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Portable IEM DAC/Amp Under $1k

  1. riverred105
    I’m a long time audiophile/enthusiast looking for the best portable headphone dac/amp under $1k

    For my current setup I use an ifi xdsd to drive the latest ety, audeo pfe 232, and Heir 8.a. (I also have campfire Solaris and Hyla TE-5B on the way). The goal for the next two or three years is to upgrade to a Hugo 2 (or something in that price point and feature set).

    In the meantime, I am looking for advice regarding portable DACs (excluding mojo/poly) less than $1k. I’d be very appreciative for input.

    Among this price range, I’m also curious about the Mcintosh MHA50 and iQube v5. There is a dearth of reviews for these two (which could be for a reason if their performance is poor). Does anyone have feedback regarding how these stack up to the chord mojo or ifi xdsd/BL Micro?

    I welcome any and all suggestions for the sub $1k range portables. Wireless connectivity is plus; I enjoy neutral to slightly warm sound, and place a premium on 3D sound staging. I’m looking for more than a slight/subtle improvement over the xdsd, and I can wait if needed for the Hugo 2 if there is not anything in this price range.
     

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