My solution to overheating DAC dongles

My DAC gets pretty hot, especially while playing DSD (50C!). Well now i can leave my DAC plugged in for as long as i want. :slight_smile: I just put some AliExpress VRM heatsink and thermal pad and it works wonders. 30 - 35C now.



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That’s really hot, what’s going on with it?

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Nothing wrong with it, just the way it is when i got it :upside_down_face:

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50c is so hot though lol

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ikr, kinda surprised me at first too. It also drain my phone battery to 60% in just an hour. kinda nuts how power hungry old DACs can be.

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Lol yeah it is but glad you are improving the design the best you can.

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Seems like the perfect HimalayaDAC for heating up your tent at night during that journey up the mountain in your quest for summit-fi. :stuck_out_tongue:

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Interesting solution, but it appears to quadruple the size of the dongle, defeating one of the purposes of portability.

Plus, if a DAC is running that hot, there must be something weird about the design or engineering. I would look to another product, but that’s just me.

Good luck.

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Indeed…a hard choice tbh either your pocket’s on :fire: or…

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Good for finger warm up :wink:

Haha yeah, need to look another product, well if it dies lmao. My broke a$$ cannot afford a new one yet. It is my desk dac anyway, so i don’t need to worry about portability.

Recommended cheap DAC: The $9 Apple DAC dongle, whether it’s Lightning for iOS or USB-C for Android.

The Apple dongle is one of the best values in audiophilia. Measures as well as DAC’s costing 10 times more, and it runs very cool.

No joke.

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Checked the price, it cost the same as Tangzu wan’er (Indonesian tax suck). I’ll think about it for a while :sweat_smile:

Thanks for the recommendation though, didn’t know apple made usb c DACs until today. Definitely on my wishlist.

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Depends who’s measuring I guess.

(Apple is the A1749 in the above.)

Meanwhile you can get a JCally JM6 Pro dongle with a Conexant CX31993 DAC and a dedicated amp chip that pushes 1.6 Vrms into 600 ohms for $15-16: https://www.aliexpress.com/item/1005005412539355.html?gatewayAdapt=4itemAdapt
Or the simple JM6 without the amp for $7-8, either JCally or unbranded. Both should easily wipe the floor with the Apple.

I think the Apple dongle earned its reputation simply by being among the first good ones on a nascent market, but now that the competition has gone into high gear it doesn’t stand a chance.

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a couple smaller ones would probably be fine, all that extra hanging off is actually storing more of the heat if its not getting airflow

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I see what you did there. :wink:

To OP: what are you measuring the surface temps with? That’s crazy that the DC02 gets to 50C! I have the DC04 and it gets warm occasionally when being run hard on high gain, but not that hot. :flushed:

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Using thermal probe, i taped it and measure the temperature while playing DSD128 with Samson SR850 (50% volume). And yeah 50C :sweat_smile:

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It has quite a bit of airflow from ambient (wind from windows, doors)

Oh wow, it has WAY more power (from datasheet) than ibasso. The leap from 25mW to 125mW are bonkers, and cheaper than the apple stuff too. I’m changing my mind to this one lol.

Im loving this community, how did you guys find these gems??

Wait, datasheet? You do realize those numbers assume optimal power supply just for that one chip, right? But the MAX has to run alongside the Conexant and everything else in that dongle, based on the same single USB power source. You won’t get that theoretical maximum out of it in this context, you have to look at the complete device’s specs to know what the final design has achieved. For 600 ohms it says 7.4 mW, which works out to about 1.5 Vrms (sorry, not 1.6).

Though I do have to say I have trouble believing their spec for 32 ohms, which at “60 mW” is practically no better than the JM6 non-pro without the dedicated amp chip, and that makes no sense. My best guess is they accidentally copy-pasted the power specs of the non-pro and what we have in reality is somewhere in between 60 mW and 125 mW into 32 ohms, possibly closer to 125, say 100-ish. At the very least Andy.EF confirms in his review that he had to set the PC volume to 62% for the JM7 (similar device to the 6 non-pro) while it only took 52% for the JM6 Pro to get the same loudness. #donglemadness. FAAEAL KT . JCally JM7 . JCally JM6 Pro . MEIZU Lifeme . JCally AP7 Reviews - YouTube (never mind the price he quotes for the 6 Pro, he got confused by sellers mixing pro and non-pro variants on the same product page on Ali).

Yeah, I ordered one myself, though I already have 2 larger DACs that I’m more than happy with. For the price and the fidelity specs I can absolutely make room for a gem like this in my menagerie. I think we will be hearing more about Conexant DACs in coming years if this is what they’re capable of for this kind of money.

But I also ordered the JCally because while waiting for the supposedly even-higher-fidelity Hiby FC3 I started noticing reviews of it suffering some kind of sudden death for a few people, and I don’t want to be left without an audio in/out supporting dongle on my new jackless phone if that happens to my Hiby. (First jackless phone for me, and I’m scrambling to patch that deficiency with the best audio gear available in the cheap&small category, as my BTR3 will not work as an inline DAC if I ever need it right when its battery is empty.)

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I didn’t count that lol, now you mentioned it i agree it has around 100mW @ 32 ohms. Still much bigger bump than the ibasso though :upside_down_face:

And yeah, I also have a new jackless phone too (S20 FE), my “reasonable” excuse to why i should spend more money hehe.