Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Updated: Ipad mini and Fiio E17 USB DAC compatibility (also in combination with E09)

Please read my most recent blog post on this topic which makes that below obsolete.

As I did not find many reports of the Fiio E17 compatibility with an ipad mini, I tested it myself.

The FIIO E17 Alpen USB DAC Headphone Amplifier unfortunately does not work as USB DAC in combination with the ipad mini and the camera connection kit (message "external device needs too much current") if connected directly. Even switching off the USB charging function on the Fiio does not help to overcome the current limitations given by the ipad. The docking station with amplifier FiiO E09K does not change the situation!

BUT, connected to a powered USB hub, the ipad and Fiio work like a charm. I played flac files and other content from the ipad. I found out, that even non-powered hubs work and powered hubs just need power during the connection to the ipad. Later the power can be removed. There are very compact non-powered USB hubs which allow a very mobile setups. Amazon is offering one (see picture below), I have not tested this particular one. My one is very similar by Dr. Bott.

 Some other users reported that external spdif adapters do work (like The spdif signal can then decoded by the Fiio which gives a mobile solution. I have not tested this combination myself yet.

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