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AudioQuest Dragonfly Cobalt Review (Portable Headphone Adapter)

Asylum Seeker

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Surprise, surprise...
 

DSJR

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The $9 apple lightning adapter has been out for 9 years and is 20dB better(-99dB).
I recently bought the USB C version for seven quid including free delivery. A C-A adaptor cost two quid or so and for a tenner in UK terms, I think it's excellent. Rather silly isn't it when other 'high end' dacs offer worse performance for thousands, where the casework and story told is more important than the actual function of the thing...
 

DSJR

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Is funny to see some YT reviewers like J Darko, really recommending this one, even my old Fio 1k for 20$ does better.
I don't think he has anything other than his ears and eyes to confirm though, does he? All it takes is mood, heath and even the weather (humidity, sunshine and suchlike) to affect subjective opinions but these people don't seem to understand or even want to.
 

mansr

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Yeah thats evident. The problem is why are they doing that when this isnt a necessitation. Since its using ESS, they can use other filters if MQA isnt detected.

Also if this were true, supporting MQA means you're locked out of brickwall filters in totality. And that's simply not the case. They either specifically chose this for MQA and decided not to tap thr chip for other filters in any other circumstance which is stupid.
For non-MQA material, the ES9038Q2M built-in "minimum phase slow roll-off" filter is used.
 

Lambda

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I'm not sure. Don't scam products need to be exposed, over and over?
There is panty of other manufactures without BS marketing and Scam products.
Why come back to the one manufacture that never delivered anything good and is clearly selling snake Oil?
 

BDWoody

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There is panty of other manufactures without BS marketing and Scam products.
Why come back to the one manufacture that never delivered anything good and is clearly selling snake Oil?
You want a search result for each product. WE know it's all snake oil, and each new review of their products informs more people who wouldn't otherwise know.
 

Lambda

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You want a search result for each product. WE know it's all snake oil, and each new review of their products informs more people who wouldn't otherwise know.
I would rather see a review of an honest product that surprises in a good way.

Sure it has value to expose AQ products maybe it’s stops someone average Joe from buying and saves them money.
But since WE already know it has little value for US.

I would love to see more Reviews from products WE don’t know about or we assume to be good.
In my mined this would be more value for the community (us) that researchers and makes evidence based decision.
 

AudioSceptic

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There is panty of other manufactures without BS marketing and Scam products.
Why come back to the one manufacture that never delivered anything good and is clearly selling snake Oil?
Because as they put out each new product, which gets predictably glowing reviews from the usual suspects, it is necessary to show to the unwary, who might not have seen previous objective reviews, that the product is poor. It's like countering pseudoscience: it's a never-ending battle.
 

AudioSceptic

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I would rather see a review of an honest product that surprises in a good way.

Sure it has value to expose AQ products maybe it’s stops someone average Joe from buying and saves them money.
But since WE already know it has little value for US.

I would love to see more Reviews from products WE don’t know about or we assume to be good.
In my mined this would be more value for the community (us) that researchers and makes evidence based decision.
So would I, but that depends on the product being sent to Amir. We can't expect him to source them all himself.
 

Grumple

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I don't think he has anything other than his ears and eyes to confirm though, does he? All it takes is mood, heath and even the weather (humidity, sunshine and suchlike) to affect subjective opinions but these people don't seem to understand or even want to.
He maybe gets paid for producing infomercials?
 

AudioSceptic

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Soooo.. Long time lurker first time poster. I don't pretend to understand half the stuff Amirm measures but enjoy reading about it anyhow.

So, I bought one of these as I wanted a DAC / Headphone amp with MQA.

I don't hear the distortion Amirm is measuring / hearing possibly because I'm not cranking the volume up.
I thought it sounded ok, and makes my HD650s and Meze99s sound better than the stock DAC in my phone. Sounds like I've been ripped off but hey ho. With nothing else to listen to I'll stick with it.

Maybe next purchase I'll choose something better
These things got rave reviews from the subjective crowd. Put it on eBay and make sure you quote those reviews!
 

DSJR

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I think that when third parties only give subjective opinions, 'just good enough' really is it*. Back in the 60's and 70's, maybe it was, as I think getting consistency and reliability in samples and batches was the main criteria once a basic minimum spec was reached, but today with modern components which seem better toleranced, together with computer aided design and modelling, there really isn't much excuse frankly in my book. Jason at Schiit has laid it out as to why they did and maybe still do things the way they did/do, but then came back with stuff that maybe he feels is a bit 'me too' in terms of design (using op-amps and so on), but he's got the performance 'we' appreciate and hopefully a ton of sales out of it as a result, so as I said earlier, a win-win situation for them and us :)

* Mind you, i am so ignorant and naive when it comes to marketing needs and playing to a particular audience...
 

Human Bass

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They don't, and I wasn't expecting Audioquest to send in a pair to review, but some folks here own them, like myself, and would like to know if anyone has offered to send them in yet.
I had the Nightowl and it was very good, nothing harsh, very sweet highs, it was a tamed, safe sound. Just wish it had more sub bass slam. But the fact that Audioquest gave up on those headphones can only mean they were good.
 

Lambda

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Because as they put out each new product, which gets predictably glowing reviews from the usual suspects, it is necessary to show to the unwary, who might not have seen previous objective reviews, that the product is poor.
I think there is a very small overlap between "the usual suspects" and this community.

It's like countering pseudoscience: it's a never-ending battle.
Imagine it's Medicalsciencereview.com at what point would you stop wasting lab time on "healing crystals"
Maybe do it once or twice, but then "They" loose the benefit of the doubt and have to deliver real data/evidence before they earn an other review.
 
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