#donglemadness

andyaudiovault@gmail.com

The ranking are based on my personal preferences as a USER, matched with my own equipment. I am NOT a professional reviewer. THIS IS NOT A BUYING GUIDE!

INCOMING DONGLES

  • HiBy FC5 (In Progress)
  • Lotoo PAW S2 (In Progress)
  • Creative SX-Fi (In Progress)
  • Colorfly CDA M1 (In Progress)
  • ZOOAUX New Version (In Progress)
  • SMSL Idol+ (In Progress)

103 DONGLES REVIEWED & RANKED

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

1CEntrance DACport HD
2Cayin RU6 (NEW)
3TempoTec Sonata E44
Questyle M12
4Ovidius B1
Apogee Groove
5Hidizs S9 Pro
E1DA 9038SG3
REIYIN DA-Plus
HAA FEE
6Astell & Kern PEE51
Hidizs S9
*Dongles that actually perform on par or better than some Mid-Tiered DAPs

⭐⭐⭐⭐½

7Luxury & Precision W2
8JCally JM10
Xnyocn Q2
FiiO KA3 (NEW)
9TempoTec Sonata HD Pro
iBasso DC05 (NEW)
10Abigail
11Xumee
Avani
12KINSOUND
Amazon DAC
13hiliDAC Audirect BEAM 2S
14VE Odyssey HD
HAKUGEI
HAKUGEI iOS
15ASUS ROG Clavis
16Lotoo PAW S1
17Creative Sound BlasterX G1
18iBasso DC04
19E1DA 9038D
20hiliDAC Audirect BEAM 2SE
21Shanling UA2
22CX-Pro Audio 31993
JCally JM6
23iBasso DC03
Hidizs S3 Pro
24xDuoo Link2
25THX Onyx
26TANCHJIM STARGATE iOS
* Dongles that are excellent sonically & with great features. Minimal Cons

⭐⭐⭐⭐

27HELM BOLT MQA
28IKKO Zerda ITM01
29Zorloo Ztella MQA
30Shanling UA1 Pro
31MCDODO Beethoven
32GGMM A1
REIYIN DA-03
33IKKO Zerda ITM03
34TERA Grand iOS
JCally JM08L iOS
UGREEN MFi iOS
JSAUX MFi iOS
35JSAUX Type-C
36JCally JM40
37Meizu HiFi Audio Pro
38hiliDAC Audirect ATOM2
ddHiFi TC35 Pro
HiBy FC3
39Xnyocn X1
ES9280c
40TempoTec Sonata BHD
41JCally JM08c
BREXLINK
42Hill Audio ALC4050
JCally JM04Pro
43JCally JM20
44XtremPro X1
* Dongles which are great sounding, suitable for casual usage


⭐⭐⭐

45Nillkin Type-C
Hill Audio WSH9415
46Shanling UA1
47Hill Audio ALC4042
48CS-PRO CS46L41
49HIFI Audio PCM2704
50Baseus Type-C
51ARKTek Type-C
52PLEXTONE GS1 Mark II
53AudioQuest DragonFly Cobalt
54CYBERDRIVE XMOS
55ENVEL Type-C
56ES-PRO Audio 9318
57UGREEN Type-C
NGOKGA Type-C
58Stouchi Type-C
59JCally JA21
60JCally JM01
JCally JA04
61JCally JA05
JCally JA06
62Apple Type-C
63Monolith Hi-Res DAC
* Dongles which are moderately good but the Cons holding them back


⭐⭐

64DSD.3D SigmaTel
65Glotao Type-C
66JCally JA02
67TempoTec Sonata HD II
68Vention Type-C Gold
69Vention Type-C
70Plextone Type-C
* Dongles that failed to impart sonic enjoyment or functional use

DISQUALIFIED DONGLES

ZOOAUX
iNassen
I have stopped buying budget range Dongles from Amazon as I am no longer confident that the advertised specifications are accurate. The listed Dongles as above has been found to be inconsistent from various feedbacks received by others. The same models has been found to contain different DAC chips

UNRANKED DONGLES

E1DA PowerDAC V2.0 (Overheated and self destructed within the first 30 minutes)
Dongles that has malfunctioned during tests. Will redo the test once replacement obtained

SPECIALTY CLASS PURIST DAC/AMP REVIEWS

Venture Electronics MEGATRON (NEW)
This segment is reserved for specialty DAC/Amps that I does not fall into the traditional Dongle form factor. Specialty purist devices that serves specific purposes


I actively post updates on the progress of my #donglemadness activities to the Facebook group Chifi Audio Reviews


231 Comments

  1. Hi Andy – any budget recommendations here for someone whose phone refuses to work with the VE Odyssey HD? Those Hakugei dongles look beautiful and could be what I’m after but I have no idea where to find them. Thanks!

    Like

      1. Gareth says:

        Thank you! There doesn’t seem to be a 3.5>USB-C option here though, which is what I’m after! Any ideas?

        Like

      2. Andy.EF says:

        The one that I have is a 4.4mm-USB C unit. You should message them to see if they have 3.5mm SE on USB-C.

        Like

  2. zach says:

    Hi Andy! I may be getting a S20 soon, if you plug a dongle to it, will all sounds be routed through the dongle then to your wired headset? Or would you need UAPP for this?

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      You plug in any USB DAC/Amp and all digital audio processing will be routed to the USB device. Not just S20 but practically any Android phones that use OTG functions. No need for UAPP. But UAPP and HiBy Player are used to bypass SRC sampling and thus giving us bit perfect output. I use HiBy Player Exclusive Mode to do it

      Like

  3. Greg says:

    Hi Andy. Any plan to acquire iFi Go Blu? It implement a Cirrus Logic CS43131 and an S-balanced jack (iFi version of single ended balanced circuit to eliminate crosstalk). Hope you can review it here. Is it worth the $199 price for an interchangeable DAC Amp (wired/wireless use case)?

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      iFi Go Blu is a BT device so very likely I will not get them, especially not at that price. Thanks

      Like

  4. Shane says:

    Hi Andy! I stumbled on this series by chance after venturing beyond Ugreen/Vention USB offerings for my laptop, as my mic is rather quiet on it.

    Before I found you I had bought two dongles from Keysion, both using the ALC5686 for under $9 each. They also had a version using CS46L41+SA9302L for under $15. I didn’t consider the CX31993 since the ones I found at the time didn’t support a mic.

    No datasheets but I know the ALC5686 has a dynamic range of 100dB, CS46L41 having 120dB. Would a larger dynamic range play a role in improving my mic volume? I don’t know how much power each option passes to the mic.

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      Hi Shane, I am sorry as I am clueless as to how the dynamic range you mentioned would impact the MIC volume, my #donglemadness practically omitted any tests on MIC as I focus on playback quality only. I only mention if they support MIC or no (based on manufacturer details)

      Like

      1. Shane says:

        Ah, I understand. As far as playback goes, how much different is a 100dB dynamic range from a 120dB one? I would assume the noise floor is much lower on the latter to achieve the increase.

        Before I forget, thank you for your #donglemadness testing! I have non-dongle DACs like the Fiio K1 and Q1 but if I get more into dongles I’ll be sure to keep your thoughts in mind!

        Like

  5. Trung Nguyễn says:

    Hi andy, is jcally jm10 consider an upgrade over my cx pro and ve ohd? or should i go for tempotec sonata hd pro/ e35 instead.

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      Yes. JM10 Is more refined and polished than CX-PRO and OHD. Sonata HD Pro is on the same level as JM10

      Like

  6. Audionoob says:

    Any good dongle to pair with Moondrop S8 and Moondrop Dusk? Especially something with decent soundstage and imaging with S8?

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      Unfortunately I never tried those Moondrop IEMs. But if you want the safest bet then it will be TempoTec Sonata E44 or Hidizs S9 Pro surely

      Like

  7. kulidone says:

    Hi, looking for dac/amp for my IEM (22 Ω, 117dB / Vrms @ 1kHz) and want the best SQ. According to your ranking list E44 or S9 Pro should be the best, but since I don’t really have headphones I don’t need the extra power or probably balanced output. I have few questions.
    1. Does going balanced improves SQ on my IEM? (seems like a no, but want to be sure)
    2. Is E44/S9 Pro significantly better in Sound quality comparing to Sonata HD Pro (with IEM)?
    3. Could you compare power consumption with some IEM with E44/S9 Pro vs Sonata HD Pro? Want to know if the better DACs eats more battery.
    4. Is dual dac better than single dac in terms of SQ considering it’s the same DAC?

    If you could review this DAC someday if you would be great 🙂 it has ES9038Q2M, while it isn’t really powerful it says that it has low battery consumption which means it might be what I am looking for.
    https://www.aliexpress.com/item/1005002858873451.html?spm=a2g0o.search0304.0.0.7d186dd6plbiXa&algo_pvid=0476d39e-c328-4d9a-b211-f61fcdb8c0b3&algo_exp_id=0476d39e-c328-4d9a-b211-f61fcdb8c0b3-29

    Thanks

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      1. It depends on which DAC/Amp we are talking about. For something like TempoTec Sonata E44 yes because E44 is a true discrete balanced which will offer great SQ even for sensitive IEMs. The healthy driving power will enhance dynamic performance even at lower drive
      2. E44 and S9 Pro are 5 Star dongles for good reasons, they are just better sounding than Sonata HD Pro even for high sensitivity IEMs
      3. Power consumption is higher on S9 Pro on balanced mode. E44 a bit more forgiving. Sonata HD Pro a bit more efficient that the two
      4. Dual DAC will perform better if implemented correctly. But not always. If you look at the 5 Star Dongles, Ovidius B1 and Apogee Groove are Quad DAC setup, E44 & PEE51 Dual DAC, only S9 Pro, S9 and E1DA 9038SG3 are single DAC

      Like

  8. kadinh says:

    Hi Andy,

    Did you receive a faulty E1DA Power DAC v2.1? I dont remember if you did or not. Curious if you have any interest in reviewing it. It claims to output 600mW and is either 3.5VRMS or 35VRMS, i can’t tell by the picture, but i assume its 3.5.

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      I did have a V2.0, which is essentially the same as V2.1. The difference being V2.1 comes with SE and 2.5mm BAL while the V2.0 only SE. The first 20 minutes I listened to it (before that thing went self-destruct by overheating) was a super clean sound. Very clinical clean if you ask me, similar to Topping sort of clinical sound. And with my current preference of organic analogue sound, while it is impressive SQ wise, but I don’t think I fancy that sort of clinical sound, somewhat lacking character and soul, but then this is just my personal preference, many others will assuredly love the PowerDAC

      Like

  9. Mahfooj Khan says:

    Hi Andy. First of all thank you for your amazing dongle madness reviews. I have owned my first ever dongle JM04 Pro, I was going for JM20 but after your review I have changed my mind and went for JM04 Pro and its very good for the asking price. I have Blon Bl-03 and KZ ZS10 Pro(will use with my OnePlus 6t) and was wondering is CX pro 31993 better than JM04 Pro if I go for it for overall sound quality upgrade or should I stick with my JM04 Pro.
    Also if you can please confirm among JM20, Jm10 and IBASSO DC03 which will be best for more open, airy, refined and lively sound with great adaptability with different IEM as I want to own a Cirrus logic equipped dongle as well and Do not want to go for tempotec as they are costlier in my country.

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      If you already like JM04Pro then the you should consider getting Avani which uses the same ALC5686 DAC but tuned better. CX-Pro offers slightly different sound approach where it is a bit brighter (not too much). For CX-Pro options I would recommend Abigail instead which also uses the same CX31993 but tuned by the same factory as Avani. I am not sure how easy it is to get either Avani or Abigail from your country, but if not then the CX-Pro is a great unit still and will offer different sound experience vs JM04Pro

      Like

      1. Mahfooj Khan says:

        Unfortunately in my country Avani and Abigail both are not available and we cannot buy from Aliexpress as well due to the restrictions and recently one seller listed JACALLY products on amazon so I grabbed JM04 PRO. BTW the reason I was asking for CX-PRO is because though JM04 PRO sound really good but While using with my laptop type C port directly and with my one Plus 6T as well, sound quality is way too soft, though clarity is really good for the price but I love my music to sound a little bit alive, raw and I love more airy sound with enough Bass, as I feel JM04 PRO has little softer approach for bass and overall sound so will CX-PRO will be suitable option as you said that it is totally different sound. And if not then among JM20, Jm10 and IBASSO DC03 which will be best for more open, airy, refined and lively sound with great adaptability with different IEM

        Like

      2. Andy.EF says:

        Sounds like a JCally JM20 would suit you better, more euphonic and energetic. CX-Pro is somewhere between JM20 and JM04Pro

        Like

  10. Hi Andy thanks for your contributions to the community. One question. What is the best match for my HZSOUND ?, since I want the biggest sound scene with very good technical skills.With an incredible naturalness, and very good instrumental separation.me compre a Abigail viene en camino que sería lo mejor respecto a lo anterior para sentir una gran actualizacion.muchas gracias y saludos

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      Get the TempoTec Sonata E44 for Heart Mirror. You will love it. If you need something smaller and cheaper, Abigail will do great as well

      Like

      1. Alex says:

        Hi Andy, did you tested the Earmen Eagle or is it on your list to try it? I recently bought it and it works great with my Hzsound in terms of soundstage and detail. I would be curious to see if you think the same.

        Like

      2. Andy.EF says:

        Sorry I never tried Earmen Dongles

        Like

      3. Muchas gracias lo haré.

        Liked by 1 person

  11. Hola buenos días andy una pregunta como es el sonido del topping nx1s con Abigail, como se compara con el tempotec e44 y ya dada tu respuesta mejor compro un nx1s para mi abigail o compro mejor el e44.muchas gracias y saludos

    Like

  12. Hello good morning andy a question how is the sound of the topping nx1s with Abigail, how does it compare with the tempotec e44 and once your answer has been given, I better buy an nx1s for my abigail or better buy the e44

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      Abigail + NX1s will still be not as powerful as 4.4mm Balanced mode of E44 with that 4 Vrms. NX1s is not that powerful to begin with and more suitable for pairing with less demanding IEMs. So I would pick E44 over those two any which way I look at it

      Like

  13. kadinh says:

    RIP PowerDAC, I was looking forward to that one.

    Like

  14. CHIN says:

    any chance to review Questyle M12? haha

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      Please check again https://andyaudiovault.com/donglemadness/
      Look at rank No. 24 and it’s all there

      Like

  15. Nene says:

    Hi Andy, would you review TempoTec Sonata MHD? You have reviewed most of their products.

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      Most likely no. #donglemadness will end soon at the turn of 100 dongles and MHD is not part of the plan I want to buy

      Like

  16. Jeremy says:

    Hi there.
    Thanks for the great write up. Could you please consider doing some dongle reviews with USB-C power delivery pass through? Or if there are all ready some in the list adding it into the name? Thanks and keep but the massive good work!

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      Thanks! At this moment this sort of PD pass through will be coming with the arrival of VE Megatron. I hope receive the unit soon when pre-orders starts flowing

      Like

  17. Karthik H.S. says:

    Reposting as the earlier comment didn’t seem to stick
    Hi Andy,

    I’m planning to pick a dongle for my Thieaudio Monarch+S21 ultra phone combo.
    The Monarchs are a little too bright and shouty for my taste. I’m currently using them with an ibasso DC02.
    I’m looking for an option with good sounstage, slightly reduced treble and otherwise uncolored, clean sound. Thx Onyx looks promising. What would you suggest?
    Thanks for all the reviews and the effort!

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      Yes THX Onyx is one of the most neutral sounding dongle and absolutely the one with the widest soundstage. It is also very smooth sounding. You will like it a lot. Otherwise you can also consider the Hidizs S9 (non Pro) which is even smoother than the S9 Pro

      Like

      1. Karthik H.S. says:

        Wow, that was quick.
        Thanks so much! Take care!

        Liked by 1 person

  18. Blair says:

    Hello
    this is my first time buying an IEM and I bought the Moondrop SSR. What do you think is the best budget dac dongle ($5-$10) i should get? I’m all new to this so I really don’t know which fits for my IEM.

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      Within that budget it’s easy for me to recommend Abigail or Avani. Can’t go wrong with any which one of them. Abigail being a bit more neutral and Avani warmer

      Like

      1. Blair says:

        Thank you for the fast reply! I think I will go with the Abigail. Thank you!.

        Like

      2. Hilda says:

        Hijacking this comment
        Does it work will most smartphones? My phone is Poco M3 and the only thing held me from buying any DAC dongle is the compatibility. Most of the time I see it listed a limited number of compatible devices and smartphone with dedicated headphone jack usually not compatible

        Like

      3. Andy.EF says:

        I wish I can help you clarify on this. I am a Xiaomi user myself and have Redmi 10 & Mi9T. Both of which worked flawlessly with any dongles I threw that them

        Like

  19. Hello sir,
    I’m planning on buying my first DAC. I’m using Sennheiser HD 280 and I want a DAC to use both on my Android phone and a laptop. What dongle should I get? (I’m terribly sorry if this message is posted several times, I’m not sure how commenting on this website works)

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      For a very small fee of $10, you can start with Abigail or Avani Dongles. It’s so cheap it will not hurt your budget at all. And then you will get used to the idea of Dongles and if you decide you need more then you can start looking for something else

      Like

  20. Ten says:

    Hi Andy. I have the Abigail avani and OHD se.
    Will the jm10 be any improvement for me?

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      Probably no difference. You have to get the 5 Star dongles to hear perceivable improvements

      Like

  21. Ten says:

    Thanks! I would probably get the E44. A pity that you don’t review the e35 or tempotec mhd as I really want to know how does they differ as I’m mostly using the 3.5 se connection.

    E44 is out of stock everywhere.

    Liked by 1 person

  22. GTI says:

    Thanks Andy for all the great reviews and help!!
    Just picked up a Xumee from Amazon. Device ID showed 0BDA:4BE2 on mine.
    Is it an ALC5686 in mine?? Can Andy or anyone confirm if you have a Xumee handy to check/report??
    (I have seen people listed 4BA6 for JA04(5686); and another believed-to-be-5686 having 4BD1.)

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      My Xumee and Avani registers as Product ID: 19426 (0x4be2) in TTGK App

      Like

      1. GTI says:

        Thanks Andy!! Yes that is the same Product ID I have too. So I assume it is still the same item as reviewed.
        Also wants to report I also get a Zooaux from Amazon and it is the same PID reported by Andy in his review as the Gen2 version (CX chip).

        Liked by 1 person

  23. Mykel Chan says:

    Hi, I’m planning to buy a dac dongle for the first time. I need some recommendations.

    -planning to use it on my iPhone or pc
    -IEMs: Mi Hybrid pro HD, KZ ZSR, KZ EDX Pro

    Thank you

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      Depends on how much you want to spend. On budget and ultra compact segment, you can get Abigail (neutral sound) or Avani (warmer sound). If you want midrange budget then consider getting TempoTec Sonata HD Pro or JCally JM10. For top tier budget get REIYIN DA-PLUS or Hidizs S9 Pro

      Like

      1. Mykel Chan says:

        Wow thanks! How does the midrange sound? Which sounds neutral/bright/warm?

        Like

      2. Andy.EF says:

        Both JM10 and TempoTec HD Pro are very neutral as a good source should sound like. Perhaps JM10 with a touch of warmth and HD Pro a touch of sparkly brightness

        Like

  24. Edward says:

    Hi Andy, great blog. I listen rock, metal, j-rock, pop. Wich dongle do you recommend me? I don’t care the price. Just I want the best sound.

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      Get TempoTec Sonata E44 or A&K PEE51. Great for Rock/Metal

      Like

  25. Jay . T says:

    Hi Andy, what would you recommend for a basshead?
    I own kz dq6 and looking for either avani, Abigail or jm04pro. (other better suited ones will do too)

    Thank you

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      The bass element comes from the listening device primarily. But if you need warmer source then you can get it from either Avani or JM04Pro. Abigail is a bit more flatter neutral

      Like

  26. Ravi Kashyap says:

    I recently bought… Abigail…and i am using this on Samsung A50…. paired with bl 03 , ssr , tanya …monk plus and don’t find much difference in sound (on hiby flac ) i also have sonata hd pro … which really changes sound a lot….and how Odyssey hd is better and is Abigail support mic …plz..??

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      All the IEMs you mentioned are super Bass heavy. And that’s why it worked better with HD Pro because the nature of HD Pro is brighter natively. OHD is not longer available

      Like

  27. César says:

    Es mucha la diferencia entre Abigail y Acabo? Quiero alguna de loas dos opciones para unos blon-01 y kz edx pero no sé que me viene mejor con eso de neutro y cálido. Quiero mayor definición y que suene muy bien y todo como debería ser. Escucho bastante música clásica, blues, rock, alternativa y reggae-dub. Ayuda!!!

    Like

  28. Munteaz says:

    Hey Andy, which dongle has the best synergy with Aria and which dongle has the best synergy with yuan li?

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      For Aria, best with TempoTec Sonata HD Pro or Zorloo Ztella. For Yuan Li, needed more power to shine the best. Works perfectly for me with DACport HD or Ovidius B1, but if you can’t get those, then it is REIYIN DA-Plus, S9 Pro or TempoTec Sonata E44

      Like

      1. Munteaz says:

        Thanks for the reply Andy, your blof is very informative. It helped me understand a few things here and there. But I wish some serious helping here. Will you help me find the right pair for me?
        I want an IEM better sounding than my Starfield (which sounds similar to Aria). I want more sparkly highs, detailed mids with more bass punch and rumble over Starfield/Aria. I’ve never listened to Yuan li before. Do you consider Yuan li is an upgrade over Aria? Should I buy Yuan li or consider other iIEM at this price range. As for dongle, I can only get s9 pro, e1da Powerdac v2, Shanling ua2, Avani thus these are available in this area and I could afford them cause they’re used. So, should I go for “yuan li + s9 pro” or any other IEM paired with any of these dongles from above?
        Wish you the best of luck, thanks.

        Like

      2. Andy.EF says:

        For the things you described, Yuan Li may not be suitable as it is very natural organic sounding. I like Yuan Li more than Aria definitely, but Yuan Li will not satisfy your need unless you would say you prefer a more subtle and textured presentation. You need something more Euphonic – something like 7Hz Timeless or at the very least KZ EDX Pro (with cable upgrade). With the options of dongle you have, then no brainer S9 Pro

        Like

  29. Lucky says:

    Hi Andy I’m looking for a cheap dac which can run Akg K52, k361Bt, sony mh755, Moondrop quarks.
    My main concern is power which among sub $20 is the most powerful dongle
    Currently looking for odyssey hd, Abigail, jm04 pro

    Abigail and jm04 seems to more powerful in numbers atleast but lots of people suggested ve odyssey hd even though it’s almost half as powerful so I’m very confused please help me out.
    Thanks

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      OHD has a bit more power and density but it will not work great with most sensitive IEMs. Also both Avani and Abigail actually has better technicalities compared to OHD. I only use my OHD for driving demanding stuffs like magnetic planars, ER4SR, VE Duke and Etymotic ER4SR. Otherwise for anything up to 64 Ohm with sensitivity above 98db I prefer Abigail and Avani

      Like

  30. Kevin says:

    Hi Andy, I have read from a previous comment in this same thread that a BLON BL-03 user like me was choosing between JM20 and JM04 Pro. Which is the better option in your opinion? I am going to use it with my Redmi Note 10 Pro and Windows 10 laptop. Thanks!

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      BL03 goes better with JM20. JM04Pro is warmer and may make BL03 even thicker sounding

      Like

  31. Vishnu says:

    Hi Andy, Which DAC do you recommend for 7hz Timeless. I already own AVANI, but I dont think it’s powerful enough to drive the 7Hz. Can you give few options as only few dongles listed here are available in my place.

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      If you need more power then it has to be any of the 5 Star Dongles. 2 Vrms and above. Pick any one of them and Timeless works great since that IEM is highly adaptable to most sources

      Like

  32. Muhammad Fiqrullah says:

    Hi Andy, I’m from Malaysia also, do you plan to sell the others dongles 😁. Just try my luck or else i just get new haha

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      Lol. All 96 of my Dongles has been given away

      Like

  33. Andrej says:

    Hello Andy, im looking for portable dacs under 100 euros to combine with my Topping L30 amp, my headphones are HD560S. Some of the often recommended options i’ve seen are: Ibasso dc03, Tempotec sonata hd pro, hisizs s8 etc.
    What would be your best recommendations?

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      If you want bright euphonic sound then DC03 and HD Pro. S8 is warmer. So it depends on your taste. Any which way all of them already very good. Just different flavoring

      Like

  34. Phil says:

    I greet everyone
    does the Avani dongle work on Windows 8.1?

    Like

  35. Kevin Chavez says:

    Hey Andy, thanks for answering my previous question. I have a few questions.

    I have these 3:
    1. LG V50 ThinQ (where the music and power will come from)
    2. BLON BL-03 (IEM that I am using)
    3. Conexant CX31993 (dongle DAC that I use on my previous Android phone or Windows 10 laptop)

    Which will produce better music?
    a. Connecting BLON BL-03 to LG V50’s audio jack and use the phone’s internal Quad DAC or
    b. Connecting BLON BL-03 to the Conexant CX31993 dongle DAC and then plugging it on LG V50’s USB C socket?

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      With BL-03, very likely you will not be able to tell the difference between LG V50 Quad DAC and CX31993. BL-03 is not resolving or refined enough to appreciate any further improvements. I personally find BL-03 being dull edged, slow and unnaturally dense (but this is just me). Perhaps you will get slightly brighter presentation from V50 if you use the “Sharp” filter on the Quad DAC. Any which way, V50 is capable of running full 2 Vrms and CX31993 only up to 1 Vrms. But then, BL-03 will not improve much at all beyond 1 Vrms

      Like

      1. Kevin Chavez says:

        Thanks, Andy! So V50’s Quad DAC only works from the phone and to the audio jack? It won’t add up through any dongle DAC’s inserted through USB-C?

        Like

      2. Andy.EF says:

        No worries. Yes the QUAD DAC is only applicable from the phone 3.5mm. When you connect a dongle everything is redirected to the dongle and the internal DAC bypassed

        Like

  36. Arlenia says:

    Hi Andy, i need a cheap DAC for my Takstar Pro 82
    Currently I’m looking between JM04Pro or JM20
    Could you recommend me which one that suits my headphone better? Or is there any better dongle at that price range. Thanks!

    Like

  37. Syafiq says:

    Hi andy, i already got abigail, odyssey and cxpro, what dongle should i upgrade? My budget around myr 100 to 200.. thanks😊

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      Hey, upgrade only if you feel the need for more power or driving more demanding IEMs. Otherwise you already have some of the best quality to performance ratio dongles possible. You can try JCAlly JM10, but it will only just a very marginal improvement over what you already have. To upgrade, in the truest sense you need to spend higher to get stuffs like HiBy FC5 or TempoTec Sonata E44 etc

      Like

      1. Ten says:

        I have compared Avani Abigail and OHD for my music and mostly I prefer Avani the best. Probably because the mids.

        What would be recommended upgrade for them?

        Like

      2. Andy.EF says:

        Any of the 5 Stars Dongles are upgrades from that point onwards, especially if you need more power and driving authority

        Like

      3. Syafiq says:

        Oh i see, sorry for late reply bc i don’t get notifications, so i thought maybe i just wait for ve megatron,

        Like

  38. Rashed Khan says:

    ANDY, when you will review JCALLY JM50

    Like

  39. Rashed says:

    Hy which one will be better Andy,
    tempotec sonata e44 or ibasso dc04?

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      E44 undoubtedly

      Like

  40. Ghelo says:

    Hi sir Andy.
    Since you are into the dongle business can I ask if which is better?
    I have 3 choices or 4.
    VE Odyssey HD/Abigail/Avani/TempoTec SONATA HD 2
    These are all in my price-point which the tempotec one is 20 bucks.
    I just want to know which is better in terms of details, resolution and soundstage.

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      Sonata HD2 as you can see my review, has some glaring issues with soundstage so I personally would not want to use it. Among all the 3, get Abigail if you must choose one. But really I love all three of them, Abigail, Avani and OHD for the different tuning options they provide. And not forgetting that they all cost under $30 for all three

      Like

  41. Blair says:

    Hello, I am a beginner I have decided to get another dac I have a 30-35$ budget I am eyeing Jcally JM10 and Sonata HD pro which is better for better sounding and for android and pc use?
    Iems I use: Blon Bl-03 and Moondrop SSR
    Portable Dacs that I have: Abigail dongle.

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      If you want a bit of brightness and crisp presentation, HD Pro. If you want smooth mature sound which has better balance, JM10. Both being excellent dongles nonetheless

      Like

  42. HARITH ADAM says:

    Hello Andy, thanks for your great contribution in #donglemadness.

    I have question,

    1. In your opinion, if I have IEM that is Harman curve graph tuning (balance) which dongle DAC should I use?
    Avani for getting more warm-sound or Abigail getting more neutral sound?

    2. Is there any big difference between the above dac and JCally JM20 or Sonata HD Pro?

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      Hi.
      1. You said it yourself, Avani is when you prefer warmer presentation and the imaging is slightly crisper, but soundstage not as wide as Abigail. Abigail has more neutral presentation and had better sense of space and soundstage. So both of them being different in their own ways

      2. JM20 sounds brighter and a bit more grainy than HD Pro. Both uses the same CS43131 DAC chip, but HD Pro has better real estate of circuitry to allow for a slightly refined tuning.

      Like

  43. Muzza says:

    Howdo Andy, looks like your the daddy of DAC dongles. Great work.
    I’ve been running my headphones Denon d600 and Bayer Dynamic dt770 off my old phone Lg g7 with built in DAC. Sound was fairly impressive. Not as good when im driving the headphones in the studio etc but great for home use. Sadly the phone did not live to see 2022. I’ve purchased a xiaomi phone without DAC so looking for a cheap Dongle. Will these be able to power 80ohm headphones and will I run into issues as the phone has a headphone jack but too weak to power decent cans. Looking for cheap and cheerful. 10/20 pounds and Amazon/ebay available .

    Kind Regards Muzza

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      Hi Muzza, sorry to hear about your G7. For DT770 especially, in Amazon try to find a cheap dongle named Xumee, I have found it to be quite good to drive anything up to 100 Ohm, and you probably can get it for just USD $9. Also, consider using USB Audio Player Pro (UAPP) or HiBy Music Player which will allow USB Exclusive mode to fully unlock the power and quality when driven through Android phones. If you do need even more power, unfortunately you will need to spend a bit more to get up to 2 Vrms of output from the likes of TempoTec Sonata HD Pro

      Like

      1. Muzza says:

        Hello Andy, thanks for the quick reply. I went over the battle royal, madness indeed. As I’m just dipping my toes into DAC dongles for now its coming down to price and availability in Scotland. I had narrowed it down to CX-Pro Audio 31993 or JCally JM6. CX-Pro edging it because of durability. Price of pro $14. Jm6 $18.

        So how much better is the Xumee? ive read your review. I would need to get it sent over from USA. $26 .

        Do you think Xumee is worth it at those prices?

        I use poweramp on andriod . Does that unlock as you say or should i look into UAPP ?
        I listen to FLAC mostly .

        Thanks again for your time Andy. Dongle madness is some review.

        Cheers Muzza.

        Like

      2. Andy.EF says:

        Xumee has a different sound signature compared to CX31993. It is markedly warmer in comparison and has sharper imaging but smaller Soundstage. CX-PRO has a bit more air and space. But both are already among the best in that ultra compact segment. I don’t use Poweramp so I can’t tell how it is. But yes you want to unlock their fullest potential then UAPP and HiBy Music Player both can do USB Exclusive mode. You can also try the latest Tidal since it can also provide USB exclusive access

        Like

  44. Ariel says:

    Hi Andy! Thanks for the content, really love them! Just a question for you; I’m using the KZ ZS10 Pro and was thinking of getting either the JM20 or the Abigail/Avani (both are avail in my country). Which one do you think would be better to pair with the ZS10 Pro?

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      Unfortunately I never tried ZS10 Pro so I am not sure which one will pair better. But one thing for sure JM20 has the most prominent brightness among the three you mentioned, Abigail the most neutral and Avani on the warmer side. Hope you get the idea

      Like

  45. Feri says:

    Hi Andy! I think Hiby fd3 would be a 5star competitor. Any chance that you will rewiev it?

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      I hope so 🙂

      Like

  46. Hi Andy, I have the JCALLY JA04 and using Moondrop SSP with it. I’m wondering if upgrading to the JCALLY JM10 would it be better regardless of which IEM I use?

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      Yes obviously JM10 is superior than JA04. That’s why JM10 is a 4 and half Stars and JA04 3 Stars

      Like

  47. Krishna Rivera says:

    Thanks for your all recommendations and advice. I found a good usb C to lighting converter. I am looking between the TempoTec Sonata E44 and Abigail.

    Would you say there is big difference between the E44 and Abigail or not by much?

    Like

    1. Andy.EF says:

      Power wise a LOT. And power is what makes dynamic richness to the sound. That is why I am very focused on the subject of power. E44 is 4 Vrms and Abigail is 1 Vrms. So audibly E44 is better than Abigail

      Like

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