UI & Usage
Computer connection (PC/MAC)
Like most modern USB-DAC, the NuPrime Hi-mDAC doesn’t need any drivers on most computers. If you’re using a MAC, this is no surprise as Apple has made it a mission to ensure that every device you connect will work directly…ish.
On a Windows computer, it may depend. While my Desktop computer automatically recognized the Hi-mDAC, running Windows 10, my laptop forced me to install NuPrime’s latest driver. Once, it’s done, the DAC worked flawlessly.
Smartphone connection (iPhone/Android)
NuPrime advertised the DAC as an “ultra-compact and low power consumption” device. As some of you might have experienced, connecting a USB-Powered DAC can be trickier than connecting a battery-powered DAC.
Obviously, a smartphone cannot feed as much current as a computer through its USB port. On iOS, an annoying message appears, saying “This accessory requires too much power”. A polite way to say “What-the-f*ck are you trying to do with my port ?”.
On Android, there is no message displayed. The device simply doesn’t power on, whatever you try.
Thankfully, as promised, the Hi-mDAC didn’t draw too much power, and with the almighty Camera Connection Kit, and a USB-C OTG port, I was able to pair the DAC on almost any smartphone I own.
I say almost because some Android Players refused to recognize the DAC, but I’m pretty sure that’s more an issue with the phone than with the DAC.
Last but not least, I tried to figure out if the Hi-mDAC could work with a DAP. “Why”, do you say? Simply because I can, but not only. Maybe you still have an old player which doesn’t sound as good as you remember, and connecting a USB-DAC can be a quick/cheap option to improve it.
I tried a few options, but alas, the players that worked with Nuprime’s DAC were all middle to high-end ones. Sure, the FiiO M5 could be paired, but you lose the ability to answer phone calls, which is why most people will get the M5 instead of the FiiO M6.
Finally, you can use the Hi-mDAC as a bridge between your phone and a higher-tier DAC, thanks to the mini-Toslink output. All you need is a mini-Toslink cable plugged in, and the device will automatically out-stream digital data to your DAC.
Even though the DAC supports 32bit/384kHz streams, it cannot go higher than 24bit/192kHz when connected to its Toslink port, pure hardware limitation.
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