Desktop DAC w/ Portable DAC/AMP

Looking to spend no more than $400.

This is my secondary setup. Frequently use the dt880 600ohm so solution must support. I need optical and USB so I’m thinking an E30 feeding a portable dac/amp. Im after the a DAC with filters. This methodology will allow me to use dac/amp on the go but still have a quality DAC to support my in home connections will also have a decent AMP at home.

I’ve seen posts going the opposite way aka portable DAC. However, I’m needing to reverse due to input options that I’m needing.

Honestly you could just grab a ifi idsd micro black label used and it would drive the 880 600 ohm very well for a portable, should be pretty great as a desktop dac as well. It has both usb and optical (via mini toslink in the coax jack), and does have adjustable dac filters. Also full size line out, would most likely check all your boxes and be a compact size, used they should be around 400, would be an all in one package. That way you wouldn’t need to grab another dac either

Always a pleasure when you respond M0n. Never posted a follow-up but with your help I got my foot in the door and have the 880, Sundara, A3, and SU-8.

I thought about the black label but can’t find any deal currently that I’m comfortable with in budget.

Any feedback to my proposed solution?

Ah nice :+1:

There are some good deals out right now, here are a few

And more will pop up now that the micro signature has been released

So it’s good in concept but I think the hard part is finding a portable that will actually power the 880 well imo. It generally is something most portables struggle with, and also having to used single ended also limits your options as most portables tend to favor balanced these days.

I guess the options I would recommend besides the bl are the xduoo xd05 plus, perhaps with a burson opamp swap, which while not really as good as the bl does still sound nice and would get the job done. An going even cheaper an earmen tr-amp if you don’t mind a bit of brightness is a decent choice although it might not be the ideal pairing there

I failed to mention that my 880 is balanced… major fail. As it relates to the power issue.

Also, the xd-05 does support my DAC needs so I’m absolutely open to utilizing that as the DAC and buying a desktop AMP if it makes sense versus my proposal.

Ah ok that can allow for a few more options, but on 2nd thought what was mentioned above would still be my primary recommendations actually imo as the other options would be daps which wouldn’t fit what you are looking for, and a few other portable dac amps like a fiio q5s but honestly that’s not going to go well with an 880 anyways

Is there a portable DAC w/ filters and desktop AMP you suggest?

Would the portable dac have to drive the headphones as well (when used portable)? I might be getting a bit confused here

Ah ok I see, then yeah you could do that. I would still go for the plus though. I’m assuming you can’t use your asgard in this situation and would need another desktop amp?

No, with portable DAC option I wouldn’t need the power at the portable unit but I would still need USB, optical, and filters. My needs at the DAC is the reason I was thinking the opposite way unless told different.

To answer your question… I’m relocating A3 setup due to footprint issues.

So if you want this

You would still need a portable dac/amp that at least has some juice to drive the headphones when needed, but at home you can focus on using a higher quality amp with the portable acting as a line out dac. In this case with your budget then, the xd05 plus checks your boxes, as that can be your portable when needed, and when you get home you can use it as a dac into a more powerful desktop amp. If I’m understanding you correctly (I’m a bit tired so I’m probably not lol)

Desktop DAC w/ portable AMP: Was thinking E30 due to optical and USB. Portable then needed to support 880 for home use.

Desktop AMP w/ portable DAC: Need quality optical and USB DAC for home use. 880 supporting AMP is the easy part.

Hope that clears up any confusion.

**I was preferring the xd05 but is it good enough of a DAC if I picked up a desktop AMP?

That was a late one last night…

In sticking with the xd-05 would you rec combining it with an E30 or with a desktop AMP? If, dedicated AMP any compact option recs?

I would go this route

If you get the plus then I would say so

Desktop amp personally, and would say something like a lake people g103s but that might be a bit too much, perhaps an el amp ii might work as well but might be similarly too much? A monolith liquid spark is a pretty good pairing with the 880, not asgard 3 quality but still pretty nice