RMAF 2016: AudioQuest jams with new Niagara and DragonFly


AudioQuest recently released a new set of DragonFly ultra-portable computer DACs, the Red ($199) and Black ($99). The difference, perhaps obviously, isn’t just color — in addition to some upgraded parts, the Red nearly doubles the output voltage from 1.2v to 2.1v, which should be more than enough to drive most high-end headphones directly off of whatever it is it’s dangling from. Still limited to 24bit/96kHz file resolutions, the two DACs do happen to be driverless — they’re truly plug and play (even on Windows). Best of all, the new DACs are not only ultra-low power (think iPhone), they’re also upgradeable — new apps will be available to load features and improvements on the fly (as it were … ahem). Spoiler Alert: DragonFly Red is my current contender for “Best Value” of 2016 — by far the best-sounding of the line, the sheer portability is just unmatched. And the color just screams “stocking stuffer”. Christmas shopping = done.

Also on deck (or at least, on the table) was the new Niagara 1000 “Low-Z Power | Noise-Dissipation System” ($995). Six outlets, surge protection, AC + ground filtering, and low impedance = way better than what’s currently feeding my current desktop setup and that’s a cold fact. It’s a beefy bar — you can see it tucked into the table top in the photos.

Also on hand, AudioQuest’s line of power/signal cables wiring up the system that ended in pairs of NightHawk headphones ($599).

Setup courtesy of ListenUp, this table was jammed.

RMAF 2016 coverage courtesy of Noble Audio

About Scot Hull 1039 Articles
Scot started all this back in 2009. He is currently the Publisher here at PTA, the Publisher at The Occasional Magazine, and the Executive Producer at The Occasional Podcast. There are way too many words about him over on the Contributors page.