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New Head-Fier
The best dongle!
Pros: *sound
Cons: *nothing

iBasso DC04PRO​


iBasso DC04PRO

In my review i used flac files and my own tidal playlist.

Prelude. iBasso is not idle, releasing new series of mobile DAC/AMP like new collections of clothes. And so, with the end of winter, the phenomenal DC06 left, and its place was taken by the improved DC04 with the pro note. Does pro mean better? By definition, it should be so, but as the world has shown more than once, it is not so obvious. Quite recently I wrote to you about a great metamorphosis, which was the unrivaled DAC/AMP DC03PRO at the price of 69 USD. Today I will review and analyze the DC06’s direct successor.

Unboxing: The packaging looks familiar, a piece of plastic, specifications, a detachable usb type-c cable and the device itself. This time we don’t have MQA, instead we have a great chip from Cirrus Logic known from devices such as iBasso DX170 or xDuoo link 2bal and its double implementation was used. The technical parameters are impressive. In addition, two headphone outputs 3.5 and 4.4 mm. But that was already done, iBasso decided on two very important aspects for me, taking the example of devices such as lotoo paw s1 or luxury w1/w2. Finally, a hardware volume control and a fully functional application in which we can freely tune our device have been added.



Bass: In the case of the iBasso DC04pro presentation, I can describe the lower bands as springy and very tight, closer to accurate and punctual hits than to a loose and slow rhythm. They have a very good speed, despite a slight boost, they do not impose themselves on the listener. It’s actually a classic iBasso sound-house. We will not be disappointed by the texture and the really low extension of the sub-bass. At times, despite the great linearity and balance in the presentation, I had the feeling that the drums or the bass guitar, and especially the electronic music literally „makes me dizzy”, which in this context is, however, a compliment.

Diameter: Vocals are getting more and more stunning in iBasso products with each edition, we have here a really neutral and realistic presentation. The voices are engaging and not colored, although they are brought to the fore in a very deliberate way. Which works great with different types of headphones, showing their natural character thanks to the amazing linearity in the DC04PRO. The instruments, in turn, are realistic, especially when it comes to imaging and the amount of information, they are not artificially inflated and plastic, it’s more of a live concert than another disco-polo show. The micro dynamics are on a pleasant and not exaggerated level. And if we take into account really good macro-dynamics, which goes well beyond the price of 119 USD (549 PLN in Poland), then we can pick our jaw up from the floor.

Treble: They are neutral and safe, they do not peak as high as in the DC06, but they are not lacking in any case. We have great stretch and a very large amount of air. Everything is properly separated from each other and well placed in time and space. I liked the naturalness of the presentation, even though the treble is a bit sharper than, for example, in xDuoo link 2 bal or lotoo paw s1. I had no problems with her excessive loudness, which I really liked.

Stage: Here we have excellent width and much improved depth and height compared to the DC06. Which gives you the feeling of communing with slightly more expensive equipment, and yet the price is the same as in the case of its predecessor.

Power: We certainly won’t run out of power on either the SE or the 4.4mm balanced output. iBasso DC04PRO is able to easily drive most mobile headphones.


DC04PRO($119) VS DC03PRO($69)

As for the sonic signature, it is similar, but there is more detail in the DC04PRO, especially in the higher tones. The presence of a balanced output also significantly increases the soundstage and power of the device (almost 3 times 280mW vs 92mW). We get a slightly more technical and resolving product, which justifies the USD 50 surcharge.

DC04PRO($119) VS DC06($119)

The DC04 PRO is not a rival, but a direct successor to the DC06. It abandons MQA for a number of improvements. The DC06 is less natural and has more power. DC04PRO wins with functionality and sound realism. Both products are great and I still love my DC06, but the DC04PRO is a great improvement on its predecessor. I wish a bit that the MQA decoding option was added to the DC04PRO, but it is not noticeable in everyday use. The DC04PRO also puts more emphasis on the midrange and linearity of the transmission.


Noise: The iBasso DC04Pro has a perfectly black background and we have absolutely no noise here.

Summary: iBasso DC04PRO is another novelty in my dongle portfolio. Added hardware volume control, fully programmable FPGA, with the ability to fine-tune parameters in the application. The purity of the signal and the power section has been improved even further. Significantly reduced energy consumption. On top of that, an efficient, very competitive dongle with a detachable cable was created for a price that is downright indecent. Of the minuses, I can definitely include the fingering glass on the housing and the lack of a dedicated case. I hope iBasso will include such an accessory as xDuoo did with the link2 bal model. In addition, I would prefer the ability to change settings from the PC application. However, the whole is very coherent and the build quality is impeccable. If someone is looking for a natural sound with emphasized low end and neutral midrange, then this is the DC04PRO. In addition, the linearity and natural / neutral timbre throughout the tonal range put the DC04PRO very high on the technical and resolving level. Actually, at the price of USD 119 (PLN 549), I can say that this is a very high bar. As in the case of the DUNU DTC-500, I am shocked at how much budget equipment can be refined and I have great respect for such a philosophy. DC04PRO joins my dongle collection and ranks in the top five. He also had no problems with driving most headphones, whether they were very sensitive softears volume headphones or quite demanding ones. Tin p1 was able to cope with them. This is due to the low output impedance. The energy consumption was really optimal for the power. In my tests, I used dense files from the TIDALA DC04PRO, it was great with their resolution and was able to use their potential.

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Yes, thanks 😂


Reviewer at hxosplus
Don't think twice
Pros: + Excellent sound performance
+ Musical and engaging
+ Excellent technicalities and transparency
+ Natural timbre
+ Dynamic and powerful
+ Volume control buttons
+ Power saving mode
+ Low power consumption
+ Compact and lightweight
+ Excellent build quality
+ Customizable through the UAC application
+ USB C and lighting cables are included
+ Great value for money
Cons: - The UAC application is only available for Android
- User settings are not permanently stored in the memory
- Not configurable in Windows and iOS
This is a brief summary of the full iBasso DC04PRO review.


Executive summary

The iBasso DC04PRO is a USB DAC dongle with a detachable type-C cable and two headphone outputs, balanced 4.4mm and single ended 3.5mm.

It uses dual CS43131 DAC chips and separate dual RT6863 high current amplifiers. The advanced circuit also employs a synchronous DC-DC converter, ultra-low noise LDO, FPGA and KDS Femto second oscillator.

The chassis is made from CNC aluminium with tempered glass panels that add a luxurious feeling. Build quality and finish are excellent.

The iBasso DC04PRO has various power saving modes that helps it to consume less power depending on the use conditions. Using the single ended output will automatically disable the unused half of the amplifier. The user can also disable the extra amplification stage and use the embedded headphone amplifiers of the DAC chips to lower power consumption. This function is available through the iBasso UAC application which is only available for Android. User settings are not stored in the device memory so it is configurable only when it is connected to an Android host.

The audio performance is truly excellent and punches well above the modest asking price making the iBasso DC04PRO one of the best value USB DAC dongles in the market. Punchy and dynamic with plenty of power to drive a lot of full sized headphones. Musical, natural and engaging with realistic timbre and excellent transparency. Open sounding, spacious and expanded with sharp imaging and a grand presentation.

The iBasso DC04PRO offers excellent sound quality, plenty of power output and great efficiency in a small form factor and a very modest asking price making it one of the best values in the USB DAC dongle scene.
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I picked one up for a great price on Prime Day and have been nothing but pleased with the performance and sound quality.
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Reactions: Ichos
I don't understand why they do not store user settings from UAC app even though it remembers the last used volume. Have already had a few accidents with volume set as per low gain mode unplugged it, later replugged it and got blasted with the same volume but in high gain mode
Hi, I don't know, maybe it is not supported by the ROM?



New Head-Fier
I picked on up during Prime Day. Got a few $$ off and arrived in a few days. I have been nothing but IMPRESSED with this little guy. It came with both Android (USB-C) and iPhone (Lightning) cables. It works great with both my over ear and IEM headphones, although I have a lot more time logged with the IEMs. It presents much better sound out of my iPhone 14 than is available straight from the phone. The Cirrus Logic DACs sound amazing and give so much more performance when you are listening on the go.