SMSL M3 USB DAC/Amp
SMSL M3 USB DAC/Amp
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Product Description
Measuring 3.75 by 3 inches and weighing just 7.5 ounces, the SMSL M3 USB DAC/amp helps you achieve better sound without taking up too much space in your bag or on your desk. Equipped with the CS4398 DAC chip, it has a 24 bit/192 kHz sample rate via optical and coaxial, and a 24 bit/96 kHz sample rate via USB Read More

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MrMook
1
Apr 10, 2019
Does it matter if I run this (or any) DAC from a direct USB port on my laptop, or will it function equally well plugged into the USB ports on my monitor? Currently I connect my MBPro to an LG monitor via a single Thunderbolt cable. I'd like to keep it this way for simplicity, and because I do unplug my computer from my monitor multiple times per day (meetings, etc). The exception is when I connect my headphones, or my new PSB AlphaPS1's (thanks Massdrop!) directly to the audio jack on my MBPro. Ideally, I'd like to run this (or similar) DAC with a volume knob to the USB ports on the monitor, leaving my laptop connected by the single T-bolt cable, and leaving my audio gear untouched when I disconnect from the monitor. Will it work, and if it does, will it affect audio quality by having a T-bolt cable and a monitor added to my signal chain?
chairstorm
29
Apr 11, 2019
That should be fine, your computer will see it as long as the ports on the monitor are not broken.
rastus
1120
Jun 20, 2020
Never tried, should be fine, other than usual susceptibility of usb to noise etc. Having decent, well shielded cables, always a plus here.
wolfin
60
Apr 10, 2019
From the description: "Note: This drop includes a short Micro-USB to Micro-USB cable, Micro-USB to Micro-B cable, and 3.5 mm to ¼ in gold-plated adapter." If the pictures are correct, 2nd one should say "USB-A to Micro-USB cable".
(Edited)
SaskAudioGuy
417
Apr 9, 2019
Should one look at this or the DX3?
bravomail
125
Mar 28, 2019
when is my order coming? I ordered with last drop.
Spartacus09
10
Apr 25, 2019
It will ship before May 14th, you'll receive a tracking number whne it ships.
Etazman
5
Mar 4, 2019
Audioengine D3 or SMSL M3 for purely stationary usage? AKG M220, Focal Listen, AKG 7XX/SH6XX or smth for 200$ soon.
(Edited)
Spartacus09
10
Apr 25, 2019
Unless you want to pay 1/3 of the price :P. That was my issue is I couldn't justify $200 for the amp/dac combo when this one is a decent starter at only 60 (I'm only on entry level cans currently)
bravomail
125
Apr 25, 2019
Yes, but after receiving M3 I'm not so hot about it. It sounds harsh, yet muddy. FX Audio is equally muddy but sounds pleasant.
KabuTheFox
22
Feb 18, 2019
anyone know if this is compatible with the nintendo switch over usb?
Spartacus09
10
Apr 25, 2019
Try out a usb headset on the switch, that would likely determine whether it will work with it.
Rjavi
23
Jan 1, 2019
so does this have a battery?
Hyde
828
Jan 2, 2019
No battery, it's USB powered but it does have a second usb slot for power in case you want to use it with your phone. i.e. 1 usb to phone and 1 usb to phone charger. This way it drain no power from phone. Also in desktop scenerio some people report stronger or cleaner sound.
soccerk40
2
Jan 1, 2019
Would this be a good fit for the HD 58X?
bravomail
125
Mar 6, 2019
bravomail
125
Dec 30, 2018
SMSL M3 got good measurements on DAC and AMP: https://reference-audio-analyzer.pro/en/report/dac/smsl-m3.php https://reference-audio-analyzer.pro/en/report/amp/smsl-m3.php Also Stalker has its review on youtube with measurements and DIY mod https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BoMc8_WdXD0 In headphone path there are 2 capacitors which drive weaker bass (aka rolled off). DAC has no issues. Capacitors in amp path can be shortened (DIY mod), that solves rolled off bass.
bravomail
125
Mar 7, 2019
After rewatching video, and checking specs on output power, decided to get it on Massdrop for 60. Here's quick translation of video: Headphone output measured. Very low noise (floor at 120dB or lower) Very little harmonics (at 103-108db on my eye) Enough power to drive Senn HD6xx. Rolled off bass starts at 50Hz, reaches -1dB by 30Hz and about -3dB by 5-10Hz. Rolled off bass is only on headphone out, not on RCA. The reason for roll-off are 2 capacitors in signal path, which are used to block small DC (~1 mV) from Dac or Opamp. In stereo - total of 4 capacitors. He draws schematics in video so everyone can understand. Capacitors put to fight DC and the noise, caused by it on volume pot (resistor). If you short-circuit last capacitor (2 in stereo) - roll off is completely gone. But you will hear some gentle rustle while adjusting your volume. Also, SMSL M3 is not for IEMs, due to poor balance of channels at low volume. It is actually will sound its best with harder to drive headphones :) Output impedance could be really low because headphone jack is directly connected to some opamp. So if your IEMs are 32 Ohm or higher - you should be fine.
millerjl2
5
Dec 19, 2018
Buyer beware. There's no manufacturer warranty on these and mine literally lit on fire after about 18 months of use. I'd either go cheaper (probably about the same quality) or more expensive (aiming for higher quality) rather than buy this again.
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