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The New iRiver AK100: A High-End DAP - Page 49

post #721 of 8348
Quote:
Originally Posted by lee730 View Post

 

Pretty much what he asked is why aren't BA with their varying impedance's seen as flawed if this DAP is considered flawed.

 

That's right ;)

 

My logic does not make sense because it doesn't meet the norm, like the AK100, then :( Cruel world... 

 

I must admit I was not aware of their past marketing strategy, which turned out to be deceptive for most IEMs users that had high hopes/expectations in the unit.

 

Did anyone try this with the RE262 yet? 

post #722 of 8348

I think the point is that having a low output impedance would not inherently hurt high impedance headphone performance so it's not a horses for courses thing. It's just a limiting thing that one would expect avoided on a portable product, you know, the kind that mostly get used with IEMs and cans under 100 ohms.

post #723 of 8348

Bingo! Also to use an excuse that it is expensive to impliment low output impedance is laughable at best. Just they didn't do so while designing it (a design flaw).

 

@Clemmaster don't take it personally. Just couldn't understand why you were defending an obvious flaw on the product? More so to the point that they initially hyped this product for sensitive IEM usage :).
 

post #724 of 8348
Quote:
Originally Posted by frenchbat View Post

Have you seen the graph that shows a roughly 12dB difference (in the treble) correlating to a 15 ohms difference in the output between the Nuforce and the EMU404 ? That should answer your question, IMHO.

 

My question was really, has the AK100 itself been tested with a variety of BA IEM's and measured, and why the inconsistency in the arguments of some posters between threads and devices? In one thread measurements are berated as inconsequential, in this thread they become the fundamental argument against buying the DAP? 


Edited by mark_h - 12/7/12 at 6:21am
post #725 of 8348
Quote:
Originally Posted by scrypt View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vibemerchant View Post

This might seem slightly offtopic, but for Spotify users like me, a DAP without Spotify (or Rdio, Pandora perhaps) is pretty useless.

 

I sometimes use Spotify at work.  Even if you select the service's highest resolution files and the option to store them on your SD temporarily, the AK100 is overkill for that purpose.  The whole point of a player like this is to play lossless and high-resolution files.  Spotify doesn't offer either one. 

 

Spotify's best option is Ogg Vorbis at 320 kbps.

 

Scrypt,

 

I hear you.  However, I would posit that this product's purpose is to deliver the best musical experience possible, regardless of storage choice.  iRiver has always delivered high quality playback devices built to accommodate then-relevant storage formats. 

 

By itself, 24/192 guarantees nothing but a large file. Buy some HD Tracks files and see for your self.  They have just as much crap available in hi-res as they do gems (probably more of the former), though, I am told, they have been getting better.  I spent so much initially, and was disappointed so often, that I haven't bought anything from them in 7 or 8 months.

 

Respectfully, I must disagree with your main point.  The "whole point" of a player like this is to allow the most enjoyment of the music possible - regardless of the delivery medium.  After all, are you listening to files and electronics, or are you listening to music?  Personally, I USE electronics and files to LISTEN to music.

post #726 of 8348
Quote:
Originally Posted by lee730 View Post

 

No he did not ask that question. Quoting you:

 

"To be fair, this is still a straw man argument you're making.

 

The actual answer to his question is that (most) IEMs are sensitive so that they can be driven by the amps in most portable players. Some IEMs, again just to be fair, have a high impedance. 

HifiMan HM-601 + AKG Q701 + Renee Olstead = Musical bliss"

 

 

Pretty much what he asked is why aren't BA with their varying impedance's seen as flawed if this DAP is considered flawed. I'm wondering is English is your native tongue as well as his? Either way his logic still doesn't make sense because most good DAPs out there have less than 1 ohm output impedance. The same applies to portable amps that are made to drive sensitive IEMs and headphones. This has been the norm for quite some time. Still while BA are affected the most, Sensitive Dynamic IEMs and headphones are also affected by high output impedance sources. This would explain my issues I had with all my IEMs and my Denon 5000s on my Fiio E9 amp which has less than half the output impedance of the AK100 mind you.

 

 

I don't know if English is his, but it is mine, and I have worked as a writer. You have NOW answered the question that he asked. "Pretty much what he asked is why aren't BA with their varying impedance's seen as flawed if this DAP is considered flawed."   

 

Dude, not a single graph that you posted a link to answered that question. I was actually starting to wonder if English was YOUR native tongue. Because you kept saying "This is why low impedance IEMs perform poorly with high impedance amps" but now taking your own summation of what he asked, you admit he wasn't asking that.

 

But that's neither here nor there. We have now come full circle, and answered his question.

post #727 of 8348
Quote:
Originally Posted by Clemmaster View Post

 

That's right ;)

 

My logic does not make sense because it doesn't meet the norm, like the AK100, then :( Cruel world... 

 

I must admit I was not aware of their past marketing strategy, which turned out to be deceptive for most IEMs users that had high hopes/expectations in the unit.

 

Did anyone try this with the RE262 yet? 

 

 

I don't think it's been tried with much yet, to be honest. Part of me wants to pick one up, just to try, because I like the design so much. But it's way too expensive for an experiment, sadly. 

post #728 of 8348
Quote:
Originally Posted by reginalb View Post

 

 

I don't know if English is his, but it is mine, and I have worked as a writer. You have NOW answered the question that he asked. "Pretty much what he asked is why aren't BA with their varying impedance's seen as flawed if this DAP is considered flawed."   

 

Dude, not a single graph that you posted a link to answered that question. I was actually starting to wonder if English was YOUR native tongue. Because you kept saying "This is why low impedance IEMs perform poorly with high impedance amps" but now taking your own summation of what he asked, you admit he wasn't asking that.

 

But that's neither here nor there. We have now come full circle, and answered his question.

 

I posted a link from goldenears that clearly explains everything with multiple graphs showing the impact high output impedance has on Sensitive BA IEMs. I'm not sure how much more I can explain it to you. The facts are presented clear as day. It is up to you to read them and understand them.

post #729 of 8348
Quote:
Originally Posted by lee730 View Post

 

I posted a link from goldenears that clearly explains everything with multiple graphs showing the impact high output impedance has on Sensitive BA IEMs. I'm not sure how much more I can explain it to you. The facts are presented clear as day. It is up to you to read them and understand them.

 

Holy crap dude. Yes, you explained that, but not the logic as to why it isn't flawed to have such sensitive IEMs, which was explained only later. The facts are, in fact, clear as day.

 

edit: We can go in circles all day long, there is no point in it. The question is now answered, everyone is happy. 


Edited by reginalb - 12/7/12 at 6:43am
post #730 of 8348
Quote:
Originally Posted by reginalb View Post

 

Holy crap dude. Yes, you explained that, but not the logic as to why it isn't flawed to have such sensitive IEMs, which was explained only later. The facts are, in fact, clear as day.


Oh come on reginalb! You answered that question yourself lol! Most DAPs will not be able to power power-hungry IEMs or even headphones. That is why most IEMs are sensitive to begin with! Does that answer your question? I think it is quite simple honestly. The higher the impedances are on the IEM or the headphone the harder they will be to drive. Meaning most DAPs won't be able to drive them properly or at all for that matter. What do most people use with IEMs? They use DAPs not desktop amps and generally not a portable amp while on the move. The fact still remains no matter  how powerful or weak that DAP or Amp is if it has an ouput impedance above 1 Ohm it will not play nicely with Sensitive IEMs in general. This is more so noticeable with BA yet it still can and does apply to sensitive dynamic IEMs as well.

 

 

From Goldenears:

 

To summarize:
A lower internal / output amplifier impedance and a larger load impedance leads to a better signal strength.

 


Titlescurve.png

Dynamic earphones and headphones tend to have a fairly consistent impedance curve across frequencies.

02_Impedance.png

Impedance graphs for AKG K370 (in red) and Sennheiser HD228 (black)

 

The impedance graphs for the two products above show little difference between 20Hz and 20KHz, at both ends of the audible spectrum. Other products tend to show a minor peak near the bass and a gradual decline as the frequency increases, but the difference usually not significant.

 

On the other hand, products that make of balanced armature drivers exhibit uneven impedance graphs with noticeable changes in impedance as the frequency changes.

03_Impedance.png

Impedance curves for Ultimate Ears triple.fi 10 pro (in red) and Etymotic research ER-4P

 

In case of the triple.fi 10 pro, the impedance peaks around 1KHz and bottoms out at 10KHz; in constrast, the ER-4P's impedance increases with frequency.


The problem is that with equipments such as triple.fi 10 pro and ER-4P whose impedance changes significantly with frequency, the sound also changes based on the output impedance.

 

02_FR_10%20Pro.png

Frequency response graphs for UE 10 Pro paired with different amplifers (Diffuse Field EQ)
Red: UE 10 Pro + Nuforce Mobile Amplifier
Blue: UE 10 Pro + HeadRoom Balanced Desktop
Green: UE 10 Pro + E-MU 0404 USB (Headphone Out)


As you can see from the graph above, when paired with amplifiers with high output impedance (usually voltage amplification, as in E-MU 0404 USB), the triple.fi 10 pro displays a weaker treble, whereas pairing with low output impedance (usually current amplification, as in NuForce Mobile) results in a treble boost.

 

Note
In my review of the triple.fi 10 pro, I stated that despite the frequency response graph (which had a rather excessive bass), the unit sounded balanced - this was precisely due to the effect mentioned above. At the time, the testing and the listening were done using different amplifers, specifically the Headroom Desktop and Cowon S9, respectively. The portable player was able to bring out the treble since it had a lower output impedance, which had had relatively less treble when coupled to the high output impedance of the Desktop amp.

 

05_FR_ER-4P.png

 Silicon tubes used; no Diffuse Field EQ applied for an accurate comparison


In contrast, the ER-4P shows a stronger treble with high-impedance amplifiers (usually voltage amplification, as in E-MU 0404 USB), and a weaker treble with low-impedance amplifiers (usually current amplification, as in NuForce Mobile).

 

The root cause of this problem is the earphones and headphones dramatically changing impedances with frequency, but barring that, lower output impedance is desirable in DAPs and amplifiers as the difference is proportional to the impedance.


To summarize:
Products with impedance that falls with frequency (triple.fi) will have less treble from larger output impedance, and more treble from a smaller output impedance.
In contrast, products with impedance that rises with frequency (ER-4P) will have more treble from larger output impedance, and less treble from a smaller output impedance.


Note
Sometimes resistor adaptors are marketed as making the sound 'better' universally. While the sound does, in fact, change due to the increased load impedance, the character of change is determined by the impedance characteristics of the product, and resistors will not increase bass or treble on all products.

 

 

Titleshow.png

 If you've understood everything thus far, then you're probably wondering what the output impedances are like on products on the market today. So I went through the products that I have and measured the output impedances on some of them.


 

portable.png

 

desktop.png

 

 

On desktop products, the output impedance tends to be larger than on their portable counterparts as they are frequently used with high-impedance headphones and operate out of a wall socket.
On portable products, the output impedance tends to be smaller as they are used with earphones and must operate on a battery, which cannot provide the high voltage necessary for a large output impedance.


Edited by lee730 - 12/7/12 at 6:52am
post #731 of 8348
Quote:
Originally Posted by reginalb View Post


I don't know if English is his, but it is mine, and I have worked as a writer.

But that's neither here nor there. We have now come full circle, and answered his question.

You are an English writer and you start a sentence with "but"! ?
Go and stand in the corner !
post #732 of 8348
post #733 of 8348
Quote:
Originally Posted by mark_h View Post

 

My question was really, has the AK100 itself been tested with a variety of BA IEM's and measured, and why the inconsistency in the arguments of some posters between threads and devices? In one thread measurements are berated as inconsequential, in this thread they become the fundamental argument against buying the DAP? 

When a measurement correlated this obviously to character, it matters. Tenths of % of distortion or a db or 2 variance in response can be argued as it may not be the overwhelming determining factor in the overall character but this type of change in response and damping factor is hard to ignore relative to it's apparent intended use. It will determing the character ofn over 90% of the phones used here.

post #734 of 8348
Quote:
Originally Posted by goodvibes View Post

When a measurement correlated this obviously to character, it matters. Tenths of % of distortion or a db or 2 variance in response can be argued as it may not be the overwhelming determining factor in the overall character but this type of change in response and damping factor is hard to ignore relative to it's apparent intended use. It will determing the character ofn over 90% of the phones used here.

 

And it's too bad. It's the first High res player that checks all of the other boxes for me, it's small, lots of storage, etc. I am still holding out hope for the possibility of a "lower end" alternative for IEMs which is also cheaper, haha.

post #735 of 8348
Ok, shows over,...nothing to see here,...MOVE ON NOW PEOPLE!!! biggrin.gif
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