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Portable DAC for iPod Classic Only Use

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
I'm currently looking for a portable DAC suitable for iPod Classic 160GB(7G).

I was considering one of the CLAS(R,dB,Theorem), however, since iDevices can only play music at max resolution of 16/48k, I thought, this could be overkill for just iPod Classic use-only.

So I'd like to know what portable DAC will provide me with the most optimal results and value/performance for my iPod Classic.

My current setup is iPC > FiiO L9 LOD > FiiO E12 > Sennheiser Momentum(Over-Ears).

I am still researching, I have found the HRT iStreamer somewhat what I'm looking from however, if the higher levels(CLAS,HP-P1) remains triumphant for sound quality then I will consider that option again.

P.S. Any recommendable upgrades between iPC and Momentums is appreciated. (I am aware amp shouldn't be required by Momentums(love them), I just love the idea of holding a stack and controlling my volume with a knob). =)
post #2 of 17

I would just stick with the DAC in your iPod. The 7th gen has a very reputable Wolfson DAC in there. I would invest in an amp but seeing as the momentums have pretty low impedance you can easily drive it with your iPod. Not sure if the price would justify a DAC upgrade.

 

Or maybe you could just sell your iPod and get a Hi-Res DAP instead. Fiio X3 or X5 are value units with the Wolfson WM8740.

post #3 of 17
Thread Starter 
From my reading the internal DAC is Cirrus CS42L55.

People do say the DAC is sufficient enough to be left as the last upgrade. I was wondering what would be the most desirable DAC for iPC only.

I use iPC because I like reliable software and easy management of playlist, along with the ability to rate my songs, and the nice chunk of disk space. It might not be the best for sound experience but it's a comforting aspect of usability. So I'd like to get the most of it as a source.

I think my setup is quite sufficient as it is, but I like to see if I can improve it any further.

Headphones would be the major upgradable, however, I really like my Momentums, so I'm looking for things between the iPC and Momentums.

Thanks for your response!
post #4 of 17

Yea, sorry you're right it does. It was the Classic 5/5.5G with the Wolfson. However, I heard some great things about the Cirrus DAC in the latest generation Classic. Some say that it is even better.

 

Personally never experienced the Cypher Labs DAC so I can't really comment but I'm sure you will be happy either way. 

post #5 of 17

Have you looked into the Fiio E17? Good portable DAC which I use currently for my portable use. I also do use it with my Ipod Touch 1st gen and using sennheiser momentums as well. 

 

I would say the bass is enhanced being punchy but not out of control and gives a slight edge in the quality of the sound in vocalists.

 

Paired them as my daily for about 6 months so far.

post #6 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by eaglex3 View Post

Have you looked into the Fiio E17? Good portable DAC which I use currently for my portable use. I also do use it with my Ipod Touch 1st gen and using sennheiser momentums as well. 

I would say the bass is enhanced being punchy but not out of control and gives a slight edge in the quality of the sound in vocalists.

Paired them as my daily for about 6 months so far.

How did you manage to use the 17 as a DAC with your ipod?
post #7 of 17
Thread Starter 
As far as I know FiiO doesn't have a DAC that can extract the digital signal to bypass the iDevice internal since they still haven't received their MFI license from Apple. So the E17 should only be working as an amp.
Edited by Luthus - 4/23/14 at 7:15pm
post #8 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by cuiter23 View Post


How did you manage to use the 17 as a DAC with your ipod?

 

Basically the E17 - you can set about 4 modes - USB, COAX, Auxiliary cable and OPT. Just simply set the mode to AUX, plug in the included AUX cable ( you can also get a AUX to the 30 pin Ipod connector cable ( http://www.ebay.com/bhp/ipod-female-to-aux ) as linked. The E17 has a aux plug at the bottom and Headphone cable at the top. 

 

Ill post a picture when I get home from work. 

post #9 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by eaglex3 View Post

Basically the E17 - you can set about 4 modes - USB, COAX, Auxiliary cable and OPT. Just simply set the mode to AUX, plug in the included AUX cable ( you can also get a AUX to the 30 pin Ipod connector cable ( http://www.ebay.com/bhp/ipod-female-to-aux ) as linked. The E17 has a aux plug at the bottom and Headphone cable at the top. 

Ill post a picture when I get home from work. 

Yes, I know I have the E07k. I also used the LOD 9 to connect to my ipod. You are only able to use it as an amp, not a DAC with your ipod.
post #10 of 17
The only dac/amp that i know that can bypass the ipods dac are, CLAS, theorem, vmoda vamp, foxtex hpp1, centrance hifi m8 and venturecraft. I too had search on this cause im using an ipod 7th gen too and i love it. Maybe ill suggest you to go with the theorem. Really a great device..
post #11 of 17
...and, of course, the Sony PHA-1 and PHA-2.
post #12 of 17
Thread Starter 
I was considering the Theorem, I can buy it locally for $949. I thought this could be quite the overkill for iPod Classic & Momentum only use. If its worth it, I'll consider it smily_headphones1.gif.
post #13 of 17
For me its not the overkill, its the quality of music that ill be getting. In time I can say youll be upgrading your headphones to a higher level(i guess) and with a good source you can really hear the potential of the next upgrade you will be getting. Im sure this investmet will be worth it.

But one thing, audition it first before you buy.

Cheers!
post #14 of 17
A DAC Is overkill for me, an amp bypassing IPod gain has been a big plus. Have decided to stick with my Classic 160 because all I've read about most DAPs, so far, has made me appreciate more the unfinicky IPod interface.
post #15 of 17

Exactly, the ipod has a capable DAC in it already. Its just laptops that have extremely bad DACs that need bypassing. 

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