Audirect Whistle dac/amp review - A. 'ReDDoG. Jones'

Audirect `Whistle` DAC/Amp review
A. 'Reddog' Jones

I recently had the pleasure to review AudioDirect’s Whistle, an amazing dac/ amp. 

The Whistle, is small, about one to one and a half inches or the size of my right pinky. 
The Whistle is made of aluminum and comes in a nice red color. One end of the Whistle has a micro USB port and the other end has a 3.5 mm port for ones headphones and car speakers. 
I really like the Whistle because it is so small and takes up little space in my headphone bag. 

This plucky little dac/ amp is fantastic, it allows my tablets and cell phone to play high definition PCM and DSD music files. There are times when I like to pace back and forth like a mad man and it is very nice to hook up the diminutive whistle to my tablet or cell phone and listen to great music. 

I do love My Questyle QP1R Dap and Chord Hugo 2 DAC/ Amp but sometimes its a drag to hook them up. I must turn the DAP on then hook it up to the Hugo 2 and then tuck them away into my bag. Sometimes its just too much hassle for a quick jaunt down the street. But with the whistle I simply hook it up to my iPad or cell phone, and get lost into the moment of musical bliss all the faster.

And the the best thing about AudioDirects - Whistle, is how bloody nice it sounds, especially compared to the DAC chip that comes with the iPad or cell phone. 
The sound is detailed and natural with good resolution. The bass is pretty balanced and does not muddy up the mids. And the mids are detailed, smooth, with a touch of edge. The treble is pretty good, with just a touch of sibilance, and only when I was listening to classical music. The sound stage is average. I was pleasantly surprised at how much better my iPad sounded, with just the Whistle. Furthermore the Whistle has a nice amp that compliments the DAP being used. I did not need to turn up the volume on my tablet/ cell phone as high to make my various IEM’s and cans sing.

I used the following IEM’s with the Whistle, the Audeze iSine 20 and Audeze LCD i4. Both of these IEM’s sounded nice driven by the Whistle, although I felt the iSine 20 sounded better. 
One must use a good amp to get the best performance out of the i4’s. 

I used following headphones with the Whistle: 1) Meze 99 Classic, 2) Oppo pm-3, 3) MrSpeakers Aeon closed back, 4) Audio-technica ath-m50x . 
And out of all these headphones, driven by the Whistle, I felt the Meze 99 Classics sounded the best. However MrSpeakers Aeon closed back came in real close. I feel the Aeon’s performance improves with a stronger amp. 
But all of these headphones sounded quite nice driven by the Whistle.

AudioDirect has created a great piece of audio equipment. The plucky Whistle is a very nice sounding DAC /AMP, that allows ones Ipad and Cell phone to play high resolution files. The small, unitarian design, makes it easy for anyone to turn their cell phone/ tables into a high resolution player. I loved how portable the Whistle is and how I could get caught up into the moment, easier, at times with the sweet Whistle, in my bag.

The Audio D

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