Usb c dongle dac to rival my LG G8x quad dac....
Sep 20, 2021 at 6:49 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 11

IanT1977

New Head-Fier
Joined
Aug 11, 2021
Posts
4
Likes
3
Location
Cornwall, UK
Morning,

So as the title says, I'm looking for a usb c dongle that can compete with my LG G8x quad dac - reason being I'm looking to go back to a Note 9 (mainly as I use my phone for work when I'm away, Dex is REALLY useful and I love the note phones generally) but will only do so if I can get a similar level of audio quality via a USB c dac dongle.

I mainly use a set of Sony Mdr xb950 headphones - not the most amazing set in the world but I like the sound they produce now they've bedded in a bit, plus I've dialed down the bass slightly and find them more than adequate. I'm also looking at getting a pair of Beredynamic dt770 (250 ohm) when funds allow so need something that could drive them sufficiently.

Any suggestions?

Thanks, Ian
 
Sep 20, 2021 at 7:59 AM Post #2 of 11

bland125

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Mar 9, 2020
Posts
463
Likes
332
Location
Canada
Hey there, my personnal favorite is the Lotoo Paw S1 (new version, the S2, was just announced). I tried a bunch of cheap dongles as well as Audioquest Red and Cobalt and the Lotoo comes ahead by a large margin. I’m using the 4.4mm output but it has a 3.5mm as well. For the DT770 at 250 ohms, that will be challenging for any dongle to drive properly. The E1DA 9038s is one of the most powerful I am aware of but never listened to it. It is well regarded though and rivals some DAP in power. Maybe at the expense of your phone’s battery though.
 
Sep 20, 2021 at 1:16 PM Post #3 of 11

IanT1977

New Head-Fier
Joined
Aug 11, 2021
Posts
4
Likes
3
Location
Cornwall, UK
Hey there, my personnal favorite is the Lotoo Paw S1 (new version, the S2, was just announced). I tried a bunch of cheap dongles as well as Audioquest Red and Cobalt and the Lotoo comes ahead by a large margin. I’m using the 4.4mm output but it has a 3.5mm as well. For the DT770 at 250 ohms, that will be challenging for any dongle to drive properly. The E1DA 9038s is one of the most powerful I am aware of but never listened to it. It is well regarded though and rivals some DAP in power. Maybe at the expense of your phone’s battery though.
Ah yes I had looked at the E1da 9038s, has had some pretty good reviews on here so far. That was one of my favored options along with the iBasso Dc02. Battery use isn't a massive problem for me as I tend to be sat down listening rather than walking/jogging/gym etc, so would generally be within reach of a plug socket. The dt770's whilst I am looking at the 250 ohms, I was also considering the 80 ohms version as more of a compromise between my phone and my home set up? Again, based on what I have read about them they are capable of being driven by the LG quad dac quite well even at 250?
 
Sep 20, 2021 at 3:43 PM Post #4 of 11

bland125

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Mar 9, 2020
Posts
463
Likes
332
Location
Canada
They are decently efficient at 96db/1mw so that even the AQ dongles might be able to power them :) I don't recommend them though as they are just way overpriced for what they are. The LG quad dac phones seem to have an high impedance mode. Not sure if this is just a gain setting or something else but dongles don't often have that. Most well reviewed dongles should do the trick.

If it's for home listening, why not get a more versatile device instead? Like a Xduoo XD-05 type of device? Just a suggestion.
 
Sep 22, 2021 at 6:45 PM Post #6 of 11

m-i-c-k-e-y

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
May 1, 2013
Posts
2,826
Likes
1,312
Location
The Eternal City
Am searching too.. And the Hidizs S9 Pro ticked most of my boxes.
 
Nov 17, 2021 at 12:12 PM Post #7 of 11

nuwanv

New Head-Fier
Joined
Oct 31, 2021
Posts
15
Likes
23
Location
Sri Lanka
Just got my Hidizs S9 Pro delivered today. Pairs wonderfully well with Sennheiser IE 900. For best results have to use the balance output. There is a significant improvement in sound quality when using the 2.5 mm balance cable. For some reference, even compared to Chord Mojo, hides performs much better for balance output. This is a significant upgrade in SQ when compared to DACs like chord mojo and LG V50.
20211117_163008.jpg
 
Nov 18, 2021 at 10:05 AM Post #8 of 11

silent-circuit

1000+ Head-Fier
Joined
Mar 26, 2014
Posts
1,324
Likes
600
Location
Charleston, SC
I've been very happy with the Hidizs DH80S so far. Plenty of power, even for somewhat harder to drive stuff like the Audio Technica ATH-R70X.
 
Jan 20, 2022 at 3:30 PM Post #10 of 11

IanT1977

New Head-Fier
Joined
Aug 11, 2021
Posts
4
Likes
3
Location
Cornwall, UK
So an update to this should anyone else be flowing with a similar issue, I've gone from having a Sony Nw A45, which I found to be decent but didn't really wow me as I'd hoped it may, to receiving an ibasso dc5 yesterday - first impressions are quite good! I've gone from having my volume level at over 3/4 during normal listening to between 1/4 to 1/2, anything more is too loud for me. Seems VERY powerful compared to anything else I've tried.

In terms of sound, I mostly listen to music off my SD card. I'm working through my collection upgrading to Flac files as needed, and for me at least it seems as though the music has much better separation? Ie, if I concentrate on listening to one instrument I can hear it as clearly as you would the vocals, and can do that to each and every aspect of the song in question. Possibly due to the Flac recordings, possibly due to the dongle dac. Certainly much better than any of the cheap dongle I've also tried if only for the power of this thing.

I did also consider the S9 Pro but as I only have 3.5mm headphones I figured I'd try this first. Will probably treat myself after a couple of paydays to some more expensive iem's also and see how that goes. Should also point out that my phones battery does go down a little more quickly, probably thanks to the extra oomph this thing brings. Not an issue for me as I can sit it on a wireless charge pad most of the time if needed 👌
 
Jan 20, 2022 at 5:34 PM Post #11 of 11

jmwant

500+ Head-Fier
Joined
Dec 4, 2019
Posts
678
Likes
539
Location
Hong Kong
So an update to this should anyone else be flowing with a similar issue, I've gone from having a Sony Nw A45, which I found to be decent but didn't really wow me as I'd hoped it may, to receiving an ibasso dc5 yesterday - first impressions are quite good! I've gone from having my volume level at over 3/4 during normal listening to between 1/4 to 1/2, anything more is too loud for me. Seems VERY powerful compared to anything else I've tried.

In terms of sound, I mostly listen to music off my SD card. I'm working through my collection upgrading to Flac files as needed, and for me at least it seems as though the music has much better separation? Ie, if I concentrate on listening to one instrument I can hear it as clearly as you would the vocals, and can do that to each and every aspect of the song in question. Possibly due to the Flac recordings, possibly due to the dongle dac. Certainly much better than any of the cheap dongle I've also tried if only for the power of this thing.

I did also consider the S9 Pro but as I only have 3.5mm headphones I figured I'd try this first. Will probably treat myself after a couple of paydays to some more expensive iem's also and see how that goes. Should also point out that my phones battery does go down a little more quickly, probably thanks to the extra oomph this thing brings. Not an issue for me as I can sit it on a wireless charge pad most of the time if needed 👌
ibasso DC05 is quite powerful and very good for the price. Yiu made a nice choice.
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Top