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AudioQuest Dragonfly Cobalt Review (Portable Headphone Adapter)

wait wait.. this means that once you support MQA you're forced to use non brickwall filters?
Unless you allow the user to swap filters, yes.

The THX Onyx reviewed recently is the same, through their filter isn’t as slow:
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It's pretty clear that people want a story far more than they want actual fidelity.

That said, using a sensitive pair of iem (or over ears for that matter) would anyone be able to tell this blind from a meizu /tempotec sonata HD Pro or even an e1da? Does the limitations of this compared to others only become apparent at the top end of its output?
 
I'm quite sure the distortion characteristics of this dongle is intended. They seem to follow the same erroneous path like PS Audio.

I've just posted a question as to how audible this is. I suspect most at moderate volumes wouldn't tell the difference from a well measuring one.
 
That said, using a sensitive pair of iem (or over ears for that matter) would anyone be able to tell this blind from a meizu /tempotec sonata HD Pro or even an e1da? Does the limitations of this compared to others only become apparent at the top end of its output?
0.012 % THD+N is the same as the specified performance of the headphone output of Komplete Audio 6 (original model, not MK2). I considered it my trusted audio interface at the time and good sounding.
 
Audioquest products don't perform well when tested on ASR so it suprises me that many reviewers give high praise to Audioquest products.
Fortunately, we have Armir who shows us the truth.
Thanks Armir, keep up the good work.
It's the power of marketing, pure and simple. Also, Audioquest spends a ton of money on adverts both in print and online, and any reviewer who points out how crap their products are risks losing that revenue.
 
Devil's advocate question - how old is this thing? It seems as though cheap dacs have improved massively in just two or three years, so... Was this thing sort-of competitive when it came along a few years back? Maybe it wasn't, so just asking...
 
Devil's advocate question - how old is this thing? It seems as though cheap dacs have improved massively in just two or three years, so... Was this thing sort-of competitive when it came along a few years back? Maybe it wasn't, so just asking...
I think it's 2 or 3 years old. Other dongles measuring no worse and costing far less have been around for that time.
 
The Cobalt is the top of the line as indicated by sky high price for such a product. An ESS ES9038Q2M DAC chip is used internally as to indicate high performance. We will check for this.
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“A dual-clock design could have avoided these compromises at the cost of additional components, resulting in a higher retail price.” Here is the idea for the $ 500 Dragonfly Gold
Right, ironic they could not do separate 44/48 clocks at the current retail price :eek:
 
Thanks Amir.

I had low expectations, but wow, I am surprised by this level of performance. They should have just re-badged, maybe in a custom case, a Chinese product with 1000x better performance and a production cost of 2-10% of the retail price. All you get here is a brand name anyway.

Of all the Fraudioquestionable reviews, this one makes me feel the most warm fuzziness.
 
Due to support of MQA, they are using the same filter for all content, MQA or not.
That is incorrect. Non-MQA content uses one of the built-in filters of the ESS DAC. For MQA content, they set one of 16 custom filters as requested by said content. I found this out by tapping the I2C bus inside the device.
 
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