Setting up shan’t pose much issues for most of us since a step-by-step instruction is clearly laid out and updating this device was effortless. The size of the Dragonfly Red does make one wonder if it’ll make any difference at all but for how much one is for, it better does. To avoid RCA, balance or unbalanced jargon, Dragonfly’s familiar 3.5 mm output could be the very solution.
Listening to John Mayer’s Stop This Train, cleaner sounds can immediately be heard. Music just gets elevated to another level whereby bass gets bolder, mids are prominent and highs more rounded off. Things don’t get as bright at higher registers and when at a lower volume, Dragonfly Red’s expressive sound still is apparent.
Ease of use
Colour and gloss durability
32-bit ESS 9016 Sabre DAC
ESS Sabre 9601 Amp
$ 349 AUD
It is amusing how Audioquest crammed a DAC and preamp into a USB stick however we are moving to a wireless world thus this will only appeal to those who’d like to extract every drop of the music they listen to or simply enjoy the finer things in life. The contrast may not be as noticeable at first but with more listening time, you will learn to love the extra polishing given off by a Dragonfly. Even on the Beosound 2, it does bring listeners that bit closer to the recording studio.
The difference may not be apparent with FLAC files though on Spotify, you'd be surprised by how much is brought out in each track. Moreover, the Dragonfly Red does not heat up one bit from 8 hours of continuous use. A little here and there certainly makes listening to music more enjoyable but in all honesty, the masses might just call this a pass and will still be satisfied with lossless files as they are.