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Cambridge - DACMagic XS

24 customer reviews
| 15 answered questions

List Price: $200.00
Price: $189.00 & FREE Shipping. Details
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  • Smaller Than a Matchbox, Weighs Less Than 3.5 Ounces: Ultra-Portable
  • Includes a headphone amplifier that delivers ten times more power than most laptop soundcards
  • Delivers the bass, clarity, and power missing from your digital audio when it's played through a computer or portable device's DAC
  • Analog volume control is easily adjusted with the tap of a finger
  • LED shows current sample rate
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Cambridge - DACMagic XS + Shure SRH1540 Premium Closed-Back Headphones
Price for both: $688.00

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Technical Details

  • Brand Name: Cambridge Audio
  • Model Number: C10659K

Product Description

Cambridge Audio DacMagic XS USB DAC/Headphone Amp Smaller Than a Matchbox, Weighs Less Than 3.5 Ounces: Ultra-Portable DacMagic XS Packs a Truly Unbelievable Sonic Punch and Plugs into Any USB Input A Bona fide Audiophile Device with Audiophile Touches: Powerful Headphone Amp, Analog Volume Control, 24-Bit DAC, Sturdy Aluminum Case All Included No words aptly describe the seriously unbelievable sound produced by the ultra-compact, ultra-thin, ultra-portable, and yes, ultra-powerful DacMagic XS. The tiny wonder weighs a mere 3.5 ounces, yet this award-winning USB DAC/headphone amplifier has amazed dyed-in-the-wool audiophile press the world over, winning rave reviews from the US to the UK to Germany to Asia and all points in between. An astoundingly affordable way to exponentially improve your computer audio and headphone performance, DacMagic XS connects to any USB port and even includes a headphone amplifier that delivers ten times more power than most laptop soundcards. Yes, this minuscule device packs quite a punch. "If you're looking for a USB DAC that will improve computer audio - but not break the bank-Cambridge Audio's DacMagic XS is a leading contender." - Sound & Vision Smaller than a matchbox, DacMagic XS uses technology from Cambridge Audio's high-end DACs. As a result, any file-from MP3s to high-resolution lossless, streaming services such as Spotify and Pandora, Skype, games, and even films-sound fuller, richer, and more detailed when played through DacMagic XS. So, if you've paid for a higher-quality subscription service, DacMagic XS allows you to hear what you're paying for. Also, by plugging in via a cable, DacMagic XS removes any risk of flex or movement damaging your computer's USB port. It also avoids adding a bulky and easily damaged lump to the side of your laptop. "It sounds solid, stable and refined ... the DacMagic XS is excellent for the money, and easily outpoints most DACs we've heard anywh

Product Details

  • Product Dimensions: 0.4 x 1.2 x 0.2 inches ; 3.5 ounces
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • ASIN: B00FSDFF9K
  • Item model number: C10659K
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank:
  • Product Warranty: For warranty information about this product, please click here
  • Date first available at Amazon.com: October 16, 2013

Customer Questions & Answers

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Fastguitars on March 29, 2014
Verified Purchase
Comparing this amazing sounding DAC-Headphone amp to the Meridian Explorer, the cEntrance Dacport, the Woo Audio Firelifes, and the ResonEssence Concero, i will have to tell you that this device is astounding.
It equals the Meridian and cEntrance in value and surpasses them in clarity and articulation. (and yes, they both sound very good).
As compared to the Woo Fireflies or the Concero HP, it actually has better dynamics and clarity.
It does not sound better then those (2) $4X its price units, but it offers no less quality of sound, which is amazing.
The volume control implementation is excellent and the unit itself is aesthetically refined & beautiful.
Its a little sonic miracle for very little money as compared to the Audiophile sound quality which it supplies.
At 3x the price it would be a good value. !
The Stereophile review was correct about this brilliant device.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By kix on January 2, 2014
Verified Purchase
This little device puts out big sound. Plug and play provides USB1 connection with support for up to 24-bit/96kHz. On a Mac you can switch to USB 2 and get up to 176.4kHz/192kHz. On Windows, you will have to install a driver from Cambridge Audio first, then you can switch to USB2.

USB Class 1.0 supports a maximum of only 24-bit/96kHz
USB Class 2.0 supports a maximum of 176.4kHz/192kHz
Switch the DacMagic XS into Class 2.0 mode by pressing and holding both volume buttons until the LED flashes pink three times.

If you take the time (about 20 minutes for installing the Windows drivers) the sound is really amazing. I would recommend this product to a friend.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Michael J. Anderson on June 15, 2014
Verified Purchase
I just got this headphone amp/DAC for Father's Day. This little device greatly improves the dynamics of my B&W P7 headphones. Highly recommend if you have quality headphones and want to pull out their full potential. Perfect for up converting Spotify and SiriusXM streams.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By R. A. Wheeler on July 31, 2014
Verified Purchase
Absolutely spectacular!!! I downloaded the USB2 driver but haven't installed it yet because I am afraid of messing up the already incredible sound improvement of my ripped CDs. There are things on these CDs I have never heard before. Piano notes are clear and they are a piano!! I can even hear the results of the occasional poor compression schemes the recording studios used. Whereas the most startling improvement I expected to be at the high end, instead my improvement in the bass is what stands out the most. Once I work up enough courage to install the USB2 drivers maybe it will be the high end that will be the most improved. But by then I will have listened to enough the the USB1 driver to be able to tell the difference. I read all the reviews before buying this and the half was not told. This is a first class winner!!!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Dave on May 15, 2014
Recently reviewed this for DroidHorizon, droidhorizon.com/cambridge-audio-dacmagic-xs-review/
This thing is ridiculously good value for money! Ultra portable solution for Android phones and tablets with USB OTG as well as laptops.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By E. R. Morris on March 19, 2014
Verified Purchase
I had trouble with the installation of required software USB drivers. I made the mistake of just plugging in the device, and voila it worked for a few hours! Then, the second time it didn't work. After some tech support issues registered with Cambridge Audio, I downloaded a required free USB driver. This driver installed fine, and the device sounded really good with my Sennheiser headphones. I have installed the USB driver on Windows 7 and 8 on two laptops and two desktops. But the USB driver doesn't always start properly, requiring re-installation. It's a bit frustrating, but when the thing works it sounds really good to my ears.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Kevin Olson on February 27, 2014
Verified Purchase
I was looking for a small DAC/headphone amp after adding a (relatively cheap) desktop DAC/amp to my Mac Pro setup in the office (Maverick Audio). The audio improvement was dramatic with my large Beyer 770 headphones so I knew it was time for a smaller device for my MacBook Pro. Research led me to consider the Dragonfly, Meridian and Cambridge Audio products.

I chose the Dacmagic XS based on a few design features:
1. doesn't directly plug into the USB port so less likely to damage either piece of gear
2. minimal features - does one thing well and keeps the design simple
3. solid construction for travel durability (preferably metal case)

I was surprised at how small it really is - other reviews mentioned a book of matches but I guess I was expecting a larger book. It's about the size of a lighter, with decent heft, metal case and a nicely brushed, satin finish. There are only two buttons - plus and minus for volume (as mentioned by others, holding them both down controls the sampling frequencies but I don't care about that now). A short USB cable is included for connection between the unit and computer so the Dacmagic XS lays on the table next to my MacBook. Select the Dacmagic in the Sound settings, plug in some phones and listen to clear music that is far superior to what it was without the DAC/amp. I'll use it mostly with custom IEMs but it can handle the Beyer 770s, too (250 Ohm version).

Cons? Nothing to speak of. I suppose the short USB cable could be a little longer (it's about 6" total) but that's a minor point. No batttery to worry, it comes with a little cloth bag for storage and it has good build quality.

Overall, an excellent purchase. It's not cheap, but even my middle-aged ears can hear a significant difference in audio quality with this product. Now I'll definitely be adding higher bit rate recordings to my iTunes library - garbage in, garbage out no matter how good the gear is.
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