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Review: Apple vs Google USB-C Headphone Adapters

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I just read this thread and wonder if it can be used with raspberry pi / Netbook + volumio? I'm hyped on ordering this until I read that it has problem with android. I have old Samsung A7 with USB C. At least if it can run with volumio I will consider buying it.
There is no problem with Android. Restrictions were put in for safety. If you are able to run alsamixer on raspberry pi, you can set the volume to insane levels.
 
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picked up the apple dac as a source for my old o2 amp as its default 6.5x gain doesn't want much more than 1vrms. gets good and loud with some vintage phones (sennheiser hd414 & hd424, yamaha hp-3) that like the extra power
 

Veri

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picked up the apple dac as a source for my old o2 amp as its default 6.5x gain doesn't want much more than 1vrms. gets good and loud with some vintage phones (sennheiser hd414 & hd424, yamaha hp-3) that like the extra power
That's a smart and very good bang-for-buck combo :)!
 

infinitesymphony

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Is there any way to get a digital signal to these USB-C dongles without using a computer or mobile device, say, with a Chromecast Audio or other digital transport? In other words, can these be made to operate as standalone DACs?
 

infinitesymphony

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Earlier in the thread someone asked about compatibility of the Apple USB-C to 3.5mm headphone jack adapter with Windows 7 and USB 2.0. Not sure about that, but I have a Windows 7 laptop with USB 3.0 and I can report that at least for me it does not appear to be showing up as an audio device at all. On initial plug-in it appeared to be initializing with the correct device name, went looking for a driver, then installed itself as a generic 'USB Input Device.' This meant that it was not selectable within Windows, ASIO4ALL, or in audio applications. Bummer.

For reference I'm using a CableCreation USB A to C adapter. (Link)

Here is the Hardware ID if it makes a difference:

USB\VID_05AC&PID_110A&REV_2611

Anyone else with Windows 7 able to get the Apple USB-C dongle to work?
 
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edechamps

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I have a Windows 7 laptop with USB 3.0 and I can report that at least for me it does not appear to be showing up as an audio device at all
Have you tried plugging a pair of headphones into the dongle? Most USB-C dongles, including the Apple one, do not enumerate if there's nothing plugged into them.
 

Winshor

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Finally bought one to use with my Xiaomi Mi 6 w/ IEM.
It's noticeably better than stocks.
It works right away, no trouble.
Only thing to complain is the cable's too thin.
Thanks @amirm for doing the review.

Will try with Windows 10 + headphones after i get my usb adapter.
 
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infinitesymphony

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Have you tried plugging a pair of headphones into the dongle? Most USB-C dongles, including the Apple one, do not enumerate if there's nothing plugged into them.
Yes, there were headphones plugged into the adapter when I plugged it in for the first time. After that did not work I tried plugging in the headphones after plugging in the adapter, and plugging in the USB A to C adapter before plugging in the Apple adapter + headphone combo. No luck.

I can report that the device does show up as a "USB Input Device" even without headphones plugged into it. Plugging in headphones at this step triggers Device Manager to refresh, but as far as I can tell there are no new devices listed.
 

infinitesymphony

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Good news for people with only USB 2.0:

The Apple USB-C to 3.5mm Headphone Jack Adapter works in Windows 10 with USB 2.0 and 3.0. I tested this on two very different laptops.

Note that on one laptop, a fairly old Dell (2011?), I experienced what sounded like DPC latency related drop-outs on both the USB 2.0 and 3.0 ports, so YMMV for your particular laptop. Perhaps you could get around this by using ASIO or WASAPI to increase priority of the sound device.

Windows 7 users may be out of luck unless we can find a way to get W7 to see the adapter as a sound device.
 

infinitesymphony

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Okay. My best guess is that this might be because the dongle might be using USB Audio Class 2, which is only supported in Windows 10, IIRC.
Good possibility. I did some preliminary work digging around a Windows 10 installation for usbaudio2.inf (C:\Windows\INF) and usbaudio2.sys (C:\Windows\System32\drivers), but it looked like they had other dependencies. Wonder how possible it would be to modify these drivers.

Link - Microsoft USB Audio 2.0 white paper

I tried replacing the generic 'USB Input Device' driver manually with Windows 7's built-in 'USB Audio Device' driver but got "This device cannot start. (Code 10)." Now the device says 'USB Audio Device' and is listed correctly in the sound section of Device Manager, but it does not appear in the Sound control panel or anywhere else and it remains unusable.
 
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@infinitesymphony

Hmm... It doesn't seem like MS made usb audio 2.0 drivers for Windows 7, but the third search result is thesycon, which is the company behind the Khadas Toneboard driver and they seem to have a generic usb audio 2.0 driver for windows 7 available, but only to manufacturers...

Khadas's driver seems to be a generic version from thesycon, and apparently the ktb is apparently usb audio 2.0 device that works with windows 7 according to their manual, so it might be worth it to give KTB's driver a shot and see if that'll work
 
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Winshor

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This becomes my main DAC for PC, using it with my amp+speakers and headphone.
Sounds better than my old UFO202 with cheaper price.
But its build quality seems like it won't last longer than my UFO202 which has been running 7 years straight w/o problem.
Apple wants you to keep buying :)
 

infinitesymphony

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@infinitesymphonyKhadas's driver seems to be a generic version from thesycon, and apparently the ktb is apparently usb audio 2.0 device that works with windows 7 according to their manual, so it might be worth it to give KTB's driver a shot and see if that'll work
Thank you for that info. I grabbed the Thesycon drivers and modified the driver pack by adding the Apple device's hardware ID to get the drivers to install. Now at least a part of the device starts but it is still not available as a sound device. Maybe closer?

Thesycon Apple USB-C.PNG


USB-C to 3.5mm.PNG
XMOS USB 2.0.PNG


The hardware ID of the first device is TUSBAUDIO_ENUM\VID_05AC&PID_110A&KS, which likely means the Thesycon drivers do not know what to do with this particular device (i.e. cannot enumerate) somewhere further down the line.
 
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G
don’t worry Apple and Microsoft products are quite similar, anything (SW and HW) they made would be small in size, elegant, of great quality, creative, and sound good.......when compared to something like Totaldac :D
 

FrantzM

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Hi

I switched to Apple iPhones a while back after years of :
1) Blackberry (Remember those?)
2) Android (HTC when they counted among the best phones)

.. how the mighty have fallen)

and inherited that Apple dongle for free... it was in the iPhone 7+ box ...I quickly lost it thinking of it as a cheap piece of hardware .. Now thanks to Amir/ASR we know , it is inexpensive, true but a high performance DAC/Amp, overall a stellar piece of engineering ... a very good DAC .. not a TOTAL ... dac ;) ...
A High End Audio company will take it, bathe in cryogenic goo, perform a Quantum purification , put it in a shiny Stainless Steel Box, add a Linear Power Supply and an external clock and sell the contraption for ... more perhaps $9000 :D
 

LJN

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Get a Apple USB-C dac to my Google Pixel 2 XL and it works but the max output volume a way too low, and this thread indicate that. Are that any fix to increase the volume? ( My Pixel are a EU unit ) Or any budget good line amplifier with high gain?

BR, Lennart
 
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