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Tempotec Sonata HD Pro Review (headphone Adapter)

amirm

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This is a review and detailed measurements of the Tempotec Sonata HD Pro. It is on kind loan from a member and costs US $54 on Amazon including Prime shipping.

The Sonata HD Pro comes in the usual rectangular dongle size:

Tempotec Sonata HD Pro review USB DaC Headphone Amplifier.jpg


The differentiation as you can barely see are the volume control indicators. Alas, they are very coarse so unless you get lucky, I doubt that you can set them to the volume you require.

The cable is removable and the connector is micro-USB. A micro-USB to USB-C cable is provided as you see in above right which I used for my testing.

Tempotec Sonata HD Pro Measurements
As usual, we start with our dashboard of 1 kHz tone:

Tempotec Sonata HD Pro Measurements.png


This is excellent performance for a dongle. It ever so slightly saturates as otherwise it could produce a SINAD that wuolld be above 110. As it is, performance is quite competitive:

best headphone dongle reviewed 2021.png


Dynamic range is also excellent:

Tempotec Sonata HD Pro Dynamic Range Measurements.png


As is jitter test result:
Tempotec Sonata HD Pro Jitter Measurements.png


Multitone test shows slight weakness in lowest frequencies, likely indicating lack of power supply capacitor reservoir:

Tempotec Sonata HD Pro Multitone Measurements.png


Let's measure power starting with 300 ohm load:
Tempotec Sonata HD Pro power into 300 ohm Measurements.png


Most powerful headphone adapter 300 ohm.png


Switching to 32 ohm load caused clipping and with it, lower power than I was hoping for:

Tempotec Sonata HD Pro power into 32 ohm Measurements.png


Most powerful headphone adapter 32 ohm.png


Tempotec Sonata HD Pro Headphone Listening Tests
I was pleased with the performance of the unit with my Sennheiser HD-650 high impedance test headphone. For the other extreme, I use the 25 ohm Drop Ether CX headphone. Here, I only had adequate amount of power so not quite enough for me.

Conclusions
The Tempotec Sonata HD Pro is prices as much as half as much as the next tier up dongle and produces performance along those lines. If you don't have an inefficient headphone, it is a very good choice and very well executed. If you want to be obsolete proof though, I would pay more and get one that has more power especially with low impedance headphones.

I am going to put the Tempotec Sonata HD Pro on my recommended list.

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As always, questions, comments, recommendations, etc. are welcome.

Any donations are much appreciated using: https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?threads/how-to-support-audio-science-review.8150/
 
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amirm

amirm

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It seems that a lot of TempoTec stuff is the Hidizs product in a different skin. The numbers here are VERY similar to the S8, unless I'm missing something...
That has been the rumor.
 
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amirm

amirm

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The difference in Sinad is 4-5 dB, though. A bit too much for just having different skins, isn‘t it?
Some of it may be instrumentation difference as I am using a new load box.
 

abdo123

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I wonder whether the DAC is 'gently clipping' in the SINAD graph since distortion is below -120 dB in the multi tone test. it is absolutely a transparent product.
 

Vict0r

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I guess there are worse ways to spend $50 on audio! Really solid performance.
 

wwenze

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I had this thing and it was horrible, constant clicks and pops both on Android and Windows, on different PCs. I don't quite understand how the reviewer can miss those problems and recommend this crap.

Unfortunately that happens a lot doesn't it. There are issues that only get discovered after 1 hour, some after 1 day, others 1 month.
 

Matias

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This is currently by far the best value in dongles.
 

Matias

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I had this thing and it was horrible, constant clicks and pops both on Android and Windows, on different PCs. I don't quite understand how the reviewer can miss those problems and recommend this crap.
That's so unfortunate.
I own one, and I'm using it with an Ipad Pro 12,9", and with a Galaxy Note 10+, but I never had this issue.
Any way to reproduce this fault?
 

olivier salad

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That's so unfortunate.
I own one, and I'm using it with an Ipad Pro 12,9", and with a Galaxy Note 10+, but I never had this issue.
Any way to reproduce this fault?
Try switching between apps on Android with both apps playing sound, for example open Instagram stories while music is playing in some player app.
 

ragecandy

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Mine refuses to work properly on my main windows 10 pc, works flawlessly on my phone and some 10 year old laptop(with win 10 too), kinda sad cause tbh it’d be all I’d need if it worked as well on my pc as on my android, runs both my 6xx and 400i 2020 as well as my liquid spark or an l30...
 
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