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post #11461 of 12955

I notice alot of people are saying the X3 is loud enough where they don't need High Gains settings, but I seem to be getting different experience.

 

When using FLAC files, especially 24bit files, I am finding the volume just not loud enough. Max is 120 and I wish there was another 10-15% boost. Using CD Rips (16bit 44.1) its just enough at max volume. Using high gain though really adds a noticeable hiss/background noise.

 

This is also on cheapy Samsung S3 (35 ohm) OEM headphones. I'm hoping the Ostry KC06 (16 ohm) will allow me that extra bump in volume that I'm looking for. They are on the way.


Edited by BabylonDown - 7/13/14 at 11:13pm
post #11462 of 12955
In reply to the sloppy release of the X3 and X5 I'd like to point out that these are their first DAPs and I think they've nailed the SQ in both devices for their price point. The FW has been written from scratch and has developed at an impressive rate. I congratulate Fiio for taking the huge risk to enter this segment of the market without any previous DAP experience, or the same resources as the larger companies in the game.

I am happy to go through some growing pains with Fiio in order to have this SQ at these prices.
post #11463 of 12955
Quote:
Originally Posted by BabylonDown View Post

I notice alot of people are saying the X3 is loud enough where they don't need High Gains settings, but I seem to be getting different experience.

When using FLAC files, especially 24bit files, I am finding the volume just not loud enough. Max is 120 and I wish there was another 10-15% boost. Using CD Rips (16bit 44.1) its just enough at max volume. Using high gain though really adds a noticeable hiss/background noise.

This is also on cheapy Samsung S3 (35 ohm) OEM headphones. I'm hoping the Ostry KC06 (16 ohm) will allow me that extra bump in volume that I'm looking for. They are on the way.

eek.gif You should see a doctor because that should be uncomfortably loud. Lol. Maybe the OEM headphones are just crap.

Are your CD rips volume adjusted in some way during the ripping process?
post #11464 of 12955
Quote:
Originally Posted by x RELIC x View Post


eek.gif You should see a doctor because that should be uncomfortably loud. Lol. Maybe the OEM headphones are just crap.

Are your CD rips volume adjusted in some way during the ripping process?

+1 That would make my ears bleed, even with my K702s.

 

You aren't using one of the beta firmwares are you? One of those wouldn't go to max volume, but IIRC that was because it wouldn't go above 60 so probably not.

post #11465 of 12955
Quote:
Originally Posted by x RELIC x View Post

In reply to the sloppy release of the X3 and X5 I'd like to point out that these are their first DAPs and I think they've nailed the SQ in both devices for their price point. The FW has been written from scratch and has developed at an impressive rate. I congratulate Fiio for taking the huge risk to enter this segment of the market without any previous DAP experience, or the same resources as the larger companies in the game.

I am happy to go through some growing pains with Fiio in order to have this SQ at these prices.

 

 

As I said they are doing a better job of servicing their customers than Sansa or Cowon or I bet any other DAP seller, respect where respect is due. But ultimately they missed out on selling another one because they still don't have these things addressed. I might be crazy but I woulda thought M3U playback is 101 basic DAP stuff. Anyway...

Sound quality wise I can't really comment, but I have learned that sound quality is very much in the 'ear of the beholder'. I would expect many to feel a Sansa Clip is just as good, and if paired with a portable amp (even a Fiio hehehe) would sound just as good. Which is really the point, a Clip + amp is no doubt cheaper than a X3 or X5 and more versatile, it just comes down to Hi Res and whether you really can hear a difference vs you think you can tell a difference (abx will decide that).
A friend of mine shared me some settings that he uses on his J3 (BBE/EQ and Jet Effect tweaks) that he finds is scarily close to the sound an X3 has. I tried them and I'm not blown away, I much prefer the overall sound that I get from my i9+ with my own custom presets. For me I'm not interested in Neutral or Default Sound Quality, I'm interested in what the final possibilities are  with a player, the available EQ and other DSPs etc. I can completely see me still going for the Cowon DAP over the Fiio when all is said and done, even on the SQ side. The real advantage of the X3 is better amp to drive harder cans and Hi res, both of which arn't really applicable for me at the moment. Portable rigs mean IEMs for me.

post #11466 of 12955
Quote:
Originally Posted by BruceBanner View Post


As I said they are doing a better job of servicing their customers than Sansa or Cowon or I bet any other DAP seller, respect where respect is due. But ultimately they missed out on selling another one because they still don't have these things addressed. I might be crazy but I woulda thought M3U playback is 101 basic DAP stuff. Anyway...


Sound quality wise I can't really comment, but I have learned that sound quality is very much in the 'ear of the beholder'. I would expect many to feel a Sansa Clip is just as good, and if paired with a portable amp (even a Fiio hehehe) would sound just as good. Which is really the point, a Clip + amp is no doubt cheaper than a X3 or X5 and more versatile, it just comes down to Hi Res and whether you really can hear a difference vs you think you can tell a difference (abx will decide that).

A friend of mine shared me some settings that he uses on his J3 (BBE/EQ and Jet Effect tweaks) that he finds is scarily close to the sound an X3 has. I tried them and I'm not blown away, I much prefer the overall sound that I get from my i9+ with my own custom presets. For me I'm not interested in Neutral or Default Sound Quality, I'm interested in what the final possibilities are  with a player, the available EQ and other DSPs etc. I can completely see me still going for the Cowon DAP over the Fiio when all is said and done, even on the SQ side. The real advantage of the X3 is better amp to drive harder cans and Hi res, both of which arn't really applicable for me at the moment. Portable rigs mean IEMs for me.

I understand and respect your point of view, but strictly speaking about accuracy, neutrality and naturalness I'll take the Fiio DAPs. Some people prefer a coloured sound and that's cool. Some people don't have resolving enough headphones to notice a difference, and that's fine. Some recordings are mastered to sound loud at less than half volume and are dynamically compressed, but if you like the beat then rock on. Some files are highly compressed and less resolving systems gloss over the ugly artifacts, ignorance is bliss.

This is Head Fi and most people on Head Fi want as resolving and accurate to the recording as possible (without EQ) so they spend oodles of cash to get the last bit of detail they can muster. Fiio goes a long way toward this goal without breaking the bank (relatively) compared to other TOTL DAPs.
post #11467 of 12955
Quote:
Originally Posted by BruceBanner View Post

 

...
Sound quality wise I can't really comment, but I have learned that sound quality is very much in the 'ear of the beholder'. I would expect many to feel a Sansa Clip is just as good, and if paired with a portable amp (even a Fiio hehehe) would sound just as good. Which is really the point, a Clip + amp is no doubt cheaper than a X3 or X5 and more versatile, it just comes down to Hi Res and whether you really can hear a difference vs you think you can tell a difference (abx will decide that).

...

Whilst I agree that SQ is in the ear of the beholder, my X3 is much better than my Clips (in my ear), even with an external amp, or directly into IEMs (Sony XBA-30s, in my case). It isn't even marginal...

 

Just noticed x RELIC x got in first and said essentially what I was trying to say, but much more helpfully, eloquently and in more detail, than what I said. Just read what he said instead - it's much better.


Edited by tjw321 - 7/14/14 at 2:39am
post #11468 of 12955

Yep agreed.

post #11469 of 12955
Quote:
Originally Posted by x RELIC x View Post


eek.gif You should see a doctor because that should be uncomfortably loud. Lol. Maybe the OEM headphones are just crap.

Are your CD rips volume adjusted in some way during the ripping process?


I don't rip them myself. It's all downloaded from PB. ;) I'm pretty sure I don't have hearing loss either. I've also tried it with JVC HA-FR50 earphones (16 ohm) and the loudness is the same.

 

The Firmware I have is the latest FW3.0.


Edited by BabylonDown - 7/14/14 at 3:27am
post #11470 of 12955
Quote:
Originally Posted by BabylonDown View Post
 


I don't rip them myself. It's all downloaded from PB. ;) I'm pretty sure I don't have hearing loss either. I've also tried it with JVC HA-FR50 earphones (16 ohm) and the loudness is the same.

 

The Firmware I have is the latest FW3.0.

Unless you are plugging into the wrong socket, there is something wrong with your X3, then.

post #11471 of 12955
Quote:
Originally Posted by tjw321 View Post
 

Unless you are plugging into the wrong socket, there is something wrong with your X3, then.

I put my earphones into the slot next to an image of headphones. I'm assuming that's the right slot. lol

post #11472 of 12955
Quote:
Originally Posted by nmatheis View Post


E12 DIY

E12 DIY

E12 DIY

beerchug.gif

 

What's the difference with the regular one? Aside for being considerably more expensive. 

post #11473 of 12955
Quote:
Originally Posted by tjw321 View Post
 

Unless you are plugging into the wrong socket, there is something wrong with your X3, then.


Not necessarily. I did a poll over on ABI re: volume and what level people listen to etc. I'm known (over there) for listening at stupidily high volumes (on multiple Cowon's). Under certain settings I'll listen at 37/40 whereas most other users fall to 20-30 bracket.

I've been criticized for possibly being partially deaf, but irl my hearing has never really been questioned. For example, when sitting watching movies with 5.1 sound, I'm in sync with my wife as to what is an acceptable level (not too loud, not too quiet, just right etc). She listens to her Cowon at level 25.
I guess some people just really like listening to music at high volumes, anything less is just not as good an experience.

 

FWIW I find Android/Poweramp combo too quiet on multiple devices and various IEMs. I would need an amp if I were to go the smartphone/DAP route.

post #11474 of 12955

The thing is, it's really the 24bit files that kill the volume. After testing a few CD rips (16bit/44) vs their 24bit/96 counterparts, the CD rips are more than loud enough at max volume on low gain. I hate to put CD rips on my X3 since my intention primarily was to put high quality 24 bit albums on it and didn't think I would need to worry about the amp not being loud enough.

post #11475 of 12955
Quote:
Originally Posted by BabylonDown View Post
 

The thing is, it's really the 24bit files that kill the volume. After testing a few CD rips (16bit/44) vs their 24bit/96 counterparts, the CD rips are more than loud enough at max volume on low gain. I hate to put CD rips on my X3 since my intention primarily was to put high quality 24 bit albums on it and didn't think I would need to worry about the amp not being loud enough.

That is strange. It may just be that the hi-res files are mastered with more dynamic range. The one CD which I have multiple bit rates for, the hi-res one is actually louder.

 

Do you know if the hi-res files are taken from vinyl? It may be that the individuals who transferred them deliberately kept the volume low. My hi-res files have never been on vinyl so that may make a difference.

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