Discuss Decibel, a high quality audio player.
Post Reply
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Oct 08, 2011 4:21 pm


Post by amham » Thu Nov 29, 2012 8:54 pm

Has anyone successfully setup an AQ Dragonfly DAC? I got it working but it seems you control the audio volume via the MIDI or SOUND control panel. Also, only the FRONT RIGHT slider controls both channels in the STEREO mode (master and front left inactive). Am I correct or is there another setup mode? Is there a keyboard sequence that will control the ANALOG MIDI volume or do you have to open the midi control panel as the only volume option using headphones?

Seems I've discovered the following. The MAC Pro MIDI and SOUND utilities balance controls ONLY both volume channels simultaneously when using the Dragonfly (as described above) other words the BALANCE control has NO effect upon balance but ONLY volume in both channels when NOT using Decibel (iTunes. Pandora, etc.) and the VOLUME control is inoperative. When using DECIBEL, the applications Volume control override the MAC Pro utilities and appear to control the ANALOG volume correctly. There is something strange about the Dragonfly's software control BUT it appears that DECIBEL is reacting properly and correcting these quirks. To be honest, I'm confused at what is occurring but all is operating correctly with DECIBEL in control.

Posts: 26
Joined: Sun Mar 26, 2006 8:33 pm


Post by maya » Thu Dec 06, 2012 7:41 am

I just have the Decibel output through my Mac Pro's Digital Audio Out, b/c it's connected to a Cambridge Audio DacMagic. Simplest set up ever.

However, have you taken a look @ AudioQuest's Computer Audio Setup Guide? It doesn't cover Decibel, but maybe the other options could work out?

Are you able to see the DAC in Decibel's preferences under General > Output Device? I'm assuming you just plug in headphones to listen?
“Unless you’ve seen KISS live, you don't understand the band.” —Paul Stanley, KISS. (2003).

Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Jan 28, 2013 8:15 pm


Post by jhrcdn » Mon Jan 28, 2013 11:40 pm

I have an AQ Dragonfly and it's terrific sounding--when I can get output from it!

I've been using it on a new Mac Mini (and just checked it on a Win7 box as well).

To the OP: the analog headphone volume control inside the Dragonfly is adjusted by the volume out on most applications. So things like Enqueue or XBMC will control the volume out to the Dragonfly like any other app. You can't adjust the balance at all to the best of my knowledge in the Mac Midi app.

But when you set up the volume input to the Dragonfly is 100%, then the analog volume control inside the Dragonfly (the headphone amp, in essence) is defeated and you have a straight pass-through, which is perfect for home theater, since I'll control the volume not with the Mac but with my AV system.

My problem with the Dragonfly is that I think mine is actually defective.

I bought Decibel so I could automatically switch the sample rates for incoming FLAC and APE audio, since I have some high definition audio files mixed with more normal 44KHz ones.

What I found was that I could not get any sound output from 24/ 96KHz files (if the right sample rate was selected in the midi subsystem on the Mac)!

Decibel would switch correctly from one sample rate to another, and go seamlessly from 44 to 88KHz files, but as soon as you hit a 96KHz file, no sound is output from the DAC. When I manually select a sample rate through the Midi App (from either Decibel or Enqueue), then I can get sound output from a 24/96 file at 44 and 88 KHz, but not at 96! :)

I confirmed this on a Windows 7 box as well: I can output (using JRiver) all sample rates except 96KHz from a 96KHz file. Weird.

FWIW, the high definition 24/96 files are identified properly as 24/96 in the old DAC in my Marantz 7200 (using an optical input), and they also play without issue on my Windows ASIO driver (through my Creative Sound Card from JRiver or SoundForge). I checked this on Windows because I'm just more familiar with the pieces on Windows.

I also wanted to know if I had a MAC problem or a DAC problem :)

It seems they just don't play on the Dragonfly.

I'd really *love* to know if others are seeing this with the Dragonfly. At this point I think (and I hope!) I have a defective DAC part, and will be getting a new one at the end of the week unless others can tell me I'm doing something wrong! I hope it's broken because the sound is otherwise wonderful.

I really like Decibel as well. The sound is great, the interface is simple, and auto-switching sampling is great too! I'll put my 2 cents in for an iPad app for remote control, or a "10 foot interface" option or something. Nothing worse than trying to read a teeny playlist from 10 feet away on my older plasma :)

Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Jan 28, 2013 8:15 pm


Post by jhrcdn » Thu Jan 31, 2013 3:12 pm

BTW--just in case others run into this problem with the Dragonfly:

I confirmed over the last few days that early versions of the DAC have an issue with 96KHz files. IOW, early Dragonflys have a bug :) So if you have one that won't output 96KHz audio from a good source, it's defective.

Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Sep 08, 2014 10:13 am


Post by Alvin » Mon Sep 08, 2014 10:50 am

jhrcdn wrote: So if you have one that won't output 96KHz audio from a good source, plus the Bathmate is really good.
Looks like mine is defective too then. :(

Post Reply