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Newbie - Need Help With Single Portable DAC/AMP Device for Multiple Use Cases

post #1 of 2
Thread Starter 

Hello All,

 

I've spent many hours getting educated (still long way to go) on headphones and equipment for better experience. Here is my use case and what I need help with.

 

Use Case

  • Planning to purchase a new headphone - most likely Alpha Dog
  • Player - PC, laptop, tablet, phone - essentially, many different devices

 

My Understanding

After reading many threads on this site and other sites, here is my understanding:

  1. To get better playback on PC/laptop and supported tablets - I need to get a DAC
  2. For my Phone (Windows Phone 8), I know I am limited in that Nokia 1520 does not support sending Audio via USB.
  3. I will need an amp to drive the Alpha Dogs

 

Question/Help

Here is where I need some help. I would like a singe device that is:

  • BUDGET - $200 (However, if I need to, I can go up to $300)
  • PORTABLE - to take on business trips, work in coffee shops, at my desk
  • DAC/AMP combo - I'm looking for one device that meets my use case.
  • POWER - Can drive the Alpha Dog - more so from my phone

 

Research

I have spent many many hours reading reviews of portable amps, portable DACs, desktop DACs, etc. and although I've learned a lot, I have way too much new information in my head and frankly, it's getting all mixed up. Seems like I have two choices:

  1. Purchase a single DAC/AMP device - such as HiFi M8 (but outside my budget) OR
  2. Buy two devices - a USB DAC (such as Dragon fly or the newly release GEEK) for my desktop and laptop and get a portable AMP to use with my phone.

 

(I'm assuming that a PC and Laptop will just need a DAC and not an Amp Or perhaps I'm getting confused about getting a separate portable DAC and AMP.)

 

Now I'm a bit lost in as to 1) what direction I should head and 2) what device(s) to look at. Like I said, I have spent many hours reading many threads and reviews and my head is spinning.

 

So, I would appreciate some advice.

 

Thank You!

post #2 of 2
Thread Starter 

Hi. One time bump in hopes someone can chime in.

 

Thanks

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