Best budget DAP to drive power amplifier

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hifiramr

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I like to know some input regarding a budget DAP which can easily drive any power amplifier.Let me know if anyone have tried this before.I think DAp ia a very good option to remove cd player from chain
 

kartikay

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You can use a DAP directly with power amplifier, via Headphone out. But a DAP being replacement for CDP is not sure. Final SQ will depend a lot on the DAC/Amp implementation in the DAP vs CDP.
 

MaSh

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I like to know some input regarding a budget DAP which can easily drive any power amplifier.Let me know if anyone have tried this before.I think DAp ia a very good option to remove cd player from chain
To a power amp you can add anything. Why only a dap? You could repurpose an old phone+dac or add a Pi+allo solution.

MaSh
 

hifiramr

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Here the biggest issue is the output voltage most of the phone dont have 1 v output yes for sure we can drive any power amp with headphone out but that is not I need a DAP with good dac that have 1 v out

Why DAP

while using a DAP I can have a good inbuild dac + important battery power supply + Bluetooth so all in one package
 

DB1989

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Here the biggest issue is the output voltage most of the phone dont have 1 v output yes for sure we can drive any power amp with headphone out but that is not I need a DAP with good dac that have 1 v out

Why DAP

while using a DAP I can have a good inbuild dac + important battery power supply + Bluetooth so all in one package
have you considered a chord Mojo + chord poly combination? Or simply a chord mojo? It’ll be more powerful than most if not all DAPs (has built in battery + all digital and other connectivity options via the poly) and you can use it with the best DAP you can possibly have i.e. your phone.
 

DB1989

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Then again, if you have an AV receiver already, you can do without a DAP and stream directly through it.
 

fLUX

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Here the biggest issue is the output voltage most of the phone dont have 1 v output yes for sure we can drive any power amp with headphone out but that is not I need a DAP with good dac that have 1 v out

Why DAP

while using a DAP I can have a good inbuild dac + important battery power supply + Bluetooth so all in one package

The need to charge the DAP almost on a regular basis can be detrimental as well. Unless you are going to use the DAP with a midfi Headphone/IEM it would not make much sense going for a DAP. A dedicated streamer might turn out to be a better option if your usage is mainly directed towards listening on speakers.
 

raghupb

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I like to know some input regarding a budget DAP which can easily drive any power amplifier.Let me know if anyone have tried this before.I think DAp ia a very good option to remove cd player from chain
Are you insistent on a DAP because it can double up as an "on-the-go" device too?
If not, as @MaSh suggested, explore RPi/HAT solutions.

Cheers,
Raghu
 

shyamv

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Theoretically, this is possible with a DAP that has a line out signal. Most DAPs have a line out voltage of around 1.5-2 Vrms for unbalanced output and upto 4 Vrms for balanced output and this is sufficient to drive a power amp. Some power amps have input sensitivity adjustment and gain controls (like Crown XLS) so you can set the appropriate sensitivity based on input signal and adjust gain on the power amp accordingly.

One can even connect headphone out to the power amp and adjust volume on DAP and match gain on power amp. This would result in two volume control in the chain which would have a detrimental effect on the overall sound. Impedence and gain matching is a different story.

While this is possible, using a DAP as a digital amps is not recommended.
 
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tigerwag

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Recently i have tried my Cayin n5iis DAP as a source to my stereo system.
Line out from cayin dap goes to aux in of Cambridge cxa60 amp. Final result is just fantastic.
I like this chain more than laptop - Cambridge audio dac magic plus - cxa60.
Icing on the cake is Cayin has 2 sd card slots which occomodates my 512gb and 400 gb sd cards,
Also i have installed fiio music app on cayin and my android phone, so i can control cayin via fiio link,
remotely.
 

shyamv

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Recently i have tried my Cayin n5iis DAP as a source to my stereo system.
Line out from cayin dap goes to aux in of Cambridge cxa60 amp. Final result is just fantastic.
I like this chain more than laptop - Cambridge audio dac magic plus - cxa60.
Icing on the cake is Cayin has 2 sd card slots which occomodates my 512gb and 400 gb sd cards,
Also i have installed fiio music app on cayin and my android phone, so i can control cayin via fiio link,
remotely.
I believe the OP's question was regarding connecting a DAP directly to a power amp not to an integrated amp or preamp.
 

tigerwag

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I believe the OP's question was regarding connecting a DAP directly to a power amp not to an integrated amp or preamp.
Agree!
But i was just trying to suggest that cayin has got desktop grade line out, so obviously can be used with power amp or pre or integrated amp.
Instead of 3.5 mm aux cable u will have to use 3.5 mm to 2*RCA thats it.
As OP is looking forward to remove cd player from chain its obvious that all that CDs ripped in to flacs will be put in Dap, if someone has huge collection 2 sd card slots are beneficial.
If u using dap as source, to change song or control volume u have to get up from ur chair and do it and again rpt the procedure for each and every song as poweramp won't have volume control, so i was suggesting to use some app like fiio or hiby link to control both volume and track change. (provided that dap is android based)
I hope i am clear now...
Cheers
 

shyamv

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Agree!
But i was just trying to suggest that cayin has got desktop grade line out, so obviously can be used with power amp or pre or integrated amp.
Instead of 3.5 mm aux cable u will have to use 3.5 mm to 2*RCA thats it.
As OP is looking forward to remove cd player from chain its obvious that all that CDs ripped in to flacs will be put in Dap, if someone has huge collection 2 sd card slots are beneficial.
If u using dap as source, to change song or control volume u have to get up from ur chair and do it and again rpt the procedure for each and every song as poweramp won't have volume control, so i was suggesting to use some app like fiio or hiby link to control both volume and track change. (provided that dap is android based)
I hope i am clear now...
Cheers

Thanks. Yup, I use Hibu Link as well to control the DAP from my phone app and it's quite convenient.
 

DB1989

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Recently i have tried my Cayin n5iis DAP as a source to my stereo system.
Line out from cayin dap goes to aux in of Cambridge cxa60 amp. Final result is just fantastic.
I like this chain more than laptop - Cambridge audio dac magic plus - cxa60.
Icing on the cake is Cayin has 2 sd card slots which occomodates my 512gb and 400 gb sd cards,
Also i have installed fiio music app on cayin and my android phone, so i can control cayin via fiio link,
remotely.
Could it be that the DAC inside the Cambridge audio vs. the Cayiin just isn't competent any longer, considering it came out in 2012 whereas DACs have improved massively in the last 10 years? Most reviewers are advising against spending too much on DACs as the technology is consistently evolving and high priced products of yesteryear are constantly being bested by newer and substantially cheaper DACS.

The reason that I'm mentioning that the Cambridge Audio DAC may no longer be competent is because i remember this video by Paul from PS Audio who mentioned that they test all their equipment using the source as a laptop connected to a DAC as they found it to be the best source so perhaps the laptop is not the problem.
 
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lithiumnk

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When buying dap for its line out to use with ext amp. Always get one with dedicated LO which bypasses the amp stage of the DAP.
ibasso dx160 has dedicated LO which bypasses internal opamp based amp stage.

DAPs with shared LO will result in double amping. Not recommended.
 

Yogesh

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A DAP could be a good option for streamer.

I was thinking if we can use remote control app like TeamViewer to control it from your phone (Nowadays most DAP are Android based). This way even Apple Music also can be controlled from your phone. :cool:
 

amrutmhatre90

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I dunno how I missed this thread, sorry for late reply.
I am using a Activo CT10 DAP as a streamer for last few months. This has a Line Out option and can select various Voltage ranging from .775 to 2V.
90% of the time I have been using Tidal on this and control it through the mconnect app, some songs do the unfolding too. You can use the internal library too if one wants to play downloaded songs. Supports most of the Codecs.
It sounds really good, neutral and punchy. I connect the DAP to either the Tube Pre Amp or the recently acquired NAD integrated 320BEE via RCA to 3.5mm.
 

bhooshaniyer

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I dunno how I missed this thread, sorry for late reply.
I am using a Activo CT10 DAP as a streamer for last few months. This has a Line Out option and can select various Voltage ranging from .775 to 2V.
90% of the time I have been using Tidal on this and control it through the mconnect app, some songs do the unfolding too. You can use the internal library too if one wants to play downloaded songs. Supports most of the Codecs.
It sounds really good, neutral and punchy. I connect the DAP to either the Tube Pre Amp or the recently acquired NAD integrated 320BEE via RCA to 3.5mm.
I believe line out on activo ct10 is not true. Its some sort of software enabled functionality. I had the dap and tried using the line out but couldn't get 2vrms right.
 

amrutmhatre90

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I believe line out on activo ct10 is not true. Its some sort of software enabled functionality. I had the dap and tried using the line out but couldn't get 2vrms right.
Yeah you may be right, I feel no difference or any changes if I change the voltage. I stopped fiddling with it.
 

bhooshaniyer

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Its a wonderful little dap streamer but not what I would put in a stereo chain. At 10k the absolute best Dac-streamer you can get is Allo Boss2. In fact from what I have heard from other sources it holds it's ground to 50 60k range. As per audioscience review(if you believe that kind of rating) boss2 is among the best dacs that amir has tested, well above some of the more expensive and famous dacs.
 
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