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New Portable USB DAC/Amp to preview at Maryland Meet


justin
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The DAC runs on USB power, and is filtered and regulated extensively. The headphone amp always runs on battery power. The power draw from the USB is 100mA (0.5W)

Thats great news! Oh and I think option 2 would be very useful. The dac section you describe is tops, and taking advantage of it as a great source for desktop amps is probably a key selling point too. Option three seems interesting though. Maybe more info on it? Option one doesn't really concern me because the ae2 was pretty cooperative with the really sensitive superfi5's and I don't see the need to switch to low gain...

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It would be a shame to have a top notch dac that you can't use with a good amp when possible. I mean, you do amazing things with the tiny amp section in that amp, but if given a choice, I'd still rather use a better amp when given a chance.

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Justin, if you decide to go with option 2, would the toggle switch do anything for the one without USB DAC?

This is really the problem, because the best use of the switch on the amp-only version would be a gain switch. To have a gain switch on the amp-only, but none on the DAC+Amp, would definitely bother a lot of people (and also make it more difficult by having 2 different front panel layouts).

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Is there any way to make it so that when USB cable is plugged in, the analog automatically turns into a DAC line output?

I believe that would be an internal jumper that Justin says can't be fit in. I could be wrong.

Poll time...

The toggle switch on the front of the amp could do 1 of 3 things. I'd like to find out what is the most desirable

1) Gain switch (this is the current use)

2) Change the analog input into a DAC line output

3) This one is unlikely to win, but could be done....a voltage switch, giving a shorter or longer battery life depending on position.

I'll place my vote on the 2nd choice. But of course, I totally see what you're saying regarding:

This is really the problem, because the best use of the switch on the amp-only version would be a gain switch. To have a gain switch on the amp-only, but none on the DAC+Amp, would definitely bother a lot of people (and also make it more difficult by having 2 different front panel layouts).

I guess the second choice is well suited for me personally, but I'm not sure whether that would be the best choice for all.

By the way, any ideas on what the gain would be around if you go for the single gain option?

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Is there any way to make it so that when USB cable is plugged in, the analog automatically turns into a DAC line output?

That would be ideal, and it would allow him to keep the gain selection associated with the toggle.....which would be my choice for the toggle regardless. I'm very anxious to see how this little package will stack up to something like the microstack or even the apogee. I know those aren't really intended as portable solutions, but the comparison should be interesting.

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Perhaps someone can answer this question. The Apples can deliver 44.1khz audio to USB directly, but what about XP / Vista machines?

It's never been 100% clear to me. I'm over Apples, have moved back to the Windows camp and have a veritable wodge of portables and any of these would be what I'd want to use with a device like this

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if you're playing 44.1khz audio, which is just about everything, then you should set the output to 44.1khz if you have the ability to do so. it uses 100mA of current from the USB port so even the oldest computers with USB will be able to support it

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