Listening to music or trying to enjoy high-quality sound from your computer setup can get difficult, tricky, and expensive, if you’re not careful. It doesn’t help that audiophile-grade products for computers often cost an arm and a leg. Fortunately, there are companies out there that offer quality audiophile products for budget-friendly prices. High Resolution Technologies (HRT) is one of these companies, and its release of the HRT MicroStreamer is its reasonably priced contribution to the portable digital-to-analog (DAC)/headphone amplifier market meant to support computer setups.
The HRT MicroStreamer is a small USB DAC/headphone amp that offers surprising sound boost in combination with headphones, whether audiophile-grade or not. At 2.5 inches x 1.2 inches x 0.4 inches, it has a slim and tiny form factor that gives it ultimate portability. Being that small also means it doesn’t need a power supply or batteries, just the power running through USB ports. The MicroStreamer can function not only as an external sound card for PCs, tablets, and smartphones alike, but also as a headphone amplifier with quality audio output. A major factor that plays into this quality is the fact that the parts are designed and assembled in the United States. Sure, the case is says made in China but that only goes for the case itself. Even the finishing of the metalwork is done on American soil to ensure quality.
The HRT MicroStreamer is equipped with a generous amount of audio components for its size. It features two 3.5mm output jacks, a fixed-level jack for computer-to-home-stereo connection, and a variable output headphone jack. Setting up the device is as easy as plug and play. Just select it as a default device on your computer before you play your audio. Thanks to the quality component build, the sound that MicroStreamer produces is rich in detail and clear. Another noticeable improvement over other portable DAC/headphone amps with a lower quality build is the lack of any hiss or noise interference in the audio caused by the MicroStreamer.
Overall, the High Resolution Technologies MicroStreamer is a worthy investment for people looking for a budget audiophile USB DAC/headphone amp. It retails for $189.95.