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A mini portable DAC/AMP for phone calls & media?

conandrum

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Jan 19, 2024
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I am looking for a small portable USB DAC & headphone amp.
It should be able to amplify the audio to the headphones.
It should have a 3.5" headphone socket.
It should be able to connect to a Android 13 phone via USB.
It should be able to make/receive phone calls.
It should be able to play music and any other media on the phone.

I was VERY HAPPY with Cyrus Soundkey, but it cannot make/receive phone calls.
I love its performance, size and price.
Do you have something in mind just like the Soundkey which can also handle calls?

UPDATE 20 Jan 2024
-----------------------
The reason why phone calls do not come out of the USB DAC is because the Android device does not support calls via DAC.
Just tried a phone call with the Cyrus Soundkey and a Galaxy A53 (Android 12) phone and it works perfectly!
So Soundkey is NOT the problem... it is the android device.
So I went back to the Note 8 (android 9) and installed 'lesser audioswitch' and selected USB DAC but still phone call switched over to earpiece as soon as the call connected (not to DAC) and refused to switch to DAC during the call!
 
Last edited:

Chazz6

Active Member
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Mar 4, 2021
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What do you want to do that a headset for Android phones could not do for you?
 
OP
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conandrum

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Jan 19, 2024
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I use the soundkey to amplify my Android head unit digital audio and send it into my car's AUX-IN to the Amplifier.
Unfortunately when phone calls are made/received, there is no digital audio to be amplified!
That's why I need a DAC/AMP capable of dealing with phone calls.

Of course, I could get a headset and cut the speakers off leaving the bare wires to solder into a 3.5" jack plug. But I am hoping there is an off the shelf product. Is there?

UPDATE 20 Jan 2024
-----------------------
The reason why phone calls do not come out of the USB DAC is because the Android device does not support calls via DAC.
Just tried a phone call with the Cyrus Soundkey and a Galaxy A53 (Android 12) phone and it works perfectly!
So Soundkey is NOT the problem... it is the android device.
So I went back to the Note 8 (android 9) and installed 'lesser audioswitch' and selected USB DAC but still phone call switched over to earpiece as soon as the call connected (not to DAC) and refused to switch to DAC during the call!
 
Last edited:

Chazz6

Active Member
Joined
Mar 4, 2021
Messages
225
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153
Presumably the situation is in your home, since you mention an amplifier. In that case, you might want to feed the amp from a home network, through a WiiM, Denon HEOS Link2, or similar box.
Such a setup will also be more flexible for future changes you may want to your audio setup.
 
OP
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conandrum

Member
Joined
Jan 19, 2024
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Presumably the situation is in your home, since you mention an amplifier. In that case, you might want to feed the amp from a home network, through a WiiM, Denon HEOS Link2, or similar box.
Such a setup will also be more flexible for future changes you may want to your audio setup.
You were too fast for me... I added 'car' a few seconds later.
Has to be a simple solution. Wiring is not easy in a car!
 
OP
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conandrum

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Jan 19, 2024
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Basically I have :
Android Head Unit -> USB -> Soundkey DAC/AMP -> audio cable -> AUX-IN 3.5" socket in armrest -> OEM headunit -> AMP -> speakers
 
OP
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conandrum

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Jan 19, 2024
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Simple solution... simpler the better...
Think Cyrus Soundkey + phone call support.
Similar performance... similar cost... similar size. thereabouts.

UPDATE 20 Jan 2024
-----------------------
The reason why phone calls do not come out of the USB DAC is because the Android device does not support calls via DAC.
Just tried a phone call with the Cyrus Soundkey and a Galaxy A53 (Android 12) phone and it works perfectly!
So Soundkey is NOT the problem... it is the android device.
So I went back to the Note 8 (android 9) and installed 'lesser audioswitch' and selected USB DAC but still phone call switched over to earpiece as soon as the call connected (not to DAC) and refused to switch to DAC during the call!
 
Last edited:
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