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I'm having the worst luck with USB DACs.

This new DAC (FiiO KA3) has a similar playback issue with the DragonFly Black. It seems to have trouble "waking up" when I use afplay or mplayer on OSX, resulting in about a second of silence.

Realtime Csound on OSX also suffers from this lag.

So far, I've been unable to reproduce this issue in Reaper or using it on Linux with JACK/mplayer. The other DAC had issues everywhere.

I'm thinking this is a CoreAudio thing related to some async thing happening when software starts up, and not a firmware issue.

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This bug was causing me a lot of trouble when I was using Firefox to get the pronunciation of something. I guess if you want to play a single sound event, it needs to "turn on" the sound. The delay made it so I could only hear half the word.

My workaround was to play at low volume (but not mute) Spotify in the background to keep the audio client from closing every time.

Safari does not have this issue.

@paul I suppose JACK would keep the sound hardware active all the time, even when silence is playing. is it an option for you to use it on mac?

@mathr probably not on my work Mac computer. But yes definitely on my not-work Mac computer.

@paul I had this kind of problem with pulse audio on Linux. I solved it by disabling an option that makes the device going in "standby" mode when idle.

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