I bought this DAC some weeks ago. DAC sounds very nice, but is very few information about it.

This guide works for AUDIOPHONICS DAC I-Sabre ES9038Q2M and AUDIOPHONICS DAC I-Sabre ES9028Q2M (I didn’t test ES9028Q2M).

Volumio 2.413
plugin Q2M_kernel_4.14.29.zip

Main page about DAC
audiophonics.fr/en/diy-dac/ … 12795.html

Forum about Audiophonics es9028 in French
forum.audiophonics.fr/viewtopic. … 7956#p7956

Sources of Audiophonics plugin for DAC control
github.com/audiophonics/Volumio … 028_plugin

Enable SSH connection

Connect SSH. I use Putty for Windows.
username: volumio
password: volumio

cd /home/volumio wget https://github.com/audiophonics/Volumio2_I-sabre9028_plugin/raw/master/Q2M_Volumio_plugin_kernel_4.14.42.zip miniunzip Q2M_Volumio_plugin_kernel_4.14.42.zip cd Q2M volumio plugin install
exit from SSH

Enable control plugin
volumio setting (gear icon) -> PLUGINS ->Installed Plugins->es9028q2m->On

Set DAC as audio output
volumio setting (gear icon) -> PLAYBACK OPTIONS->Audio Output->DAC Model-> Audiophonics I-Sabre ES9028Q2M

volumio setting (gear icon) -> PLAYBACK OPTIONS->
DSD Playback Mode -> DSD over PCM (DoP)

Now, you can play music in high quality.

For quick test you can use
volumio setting (gear icon) -> PLAYBACK OPTIONS->Audio Output->DAC Model->Generic I2S DAC
DAC plays very quiet. I think about 10% of maximum with right plugin. For test it’s ok.

Hello, I am owner of this incredible dac, exceptional for my taste. After the update to 2.413 the dac was not working anymore and so I went back. Now I’ll try your guide on the new version, I hope it works for me too. Thank you

Inviato dal mio CLT-L09 utilizzando Tapatalk

I hope, it will works. Try clean install of volumio. When I had writing this guide, I had clean image of volumio on my micro SD card. Please send result here.

Ok, then I’ll try with a new installation of Volumio on another sd. For the moment, thank you

Inviato dal mio CLT-L09 utilizzando Tapatalk

Could you please help me to install my DAC?

This is it:
audiophonics.fr/en/diy-dac/ … 10176.html

Thank you for your help!

Hi Kisszabo,
I don’t own this DAC, but in audiophonics page is text “I2S driver: Hifiberry DAC”. I think, you must use a settings for Hifiberry DAC.


  • prepare miniSD card with clean volumio image
  • connect DAC hat on Raspberry pi
  • connect power, go through firs set up wizard ,…
  • try set up Hifiberry drivers
    volumio setting (gear icon) -> PLAYBACK OPTIONS->Audio Output->DAC Model->
    Play some song.
    If not working, try diferent hifibery driver a save and restart.
    If no hifibery driver will be working, try Generec I2S driver or some Audiophonics driver.
    If all test failed, send a question on Audiophonics support.

Thank you for help!

It works with hifiberry DAC, but in another player, when I choose 9038 TXCO DAC, it sounds much better than hifiberry DAC.
I thought it can be work in volumio too…

Which player did you use? Maybe try enable resampling in volumio.

in Moode Audio…

My friend told me, different players sound different. I did not validate it, but I trust him. Anyway try ask of the audiophonics support for help. Maybe it is some hidden feature in moode audio driver like FIR or IIR filters. Then let me know how it happened.

It’s true… Moode sounds the best of the 3 players what i tried…
I’ll try to contact somebody from Audiophonics, as you told.

If I got something, i will told you!

… for somebody who need command to switch from I2S to SPDIF and back

get current state of DAC

amixer -c 1 cget numid=5

set audio input to I2S

amixer -c 1 cset numid=5 0

set adudio input to SPDIF

amixer -c 1 cset numid=5 1

toggling I2S <-> SPDIF in signle command

if amixer -c 1 cget numid=5 | grep ": values=0" -q ; then amixer -c 1 cset numid=5 1; elif amixer -c 1 cget numid=5 | grep ": values=1" -q ; then amixer -c 1 cset numid=5 0 ; fi

I have installed the plugin and see all right settings (see attachment). But I don’t hear any thing - it is playing on volumio but no sound. Volume Indicator on web-page stays on 50%

What is the minimal hardware I have to wired - currently I have only stet the AUDIOPHONICS DAC I-Sabre ES9038Q2M on the Raspberry 40pin connector with no other connection…
Do I need the hardware volume knob or a power cable for the AUDIOPHONICS DAC I-Sabre ES9038Q2M board?

Thanks for help and any sugestion!
2018-12-07 09_07_21-Volumio - Audiophile Music Player.png

Additionally I have now added the display and the knob.
On the Display I get: IIS 100 UNLOCK or after pressing the knob SPDIF 100 UNLOCK

What means UNLOCK?

Today this dac has arrived for a project of active speakers. I have been very impressed with its sound. From Khadas Tone Board, which assembles the same chip, I was not so impressed that something so small and “cheap” sounds so good. I liked everything, especially the “analog” sound characteristic of the saber 9038q2m; the scene is very advanced but at the same time deep (not everyone likes to have the soloist in the face). The bass better than Allo Boss 1.2, not only muscle, also has speed and detail, this makes it better than Allo Boss, it is also much better in highs.

It is so well done that it does not improve the sound a series of tests that I have done. I have improved the linear power supply) and it has not meant a significant improvement, I have connected an xmos device with reclocker with crystek clocks (jlsounds) and surprisingly it sounded much worse than directly connected to rapsberry pi.

Without doubt it is the best low-cost i2s dac I have heard, I am excited about this dac.


is there anything new? the plugin works every time you update volume you need to re-install the plugin?