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Fostex PC-100USB Volume Controller with USB DAC

B&H # FOPC100USB Mfr # PC-100USB
No Longer Available
Product Highlights
  • Metal Construction with Rubber Feet
  • 16-bit D/A Converter
  • High-Quality Volume Knob
  • Stereo RCA and USB Connectors
  • 3.5mm Mini Headphone Jack

The PC-100USB Volume Controller with USB DAC from Fostex allows you to convert a digital USB audio signal to an analog feed and control the volume when used with a set of powered monitor speakers, such as the PM0.4n, PM0.5n, and others. The controller has a metal construction with rubber feet for secure placement on your desk.

Simply connect the USB connector to your computer and the internal 16-bit digital-to-analog converter will send the computer audio to the controller's stereo RCA output so you can connect your speakers for high-quality reproduction. The high-quality volume knob provides smooth operation and allows you to control the volume of your left and right monitors simultaneously. A 3.5mm mini output is provided for headphone monitoring.

Durable metal construction with rubber feet for secure placement on your desk
Converts computer audio received over USB to analog audio that's sent out via RCA connectors for use with a variety of active monitor speakers
The internal 16-bit digital-to-analog converter provides high-quality transfer of digital computer audio to analog stereo audio
The high-quality volume knob provides smooth operation and allows you to control the volume of your left and right monitors simultaneously
A 3.5mm mini output is provided for headphone monitoring
Bit Rate 16-bit
Sampling Frequencies 32/44.1/48kHz
Output Level 6dBV
Load Impedance RCA: 10 kOhms
3.5mm: 32 Ohms or More
Headphone Output 5mW + 5mW (32 Ohm Load, < 0.5% THD)
Connectors 1 x USB Type B Port
1 x Stereo RCA Output (2 Jacks, L/R)
1 x 3.5mm Headphone Jack
Power 5V, 500mA USB Bus Power
Power Consumption 2.5W Max
Dimensions (WxHxD) 2.6 x 1.7 x 2.8" (66 x 44 x 70mm)
Weight 6.7 oz (190g)
Fostex PC-100USB Volume Controller with USB DAC
  • USB 2.0 Type A Male to Type B Male Cable
  • 2 x RCA Cables
  • 1-Year Limited Warranty
  • REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

    by PowerReviews
    FostexPC-100USB Volume Controller with USB DAC
     
    4.6

    (based on 10 reviews)

    Ratings Distribution

    • 5 Stars

       

      (8)

    • 4 Stars

       

      (1)

    • 3 Stars

       

      (0)

    • 2 Stars

       

      (1)

    • 1 Stars

       

      (0)

    88%

    of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

    Pros

    • Compact (8)
    • Durable (7)
    • Easy to use (7)
    • Good audio (7)
    • Lightweight (6)

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Home studio (6)
      • Amateur recording (3)
        • Reviewer Profile:
        • Experienced (6)

      Most Liked Positive Review

       

      Sounds great with a T-amp

      I wanted an analog volume control knob because I dislike the "dek dek dek" sound my iMac makes when using the keyboard to change listening volumes. The knob turns smoothly without...Read complete review

      I wanted an analog volume control knob because I dislike the "dek dek dek" sound my iMac makes when using the keyboard to change listening volumes. The knob turns smoothly without detents so you can get the exact magnitude of volume you want out of your speakers. Very nice!

      I have the RCAs hooked to a Lepai LP-2020A+ tripath amp for completely clean and authoratative sound. I've turned the output of my amp up to max and there is absolutely no discernale hum or other extraneous noise which exit the speakers (6.5" bookshelf Dayton Audio B652's). There is indeed a noticable gain in audio quality and clarity. I enjoy my music more now and can hear things that I haven't previously noted.

      Pros: knob can be put anywhere on your desktop for improved ergonomics, build quality is nice- feels like a real quality piece of hardware, easily compatible to Apple or Windows OS, comes with cables (!), pleasant green light indicating operation is not obnoxiously bright

      Cons: rubber feet sometimes don't grip to tabletop surface and can be knocked around a bit, wish it could DAC up to 24-bit but for my purposes it sounds nice enough as it is

      VS

      Most Liked Negative Review

       

      Great design, lacking sound quality

      I used a USB DAC to replace and improve my lapto's sound card. using the laptop's internal sound with nice monitors (M-audio and Rokit 5) is not too bad, but it has some...Read complete review

      I used a USB DAC to replace and improve my lapto's sound card. using the laptop's internal sound with nice monitors (M-audio and Rokit 5) is not too bad, but it has some hum and computer noises. Also , I relly liked teh idea of volumn control, in a reachable place, not through the laptop's miniature controls.

      All was good, guild quality is solid, volume control is very nice and smooth, and teh device functions great.
      However, listening through speakers, the sound "emptied". it lost it's depth and vibrancy, and not it sounds flat and boring, even with great monitors.
      it is much wors than the original laptop sound card, which is surprising. it removed the hums and buzzes, which is good, but it also removed the beauty of the music...

      Reviewed by 10 customers

      Sort by

      Displaying reviews 1-10

      Back to top

       
      5.0

      Smoove move...

      By SpaceCadet

      from New York, NY

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

        Cons

          Best Uses

            Comments about Fostex PC-100USB Volume Controller with USB DAC:

            I needed an external volume control as I did not want to have to use the software control on my PC. This gives me immediate access and the ability to finely control the volume to my Audioengine speakers. It's unobtrusive, looks nice and has a great feel. No one likes a cheap plastic-y control. This one is very solid. Sound is neutral; it does not seem to color the sound. Fostex makes terrific products and B&H is the best.

            • Was this a gift?:
            • No

            Share this review

             
            5.0

            great little volume controller

            By apc

            from Toronto

            About Me Experienced

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Clear Sound
            • Compact
            • Durable
            • Easy To Use
            • Lightweight
            • Versatile

            Cons

              Best Uses

              • Amateur Recording
              • Events
              • Home Studio
              • Mobile DJ

              Comments about Fostex PC-100USB Volume Controller with USB DAC:

              the sound is definitely better than the mixer i was using. midrange is better. the size of the volume knob is perfect as well.

              Share this review

               
              5.0

              Great device

              By training man

              from Chicago

              About Me Experienced

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Clear Sound
              • Compact
              • Durable
              • Easy To Use
              • Lightweight
              • Versatile

              Cons

                Best Uses

                • Amateur Recording
                • Home Studio
                • Mobile DJ
                • Performances
                • Professional Recording

                Comments about Fostex PC-100USB Volume Controller with USB DAC:

                Had another simmilar unit from another brand but it didn't work with the mac. This one is very sturdy and I travel all around the country with my trainings. Helps eliminate the annoying beep sound that the mac makes when you adjust the volume.

                Share this review

                (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                Solid Controller and DAC!

                By Adam

                from Chicago

                About Me Novice

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Clear Sound
                • Compact
                • Durable
                • Easy To Use

                Cons

                  Best Uses

                  • Home Studio

                  Comments about Fostex PC-100USB Volume Controller with USB DAC:

                  I purchased this volume controller primarily for the DAC - I wasn't 100% satisfied with the output of the built-in sound card on my Macbook Pro, and wanted to see if using an external DAC would give me better sound quality through my Yamaha monitors.

                  My first impressions were that it yielded a 'flatter' response than the onboard sound card. While it didn't seem to have the bass response that the Mac sound card had, I quickly realized that the sound card was inaccurately boosting bass response to compensate for headphones or smaller speakers. Some other reviews have noted that it doesn't have the dynamics of their previous sound cards - this is because the DAC is designed to provide a flat response, without overcompensating certain frequencies. Some may not like this, but it was exactly what I was looking for.

                  I also noticed that the Fostex DAC yielded greater clarity in the mids and top-end than the Mac, and the volume control feels very solid. Plus it was a great price. Overall, very pleased.

                  Share this review

                  (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  5.0

                  Sounds great with a T-amp

                  By Cheapskate Audiophile Guy

                  from Mission Viejo, CA

                  Pros

                  • Clear Sound
                  • Compact
                  • Durable
                  • Easy To Use
                  • Lightweight

                  Cons

                    Best Uses

                    • Home Studio

                    Comments about Fostex PC-100USB Volume Controller with USB DAC:

                    I wanted an analog volume control knob because I dislike the "dek dek dek" sound my iMac makes when using the keyboard to change listening volumes. The knob turns smoothly without detents so you can get the exact magnitude of volume you want out of your speakers. Very nice!

                    I have the RCAs hooked to a Lepai LP-2020A+ tripath amp for completely clean and authoratative sound. I've turned the output of my amp up to max and there is absolutely no discernale hum or other extraneous noise which exit the speakers (6.5" bookshelf Dayton Audio B652's). There is indeed a noticable gain in audio quality and clarity. I enjoy my music more now and can hear things that I haven't previously noted.

                    Pros: knob can be put anywhere on your desktop for improved ergonomics, build quality is nice- feels like a real quality piece of hardware, easily compatible to Apple or Windows OS, comes with cables (!), pleasant green light indicating operation is not obnoxiously bright

                    Cons: rubber feet sometimes don't grip to tabletop surface and can be knocked around a bit, wish it could DAC up to 24-bit but for my purposes it sounds nice enough as it is

                    Share this review

                    (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                     
                    5.0

                    Perfect device for my needs

                    By Masonic Organist

                    from California

                    About Me Experienced

                    Verified Buyer

                    Pros

                      Cons

                        Best Uses

                          Comments about Fostex PC-100USB Volume Controller with USB DAC:

                          This volume controller is exactly what I needed for my purpose.

                          Share this review

                           
                          5.0

                          A quality product

                          By Aki

                          from Brooklyn, NY

                          About Me Experienced

                          Verified Buyer

                          Pros

                          • Clear Sound
                          • Compact

                          Cons

                            Best Uses

                            • Desktop Monitor

                            Comments about Fostex PC-100USB Volume Controller with USB DAC:

                            I was looking for an "analog" volume control knob for my desktop speakers (also Fostex). I originally just wanted the one without USB DAC, but since I was not happy with the sound quality of the USB DAC I was using, I decided to replace the DAC as well. (When you consider the price of this product, it's like getting the DAC for free anyway.)
                            I was expecting decent quality from Fostex, but still surprised by the build and the sound quality. All metal construction. Very low noise output. The knob has a nice heft to it, and well damped. I remembered how nice to be able to control volume with a flick of a wrist, instead of pushing up/down buttons.

                            Share this review

                            (0 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                             
                            2.0

                            Great design, lacking sound quality

                            By Dudi

                            from Cupertino, CA

                            About Me Experienced

                            Pros

                            • Balanced Weight
                            • Compact
                            • Durable
                            • Easy To Use
                            • Lightweight
                            • Well build

                            Cons

                            • Dimentionless Sound
                            • Poor Sound Quality

                            Best Uses

                            • Very Basic Computer Audio

                            Comments about Fostex PC-100USB Volume Controller with USB DAC:

                            I used a USB DAC to replace and improve my lapto's sound card. using the laptop's internal sound with nice monitors (M-audio and Rokit 5) is not too bad, but it has some hum and computer noises. Also , I relly liked teh idea of volumn control, in a reachable place, not through the laptop's miniature controls.

                            All was good, guild quality is solid, volume control is very nice and smooth, and teh device functions great.
                            However, listening through speakers, the sound "emptied". it lost it's depth and vibrancy, and not it sounds flat and boring, even with great monitors.
                            it is much wors than the original laptop sound card, which is surprising. it removed the hums and buzzes, which is good, but it also removed the beauty of the music...

                            Share this review

                             
                            5.0

                            Simple USB Interface

                            By The Arsonist

                            from Haviland, KS

                            About Me Experienced

                            Verified Buyer

                            Pros

                            • Clear Sound
                            • Compact
                            • Driverless On Os X
                            • Durable
                            • Easy To Use
                            • Lightweight

                            Cons

                            • Limited Functions

                            Best Uses

                            • Home Studio
                            • Performances

                            Comments about Fostex PC-100USB Volume Controller with USB DAC:

                            I had been using a Line6 product for years to interface between my Macbook Pro and my studio monitors. I prefer a USB interface because I can use a USB hub and avoid having to use the headphone jack to feed my monitors. My Line6 interface began having issues, either due to age or buggy drivers, so I picked up the Fostex box on sale at B&H.
                            The Fostex USB box worked right out of the box with OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion. There were no drivers to install, and I have not had a single issue with dropouts or audio glitches yet. All you have to do is hook up the USB and option-click the audio icon in the top right system icon bar and choose the Fostex as the audio output device.
                            The box is rugged, made out of solid metal, and the knob is pleasantly smooth and accurate. The RCA outputs feed my monitors, and I can plug in some earbuds to the headphone jack if I want

                            Share this review

                             
                            4.0

                            not a bad product

                            By kato

                            from New Brunswick, NJ

                            About Me Novice

                            Verified Buyer

                            Pros

                            • Clear Sound
                            • Compact
                            • Durable
                            • Easy To Use
                            • Lightweight
                            • Versatile

                            Cons

                              Best Uses

                              • Amateur Recording
                              • Home Studio

                              Comments about Fostex PC-100USB Volume Controller with USB DAC:

                              I use it to bypass factory sound card.
                              It is not a bad, sounds pretty clear.
                              However, didn't really amaze me. Only marginally better than on-board sound card.

                              Share this review

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