Best Portable DACs of 2023 | Moon Audio

CODA Headphone Amplifier DAC

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A “Coda” is defined as a concluding musical passage that brings a sense of completeness to the … More details

Best Portable DACs of 2023 | Moon Audio

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The Finest Portable USB-DAC Available

A “Coda” is defined as a concluding musical passage that brings a sense of completeness to the music. The Clarus CODA is an ultra-high performance USB-DAC amplifier designed to be used with smartphone, tablet or computer. A DAC converts a digital audio signal to analog audio and the amplifier sends the signal to your headphones or your home audio system. The problem with computers and mobile devices is they don’t typically have very good DACs and the amplifiers are usually too weak to drive high performance headphones leaving audio dull and dampened. The CODA by-passes the internal DAC/AMP and delivers audiophile quality sound that has more detail, greater dynamics with ultra-low distortion and provides a bigger sound stage that essentially brings a sense of completeness to your music.

Introducing the CLARUS Portable USB-DAC

The Clarus CODA is an Ultra-High Performance USB-DAC / Headphone Amplifier that includes an MQA renderer. The CODA features the latest in USA-DAC technology that provides ultra-low distortion, more detail, greater dynamics and bigger sound stage. Designed to be used with a smartphone, tablet or computer, the CODA is compatible with Android, iOS, MacOS and Windows 7-10. The CODA will deliver higher than CD quality while listening to your favorite download or streaming Amazon Music, Spotify or Apple Music. When paired with an MQA Core Decoder (streaming with Tidal, Nugs and Xiami or when used with media players, Audirvana and Roon): the CODA’s renderer delivers the full MQA experience, letting you hear what the artist and the music producer heard during the original performance. The CODA features a mini stereo input and an USB-A output with a two-button volume control and a choice of three roll-off filters.

Clarus CODA

CODA’s Technology

The heart of the Clarus CODA is a new legendary ESS Professional Series SABRE® DAC audio converter with Hyperstream® II modulation. The new SABRE® DAC provides previously unheard sound stage and clarity. QUAD DACTM Technology delivers superb 120dB SNR and -112dB THD+N for the ultimate in sound quality with a stable sound field. The low-power USB controller supports USB 1.1 and 2.0 and can natively handle 32-bit 384 kHz PCM and up to DoP128. The CODA has tight power supply regulation using a multi-stage, low noise, high ripple rejection CMOS based regulator, while a high-precision audio grade clock reduces jitter. The CODA’s class G headphone amplifier provides class AB performance with ultra-low power consumption optimized for mobile use. The 2.0Vrms output voltage will provide plenty of power for the most demanding headphones and class G ensures it won’t drain your battery.

Mqa Logo

CODA is an MQA renderer. MQA stands for Master Quality Authenticated. MQA is an award-winning British technology that delivers the sound of the original recording. Traditional encoding discards music information to reduce size. MQA is fully authenticated in the studio and then folds the music file small enough to stream or download. MQA calls this folding “Music Origami”. When the CODA is paired with a MQA Code Decoder (available streaming with Tidal, Nugs and Xiami or when used with media players like Audirvana and Roon); the CODA’s renderer will automatically detect the MQA stream and engage the rendering process to complete the final unfold unlocking the full studio experience. Visit for more informaton.

CODA’s Features

Clarus CODA Labeled

Volume Control
The CODA supports HID (Human Interface Design) volume control via the side panel buttons; (+) for volume up and (-) for volume down. CODA’s volume control is capable of 64 steps depending on the volume rate setting of the device it is controlling. There is zero switching noise during volume control
LED Indicator Lights
CODA’s LED Indicator lights up in different colors to indicate the audio sample rate. The sample rate is how many times per second a piece of music is sampled during the recording. Higher sample rates mean higher quality in the recording.
Three User Selectable Digital FiltersThree User Selectable Digital Filters
The CODA’s side panel buttons also provide a method of choosing from one of three digital roll-off filters. You can hear these features by ear; just select whichever one sounds best to you.

CODA Firmware Updates

The CODA’s software is upgradeable. As technology changes Clarus will provide improvements for your CODA via firmware updates.

Press and Reviews

Clarus CODA USB DAC Review Moon Review
Moon Audio

by Ricky Kovacs
Jun. 2021

Best Portable USB DACs 2021: Comparison & Review
Portable DAC Comparison

by Ricky Kovacs
Sep. 2021

Soundstage CODA Review

by Mark Phillips
Feb. 2021.

Enjoy the Music CODA Review
Enjoy the Music

by Rick Becker
Feb. 2021

Home Theater Hifi CODA Review
Home Theater Hifi

by Mel Martin
Feb. 2021

Input USB-A
Output 3.5mm (1/8”) Stereo plug
Operating Systems Windows 7-10, Apple MacOS, Android, iOS
Amplifier Class G Headphone Amplifier
Audio Formats DoP, PCM, MQA
MQA Renderer
Max Resolution 32-bit (supports 16-bit & 24-bit)
Max Sample Rate 384 kHz (supports 44.1, 48, 88.2, 96, 176.4, 192, 352.8. Dop64 & Dop128)
SNR 120 dB
THD+N -112 dB
Max Output Voltage 2.0 Vrms
Output Impedance < 1 ohm
LED Indicators Blue: ≥ 48 kHz (Standard Definition) Green: > 48kHz (High Definition) Magenta: MQA
3 Filters Linear Phase, Fast-Roll-Off Minimum Phase, Slow Roll-Off Hybrid, Fast Roll-Off
Volume Control Supports HID volume Control of Source
Adapter Cable Female USB-A to Male USB-C 15cm
Zipper Case 4.3” (11mm) X 2.5” (6.5mm) X 1.5” (3.5mm) Inner pocket to hold CODA
Weight 24 grams (.8oz) with cap
Dimension 2.5” (69mm) x .9” (21mm) X .4” (11mm) with cap
Chassis Aluminum