Tech, Autos, & Gear in Layman's Terms Since 2006

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April 22, 2012 • Reviews

DEEP BASS Active Control Headphone Amplifier for iOS Devices Review


Last week we took a look at the latest iOS app from SRS labs. The app takes the audio coming from the iPhone, iPod touch or iPad and enhances it in remarkable ways. The main downside with the app is that in order to get the audio enhancement you need to use the app for your music. Try to listen to music from any other source, for example Spotify, and you are out of luck. There is, however, a way to enhance ANY audio coming from your iOS device and it comes in the form of a new audio adapter from DRACOdesign. The Deep Bass plugs into your 30-pin dock connector and does amazing things to your music. It adds volume, bass and a depth that really impresses. And there’s more. Here’s a quick look.

From DRACOdesign:

This advanced engineering design reproduces high resolution sound from your regular headphone when using iPod, iPhone or iPad. The power supply and battery-less design make this amplifier ultra-compact and the aluminum bezel control panel gives you quick access to music selection and volume control

Deep Bass is designed to truly present the original sounds produced by professional musicians, artists, and producers in the way they want to be presented. Why spending hundreds of dollars for a professional headphone when you can get the same effect using your standard headphone powered by this compact headphone amplifier?

When we were introduced to the Deep Bass it was described as “a headphone amplifier that delivers strong, deep bass sound with superior audio quality for iPhone 4/4S users”. It certainly lives up to that description as it significantly improved the audio coming from my iPhone. The device plugs into the 30-pin dock connector and, from there, plugs into the headphones you want to use

All that is good and the audio WAS significantly improved. There was, however, one issue that arose. We’ll get to that but first let’s address the other great thing about this adapter- the control it give you over your music. Use Apple’s included headphone (so long as you don’t really care about the audio quality) or pretty much any pair of headphones in the market and you will, at best, get limited control over your music. Not so with the DEEP BASS.

It has an “active control pad” that allows you to adjust the volume, skip forward/back and play/pause your music. And all this is done with a click of the button.

And because it has a clip on the back you can leave your phone in your pocket, attach the control pad in a convenient place and run your headphones up to your ears. Yes, thanks to the great degree of control and the extra cord offered by the DEEP BASS any garment can become an “audio-ready” piece of clothing, no special phone or audio pockets required!

Features:

Apple authorized for Made for iPod, iPhone and iPad

Increase sound pressure level by 20mW+20mW and boost bass

Decrease noise level and expand sound range and precision

Self powered without requirement of battery

External control panel for music selection and volume control

I did mention there was a downside so perhaps there is no better time to mention it than the present. While the DEEP BASS did a great job of enhancing the audio AND making it convenient to control my music it also introduced something I have not heard for some time- GSM buzz. Yes, when the device was within close proximity to my iPhone and the handset’s data connection was live there was a constant, and annoying buzz. It really was a bummer to an otherwise fantastic device. And, in fact, I can still recommend it but with the caveat that it will be perfect with an iPod Classic or iPod touch and but if used with an iPhone or iPad you will likely want music OR connectivity but, in some cases, not both. Details and ordering information can be found here.

MSRP: $69.99

What I Like: Enhances sound significantly; Control pad works great; Extra cabling means you don’t need special tech clothing

What Needs Improvement: GSM buzz when data is active

 

 

 

 

 

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