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Review and Measurements of LG G5 Hi-Fi Plus DAC/Amp

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#22
@amirm It would be nice to know how much wattage this little thing can output compared to the Apple dongle
It depends on headphones impedance, AFAIK it has three modes: low(0.3v), line(1v), high(1.8v). I don't know how much impedance could trigger the high mode, it needs more test.
But it's easy to trigger line mode: simply attach an extension cable at first, then connect your headphone to the cable.
 
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#23
I found one on Ali with a nice looking case :D
https://s.click.aliexpress.com/e/bc5tLGN2
I've gotta say, the decision to use recycled AMD CPUs as case heatsinks is resourceful and clever. Takes me back too because one of those Athlon 64 X2 processors is still chugging away in my parents' desktop computer over a decade later. Maybe I could part out the case and upgrade it...
 

Silou

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#24
If someone finds a standalone board of the G5 DAC, please post it here. I want to buy one and build my own case for it.
 

amirm

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#25
@amirm It would be nice to know how much wattage this little thing can output compared to the Apple dongle
I can't run my sweeps with this test setup. I also can't figure out how to get it to 1.8 volt output as opposed to 1 volt I got. Using 1 volt and assuming it can maintain that into 300 ohm, you get 1/300 or 3.3 milliwatts. If you can get it up to 1.8 volts, then you get 11 milliwatts of power into 300 ohm.
 

Silou

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#26
I can't run my sweeps with this test setup. I also can't figure out how to get it to 1.8 volt output as opposed to 1 volt I got. Using 1 volt and assuming it can maintain that into 300 ohm, you get 1/300 or 3.3 milliwatts. If you can get it up to 1.8 volts, then you get 11 milliwatts of power into 300 ohm.
Someone mentioned it before. You need a higher impedance to get a higher output voltage. I think I read something like 50-60 Ohm somewhere in a German forum. A little impedance adapter should do the job.

Would it be a problem to connect this device with a Topping NX3 and put an impedance adapter between the two? Which parameters would be affected? It should be a bit quieter because of the higher impedance but anything else?
 

amirm

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#27
Someone mentioned it before. You need a higher impedance to get a higher output voltage. I think I read something like 50-60 Ohm somewhere in a German forum. A little impedance adapter should do the job.
I tried it with 33 ohm up to 100K but could not make it output more. It is clearly possible given other measurements I have seen but I only have so much patience for such things. :)
 

amirm

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#28
Would it be a problem to connect this device with a Topping NX3 and put an impedance adapter between the two? Which parameters would be affected? It should be a bit quieter because of the higher impedance but anything else?
Don't put any adapters in between. Nothing is required there. The only issue you may have is lack of output voltage to drive the NX3 to max power. Check the specs on MX3 to make sure it doesn't need more input to reach its full power.
 

Silou

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#29
It is clearly possible given other measurements I have seen but I only have so much patience for such things. :)
I think these kind of devices are the most interesting ones for me. I do not really care about phono stages or streamers but these cheap inconspicuous items are what I am here for. This is only my opinion ofc.
 
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#30
I bought the retail version of this . It was on discount from a online seller and was like 8 dollars. So I actually bought two of them. Wish I even bought a few more tough , just in case.

It has a plastic case. A good quality and aesthetic design.It gets a hot while in use tough . I tried it with a Lenovo and Huawei android phone. Both worked flawlessly. The sound is very smooth, warm and without distortion,noise . With Sennheiser 598C, sound level is high enough and warm sound is very pleasing. With Hifiman 400i, output power is a bit on the edge. At the highest volume level it is enough , again good sound quality. While I liked the sound , I'm not sure if it has enough power for HM 400i , maybe a more powerful amp can deliver better bass.

On Windows , this looks like an abandoned product. Software is hardly at beta level , can cause BSOD. Without the software device starts at sleep state and can go into sleep state while in use. Sound quality is good enough but I'd say it's not usable at all.

So, to use with an Android device ,at 8-10 dollars it is an incredible value.
 
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#31
I tried it with 33 ohm up to 100K but could not make it output more. It is clearly possible given other measurements I have seen but I only have so much patience for such things. :)
I tried apple dongle which is known to have 1Vrms at max volume, I tested it on iPad with ER4B (about 100 ohm) to compare the max volume with the HIFI plus, and the latter has much larger loudness.
 
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#33
This is how I manage to maintain the high impedance mode:

1.Connect the device to host with USB,
2.Connect ER4B to an extension cable,
3.Connect the extension cable to device,
4.Since the step 3 boots the device, and it keeps working until you detach the cable from the device. So I can detach ER4B now, then I can connect other headphone to the extension cable.

Anyway I cannot confirm it's 1.8v, but it should be higher than 1v, since it produces much larger loudness.
 

maxxevv

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#37
This is how I manage to maintain the high impedance mode:

1.Connect the device to host with USB,
2.Connect ER4B to an extension cable,
3.Connect the extension cable to device,
4.Since the step 3 boots the device, and it keeps working until you detach the cable from the device. So I can detach ER4B now, then I can connect other headphone to the extension cable.

Anyway I cannot confirm it's 1.8v, but it should be higher than 1v, since it produces much larger loudness.
If its the "External Device" mode in LG phones, you got Step 2 and Step 3 in reverse.

i) Connect to host via USB

ii) Connect extension first.

iii) Connect headphone / earphone to extension after playback software is loaded.


That's how I work mine from the G6 and now the V40.

But if you're describing for "High Impedance" mode, then its different. You can replace the ER4B with any headphone /earphone with a greater than 50 Ohm impedance.
 
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#38
If its the "External Device" mode in LG phones, you got Step 2 and Step 3 in reverse.

i) Connect extension first.

ii) Connect headphone / earphone to extension after playback software is loaded.

That's how I work mine from the G6 and now the V40.
It will get 1v max, the key is when something connect to it, it detects the impedance (or if it is just a cord).

Btw I think External Device means Line Out.
 

restorer-john

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#39
This is a review and detailed measurements of a bare board LG G5 Hi-Fi Plus DAC and headphone amplifier. As the name indicates, it is an accessory piece for the LG phones to increase performance.
So the was little or no 'increased performance' for the LG phone in real terms and you need to carry around a wiggly plastic box as well?

I just can't see the point, why not just plug into the the phone in your pocket?
 

amirm

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#40
So the was little or no 'increased performance' for the LG phone in real terms and you need to carry around a wiggly plastic box as well?
This was an accessory for LG *G5*. I tested the *G7* and it seems to have similar subsystem in it now. It would have been an improvement for G5 (I am assuming)
 
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