headphone_amplifiers


ADL A1  |  Alpha Design Labs A1

• DSD (2.8M/ 5.6M) DAC • Android DAC • USB DAC (24bit/ 192kHz Max.) • DDC (Optical input and output 24bit/ 192kHz Max.)

IMPORTANT INFORAMTION FOR A1 and WINDOWS 10 USERS

Please download and follow the NEW guide for the driver installation on Windows 10 Anniversary Update PCs: HERE

For users that upgraded their OS from Windows 7 or 8 to the new Windows 10 and the above installation guide does not work on your PC, it is possible to roll back the Windows 10 Anniversary Update and return to the previous installed version of Windows 10.
(see this video for tutorial: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DTGxB0s_HXw )
You will also need to disable the Windows automatic update function.
(see this video for tutorial: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m-bmRe0VEeQ )
Then you will be able to install the driver on Windows 10 OS computers and use the A1 without issue.

A1_description On-the-Go-Or-In-Your-Stereo

Some digital enthusiasts require small, portable DACs and headphone amps because they’re always on the move from location to location. Others need flexibility with their digital gear, especially the ability to insert a headphone amp into virtually any system and achieve impressive sonic performance. The new ADL A1 headphone amplifier/ DAC is designed for both of these digital enthusiasts—even if they’re the same person!

The new ADL A1 is a high-resolution portable headphone amplifier and DAC that can be used with Android devices such as ADL’s own X1 and iDevices. The A1 is also DSD-capable when used with either Mac or PC. The high-resolution sound that can be achieved through the A1 makes it perfect for portable audio enthusiasts who use the highest quality headphones to delve deeply into a recording. It’s also ideal for those who want to run DSD 2X on either a laptop or a desktop.

While the ADL A1 is certainly small enough to be portable and convenient, it’s also loaded with innovative features such as:

• USB Mini-B socket for USB A output from a PC/Mac for music and to charge the battery

• USB A socket for Android music devices via OTG cable

• Optical and line out that combines a 3.5mm phone jack for line out with a mini-jack for optical output

• Additional 3.5mm jack for headphone output

• USB 2.0 high-speed compliance with DSD (2.8M and 5.6M data both supported), with the ability to sample 8, 16, 32, 44.1, 48, 88.2, 96, 176.4 and 192 kHz sampling rates, indicated by LEDs on the front panel

• Switchable between USB-A, USB-mini B and optical inputs

The portable audio enthusiast will also appreciate the A1’s long battery life. While the battery in the A1 lasts approximately 7.5 hours after a full charge, it can be completely recharged in around 5 to 5.5 hours. That provides an exceptional amount of flexibility for playback while on the go. Down time and scheduling concerns will be minimized.

The ADL A1 is a truly versatile portable headphone amplifier and DAC. It’s flexible enough to be used in a countless number of applications, it’s small enough to fit just about anywhere and the sound quality is extraordinary. You’ll appreciate the signature Furutech sound in every component offered by ADL—smooth yet detailed and focused. The ADL A1 is clearly an example of innovative Japanese design at the cutting edge of technology. Are you ready for it?

technical-specifications
  • High-performance CIRRUS LOGIC CS4392K 24bit/192kHz DAC chip (accepts PCM data and DSD audio data )
  • Controller supports ASIO and Asynchronous mode
  • VIA VT1736 32bit/192kHz USB chip ,USB 2.0 High Speed compliant accepts DSD 2.8M or 5.6M signal & 44.1 /48 /88.2 /96 /176.4 /192 kHz sampling rates supported
  • TEXAS INSTRUMENTS TPA6130A2 Headphone Amplifier chip -TPA6130A2 high fidelity Stereo Headphone Amplifier with an SNR of 98 dB
  • OP AMP: TI- LME49726 High Current, Low Distortion, Rail-to-Rail Output Audio Operational Amplifier
  • Max Headphone Output Levels (at 1%THD 1KHz) : 70mW(12 ohm), 80mW(16 ohm), 65mW(32 ohm), 38mW(56 ohm), 9mW(300 ohm)
  • Charge Time: approximately 7 hours approx. (DC 5V, 0.5A USB bus power)
  • Charge Time: approximately 5~5.5 hours approx.(AC/DC 5V, 1.0-2.0A switching adaptor)
  • Music Playback Time: Up to 7.5 hours when fully charged
  • Size: 68(W) x 118(D) x 16.5(H)mm
  • Weight: 150g approx.


ADL A1 compatible devices
    Applicable Android Device as of 2015.
  • SONY --- SONY --- Xperia Z5 , Xperia Z4 , Xperia Z3 / Xperia Z3 Compact, Xperia Z , Xperia Z1 , Z1 Compact ( Xperia Z1f ) , Xperia A (Xperia ZR) , Xperia Tablet Z , Xperia V
  • SAMSUNG --- GALAXY Active neo , GALAXY Note Edge , GALAXY Note3 , GALAXY Note II , GALAXY S4 , GALAXY S3 , GALAXY S5 , GALAXY S3 mini , GALAXY S5 mini , Galaxy S6 , Galaxy S6 Edge (not supported - GALAXY S3 mini & S4 mini)
  • HTC (Android 4.2) --- J butterfly , J One.butterfly , New One , HTC One (M7)
  • HTC (Android 4.3) --- HTC One (M8) , HTC One X

    Note* HTC One (M7) running v4.3,v4.4.2 not supported
  • HTC (Android kitkat 4.4.X) --- HTC One M8
  • InFocus --- IN810
  • Compatible with Android version 6.0 marshmallow


ADL-A1-CAUTION
  1. Recommended PC requirement for DSD playback: CPU duo core 2.0G or above; RAM 2GB or above
    * Please check if the ADL A1 ASIO icon is on the desktop screen to confirm successful installation.
    * Please also adjust the ASIO Buffer Size to maximum to ensure smooth playback.
  2. A1 supports 16bit/176kHz, but does not support 24bit/176kHz
  3. A1 does not support digital signal from iDevices
  4. A1 does not support HTC Android 4.3
  5. A1 does not support SPDIF out from DSD playback
  6. At low A1 battery charge the Android signal may disconnect
  7. Adjust the Foobar output function Buffer length to 1030ms to ensure smooth playback.
  8. When the battery charge of the Android device runs low (10~20%), music playback may stop.
    Reason: Android devices are programed to cut digital signal output at low battery charge.

    When playback is initiated on the connected Android device or during playback, sound comes from the Android device and not the A1
    Reason: Battery charge on the A1 is too low to receive digital signal input from Android device.
    ※Notice regarding the A1’s front panel indicator:
    ・During playback of High Resolution files using a High Resolution Music App on an Android device the front panel indication will only show 44.1kHz.
    ・The front panel indicators are not compatible with all playback software for MAC and PC, so they may not indicate during playback depending on software . ADL recommends Foobar 2000.
Connectivity
  • USB Mini-B socket: For USB A output from a PC/MAC for music and to charge battery
  • USB A socket : For Android Device music output via OTG cable (USB A to micro-B type)
  • Optical and Analog out : Combined 3.5mm phone jack for Analog out and mini optical jack for optical output (24bit/192kHz Max.)
  • A second 3.5mm phone jack for headphone output (12~300 ohm range)
    (When using both 3.5mm headphone Analog out jacks simultaneously it is advisable to use near impedance headphones)
  • Optical Input: For digital signal from external device (24bit/192kHz Max.)
  • Line input : 3.5mm(4-pin) phone jack for analog input (switched/When headphones are plugged in there is no Android signal output)
  • Switchable between USB-A input (Android /Line in), Optical Input and USB-miniB (PC/MAC

features
  • Supports DSD64 (2.8MHz) and DSD128 (5.6MHz)
  • Digital inputs for Android, PCs, Optical (Optical out supports Android digital signal)
  • DD Converter (3.5mm TOSLINK optical output)
  • High-performance 24-bit/192kHz DAC chip
  • supports ASIO and Asynchronous mode
  • Low Jitter
  • Fits in the palm of your hand
  • Enjoy music anywhere, on your desk or on the go
  • Doesn’t draw power from connected Android Device battery
    Front Controls and Indicators:
    ① Headphone and Analog out-1 (4-pin) : 3.5mm phone jack for headphones output
    ② 3.5mm Optical input jack: for SPDIF signal 24bit/192kHz Max.
    ③ Line input (4-pin): 3.5mm phone jack (switched) for analog source input (When 3.5mm Line In jack is used Android digital signal input is deactivated)
    ④Volume: Rotary-type variable resistor with power on/off
    ⑤ Charging Indicators: Three colors: RED, GREEN and ORANGE LED RED indicates charging/GREEN indicates full charge/ORANGE indicates low charge
    ⑥ Line input and Headphone out-1 (4-pin): ADL A1 Headphone Out supports 4pin 3.5mm headphones and earphones with remote and mic when the source is connected to the Line In jack with a 4pin 3.5mm stereo cable adl_x1
    Rear Panel:
    ⑦ USB Mini-B socket: For connection to Windows and MAC music sources via USB Cable and to charge battery (Internal DC3.7V 2600mAh Li-ion Type Rechargeable Battery)
    ⑧ USB A socket : For connection to Android Device music sources via a USB On-The-Go Cable (USB OTG cable is USB-A to micro-B type)
    ⑨ Headphone / Analog out-2 (3-pin) or 3.5mm Optical output: Combined 3.5mm phone jack or mini optical output jack for headphone or connection to external amplifiers via mini Optical cable (Optical out supports Android digital signal 16bit/48kHz Max.)
    x1-buttom

    Top Panel LED Indicator:

    • DSD Indicator: sample rates will indicate according to the computers sample rate signal 2.8M or 5.6M
    • USB DAC (digital source - Mac or Windows USB connection): sample rates will indicate according to the computers sample rate settings ( 44.1/ 48/ 88.2/ 96/ 176.4/ 192kHz )
    • Android Device digital connection: sample rates will indicate at 44.1kHz or 48kHz when connected with USB OTG cable
    • Android Device analog connection: sample rates will indicate at 44.1kHz (When 3.5mm Line In jack is used Android digital signal input is deactivated)
    • 3.5mm Optical input: If the playback sample rate cannot not be set at source, the 44.1kHz LED will indicate (Max. 24bit/192kHz sampling rates supported)
    • Playback of computer based files using iTunes on either Mac or PC: sampling rates will indicate according to the computers sample rate settings (44.1/ 48/ 88.2/ 96/ 176.4/ 192kHz)

    ※Playback of computer based files using iTunes with Windows XP: sampling rates cannot be set, in this case the A1 will indicate at 44.1kHz

    Bottom Panel:
    • Input Selection: Switchable between Android (USB-A input) /Line in, Optical Input and Windows/MAC (USB-miniB input)
    ※Switch must be reset after each selection, simply switch the ADL A1 on and off


Video


ADL A1 Q & A

Device/Computer does not recognize the A1

A1-1. Not connected correctly
(Refer to the A1 manual and check whether the A1 is connected correctly to portable player/Android device via the supplied 3.5mm the analog cable or the supplied OTG cable (USB-A to micro USB) or whether the A1 is connected correctly to the computer via USB Mini B cable)
A1-2. There is a problem with the cable.
(There may be a problem with the connected OTG cable, 3.5mm analog cable or USB cable. Please try with another cable)
A1-3. Android device is not recognized by the A1
(Refer to the A1 manual (Connectivity P.23) and reconnect the A1. If previously you had been using the A1 as a USB DAC, please try removing the cables and switching the A1 off and back on again. There is a possibility that the Android device is not compatible with the A1. Please refer to page 19 in the A1 user manual for the list of compatible Android devices.
A1-4. Computer does not recognize the A1
(In the case of Windows installation of a driver is necessary. The driver can be downloaded from the A1 webpage. If difficulties are experienced with the driver installed, please uninstall the driver and reinstall one more time) (In the case of MAC try disconnecting the A1 from the MAC and switching the A1 off and on again).
A1-5. Battery needs recharging
(Check whether the light next to the volume knob is on – Green: battery is charged – Red: battery needs charging – No light: battery needs charging)

Q2.No sound

A2-1. No sound from computer source via USB cable
(Set the sound output on the computer sound application to maximum. In the case of Windows 8 check to see if A1 is shown in the Sound application and click on Properties and adjust the volume to the maximum)
A2-2. Low volume level on digital player
(Check the volume level on your digital player/Android: set to maximum and adjust volume on the A1)
A2-3. Another device is set as the default playback device
(Open the computer’s Sound and Audio Device properties tab and select USB Audio Device ADL A1 as default playback device)
A2-4. Problem with the connections
(Check all cables are correctly inserted into sockets)

Q3. There is no sound from computer speakers or computer headphone output

A3-1. USB audio device is set as default
(There will be no sound from computer speakers or computer headphone output while a USB audio device is set as default)

Q4. No sound from headphones

A4-1. A1 volume level is too low
(Adjust the volume with the A1 volume knob on the top panel)
A4-2. Digital player / Android volume level is too low
(Set volume to maximum on the digital player / Android and adjust the volume on the A1)
A4-3. Headphones or earphones have a MIC or Volume control on their cable
(With such headphones the 4 ringed 3.5mm connector cable supplied with the A1 must be used. Connect player to the analog in socket on the top panel of A1 with the supplied cable)

Q5. Unbalanced sound balance during playback

A5-1. Check balance setting on in computer audio application
(Open the volume control tab on the computer and set the balance to neutral – centered)

Q6. Sound cuts out

A6-1. During playback there is a possibility of an overload of the computer / Android / digital player’s CPU
(During playback of music make sure all other computer applications are closed and limit use of other applications on MAC / PC / Android device / digital players)

Q7. Experiencing noise

A7-1. Connections are not secure
(Check all terminals for correct secure connection)
A7-2. Trying adjusting the volume control of digital players or idevices
(Lower the A1 volume and adjust the volume on digital players or idevices to the maximum and then gradually increase the volume on the A1)

Q8. Is it possible to connect the A1 directly to an external stereo system?

A8-1. A 3.5mm mini TOSLINK (Optical) cable or 3.5mm stereo connector to stereo RCA cable is required (Sold separately)
(For digital output: connect 3.5mm mini TOSLINK (Optical) cable to the A1’s optical output socket)
(For analog output: connect 3.5mm stereo connector to stereo RCA cable to the A1’s analog output socket)

Q9. Is a driver required?

A9-1. A driver is required to be installed on Windows computers – not required on MAC
(Download driver from the A1 product page on www.adl-av.com)

Q10. Difficulties experienced trying to recharge the A1’s internal battery

A10-1. Unable to recharge; no charging light can be seen
(Try another USB cable)

Q11. Is it possible to use the A1 as a DDC between a MAC/PC and another DAC

A11-1. Connect the A1 to the computer via USB mini B cable and by 3.5mm mini TOSLINK (Optical) cable to the external DAC

Q12. Is it possible to use the A1 as a DDC between an Android device and another DAC

A12-1. It is possible to use the A1 as a DDC in this way, however the output will be 16bit/48kHz max and volume will not be able to be controlled on the A1.

Q13. Is it possible to use the A1 for as a DDC for computer based DSD files?

The A1 can only be used a DSD DAC for computer based DSD files.

Q14. Does the A1 up-sample or down-sample all Android based files to 16bit/48kHz?

No, the A1 is compatible with files up to 16bit/48kHz.

Q15. Are there certain file formats that the A1 is not compatible with?

A15-1. If the file format is playable on a computer media player then it should be compatible with the A1  

Q16. Is it possible to for the A1 to receive digital signal from iDevices (iPhone/iPod)

A16-1. No, not possible. iDevices must be connected via analog input.

Q17. Is it possible to charge the A1 (using via USB miniB connection) while listening to Android based files.

A17-1. Yes.

Q18. Is it possible to take a phone call when using a headphone cable with a MIC?

Yes, possible if the phone is connected to theA1 via the analog input.
(With such headphones the 4 ringed 3.5mm connector cable supplied with the A1 must be used.)

Q19. Is it possible to take a phone call on an iphone when connected to the A1 via digital cable?

A19-1. No, not possible. The iphone must be connected to the A1 via the analog input to take phone calls.
(With such headphones the 4 ringed 3.5mm connector cable supplied with the A1 must be used)

Q20. During playback with an Android device connected to the A1 via digital cable the Android volume can be adjusted. Does this mean it is analog signal?

A20-1. No, for your convenience the Android volume control will be enabled during digital playback. If the indicator is flashing on the top panel then it is digital signal.

Q21. During playback with an Android device connected to the A1 how should I adjust the volume?

A21-1. We suggest lowering the volume on the A1 and the setting the volume on digital players or idevices to the maximum and then gradually increasing the volume on the A1.

Q22. Connected the A1 to a PC/MAC after listening with the A1 using an Android device and the PC/MAC does not recognize the A1.

A22-1. Check that the selection switch on the rear panel is set to USB DAC for use with PC/MAC.

Q23. How do you get the ASIO driver to be recognized by the computer?

A23-1. That will be a computer setting. First download the ASIO driver and install the driver and then adjust the settings on the media player software.

Q24. I am using a MAC, shouldn’t it be ASIO compatible?

A24-1. MAC OS X supports Core Audio sound engine, so ASIO is not necessary.

Q25. Are any special setting required for Asynchronous signal transfer?

A25-1. A1 signal transfer via USB is Asynchronous. No special settings are required.

Q26. In it possible to use a digital camera cable (USB A – micro B) to connect the A1 to an Android device?

A26-1. An OTG compatible cable is required.

Q27. After connecting a headphone cable with a mic/ remote control the sound comes from the Android

A27-1. Compatibility of some mic/remote headphone/earphones will depend on the type of Smartphone / Android device. First check that the mic/remote headphone/earphones is compatible with the Smartphone / Android device.
(With such headphones the 4 ringed 3.5mm connector cable supplied with the A1 should be used).

Q28. Experiencing intermittent noise

A28-1. After long periods of use Android devices can produce intermittent digital noise. Try switching the Android off and on again a few times.

Q29. Is it possible to use the Integer Mode with Audirvana Plus to bypass Core Audio on MAC?

A29-1. Yes, it is possible. Integer mode can be used with MacOS X、10.6 Snow Leopard. However with 10.7 Lion and later versions only Direct Mode can be used. Adjust the settings in Audio System under preferences.

Q30. Could not play DSD files with iTunes.

iTunes does not support DSD files. Use a DSD compatible media player.

Q31. Cannot playback DSD files on Windows

Steps:

  1. 1.Check the installation of foobar2000
  2. 2.Download “ASIO Support” (foo_out_asio) from http://www.foobar2000.org/components/view/foo_out_asio
  3. 3.[File]→[Preferences]→[Playback]→[Output] and on the 「Device」 dropdown menu select 「ASIO:foo_dsd_asio」
  4. 4.[Output]→[ASIO]and on the 「ASIO drivers」 dropdown menu double click 「foo_dsd_asio」 and select the following:
    ASIO Driver:ADL A1 ASIO Driver
    DSD Playback Method:DoP Marker
    Fs:DSD64
  5. 5.[Tools]→[SACD] and select ASIO Driver Mode:DSD

Q32. When the battery charge of the Android device runs low (10~20%), music playback stops.

A32-1. Android devices are programed to cut digital signal output at low battery charge. Recharge Android device.

Q33. When playback is initiated on the connected Android device or during playback, sound comes from the Android device and not the A1

A33-1. Battery charge on the A1 is too low to receive digital signal input from Android device. Charge the A1.

Q34. The A1’s sample rate LEDs do not indicate when playing DSD files using and Android app.

A34-1. The A1’s sample rate LEDs do not indicate when playing high resolution files on an Android device

Q35. Installed Windows Driver, but getting error message「Unrecoverable playback error: Could not query sample rate」 when using foobar2000 and cannot playback files

A35-1.

  • make sure the ASIO driver’s Output Device Name has been ticked “✔”.
  • Open the foobar2000’s Preference⇒Output⇒ASIO⇒「Use 64bit ASIO drivers」 and make sure there is no check “✔”.
  • check to see if the A1 driver’s unpacked folder has been deleted- it should not be.
  • Q36. The connected USB Device Name is 「SPDIF interface」 in the ADL ASIO Driver

    A36-1. This is correct

    Q37. When playing back DSD files using JRMC software and A1 is selected as the ASIO Device, the sound is monaural. The A1’s indicator shows DSD 2.8M but JRMC playback is monaural.

    A37-1. If there is software incompatibility, the A1 will not be able to playback DSD files

    Q38. Is the A1 compatible with Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge?

    A38-1. The A1 is compatible with these smartphone models.

    Q39. Is the A1 compatible with the latest versions of MAC OS

    A39-1. Yes, compatible with OS X Yosemite and OS 10.10 El Capitan The indicator may not be compatible with all playback software. ADL recommends Audirvana for MAC

    Q40. Is the A1 compatible with the Windows 10

    A40-1. Yes, compatible with Windows 10 The indicator may not be compatible with all playback software. ADL recommends Foobar 2000 for Windows.