  

 

I was under the impression that the digital feed was locked down by apple and only Wadia had been given permission to create devices that tap into the pure digital signal.  This information was accurate in 2010 but im not so sure about 2013.

 

Thanks!

post #2 of 9

I'm not an Apple person.

But so far I'm not hearing people say they can not get their Apple Lighting port to work with external DACs.

 

I think you just need a Lighting to USB cable, I believe the cable needs to have a small chip sold by Apple embedded into the cable (when the cable is manufactured).

Lots of Lighting to USB cables sold on Amazon.

 

Edit, turn out I know less about connecting stuff to the lightning port then I though i did.

Never mind my advice on Apple Lightning stuff.


Edited by PurpleAngel - 9/19/13 at 11:12pm
post #3 of 9
Cypherlabs Algorythm Solo does that and some other devices as well
post #4 of 9

Sony PHA-1 bypasses the apple's internal dac. But its too pricey

post #5 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackeyeliner View Post

Cypherlabs Algorythm Solo does that and some other devices as well

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by formula1 View Post

Sony PHA-1 bypasses the apple's internal dac. But its too pricey

Cypherlabs Algorythm Solo -R or -dB (DAC only), Sony PHA-1, Fostex HP-P1, and V-MODA VERZA to name a few.  The Sony PHA-1 is the newest, but I personally like the VERZA the best.  However, if you want to be cheap, then get the Lightning to 30 pin adapter from Apple and use a LOD to FiiO or something like that.  The reason is that the Lightning to 30 pin adapter has a Wolfson DAC inside which is decent.  PurpleAngle mentioned the Lightning to USB cable, but that won't work as the chip inside is just an ID lockout chip and not a DAC like the adapter.


Edited by DrSheep - 7/17/13 at 5:04am
post #6 of 9

Price of PHA-1 seems to be coming down on eBay, I just purchased one for $340.00 USD. free postage, waiting for it to arrive from Japan, paid with PayPal & it cost me £219.67 GBP,

 

Head-Fi'er Shigzeo's review has me convinced that this will be a good first purchase, other possible contenders (DAC/Amps) were just unaffordable with my current financial situation.

post #7 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by RayMusicLover View Post
 

Price of PHA-1 seems to be coming down on eBay, I just purchased one for $340.00 USD. free postage, waiting for it to arrive from Japan, paid with PayPal & it cost me £219.67 GBP,

 

Head-Fi'er Shigzeo's review has me convinced that this will be a good first purchase, other possible contenders (DAC/Amps) were just unaffordable with my current financial situation.

It is, very clean sound from the DAC and it is MFI.  Can't beat that.

post #8 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrSheep View Post
 

It is, very clean sound from the DAC and it is MFI.  Can't beat that.

DrSheep you are 100% spot on. Received it today and my initial thoughts "Wow!!!!!!! Incredible!!!!!" drives my HD 650's with ease, makes me like my P5's again. Only used it for a couple of hours, haven't had a chance to try out other headphones, I've had too put it on charge, need to wait (it's so hard I just want to play with it). I've read that it takes a while to burn in. So presuming "Things can only get better". I will do a review after I've had it a while.

 

Just for now I will say it looks beautiful, well made & not too big

post #9 of 9

Thanks.  I didn't noticed the PHA-1 change much during burn-in when I tested it, so it is pretty much unnecessary.  If you hook it up to your computer, it's sound signature is very close, if not almost identical, to my AudioQuest DragonFly.  Price wise it will only go down after the lease of the PHA-2, and it is a great time to buy for anyone who are interested in a MFI DAC / AMP.  BTW, there is a company called Van Nuys in Japan that makes a VERY NICE case for the PHA-1.  Too bad it is Japan only...


Edited by DrSheep - 9/30/13 at 12:32pm
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