Seeking an iPhone DAC w/ USB passthrough

Discussion in 'Digital Audio' started by jmelrose, Dec 12, 2015.

  1. jmelrose macrumors regular

    Oct 18, 2004

    I am hoping to improve my car's audio by using a portable DAC/amp with my iPod touch. (I have everything on it as ALAC files.)

    I was hoping to find a DAC that would allow me to output audio from the lightning port to the DAC, and then the DAC would pass on the USB connection to my car so I could still control tracks via the car's controls, but the DAC would pass the audio to the aux in, which is what I have currently: a lightning cord from car to iPod for control, headphone jack to aux in for audio.

    Can anyone recommend a DAC that could be inserted into the system?

  2. cbautis2 macrumors 6502a

    Aug 17, 2013
    You're better off upgrading your car's speaker system and power amps than purchasing a DAC.
  3. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    That would not improve your car's audio.

    The first step to making it better is to find the weak link and work on that first. I can't belief that would turn out to be the iPod's internal DAC. It is actually quite good already.

    Most likely the worst problem you have is road noise, engine noise and wind noise. The #2 problem is likely speaker placement and performance and then a distant #3 might be the amplifier(s).

    If would really help a LOT if you were able to MEASURE the sound and signals in the car. You don't need exotic gear. A studio grade audio interface (something a Focusrite Scarlett 2i2) for the computer and a measurement microphone (like say a Daytom Audio EMM-6) Then you can see waveforms and measure distortion, frequency response and so on.

    If you can measure, then the audio holy become much less expensive because you find there is little need for things like gold plated power cords and moving a speak by 8 inches has 1000 times more effect then swapping out a DAC. (Yes literally 1000x or more)
  4. jmelrose thread starter macrumors regular

    Oct 18, 2004
  5. DblHelix macrumors 6502

    Mar 19, 2009
    Look at the ifi idsd micro or nano. Both will decode up to 24/384 and dsd. The micro will do dsd512 and the nano will do up to dsd256 through usb
  6. MrAverigeUser macrumors 6502a


    May 20, 2015


    The best and easiest way is to buy a sennheiser CXC700. The best noise canceling I ever have heard about. NO impact on the music signal. THREE different filters for car, plane, street noise, and so on.

    Give it a try and you will be convinced.
  7. jmelrose thread starter macrumors regular

    Oct 18, 2004
    Thanks but I can't drive with headphones on so that won't help, but I appreciate the recommendation

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