alternatives to AQ dragonfly?

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by dchang81, May 19, 2020.

  1. dchang81

    dchang81 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    are there alternatives to the AQ dragonfly for a usb stick style dac? i got one years ago, and it doesnt seem like there's much else out there. nothing inherently wrong with the dragonfly, but im surprised there are no competitors.
     
  2. Brother_Rael

    Brother_Rael Forum Resident

    Location:
    Scottish Borders
    Meridian Explorer 2 (with adapters) but that's not a like for like of course.
     
  3. patient_ot

    patient_ot Forum Resident

    Location:
    USA
    Are you specifically talking about dongle-type DACs the size of a USB stick or pack of gum? If so, there are a truckload of them out there but they are typically sold through places like Amazon or Massdrop, not hi-fi retailers. ASR measured a bunch of them and the performance differences between different ones were sometimes quite dramatic IIRC.
     
    Jacob29 and Chilli like this.
  4. Chilli

    Chilli Pretend Engineer.

    Location:
    UK
    Which Dragonfly? Ifi make a number of portable units, I'm at the budget end of things so I have a Cyrus Soundkey.
     
  5. SBaradaran

    SBaradaran Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Oakland, CA
    Ibasso DC01 and DC02 are cheaper alternatives that are well regarded. Cambridge Audio used to make something like the DF.
     
  6. slcaudiophile

    slcaudiophile Forum Resident

    Location:
    Salt Lake City
    why do you want an alternative? for a couple hundred bucks it sounds good. does it complete with more expensive dacs? of
    course not but for what it is all AOK. i use mine everyday with Tidal on my run.
     
    Bill Why Man likes this.
  7. johnny q

    johnny q Forum Resident

    Location:
    Bergen County, NJ
    Perhaps if the OP can tell us why he is looking to move on from the DF, if there is "nothing inheritantly wrong with it." Perhaps something that provides better sound? Supports 24/192? Che pasa? :)

    I couldn't be happier with my modest $99 Dragonfly Black. BUT, I do wish it did 24/192.
     
  8. slcaudiophile

    slcaudiophile Forum Resident

    Location:
    Salt Lake City
    why? are you able to describe the sonic different between 24/192 and 44/96?

    not to put you on the spot just wondering actually? i’ve not done a comparison.
     
  9. dchang81

    dchang81 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Sorry, to clarify I'm not moving on or whatever. Just surprised other companies didn't try bothering to compete at the cheapish USB stick style dac.
     
  10. johnny q

    johnny q Forum Resident

    Location:
    Bergen County, NJ
    Jeez - ya know, I was going to ask that we don't go down this rabbit hole of sampling rates and can we really hear the difference etc etc - please, don't drag this guys thread down with that stuff, there are plenty of threads around here where that stuff is argued to the nth degree.

    I have a a lot of 24/192 bit files. Period.
     
  11. slcaudiophile

    slcaudiophile Forum Resident

    Location:
    Salt Lake City
    i suspect it’s the same reason no one has come up with a new google when google is so good?
     
  12. SBaradaran

    SBaradaran Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Oakland, CA
  13. SBaradaran

    SBaradaran Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Oakland, CA
    oops duplicated a link. Here is the correct one.

    iBasso DC01
     
  14. bmoregnr

    bmoregnr Forum Rezident

    Location:
    1060 W. Addison
    This Lotoo PAW S1 is coming out this month. I have it on pre-order. I really like the PAW 6000 so I hope they get close to that. Lotoo PAW S1 Portable USB DAC-Amp

    I have the Dragonfly Red and while I like it I don't find it particularly thrilling so we'll see how this compares.
     
  15. JayDog

    JayDog Member

    Location:
    Chicago
  16. bmoregnr

    bmoregnr Forum Rezident

    Location:
    1060 W. Addison
    I am very happy with the Lotoo PAW S1 over the DFR right out of the box and via an iPhone, no going back for sure. I always found the DFR to be fairly stiff/glassy and very linear meaning nothing really stood out from anything else top to bottom but for some tinkle-y high end differentiation; it was accurate, analytical and stretched the top to bottom image maybe. The S1 has better mids/bass, more musical, more engaging; maybe a more interconnected feel and the highs are incorporated more within the upper mids, but that is my taste so this does nicely.
     
  17. Radio

    Radio Forum Resident

    Location:
    Ann Arbor, MI
  18. Radio

    Radio Forum Resident

    Location:
    Ann Arbor, MI
  19. Rick58

    Rick58 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Dublin, CA, USA

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