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DAP with the best SQ

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
Hi,
Trying to find the best option among all the DAP:s out there to be used with a seperate portable amp (sr001 with mk2). The only thing that matters is SQ. Would prefer something with a line out but it seems like most of the good players with this are out of production. Any suggestions?

Regards, MiB
post #2 of 16
Yeah you're right, must are out of production. As far as sound quality is concerned, the best one out there's the iriver H120. It'sd the only mp3 player ever to feature a digital output and it's sound quality's pretty unmatched. Some say the Rio Karma's even better, didn't hear that one though.

The iaudio X5 is among the best players as well, not wuite matching the iriver however...and nowadays I believe it's the Cowon D2
post #3 of 16
Thread Starter 
This might not be very suprising but those players are exactly the ones I've been looking for. Unfortunately have not found any second hand either. Still looking. An Iriver H120 would be perfect...
Is the sound on the D2 better than I7 ?
post #4 of 16
I forgot what review, but currently the players with the best sq are 1st place Iriver Clix2, 2nd Sony NWZ-A810, 3rd Cowon d2.

found it

http://mp3.generationmp3.com/2007/12...nore-par-gmp3/
post #5 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Enthusia View Post
I forgot what review, but currently the players with the best sq are 1st place Iriver Clix2, 2nd Sony NWZ-A810, 3rd Cowon d2.

found it

12 baladeurs MP3 classés suivant leur qualité audio, par GMP3 | Generation MP3 : le blog des baladeurs MP3

I wouldn't take this chart too seriously. From reports, sonically the D2 and iAudio 7 are either identical or nearly identical. From previous charts these guys have put out too, they seem to be all over the place without rhyme or reason.
post #6 of 16
I thought that was peculiar too, but they said the iaudio7 screen did not bode well with the rest of the player, it made the sound produce hisses and interference. Not sure how that would happened since the d2 also has a screen. Other than that I think the charts I accurate, I've listened to the top 3 and they all sound very good. On the other hand,the ipods are not so good.
post #7 of 16
iRiver E10 uploaded with ogg Vorbis Q10 files, encoded with the aoTuV encoder. Sounds like lossless, while other players don't even reach the mp3 320kb/s quality level, regardless their lossless support. Some that do gain with lossless/high ogg/AAC are: Rio Karma, iRiver iHP-100/H300 series, Teclast T39, probably iAudio X5 and I think that's all.
post #8 of 16
that review is subjective, but i think it's close to reality.in top 5, they're all good, but it's very hard to say wich is the best.
post #9 of 16
Thread Starter 
Thanks guys, sounds like I could make a list of my 5 most wanted DAP:s and none of them are still available. Will probably settle with a Cowon device instead, not sure which one though.
post #10 of 16
Cowon D2, no hissing interference issues, and it's fantastic when paired with an amp.
post #11 of 16
on the contrary the Sony is bad with amp about me.
post #12 of 16
So what you're trying to factor in here is that you want SQ, and that money, size, features and battery life are of no issue?

Here's some things to consider:

CD Players:

-Panasonic SLCT family of players (Lineout -> Amp)

DAPs

-iRiver H3x0 series (Lineout -> Amp)

-iRiver H1x0 series -> Amp

-iRiver H1x0 series -> Optical Out -> (DAC -> Amp) or DAC/Amp

Note:
-CF Mods allow for the iRivers to have 128GB of solid state (Flash) memory at present, far surpassing SDHC capacity limits.
-Battery Mods allow it to surpass 30 hours easily.
-They can be Rockboxed as well.
-The iRiver H1x0 is a candidate for the DAP with best SQ out there because of its Optical Output option.

-iPod 4G iMod -> Amp

-iPod 5.5G iMod -> Vcap -> Amp

---

Note:
-CF Mods allow for the iPods/iMods to have 128GB of solid state (Flash) memory at present, far surpassing SDHC capacity limits.
-They can be Rockboxed as well.

---

-Cowon A2 -> Amp

-Cowon Q5 -> Optical Out -> (DAC -> Amp) or DAC/Amp

Note:
-What applies to the H1x0 applies to the Q5 for the optical out, but its battery life falls short, and Rockbox isn't an option.

---

-Sony NW-HD5 (Lineout Mode) -> Amp

---

-Nokia Tablet Phone (N770/N810) -> USB Out -> (USB DAC -> Amp) or DAC/Amp

Note:
-The default battery of the N810 = 1500mAh, and lasts about 10 hours for music playback.
-Optional batteries include 1800mAh and 3600mAh capacities.
post #13 of 16
Thread Starter 
thanks for all the inputs, yes, Sq is what I´m looking for. However there are always things that matters of course....

CD-player: a big No, want this to be portable and not bringin my cd-collection, plus, as far as I know all cd-players are sensitive to motions.

Iriver: Good alternatives, not easy to find though as they are all out of production. Think a H1x0 would have been perfect.

ipod: Out of principle, NO

Cowon a2/Q5: interesting, better than d2? battey life isnt really an issue unless its really really bad.

Sony: forced to use their software right? One of the reasons I dont like ipods

Nokia: hmmm, very sceptical, are you saying that a tablet phone actually competes with these players when it comes to SQ?
post #14 of 16
Newer Sony players no longer require SonicStage (at least outside of Japan), you can use whatever software you want, or no software, but an older one, like the HD5, would need SonicStage I guess.
post #15 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by MiB View Post
Cowon a2/Q5: interesting, better than d2? battey life isnt really an issue unless its really really bad.
Battery life for the A2 is decent, about 20 hours, and its cleaner and better than the D2 in sound in every way imaginable, period.
Has a dedicated lineout as well, so if you wanna amp, just use the L/O.

The Q5, I do not know, but it has the ability to connect to an external DAC, bypassing both its own DAC and Amp, so like the iRiver H1x0, its upgrade potential is huge. The drawback is its 10h battery life.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MiB View Post
Nokia: hmmm, very sceptical, are you saying that a tablet phone actually competes with these players when it comes to SQ?
Like the H1x0 and Q5, the N810 can bypass its own internal DAC and amp, but the difference is that rather than relying on an optical output, the N810 utilizes USB out for its DAC output.

Hence, it can utilize portable DAC/Amps like the Pico, Predator, and iBasso D2's for example, directly out of the machine itself, utilizing the excellent DACs inside the DAC/Amp combo with those amp output, that easily bypasses even that of the older iPods and the Rio Karma (55mW/ch @ 16 Ohms I believe).
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