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Leaving portable hifi - it's too silly - Page 2

post #16 of 935
If you are going to be outside very often when listening to music then a home setup may not be worth the investment. While you're right about the expense of high quality small equipment (high quality and small used loosely), for some it's the only option for improving listening quality. I think a Sanza Fuze (or other high quality DAP) is probably a better trade off than portable amps.
post #17 of 935
Thread Starter 
If a portable application is all that's practical for the person, then that's that. I'm not taking any stance against that
post #18 of 935
What ever floats you down that river of bliss. Sometimes it is the wind in the trees. It's portable and free. All these electronickey things. I wonder if T Rex would have rocked out? :^)
post #19 of 935
I admit that I'm the epitome of your post. I've just bought an iMod, LOD, iBasso D2, overpriced interconnect and before they've even arrived (everything but the D2) I know the size of the rig will constantly irritate me. I'm outside studying half of every day though, and also want a portable USB DAC since I take Software Engineering and always carry a laptop with me. I already dislike the D2 with my cans more than all but one of my laptop headphone outs (high hats and cymbals all sound like they're part cowbell) so I'm willing to move on to the next regrettable purchase hours after the last, doubting the ability of portable audio to satisfy me. Funny that I was satisfied by cheap DAP -> Sennheiser CX300s a few weeks ago.

On the bright side I've ordered a Xiang Sheng 708B (or is that dark side with those tubes?) which I intend to modify in my first attempt at DIY. I just hope there's a point where I can be satisfied enough to wait for a hardware burn out before another purchase.
post #20 of 935
I remember years ago when I had a Sony Sports portable cassette player and the yellow headset that came with it. Damn that was fine and I had some of the most enjoyable music I have ever had accompany me. The mood was there. I like my Ed. 9 and I like PortaPros.
post #21 of 935
Quote:
Originally Posted by brandnewgame View Post
The FiiOs just a bass boost. Get a good sounding DAP and some IEMs with enough bass already. FiiO is a last ditch attempt to save bassless phones.
it may just be a bass boost, but i feel like it helps tame the highs from my 325i's. maybe the fiio just gives me a sound signature that i like, because i like how it sounds.

i feel like my sansa fuze is sufficient as a dap... i guess it's time to get a pair of iem's. i probably won't be spending more than $100 on iem's since i'm probably going to abuse them as they'll be tossed in my backpack, unlike my full-sized headphones...

ugh, i guess i do need iem's if i plan to listen to music in the library
post #22 of 935
Quote:
Originally Posted by yukihiro View Post
it may just be a bass boost, but i feel like it helps tame the highs from my 325i's. maybe the fiio just gives me a sound signature that i like, because i like how it sounds.

i feel like my sansa fuze is sufficient as a dap... i guess it's time to get a pair of iem's. i probably won't be spending more than $100 on iem's since i'm probably going to abuse them as they'll be tossed in my backpack, unlike my full-sized headphones...

ugh, i guess i do need iem's if i plan to listen to music in the library
For me the tamed highs with the FiiO seem like the result of the spectrum becoming more bass orientated

But I admit I'm new to this whole hifi experience..

I'm listening to closed cans in a library right now and as I take them off I can barely hear the output.. and I'm the only one right next to them. Add the fact that when I'm listening to them they're pressed against my head and I'd be very surprised if anyone else could hear them. They're also loud enough that I might want to turn them down.. IEMs are handy for improved sound isolation with foam tips/customs, but their sound is as tiny as the hole the sound comes out of. They're handy for analytical purposes, though.

edit: To avoid needing a FiiO with an IEM, I'd recommend either a dual armature or dynamic driver. The SA6s or UE Super.fi 5 v2s might cut it..
post #23 of 935
Comments for the OP:

1. Agree Senn PX-100 are excellent, they got my into this game in the first place. But they are open, which can be a no-no in certain places. Their closed sibling, the PX-200, does not sound as good. Best folding closed can I have found so far is the AT ATH-ES5.

2. With these, or good IEMs (I have Shure 500), portable is worth it, and an amp makes a big difference even to these old ears (and everyone else at the gym or the office).

3. A Predator (or Pico) and an i7 (or similar), cabled with an IC and lashed with velcro, fit in the tiny soft camera cases sold everywhere and easily fit in a pocket, ready to play. I leave them both on, set to shuffle, and simply hit play, re-zip the case with the HP cable just sticking out where the zipper closes. No sharp corners, and I can do this while the treadmill is moving. No exposed metal, no problem not being seated. You're not trying hard enough.

4. If you think an iQube is "poop", you are reacting to something other than its SQ. For "serious" portable listening, like on a friend's deck with two phones and a Y connector, the iQube and my RWA 5.5 Gen (Wolfson DAC) iMod with uncompressed files is damn impressive and has power to spare, driving both. This rig goes with me on long vacations too. Wife brings portable Panasonic cans that are junk, but have an attenuator in the cord, so we both can listen at our chosen volumes. Looking out the big Ahwahnee Lodge window at the Yosemite mountains by moonlight at midnight, you and your girl (wife) both listening to the same "right" music is magic man, I guarantee it works.

Oh but you're giving up on this stuff, sorry. You'll have to use your good looks and charm, neither of which I have.
post #24 of 935
A very well argued, principled position from someone who obviously knows what he is talking about.

I think it's worth keeping in mind, though, that very similar arguments are often made about high-end home equipment. Can anyone really tell the difference between a $500 interconnect and a $1500 interconnect? I've never done a blind A/B, but I doubt that I would be able to hear much, if any, improvement for the extra $1000.

There's that old saying: the only difference between men and boys is the price of their toys (Not trying to be sexist. Applies to women also. Just harder to rhyme). Let's face it, we love gadgets around here, and the gadget value of a beautifully made amp or DAC gives many of us no end of enjoyment. Not to mention the hours spent poring over catalogs/websites/forums while dreaming of that next purchase or the ideal (really, really) perfect rig. That has not a blessed thing to do with sound, of course, but it brings legitimate pleasure to many of us, and I find it hard to criticize.

Also, I think your post makes a very cogent argument for the budget-fi sub-forum discussed in tomwom's poll/thread. There should be a place for newcomers to find sanely priced stuff that will provide satisfying results with minimal expenditure. Such a forum might foster a sense of community among budget audiophiles that could serve as a buffer against the relentless upgrade philosophy. High-end geeks are proud of their stuff; budget geeks should be, too. Think of it as a practical application of the Team Mid-Fi idea.
post #25 of 935
Quote:
Originally Posted by wavoman View Post
Comments for the OP:

1. Agree Senn PX-100 are excellent, they got my into this game in the first place. But they are open, which can be a no-no in certain places. Their closed sibling, the PX-200, does not sound as good. Best folding closed can I have found so far is the AT ATH-ES5.

2. With these, or good IEMs (I have Shure 500), portable is worth it, and an amp makes a big difference even to these old ears (and everyone else at the gym or the office).

3. A Predator (or Pico) and an i7 (or similar), cabled with an IC and lashed with velcro, fit in the tiny soft camera cases sold everywhere and easily fit in a pocket, ready to play. I leave them both on, set to shuffle, and simply hit play, re-zip the case with the HP cable just sticking out where the zipper closes. No sharp corners, and I can do this while the treadmill is moving. No exposed metal, no problem not being seated. You're not trying hard enough.

4. If you think an iQube is "poop", you are reacting to something other than its SQ. For "serious" portable listening, like on a friend's deck with two phones and a Y connector, the iQube and my RWA 5.5 Gen (Wolfson DAC) iMod with uncompressed files is damn impressive and has power to spare, driving both. This rig goes with me on long vacations too. Wife brings portable Panasonic cans that are junk, but have an attenuator in the cord, so we both can listen at our chosen volumes. Looking out the big Ahwahnee Lodge window at the Yosemite mountains by moonlight at midnight, you and your girl (wife) both listening to the same "right" music is magic man, I guarantee it works.

Oh but you're giving up on this stuff, sorry. You'll have to use your good looks and charm, neither of which I have.
I think the point was that portable hifi has a comparitively poor bang for buck ratio, while many people make their first hifi purchases as extensions of their portable DAP since it's the easiest entrance point, then through dissatisfaction they keep upgrading when a similarly priced desktop setup would more than satisfy them. I agree that the extra bulk of an amp can be accomodated, though.
post #26 of 935
Quote:
Originally Posted by skamp View Post
but I'm pretty sure it's way overpriced.
I'm pretty sure that a fair comparison against its competitors would say otherwise.
post #27 of 935
The reviews here seem to say the Pico isn't that much better than its competitors; they're all good.
post #28 of 935
Quote:
Originally Posted by skamp View Post
The reviews here seem to say the Pico isn't that much better than its competitors; they're all good.
Yes, with some of those competitors costing more and some costing less. So to say that it's "way overpriced" is incorrect. And listener impressions aside the Pico is a veritable tour-de-force in terms of advanced technology compared with almost all of its piers. It was the first portable to use a truly high-end USB dac implementation rather than the same-old (decent but not great IMO) PCM27XX chip.
post #29 of 935
A very "illuminetting" review/commentary. I agree from the standpoint that the "best" portable rigs don't compare to good quality home rigs; however, a "reasonable" portable rig has, to me, been a great source of entertainment, particularly when I fly. I haven't gone past the iPod-->LOD-->iCube level yet, and probably won't. I was originally considering iMod with portable VCAP, but like you, the bigger the package gets, the less convenient it becomes. 90% of my HP listening is at the office, so the portable rig stays in the drawer most of the time.
post #30 of 935
Quote:
Originally Posted by brandnewgame View Post
For me the tamed highs with the FiiO seem like the result of the spectrum becoming more bass orientated

But I admit I'm new to this whole hifi experience..

I'm listening to closed cans in a library right now and as I take them off I can barely hear the output.. and I'm the only one right next to them. Add the fact that when I'm listening to them they're pressed against my head and I'd be very surprised if anyone else could hear them. They're also loud enough that I might want to turn them down.. IEMs are handy for improved sound isolation with foam tips/customs, but their sound is as tiny as the hole the sound comes out of. They're handy for analytical purposes, though.

edit: To avoid needing a FiiO with an IEM, I'd recommend either a dual armature or dynamic driver. The SA6s or UE Super.fi 5 v2s might cut it..
haha, i was looking at that chart yesterday. i'm new to the "experience" also, but my ears don't lie when it comes to the ringing in my ear as a result of the highs being too much. i agree that it's probably a result of the more bass oriented fiio. i'm just taking a guess, but looking at the chart, is it boosting the low end and slightly bringing down the high end? either way, i just like how it sounds with my 325i's
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