AudioQuest DragonFly Cobalt Portable USB DAC Sweepstakes

Register to win an AudioQuest DragonFly Cobalt Portable USB DAC (Total value $299.95) we are giving away.

According to the company:

In 2012, the original AudioQuest DragonFly thoroughly disrupted the DAC market. For so many casual enthusiasts who had never previously considered the possibility of improving their digital-audio experience, DragonFly was nothing short of a revelation. Meanwhile, even the most experienced audiophiles were compelled to reexamine long-held notions of what a DAC could and should be. Stereophile's Art Dudley enthusiastically summarized, “DragonFly is fun: It's a thumb in the eye of those tea-pinky tyrants who would tell the rest of us what is and is not high end. I can think of no more recommendable product in digital audio.”


In the early months of 2015, AudioQuest surpassed its previous achievements with DragonFlys Black and Red—two sensational models that offered improved performance-to-cost ratios with unprecedented sound quality, free firmware updates, and, of course, the biggest news of all, compatibility with Apple® and Android® smartphones.

And now comes DragonFly Cobalt—AudioQuest's new flagship DAC. Cobalt takes what music lovers around the world have come to expect from the multi-award-winning DragonFly family—naturally beautiful, seductive sound—and strips away fuzz and fog that weren't even noticeable until Cobalt removed them.


How is this possible? Like the critically acclaimed DragonFly Red, Cobalt has the robust 2.1-volt output to drive almost any headphone, uses a bit-perfect digital volume control for outstanding signal-to-noise ratio, enables seamless compatibility with Apple and Android devices, and is an exceptionally competent and affordable MQA renderer.

Cobalt's precedent-setting performance is made possible by multiple significant upgrades:

  • New, more advanced ESS ES9038Q2M DAC chip with a minimum-phase slow roll-off filter for more natural sound.
  • Microchip's superb PIC32MX274 microprocessor draws less current and increases processing speed by 33%.
  • Improved power-supply filtering that specifically increases immunity to WiFi, Bluetooth, and cellular noise.
  • Includes AudioQuest's new DragonTail USB-A (female) to USB-C (male) adaptor to easily accommodate the increasing number of electronic devices that feature USB-C ports.
  • Contoured enclosure measures just 2.26” x 0.73” x 0.47” (57.5mm x 18.6mm x 11.9mm), making the latest DragonFly 10% smaller than its predecessors.

Like previous models, Cobalt uses Gordon Rankin's precedent-setting StreamLength® asynchronous-transfer USB code. Further, in Gordon's monoClock® technology, a single ultra-low-jitter clock generated from the ESS ES9038Q2M DAC chip runs the ESS chip functions as well as all microcontroller functions. This superior clock enables DragonFly Cobalt to provide greater resolution and clarity than DACs with multiple clocks.

With AudioQuest's DragonFly USB DAC, music appreciation and exploration are limitless: Plug into an Apple or Windows computer or connect to an iOS or Android mobile device. Play YouTube or Vimeo videos. Go hunting on Bandcamp or SoundCloud. Explore playlists on Spotify or Pandora. Stream high-res audio from Tidal or Qobuz. No matter the choice of musical pleasure, DragonFly delivers beautiful sound to earbuds, headphones, desktop speakers, or complete audio systems, unraveling the emotional expression and nuance that makes music and movies so enjoyable. Now, more than ever before, naturally beautiful sound is right at your fingertips—however you want it, whenever you want it.


The first 10,000 units of DragonFly Cobalt will come packaged with vouchers for trial subscriptions to the outstanding Tidal and Qobuz music-streaming services. Cobalt customers can begin their musical journeys with two new AudioQuest playlists—On an AudioQuest and Making Connections—available on Tidal and Qobuz, respectively.

Click here for more info.

To enter the sweepstakes, all you need is an account on this website. If you don't already have one, click on the link labeled "register" at the bottom of this announcement or "LOG IN/JOIN" in the nav bar at the right. Then, enter a username and a valid e-mail address, and click on the "Create new account" button. A message will be automatically sent to the e-mail address you specified, which will include a link to activate the account.

The final step (and only step for those who already have an account) is to log in and leave a comment right here on this announcement—any comment will do, as long as it's not profane or spam. Then, when the sweepstakes closes, a lucky commenter will be chosen at random to receive the prize. So post a comment, and good luck!

For complete sweepstakes rules, click here.

[This Sweepstakes is now closed]

chanabijoy's picture

I'd love to win and hear for myself how much of an improvement this makes.

jsb1989's picture

Roses are red and I am blue (no cobalt, actually)! Audioquest rules!!

Thomas Helton's picture

It's the only bug I won't swat. I'd love to try it.

quantumfish's picture

Happy to hear about this. It would be great to get one!

vhenninger's picture

I want one!

Gravityblast's picture

I just had the thought that it was time for a next version... lo and behold!

Senorx12562's picture

Free and good is even better!

rumblestrip's picture

I'd be up for this

Tiesse's picture


JACH's picture

Glad to see Audioquest came out with a new version. I've been looking for something like this for a while. I hope I win!

gazdavela's picture

Perfect timing. I was just browsing online for a portable alternative for my smart phone and saw Johnny Darko's review. BAM ..i'm in...Thanks

Shoaibexpert's picture

Looking forward to upgrading this over my Dragonfly Red!

rolo's picture

Have owned and enjoyed a dragonfly black for several years. Would be very curious to hear the differences with the cobalt.

Sam Geese's picture

Would love to have a portable DAC.

kapiljaveri's picture

Ooo those would be amazing!

UncleSteve's picture

It’s great to see that Dragonfly didn’t just cheap-out and do a minor refresh. And instead did what looks and sounds like, by this review, to be a big improvement to the DAC, more power efficient, and on top of that they made it smaller. I can’t wait to get my hands on this and run my 58X Jubilee’s through it.

Sean02149's picture

Timing is everything: I just ordered a dragonfly Red, now I hear about the Cobalt!

Gtelefon's picture

I've heard a lot of good things about it from Darko Audio YT channel. I'm looking forward to experience the music and its best on the go.

Chris674's picture

I'd love to compare this with my Meridian Explorer 2!

Jerons's picture

First I’ve heard of the new version so I’m pumped it’s a sweepstakes.

Jeffstudio's picture

I'd be SO happy to receive the new Audioquest Cobalt Dragonfly.

drankin69's picture

Great article, good luck to all...but mostly to me!

samueltung's picture

The new product sounds exciting.

MrPretty's picture

Interested to try this.

dam0's picture

The best DAC was red now this one is blue, we all want a listen, I’ll want one too!

SJones23's picture
SJones23's picture
SJones23's picture
SJones23's picture
bluesbreaker1962's picture

This could be the answer to my dodgy headphone connection

SJones23's picture
SJones23's picture

Thank you for this amazing opportunity!!

jjteam1716's picture

Hi, have been interested in a dac w/ an ess sabre dac. not to mention an amp for my headphones. i was eyeing the red but hey would be nice, thanks!

a25105's picture

Love to win one to hear the difference from my iphone

gufuejan's picture

I heard it is better than previous versions.I'm interesting in it

steve22's picture

Would love to have a portable DAC.

Plod990's picture

I want one!

jplamanna's picture

Looking forward to using this with my new planar magnetic phones!

Mbg553's picture

I'd really appreciate one of these!

prof's picture

OK. I'm game.

HeineB's picture

I would love to have the new Cobalt edition.

ralph.zuniega's picture

I have just ordered an Audioquest Dragonfly Black v1.5 yesterday from my local supplier. Then just a few minutes ago, I heard news about the Dragonfly Cobalt.

I hope I win one of these.

MrGneiss's picture

Yes please!! :-D

torovoss's picture

I would love to win one!

Jofok's picture

My little USB DAC was not able, to connect to my phone. Would love to experience the flexebility Dragonfly offers.

Thomaskl's picture

Would be great for my iPhone + Tidal Master!

volvic's picture

Just got an iPhone.

PaulMG's picture

The degree of miniaturization is incredible. I wonder if the most expensive megabucks DACs with giant power supplies and much linger signal paths really sound audibly better or just different. Well done, AudioQuest!
Best regard

Bushkuhl's picture

If I win this I promise to only use it for evil.

khande24's picture

I want to to pair this with some Campfire IEM’s!

patchbag's picture

And thank you, for your service, to the audiophile community.

applepiechris's picture

I have the Dragonfly Red from a Mac Mini to Avi DM5 active speakers with a SVS SB-1000 Sub.It would be interesting to hear the Cobalt.

Mp3ismurder's picture

My headphones would really appreciate a new friend :)

AlleyCat's picture

I too would love one, please to see/hear what the buzz is all about. Thank you.

space_ghost74's picture


YrevDriew's picture


Diggi's picture

I own a Dragonfly Black and I'd love to win the cobalt version! Thanks to John Darko for reviewing this DAC.

John Shore's picture

Yes just watch John's video too.

John Dautel's picture

Ditto > I'm anxious to hear the improvements as well!

Robert Terpstra's picture

I really enjoy my dragonfly red! I use it on my computer at work, with my mobile phone and in the car

b0urne_'s picture

I'd love to test this one out. I'm selling my Chord Mojo atm - it's not for me, I need something for long gaming sessions - battery DAC is good for portable listening, but not for gaming.

Rexcrispy's picture

This would be great considering I do most of my listening at work or commuting.

John Shore's picture

The AudioQuest site has no details as yet of this dac/headphone amp. Interested in hearing it with my Android phone. I have a DragonFly mk1 time to upgrade.

freebee's picture

Sounds very promising. Can't wait to hook it up to my mobile phone and MacBook!

foolphat's picture

I'd really like one of these please. Thanks :)

dasrootin's picture

I have the Dragonfly black and like that. I'd be interested to see how much better this one is.

railwayman's picture

would love to see how this compares to my dragonfly red

Yeehaa's picture


J.'s picture

I would wear my shirt backwards and inside-out.

jhuneclarino's picture

been using Dragonfly Black for a while with my iphone Xr its fantastic cant wait to test this Dragonfly Cobalt

ChrisJohnsen's picture

This is going to be a great addition to my audio gear...

JPierre's picture

Roses are red, Dragonfly's blue, Hope I win one, I'll be happy if I do.

JamesM77's picture

Would like to win this please

escocesrojo's picture

Looking forward to adding the AudioQuest Dragonfly Cobalt to my computer audio out.

yourebarred's picture

Wow looks cool. would love to hear it

raycreely's picture

Looks very interesting

GU1DO's picture


VHSPlayer's picture

Having a portable dac would amazing to have!

Never_'s picture

But I'd still like to win one:3

Hardinge's picture

Very excited for the next iteration of this.

Dino Sore's picture

Would love to compare this to my Dragonfly Black.

kraljo1's picture

Finally,I just got bored with my DF Red.

shellac4545's picture

Love to win.

omaran's picture

A first step into "hi"-fi would be super nice--I'd pair it with a 6XX for sure.

PeterInVan's picture

Perfect for listening to Tidal on my iPad

rjhill0489's picture

I would love to see how they improved on the design. I love my DragonFly!

Mwa3aan's picture

I have been using the dragonfly red for years and it has been outperforming units 4 times it’s price. I am looking forward to hearing what’s next.

MZKM's picture

Would love to own this, these miniature DACs are awesome for portable use with a laptop/phone, you can’t be lugging around a Topping DX3 Pro or similar app the time.

CarterBro's picture

Looks great

nicdub's picture

Looking forward to hearing how it compares to the Black and Red. Keep it up, Audioquest!

trmntr03's picture

For my daughter.

packyb94's picture

Had this on my wishlist for so long but I'm disabled so I'm always fresh out of funds for fun , fixed incomes really suck so a new Dragonfly DAC would seriously hook me up (to hifi)

MAbx's picture

I have the Black and would love to own the Cobalt!

miguelito's picture

Use the Red every day!

dalethorn's picture

The Red is awesome - now I need a new word for "awesomer yet".

miguelito's picture

Use the Red every day!'s picture

I need the upgrade!

Fordo's picture

Would be a welcome addition to my portable rig!

enrique majluf's picture

It looks sensational !!! I wish I can hear it.

Thanks Audioquest and Stereophile for this opportunity.

rsaad86's picture

This looks amazing! I got the Dragonfly when it was first released in 2012 and I am still using and loving it.

Pericomojado's picture

Thanks a lot for it!!

SlawDawg's picture

I'm itching to try this one!

JML's picture

I'd love to have this one and compare it to my Meridian.

scardeal's picture

It'd be nice, I think.

Crakzull's picture

I love my Dragonfly red with Nightowl combo so much! Love to see there's another one coming! I'd love to get my hands on it and jam!!!

otherworld74's picture

I would love to hear it, thanks!

rickyjay's picture

Would love to try it.

Tom G's picture

An update from my original Dragonfly would be a most welcome contest prize.

shawnwes's picture

This might get me listening to my headphones again. Hifiman HE400i are sitting unused at the moment.

guntommy's picture

I would love to have one

saronian's picture

Free is good

Snowman's picture

It's strange that this isn't even mentioned on AudioQuest's website and the link from you're article leads to a 404 page at AudioQuest. That said, if it's real I would love to have one and it would mean you have info and pics ahead of the manufacture, either that or AudioQuest is having website issues :)

miguelfcp's picture

Since I have a DragonFly Black it would be nice to get a Cobalt and see how it compares with their cheapest device and conclude if it is a nice upgrade.

jfschum's picture

Great sweepstakes.

thethanimal's picture

I've been reading about these DragonFly products for a while now but don't have the budget to try them out at the moment. This would be a great way to give full MQA a try with the Tidal app already performing the first unfold.

Tiktok's picture

Let's hope this gets it!

Starman's picture

I have the original Dragonfly which was a revelation when I connected it to my Macbook. The thought of even better sound from both my Mac and iPhone is quite exciting!

2_channel_ears's picture

Dragonfly fly by my window
Dragonfly don't keep me waiting
Dragonfly, you've been away too long

Big Ry's picture


jromain's picture

Long time lurker, new account. I've bought 2 Dragonfly reds as gifts for friends, I've shown them the light! Would love to a and b this against my Red dragonfly. Would also be interesting to compare it to my desktop headphone setup.

PS My Dad introduced me to stereophile and the audiophile world, you can thank him :)

Bjarne96's picture

Would love to test this one out! Had the old dragonfly's too and liked it very much!
I only sold it to buy other things for my sterwo set-up but now i'm in need for a new pair pf earbuds and a good dac!
Also the color is very lovely! Isn't she lovely ;)

hondo's picture


Musicdog's picture

Sign me up. Have red, is great. This one sounds even better.

frameucci's picture

I hope I'll win; I love have music all around me everywhere, everytime. thanks in advance

Musicdog's picture

Would love to have this. Thanks.

intmdtrdal's picture

Awesome Dac!

doak's picture

I want a Dragonfly Cobalt to partner with my Audioquest Carbon cans.

alvaradobiz's picture

This would be my entry into the DAC world - would be awesome.

ddgimd's picture

Count me in.

aopu.mohsin's picture

I really want to win this so that I can review it from a user's perspective.

moose_320i's picture

I would absolutely adore one of these units. My mobile audio needs this upgrade!

mblain's picture

Have the Dragonfly 1.2 so would love to hear the difference in the latest version.

Caldrumr's picture

Good luck!

MhtLion's picture

Love to win it and compared to my Red DragonFly.

noirx7's picture

Please fly to me!

MhtLion's picture

Trying to Delete the duplicated entry.

Jimmygarn's picture

This is indeed a comment.

Rich G MCGUIRE's picture

It looks pretty

foxhall's picture

Sure would be a nice addition to my desktop system.

spivechild's picture

winner. Nice work Audioquest.

tfarinholt's picture

Have needed a worthy DAC to pair with my phone. Would be nice to plug in my IEMs again.

briabub's picture

Please enter my name into the Cobalt drawing. Sounds like a great DAC!

SeanAuc's picture

I'd love to get a listen to this.

seikosha's picture


SeanAuc's picture

I'd love to get a listen to this.

mrvalve's picture

It's been a while since Stereophile had a contest. Is this a new trend? Great way to get back if so. I would love to listen to my music at work through the Dragonfly cobalt!

bemckinley's picture

Can’t wait to try this out. Have the red currently

maudeman's picture

Enter me. thanks.

Supperconductor's picture

I might finally upgrade from my Geek Out 1000.

Shahram's picture

And this is the first ive heard of thr cobalt. Game on!