Audio Interface to go

Hi, since it looks like my HifiBerry DAC+ADC died after two days of using it. (Probably by my fault.) But I’m looking for new audio interface for my zynth.

I found a few possible options:

Audio Injector Zero:
Looks good but I have two conserns

  • Audio quality: It’s 96 kHz and I also heared that it’s noisier than HifiBerry (Is audio quality difference that noticible?)
  • Reliability: I heared it is not as reliable as HifiBerry

General question is Audio Injector worth buying?

IQaudio Pi-DAC+:

  • It’s so much cheaper than HiFiBerry DAC2 Pro
  • It has headers presoldered
  • Do you have good experience with this board?
    (it’s not currently on stock… hope it’ll be soon)

Board from Ali:
(DAC Audio Expansion Board for Raspberry Pi ,PCM5122 HIFI Audio Module Use for Raspberry Pi 4B/3B+

  • at similar price as IQaudio, but currently available.
  • also headers presoldered
  • Is sound quality/latency usable? Is it worth buing?

Do you have some other recomendations or should I rather buy HifiBerry DAC+ADC again?

I’ve used the audio injector zero almost exclusively in my devices, and (touchwood) I’ve never blown one up yet althou’ I’ve convinced myself I have on a couple of occasions.

They seem a little bit noisier than the hifiberry components but I
m pretty sure I did some measurement of them way back in the forum somewhere but the actual levels seem consistent across them both so maybe it’s characteristic of the noise. Frankly from someone that used to accept bucket brigade noise on effects it’s really not noticeable but values change.

Where you have seen issues in the past is the startup of the audio injector. I’ve perfected a fairly detailed dance to bring them alive using alsamixer to go and turn on the capture facility, this then needed to be repeated for each restart ( which precluded the device from live as there was a lot of twiddling to get it all going again). But I would now say this seems to have settled down and it seems to behave itself perfectly. The pedalboard will restart on the reset switch and about a minute after you hit the switch the system is all up again with no problem. I would hasten to add these effects tend to be GUI crashes which I’m pretty sure are not audio injector related and again these are rare and I do dish out more abuse to zynthians than most, so don’t let this put you off.

It’s small size makes it very suitable for sticking into all kinds of cases ( My pedalboard uses one and the various zynths in tiny metal boxes do as well, apart from the hifiberry machine in a steel case which is hifiberry throu and throu.

The main element is you are off the beaten zynthian track so if you do have problems the help can be rather limited.

I’ve found the injector considerably more reliable and less xrunny than usb devices and the latency is very low. ( once again their are some measurements out there …)

As to the others I can’t comment as I haven’t tried them, but there is now considerable zynthian experience across the board so you can probably find someone to comment …


I never recommend AudioInjector because i have bad experience with them. Noisy and unstable. Anyway, i’ve not tested the latest models, so better listen to @wyleu or @mheidt, that use them everyday.

If you don’t need the ADC part, you could perfectly use the IQAudio or the cheap Aliexpress clone. They both should work perfectly with same latency and “not so bad” sound quality that the equivalent HifiBerry. HifiBerry is slighty expensive because the design include independent ultra-low noise voltage regulators for each IC, what is the reason of the almost zero-noise they have. Also, clock generators are very good ones, what allows having very low jitter so there is no extra distortion added by the clock and you get a real THD very close to the DAC/ADC specification, what it’s really good. I’ve not verified the design of the IQAudio or the cheap AliExpress DACs, but although they include the same PCM5122 DAC, certainly they will cut costs by using cheaper voltage regulators and clock generators. Not to mention resistors, capacitors, etc.

Kind Regards,

must try harder!!!


Hey I wiped out a 7" screen recently,

give me a chance !!!

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I have two audioinjectors in my collection - stereo and zero. Both are reasonable for the price, but the noise is there, especially if you power everything from not the best power supply (native rbpi 4 usb-c adapters give some noise sometimes) but everything is quiet cool if you use proper power bank with 3A output. Also I experiment with local Russian PCM5102 soundcard shield right now and it has significanly better S/N balance for output (without input unfortunately).

I would mention that the output volume on both Audioinjector soundcards is sometimes a bit less, than expected. To get enough volume for recording I have to move line in faders all to the top on my Apollo uad card. That is satisfactory, but better to have some extra gain margin.

But audioinjector are very good cards in cost vs features categories. Great for the price !

I would like to order hifiberry HifiBerry DAC+ADC from @jofemodo when finance situation allows me to. Hope it has more gain for output and better input quality, than audioinjector.