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Ultraportable Lightning DACs Thread

Discussion in 'Portable Source Gear' started by Yaroslav, May 7, 2017.
  1. Yaroslav
    Here's an attempt to make a list of all Lightning-based DACs.


    The iPhone comes with a lame "adapter" now, or, rather, a very simple AMP/DAC. Cheap, very thin wire that looks like it will break in 2-3 months, not enough to drive most headphones, white rubber coating gets dirty easily.

    There is an obvious way to use pretty much any good portable DAC/AMP via the Lightning Camera Adapter [$30], which is exactly the way you connect good stuff like Chord Mojo to your iPhone.

    However, external DAC/AMPs are still heavy and bulky, may require a lot of room in your pocket or a bag. Way too geeky and not very portable.

    What about getting a very light iPhone Lightning DAC, powerful enough to drive somewhat good headphones, yet something that still fits in the pocket with ease.


    This is the stuff that I was able to find so far. Please post your findings to add to this list and your reviews if any.

    FiiO i1

    Head-Fi Thread:

    S.M.S.L. iCON
    $70/70 quid? (unclear)

    Anything else?
    CAPT Deadpool and jatergb like this.
  2. Niroc
    I know it's been a long time since you started this thread.. Did you find anything else since then? I'm wondering the same thing as you.
    CAPT Deadpool likes this.
  3. sorrick
    Cozoy REI. It’s pricey ($550), but sounds excellent.
    CAPT Deadpool likes this.
  4. Yaroslav
    I've basically ended up with the FiiO i1. Reasonable quality, but really weird form factor: a very long cable, not comfortable to wrap, and remote only works on their cable, not on my headphones. Probably Apple's limitations?

    I've ended up moving back to Apple's DAC dongle. Thing sucks, breaks every 3 months or so and it is NOT and understatement. I was on my fourth when I've switched to Bluetooth with AAC codec. Anything happens, will probably go back to Apple's DAC.
    CAPT Deadpool likes this.
  5. Niroc
    CAPT Deadpool likes this.

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