Sony MDR-1ADAC: Premium Headphones with Built-in DAC

Amazing headphones from Sony -- the MDR-1ADAC
Amazing headphones from Sony — the MDR-1ADAC

We’re Going to Buy This!~

Have you guys ever noticed that the quality of the music you listen to changes often depending on what device you’re using as your music player? This is because each device, be it mobile or stationary, has different sound components which affect the conversion of the music from digital to analogue (which is then pumped out to your headphones as sound). This is the reason why a lot of music lovers and enthusiasts buy and carry with them portable amplifiers and dedicated USB DAC (digital analogue converters) to improve the quality of the music that they’re listening to. The problem is that you have to carry so many gadgets with you just to be able to listen to good sound. This is where the new Sony MDR-1ADAC comes in.

We believe that the Sony MDRA-1ADAC represents the future of mobile audio. The premise is simple: build in the USB DAC into high quality headphones so that the headphones can bypass the on-board DAC of your mobile device and use the higher quality dedicated one built on the cans. The result is that you get to enjoy the music of your favorite artists closer to the spirit and intent that they made the music without having to carry a portable amplifier, dedicated USB DAC, and music player.

Not your usual headphones. Look at those I/O ports
Not your usual headphones. Look at those I/O ports

How does this work with the Sony MDR-1ADAC? Instead of using the standard audio cable, you use one of the cables bundled in the box that lets you connect to the micro USB or Lightning Cable port of your device. This is where the D/A converter kicks in together with the Sony S-Master HX Digital Amplifier.

There are only two notable downsides. First if you’re going to use the on-board DAC, you’ll only have 7.5-8 hours battery life. After you run out of juice though you can just plug it in normally via the standard audio cable and it will still function as headphones but without the DAC and amplifier capabilities. Second is the price. The Sony MDR-1ADAC will set you back Php17,599.

If you want to learn more about the Sony MDR-1ADAC, check out the official Sony promotional video below from Sony Europe.

Carlo Ople

Carlo is the Editor-in-Chief and Founder of During daytime he’s the Managing Director and Partner of a Digital Marketing Agency in the Philippines and by nighttime he’s living out his passion as a gadget enthusiast and story teller through Unbox.

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