USB DAC on Android - Music player matters?

Hi everyone. I recently got my hands (finally!) on a Hidizs Sonata HD DAC for my on-the-go use, since I was really tired of the integrated DAC on my phone (Moto X4) and my laptop.
I’ve been looking around the internet a lot about those kind of devices but there’s a question that the internet hasn’t yet answered: does it really matter what kind of player are you using to listen to music with an external DAC on Android? I tried Play Music and it does the job. Also tried the HiBy player as per manufacturer suggestion and it asks permission to use the device (which no other app does). What does that mean? Is it bypassing the Android driver and directly playing through the device without any alteration to the sound? What player should I use to put the device to best use? Thanks!

True-fi is my favourite music player it will tweak Equalizer according to your headset and outputs a flat frequency response provided it has a profile for your headphones

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Even on my desk setup I couldn’t tell you if I’m listening to FLACs, spotify or google music. Unless you can actually hear a difference (which I doubt), use the one that is most comfy for you.

@Sagar_Gupta That looks an awesome player, thanks!

@noenken To be honest I could tell the difference between 16bit 44.1kHz and 24bit 96kHz, the codec doesen’t really matter (192kHz is overkill and I can’t really tell the difference anymore). What I perceive is more space (and separation) and more detail. I did some back to back tests to make sure I wasn’t fooling myself. I’m not an audiophile but I spend at least 6hrs a day listening to music, for better or worse.

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Of course you are. You like good sound, that’s all that means. :smiley:

I’m in my late 30s and my ears have been through some unhealthy stuff. For me it is about what is the most convenient to use. But if you can hear differences then sure, let your ears decide.

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I was thinking about that definition more like “obsessed with the perfect sound which is what I own and everyone else is wrong” haha
My quest is still on!

I haven’t found that music players matter. I usually just use vlc on Android because I dislike everything else. I was using the play music app but I found it would download songs I didn’t want without asking me. Source matters most of course. I wish Android did better than 48khz, I too prefer 96. I use viper4android from the arise pack to make up for the lack of quality in Android, to a certain extent that is.

Yeah, the integrated DACs are pretty awful both noise and resolution wise unless you go to LG that uses a custom one. On a device without a custom DAC inside the player doesen’t really matter but if you’re using an external one (an I really recommend the one I’m using if you’re into music a lot) an app can override the Android driver and used the device in a so called bit-perfect mode avoiding all the processing Android adds wether you like it or not.