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Question: Is there a ranking of USB-C phone DACs weighted by power draw?

trungle

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Hey, all!

First time poster here, not first time visiting though. I've finally sadly and begrudgingly lost the 3.5mm port of my Galaxy S10 in a move to the S22. I've spent about 2 weeks scouring these and other forums at this point, and am finding that it's very rare that a given dongles power input is measured. The prices seem to range from $5 to, I don't know, hundreds of dollars, and the quality is all over the place as well. Most rankings go by sound quality, few by value, and non by quality x power draw. Separately, size isn't considered either, and rarely is build quality (pocketed wires tend to get crimped and abused). I've picked up an Apple dongle (not sure what chip) and a Ugreen HiFi Audio Pro (allegedly using Cirrus Logic CS43131). The latter might be a copy of the Meizu Hifi Audio Pro. Just doing back of the napkin math the latter seems to use more power than the former, and both use more power than the integrated DAC when testing on the S10. The S10 might actually have a pretty poor DAC, but I can't find reliable info on it. Apple also seems limited on volume as many reviews have noted, so that might account for power draw as well, can't confirm that. Apple's dongle also does not go as high on the bitrate, so it's a bit unfair anyway, but I wanted a reference. Not directly related, but the Apple dongle does not give me "quality build" vibes. It's probably the thinnest and flimsiest feeling piece of wire I own now. Ideally I'd like to figure out, price aside, what the best combo of quality, power draw, and size are for me. I probably can't expect the highest quality to have a low power draw, but maybe there are high quality products that manage to balance power draw and overall quality well in different brackets.

Apologies if I'm off-track here.
 

staticV3

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Screenshot_20220223-145713_Sheets.jpg

I can do audio measurements as well. If there's something specific that you're interested in, just tell me and I'll see what I can do!
 

fieldcar

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the Apple dongle does not give me "quality build" vibes. It's probably the thinnest and flimsiest feeling piece of wire I own now.
I double heatshrink any of mine. Now it's solid and durable.
Apple also seems limited on volume
Yeah. The only fix so far appears to be to be rooted to get a 3rd party mixer or to use usb audio player to remove the limit.


 
OP
T

trungle

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View attachment 188643

I can do audio measurements as well. If there's something specific that you're interested in, just tell me and I'll see what I can do!
Thank you for that image! That's very useful regarding power. That's a kind of ranking I was thinking of. Those Apple numbers are phenomenal, but alas. I suppose part of my thought in the original post has to do with data analysis tooling to allow a prospective buyer to figure out the balance of cost, power, and quality.

As far as audio quality, I am not sure if there's much I could ask that hasn't been addresses in one form or another by the many posts on these forums. For what it's worth the UGreen Hifi Audio Pro I got seems to be working out fine right now. I got it based on the quality responses for Meizu HiFi Pro which the Ugreen seems to be a rip off of (or same? not sure), and the wire-style form-factor, which is quite tidy.

I double heatshrink any of mine. Now it's solid and durable.

Yeah. The only fix so far appears to be to be rooted to get a 3rd party mixer or to use usb audio player to remove the limit.


Double heatshrink you say? I sadly don't have a heatgun for the heatshrink, but that's a solid idea.

RE: power + rooting - that's a bummer! At $9 a pop these puppies seem easy to buy for family. I am really liking the wire design of third parties like Ugreen though. No idea how well it'll hold up, but it feels more solid.
 
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