The reigning world champion drew a 10 from the judges for his new four-and-a-half somersault dive, which gave him the biggest score of the final with over 105 points and an overall total of 562.80.
British team-mate Pete Waterfield finished fifth with a score of 512.
The gold went to China's Bo Qiu, who scored 582.45, while Mexico's Rommel Pacheco scored 540.90 on his way to the bronze medal.
the synchro event on the other hand, did not live up to expectations for Daley and partner Waterfield, especially after a superb win at only their second international meet as a pair in Sheffield last week.
This time, their partnership suffered a setback as they finished fifth with a score of 402.75.
It could have been worse but for the absence of a Chinese duo, home pair Ivan Garcia and German Sanchez taking advantage to win gold.
Daley had used social networking site Twitter, to admit after the session it "had not been a great competition".
Elsewhere in the British camp, Rebecca Gallantree and Megan Sylvester secure a fifth place in the 10m synchro final while Ben Swain and Nick Robinson-Baker finished fifth in 3m synchro.
April 2011: Daley and Waterfield in perfect harmony as they strike gold in Sheffield
April 2011: Daley and Waterfield 2012 hopes undermined by financial pressures
December 2010: Daley gets a taste for London 2012 high life
December 2010: Diver Daley hoping to chalk up hat-trick as final three for BBC Young Sports Personality of the Year announced
October 2010: "That one is for you, Dad" says Daley as he clinches second gold