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Suggestions for a new USB DAC and a question about the 5k..

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Current nearfield desktop setup:

Infinity R152
Aiyma A07
Qudelix 5K
Laptop

Using the 5K as a USB DAC or for bluetooth streaming gives some serious juice to the speakers. Why is this?

I've had the 5K for a handful of months now, and it hasn't been the greatest experience. Sounds great, but all kinds of weird connectivity issues, issues with the app etc. As of a few days ago, in any configuration or use, it'll play a couple seconds of audio then immediately cut out. I contacted Qudelix and they're telling me to send it back on my own dime and that they'll look at it.

Whatever. I'm over it; moving on.

Any suggestions for a nice DAC for my desktop setup that will boost the speakers in the same way and clean up the signal from my laptop? Bluetooth is a nice feature but not a dealbreaker.

Thanks in advance.
 
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Bump

Hoping I can get a quick answer on this one. Really want to get a replacement DAC but don't want to lose the boost and am also really curious how a device as tiny as the 5k can provide this much increase in volume. Asked the same question on Reddit and it was totally misinterpreted despite what seems to me like pretty cogent wording..
 
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staticV3

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The 5K outputs 2Vrms on its 3.5mm jack and 4 using 2.5mm.
It'll be exactly as loud as any other single-ended DAC around.
 
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Thanks for that. I'm an total neophyte, here: Can you tell me why a DAC increases the power versus just using an amp?
 
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I just borrowed my dad's Sony NW-A55 DAP to use as a USB DAC, and there's definitely no discernable volume difference between this and the laptop's DAC, so now I'm a bit confused. Is there maybe some feature the 5k has that we're overlooking that would account for the boost?
 

staticV3

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I just borrowed my dad's Sony NW-A55 DAP to use as a USB DAC, and there's definitely no discernable volume difference between this and the laptop's DAC, so now I'm a bit confused. Is there maybe some feature the 5k has that we're overlooking that would account for the boost?
I don't think so. You can use a household multimeter and measure the AC voltage of your DACs playing a sine wave to make sure though.
 

staticV3

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2.0Vrms is the industry standard for standalone, desktop RCA DACs. It's not uncommon for laptops, smartphones, and DAPs to fail to meet that standard.
 
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Ah, interesting tidbit. One more arrangement I can share is: Infinity R152 ->Aiyma A07 ->FiiO D3 DAC -> Optical cable -> Sony 900h television. Also no volume boost here, but I guess maybe the D3 also fails to meet for aforementioned standard..
 

Jimbob54

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Berwhale

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Any decent desktop DAC that outputs 2Vrms is going to work for you. Have a look at the first set of charts for the Topping D10s...


The top left quadrant shows the voltage varying as a sine wave with an amplitude of +/- 2.8 volts. The bottom right quadrant shows the average voltage of the sine wave - calculated by applying root mean squared (RMS) - as almost exactly 2 volts.

Now you can compare it to the same dashboard for the 5K...

 

staticV3

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Assuming that both your laptop and your dad's NW-A55 are limited to 1Vrms, then switching to the 5K would result in a 50% increase in perceived loudness. Does that sound plausible @falsedichotomy ?
 
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