Anyone interested in a portable dCS kit?

Wouldn’t it be great to have a portable dCS player, for headphone, or in-car, use while on the road? I know, there are several upmarket offerings already, but none has the SQ of dCS.

Would it even be possible to scale down a Ring DAC for this purpose? Or to have a tiny, portable headamp with Expanse inside?


I’m with you on that. Definitely hoping I could one day soon replace the Chord Mojo that I lug around when traveling :laughing:


Sounds like a great idea but I wonder how necessary the refined SQ of dCS would be in practice in a situation such as driving, flying or train travel?

I use an AQ Dragonfly Red which I do not feel much need to improve upon given the environment where it is being used. Listening to e.g Vivaldi ( composer not equipment) on a plane with engine noise and baby screaming throughout. On a train with people sitting down next to me and carrying on a conversation loudly. Driving but where having sound loud enough to drown out both engine noise and that of other traffic involves a hazard risk unless you are only a passenger.

Of course one could go for noise cancelling headphones but then you get into a whole other world of sonic compromise and the advantage or even need for a high quality portable DAC is negated.

So a great idea but maybe only ideal for use in hotel rooms or in a quiet office?

Or while walking, bicycling, outdoors on a veranda/ porch, in the backyard at the swimming pool, on the beach, plenty of opportunities.

:smiley: :smiley: :smiley:

Think adventure, think the dCS Avventura :wink:

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What a great product name. They’ll just have to build it now :grin:

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Great idea Erno. I’d buy one! dCS Avventura DAP.

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No interest here.

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There was a time when I would have been, and happily opening my wallet for it, and was heavily invested in high quality portable SQ. But I am afraid my travel sensibilities have gotten lazier. If y’all can persuade dCS, more power to you, but I won’t be holding my breath.

Nor would I. dCS did design a ring DAC on a chip in association with Arcam in the early years of this century. I understand it ended up with a " never again" reputation being difficult to manufacture and with a high production failure rate. Of course as a chip it was a fixed entity without the flexibility of the true FGPA based ring DAC which we are familiar with and which is also too large given the array of latches for any kind of portable implementation.


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I asked that in my OP. Conservative thinking is comfortable, but will not bring us any further. Not all of us are that old and lazier, and still on the move, and may want portable dCS SQ.

Fine if you like to sit still next to you Vivaldi :wink: Avventura is not only in the past :sunglasses:

Didn’t say I wasn’t on the move. I have missed travel much during the pandemic. My wife and I travel frequently in normal times. However, my musical requirements are not what they once were while traveling. I have shifted toward convenience and not carrying “one more pouch” on my Batman utility belt.:wink: That’s all. Apple AirPods serve me well, or if not that, Bose IEMs as a backup when the source is a 3.5 plug.

As I said, if you can convince dCS, more power to you! But I’d still rather see their engineering focused on Vivaldi 3.0 and/or its successor.

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I wouldn’t bet on that; you would be amazed by some of the incredible technology that can fit in the palm of a hand these days, which comes at a huge cost of course. :laughing:

I guess the only real factor here would be what sort of sonic compromises might today’s cutting edge technology represent, and whether, compared to the rest of the dCS family, thats a good idea that fits within dCS ethos.


…and .of course, whether the development cost of such a thing would be likely to provide a viable economic return.

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As much as I love my Bartok, on the go or even just around the house the iPhone + AirPod Max headphones (or Sony’s or Bose or whatever) are perfectly fine. For portable use, I’ve always come back to wireless, which would negate any dCS benefits - it would still fly over Bluetooth in the end; the last mile so to speak.


Pre-pandemic I was traveling a lot. So I got a LG ThinQ smartphone, Sony NC headphones and aftermarket cables ( no Bluetooth). The LG phone can play MQA from Tidal, and the SQ is very good. Just an option if you don’t want to spend tons on super expensive portable DAPs, like the A&K players and don’t want to wait for dCS to decide whether they will or they won’t… make a portable product.

As dCS like naming their products after compositors…For such an adventurous product an appropriate name would be the dCS Scelsi or Berio :wink:

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I have an A&J SR25 which I use with Andromeda Campfire and love it. Also have a Mojo, great SQ but it heats too much.

My use case for portable audio is entertainment on (often long) plane rides and in hotel rooms. For short trips up to two weeks I carry an Astell & Kern SP2000 DAP connected to Jerry Harvey Layla Cusom In-Ears with an Effect Audio Horus balanced cable. The custom in-ears provide useful reduction of ambient noise. The rig fits into a small, soft accessory case that easily slides into any travel bag or backpack. For long trips I bring a small Pelicase (where all is held in place by foam inserts) with the SP2000, a Headamp Pico portable amp and the Focal Utopia headphones. They are easy to drive. Having lived with the Bartók for a bit now, both portable rigs hold up reasonably well given their small form factor. Here, I used to have a multi-room system all around the house. Not anymore, I was distracting myself too much. Now it’s just a humble Sonos for background music when cutting veggies or doing other chores. Does the job… As for myself, I would really not need a portable dCS implementation.