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Head-Fi Buying Guide (Portable Amps, DACs, & DAPs) (page 2)
Last edited: 6/26/15
I own 3 High-end headphones ( HD 600, HD-650s, and HE 500s) and this amplifier does everything I want it to do. The headphones have been driven with authority, speed and transparency. The sound is...
Disclaimer: I would like to thank www.hifinage.com and Fidue for this review sample. I was supposed...
I received by LG for review purposes. Here are my thoughts are 6 weeks. Aesthetics. The unique ‘on-neck horse-shoe’ design is inconspicuous sits neatly and discreetly around the neck line....
Signature Acoustics C-12: The Elemental Underdog Woodies Company Background Audiophiles love music, especially when played from high quality audio products that contain several different...
Before I start my review, I would like to Thank SoundMagic for providing me with a review sample in exchange for my honest opinion. If you live in US, they are currently available at a...
The Fiio X5 Thread - Page 305
Gear mentioned in this thread:
Dsd is under development
Yep, no contest you are going to be thrilled! I don't have those expensive earphones though.
Me neither haha... still waiting on my Black Friday order... I am rocking my Shure SE425's with custom cable at the moment ! :)
EDIT: not really custom cable... bought it from Fiio as well :)
Edited by JonathanCandel - 2/20/14 at 7:08am
Just got the X5 tour sample last night, so I switched through my headphones to see how they sounded with the X5. I spent a half hour with the LCD2 and can say that they sound very good with the X5. However, that is not saying much because the LCD2s are fairly easy to drive and make most everything sound good. The LCD2s even sounds ok with my Clip Zip so I think it requires a little more explanation.
IMO, what is unique about the LCD2 is its ability to scale down extremely well. The LCD's signature changes significantly when scaling from warm and euphoric with a small congested sound stage with low end low power sources to crystal clear, punchy, black background, and a much more realistic sound stage with higher end higher power sources. Throughout the scale, the LCD2 has a very realistic "being there" sound. At the higher end of the scale, the signature ranges from laid back and rich with something like a Bryston BHA-1 to aggressive/engaging with my Mjolnir. The difference is being able to take a pleasant nap while listening to spending half your listening time up on top of your chair involuntarily playing air guitar. You know what i'm saying.
My early impressions of the LCD2s with the X5 are this: The X5 has enough power that the LCD2 sound stage opens up a bit and the warmness clears up a lot, but not as much as a Mjolnir or Bryston that boast between 5 and 8 watts. However, the signature leans more toward the Bryston laid back signature than my Mjolnir's more aggressive signature. The most important point is that I don't feel the need to amp the X5 as the sound is very pleasing as is. It is a very full size and realistic sounding experience. It is not as good as through my Mjolnir, but that was never expected. Later this weekend I will try to use the X5 as a DAC to run my Mjolnir to see what happens.
However, the star of the show so far with the X5 is my CIEM, the Hidition NT6 Pro, that has never sounded so good before even with my desktop. More to come soon....
So far, I can tell you that - IMHO - the NT6 Pros are outstanding paired with the X5.
My main comparable rig is with my DX50. The DX50 is dialed in with FW1.2.8, paired with my BH2 as a two piece stack. Without the BH2, the X5 wipes the floor with the DX50 with great authority and a much superior DAC providing a much richer/blacker/punchier/3d sound. Adding the BH2 amp, the DX50 sound is closer adding the punch and richness of the X5. However, the BH2 has warmer more euphoric sound that is aggressive and sometimes fatiguing in its slam with the NT6pro. The X5 is a little more laid back allowing the details to flow through widening the sound stage a bit. The other notable difference is that the BH2 focuses a bit more on mid-bass while the X5 bass response is flatter going really deep into the sub-bass allowing the sub-bass to shine through without covering it up. This plays well with the NT6 Pro signature promoting its unique frequency extension both directions.
The things I appreciate with the X5 paired with the NT6pro:
- Stackless: it has all the punch and authority that I need with the NT6Pro so no stack required.
- Effortlessness: the sound is full sized with rich texturing and without any clipping or thinness. The sounds from each singer/instrument sound like they are on the same stage and are scaled correctly. Drums sound like drums rather than like weird clicks.
- Neutral Signature: as discussed so far in the X5 threads, the X5 is neutral across the frequency range with a slight warmness that pairs very well with the NT6pro enhancing its signature and supporting its extension both directions.
- Sub-bass Authority: The X5 has the power and signature to support an authoritative sub-bass down to the bottom of the range showing off what the NT6pro can really do.
- Low Volume Performer: The X5 has authoritative power, full sized sound, and a realistic sound stage down to very low volumes. This is particularly important to me as I am a low level listener usually needing an amp to keep the sound from falling apart at lower volumes. The X5 has a very wide sweat spot in its volume range that is much greater than most DAPs.
- Realistic Details: The detail is all there, but in a much more natural sense than the DX50 with a much blacker background to support the 3d sound stage. For example, a singers breath between passages sounds like you were standing next to them vs. an unnatural metallic sizzle that is pushed forward.
Unfortunately, I don't have nor have I heard the DX100 or balanced 901 to know where those fit into the equation. However, between 2 to 4 times the cost if you include the required balanced cable upgrade with the 901, I cannot imagine them being that much better. Given the form factor and my value buyer attitude, they would need to sound at least twice as good for me to consider them over the X5.
Actually no, technically a rectangle is 2-D, a cuboid is what the x5 is...heh, I know mister details here. Or you could say it is a rectangular cuboid, right cuboid, rectangular box, rectangular hexahedron, right rectangular prism, or rectangular parallelepiped... I'm just avoiding doing my taxes right now...so using this as a procrastination device.
Edited by bearFNF - 2/20/14 at 2:56pm
Wikipedia and cut 'n paste... Was looking up and reading tax forms and started to feel my brain seize so have to take a break...
- The Fiio X5 Thread
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- › Head-Fi Buying Guide (Introduction)
- › Head-Fi Buying Guide (Over-Ear Headphones)
- › Head-Fi Buying Guide (Over-Ear Headphones) 2
- › Head-Fi Buying Guide (Over-Ear Headphones) 3
- › Head-Fi Buying Guide (In-Ear Headphones)