New Dragonfly Black and Red Discussion
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Cann0nF0dda

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I've just bought a jitterbug for my DFB.  And in many ways it transformed the sound even more than the DAC - the difference is material to the sound.
 
I'm using it with my PCs, Samsung phone and iPad Air 2 with CCK (USB3)
 
You just plug into the USB port of your device or adaptor and then plug the Dragonfly into the jitterbug.  No further power needed.
 
Best of luck.
 
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malcbo

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  Hi Guys,
Thanks for the info, I will get the 3.0 adapter just to be on the safe side. Fingers crossed that it will be portable enough.
2 more questions:
I have an iphone 6 now but might want to buy a 7 later this year. My meze99 classic has a headset, i guess I cant use that anymore if connected through adapter and dragonfly?
Second question. I have heard a bit in this thread about the audioquest jitterbug. Does it really make a difference and do you just connect that into your laptop and then connect the dfr to the jitterbug? I guess it also works with ios or does it need separate power?
Thanks again for any info,
Greetings, Anouk,
It won't work connected to the Dragonfly.
 
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good sound

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Second question. I have heard a bit in this thread about the audioquest jitterbug. Does it really make a difference and do you just connect that into your laptop and then connect the dfr to the jitterbug? I guess it also works with ios or does it need separate power?
Thanks again for any info,
Greetings, Anouk,

I have a Jitterbug and tried it with my DFR when I still owned it. The hookup scenario you describe will work. Whether or not the Jitterbug makes a difference or not is another question altogether. Some feel it makes a significant improvement, while others can't detect much if any difference. I fall into the latter camp and mostly used my DFR without the Jitterbug. The good thing is that the Jitterbug is not expensive so even if you find it doesn't improve the performance of your rig you haven't lost much and you can re-sell it to lose even less.
 
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MX400

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Second question. I have heard a bit in this thread about the audioquest jitterbug. Does it really make a difference and do you just connect that into your laptop and then connect the dfr to the jitterbug? I guess it also works with ios or does it need separate power?
Thanks again for any info,
Greetings, Anouk,

I have a Jitterbug and tried it with my DFR when I still owned it. The hookup scenario you describe will work. Whether or not the Jitterbug makes a difference or not is another question altogether. Some feel it makes a significant improvement, while others can't detect much if any difference. I fall into the latter camp and mostly used my DFR without the Jitterbug. The good thing is that the Jitterbug is not expensive so even if you find it doesn't improve the performance of your rig you haven't lost much and you can re-sell it to lose even less.
will depend on the additional or specific hardware attached, and if tune-able software is present or not, to make the best use of the jitterbug. 

for me, with jitterbug, sound timing is far tighter and attack processing is much, much faster on lows and highs, and the vocals are cleaner and may even be over-amplified depending on the sound file type being played back. jitterbug helps with alignment of pass-through data better into dragonfly_RED, and I would pair it with RED to get the best results.

mostly more noticeable if using a variety of tools to monitor and listen, with jitterbug. I paired the jitterbug with a creative X-Fi sound card, and it made the flaws of the X-fi sound card more noticeable; the verdict of the culprit is the original source and where the data is being sent if nothing needs correction, then forget the jitterbug.
if limited to the amount of hardware testing available, the jitterbug is mostly useless because like mentioned earlier, if certain priorities of sound listening cannot be scaled back or tuned, then the jitterbug may over-amplify the way product can sound, thus making it worst off than just using the dragonfly, alone. can't know what black is without white, and good without bad.

p.s. - i only got the dragontail because it looked cool, but actually makes the sound worst for my equipment and hardware.
 
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good sound

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I was primarily using the DFR with my Android phone, and the Android specific Dragontail, which I found to sound better than another OTG cable I had. My Jitterbug is now connected to my desktop PC. Still don't hear any difference with our without the Jitterbug attached.
 
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LazerBear

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Anyone use hd 6xx with these? Wanna know if they work fine.
 
I personally didn't, but as far as I know HD650 and HD6XX both scale a lot with power. As such, I don't think a stick-format DAC/AMP will give you the best results.
 
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coolcrew23

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Thanks sir! I kinda like my dragonfly's sound. Is there a way i can use this to power an hd 6xx? Maybe using it as a lineout for an amp? Or will that be double amping?
 
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leaky74

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  Using the Bowers and Wilkins P7 Wireless in Wired mode with the DFR and setting Tidal to have exclusive use of the device (to allow it to change Mac Midi output based on song sample rate), nets me having the Tidal volume bar at about 1/10 for work listening volume levels.  Even when I put it all the way down, I still have low volume music coming through.  Am I doing something wrong?
 
Same question for me - using the Dragonfly Red with OSX I would typically set sound output to the Dragonfly Red, Tidal to Full volume & control output volume at a system level. Now with Tidal introducing MQA (& prior to the pending Dragonfly updates), I need to let Tidal control the Dragonfly in order to change sample rate accordingly. This means I need to set volume to full at a system level & control it via Tidal. This doesn’t seem to affect sound quality but I’m wondering if the pending update to Dragonflys will change this?
 
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Johnpdoe2

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  re-sampling sound software processors can ruin a lot with the way dragonfly can sound, so it depends on what OS/software/hardware platform you're using.
 
if using EQ on mobile devices, you're at the mercy of the software, juice and cabling to the hardware.
 
on Windows OS platforms, setup audio routing to "direct sound" and make sure ground paths and USB cleansing is present.
 
if using hardware mixer, recommend jitterbug, it will keep everything clean from your dragonfly all the way through mixer/FX samples to your speakers as much as possible, but only if using high quality cabling.

as far as software mixers, very few software developers get it thoroughly sounding right and tight on software timing. so don't be sold on dragonfly right away if you've only tested one program's EQ output.
 
as far as hardware mixers for example, not a big fan of entry-level Yamaha mixers, it re-samples like it thinks customers are using low quality speakers, meaning I can hear the audio degrade significantly as if Yamaha thinks they want to synthesize everything back to the 90's tv-style speakers.

EQ always works best on 320K/FLAC/WAV,etc sound files. highs/mids/lows, FX processors, will be more adjustable and tune-able on higher quality sound files.

there are no real rules; if it sounds good, it sounds good, if not, try something else and keep searching. i was never able to get my highs at 60% smooth and perfect mids at 45% until dragonly_RED matched with the jitterbug.

one listening issue with some hardware EQ's is the GAIN may be set prematurely with the volume settings, and sometimes it's absolutely hit or miss depending on what can actually be tuned with the immediate speaker controls and its tune-settings, and especially a problem for headphones that have built-in processors where the audio enhancement is "always enabled" and thus making the dragonfly_RED utterly useless with some EQ controls, as to deviate potentially preferable & desired change in audio performance and quality.
 
So does the EQ in a software player like VLC degrade the data that gets into the DFR if it's enabled?  When using my headphones with vlc and some FLAC files I tried pumping up a bit lower frequencies with VLC's to attenuate the overall bright high signature and noticed a bit of crackle in certain parts (like sandy sound) and I'm still trying to find the cause.
 
Is there any resampling taking place?  Do you guys not use EQ with using an external DAC?  Would that happen with any software player? 
 
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LazerBear

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Thanks sir! I kinda like my dragonfly's sound. Is there a way i can use this to power an hd 6xx? Maybe using it as a lineout for an amp? Or will that be double amping?
 
You could use it as lineout, yes. It is technically double amping, but the Dragonfly is designed to work that way according to AQ. 
 
Note however that most often than not the "colouring" of music happens at amp stage.. meaning that adding an amp will usually change the sound signature. If you want to preserve the Dragonfly's sound signature, you should look for an amp that is as transparent as possible.
 
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MX400

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So does the EQ in a software player like VLC degrade the data that gets into the DFR if it's enabled?  When using my headphones with vlc and some FLAC files I tried pumping up a bit lower frequencies with VLC's to attenuate the overall bright high signature and noticed a bit of crackle in certain parts (like sandy sound) and I'm still trying to find the cause.
 
Is there any resampling taking place?  Do you guys not use EQ with using an external DAC?  Would that happen with any software player? 
VLC creates a pre-process EQ into the dragonfly, and the dragonfly corrects the sound and reprocesses the data sent to your headphones. re-sampling doesn't always mean the sound is being created twice, it could be slang for the sound file being modified through a software engine before it reaches the destination of the soundcard, means it's not the flat 'most-original.' but keep in mind, the software needs permission from the operating system to utilize a method to transmit the data to the sound card. 

Windows 8.1 / Windows 10:
speaker properties: volume @ 90%-100%, "disable all enhancements", advanced: 24 bit, 96000 Hz (Studio Quality) / Exclusive Mode - check box on: "Allow applications to take exclusive control of this device" and "Give exclusive mode applications priority"

there will be 1 / 100 flaws in every split second, which is just speculation. AudioQuest didn't make a perfect product but it's pretty close. occasionally I'll hear a snap, crackle or pop, because remember the dragonly_RED hardware is trying to reprocess software data sent to it. it's not common, maybe once every couple days when I'm listening to music mixes, certain kinds of software will have bugs in it, and so when I hear it, I have to hit the replay button 3-5 times to determine if it's a flaw in the file or just a software/hardware glitch.

software EQ is pre-processed, while external hardware mixer EQ is post-processed with respect to how the dragonfly_RED is connected. the dragonfly_RED will reconstruct the sound data, and will not touch anything else once it leaves the 3.5mm DAC jack, so try plugging a different set of headphones into it on the exact same software settings.

the VLC software has "2 pass" which sends the song into the EQ bands TWICE, double processed, sending the song EQ'd and EQ'd again through the same bands. you may have to play with the compressor settings on the next tab over. VLC does not intend to degrade songs, the software (tried it) seems to be legit on the EQ settings, you can have the sound file processed the way you want it before dragonfly_RED does final processing. mids usually are always amplified pretty hard on dragonfly_RED, the brightness is very high on mids in other words, so turn down middle bands on rock music and strong vocals, for example.
the VLC EQ-preset, "soft-rock", seems to favor the dragonfly_RED, on cleanest and richest sound based on what I'm hearing on different kinds of music, with "compressor" and "spatializer" turned OFF.

try jitterbug to cleanse the USB port distortion(s) or bad ground-loops (disconnect laptop from power source and all other USB peripherals), or try a different set of headphones, because like mentioned earlier before, the hidden processor (which will boost the frequencies/GAIN by default for example) on headphones will sometimes throw out "good sound" and force enhancements which may include resetting pre-configured EQ paths and restructuring final listening experience. sometimes the combination of motherboard and dragonfly_RED software drivers may not match up very well, either. and just because it's a FLAC file, doesn't mean the recording methods were setup the way we all wanted to hear it. try using a different piece of software with the same FLAC file, and then listen to it on converted format in MP3_320k to see if the problem can be reproduced. one thing to note, that i think is truly awesome, is that 'fast music' actually may sound a bit slower with the dragonfly_RED and the jitterbug combined, because the detail is more clear and the song is re-timed on final output!

so in short, the data can be degraded, yes, but to answer it correctly, the data is being reconstructed from a digital source (supposedly) for analog reproduction, so if anything is lost or degraded, it is user listening experience of what sounds better or worst that must be your judgement after you know for sure the software-hardware combination pre-processiing before the data reaches the dragonfly_RED, as to make sure the data (song/sound) is actually at its highest integrity. hence, DAC, digital to analog converter. 

 
 
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Anatidae

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Am I right in saying that as long as you're using UAPP on Android the volume on the Red works perfectly?
 
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