or Connect
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Portable Source Gear › The Fiio X5 Thread
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

The Fiio X5 Thread - Page 624

post #9346 of 19524
Quote:
Originally Posted by x RELIC x View Post


Well the HiFiman is over twice the price. That's one thing it seems like you do get when you pay more. If you want to pair it with an e12 it'll help and still be half the price of the 901.

 

Right.. I certainly do not expect it to be at the level of a HM-901.  But certainly it should be significantly better than an iphone.  Pre smartphone days, this is easily justifiable, because you already carry a second portable device for music.  These days, your separate player really needs to be better than the phone you carry... for me, it's an iphone 5. 

 

Let's see how it sounds after more burn in time.

post #9347 of 19524
It's really all about perspective.

I think this is where subjective taste and perceived SQ really hits home.

If you're getting the same sound with coaxial to your stand alone DAC (with coaxial the X5 just passes on bits) then I'd say the X5 is doing an admirable job of reproducing the music on its own as it was recorded and not adding coloration. You may not like the perceived sterile SQ and that's fine.

By the way, I hear very little difference from my X5 coaxial out vs my MacBook Pro USB out to the Oppo HA-1, if any. Even the line out to the HA-1 sounds close to the HA-1 DAC (Sabre ESS 9018). To me the biggest differences between the X5 alone vs through the HA-1 come from the amp section. More power, impact, dynamics, separation, especially with balanced headphones. So yeah, the amp may be the limiting factor for you. To be honest, once I hooked up my e12 I haven't listened to the X5 on its own so take that as you will.

I find the iDevices are tailored to the mainstream, and the mainstream audience seems to prefer the loudness wars that have been going on since the 90's (just ask my wife tongue.gif). To hear the nuances of well recorded music with great dynamic range you need a higher end player to appreciate it. I hate, hate, hate most of the music I purchased on iTunes through my X5. Not so bad on my iPhone 5S, still terrible on my iPod Classic though. On the other hand, when I play well mastered music through the iPhone I really miss the nuances I hear on the X5. The iPod Classic just sounds flat to me (Cirrus Logic DAC).

Just to bring another player in the mix - Compared to the X3 the X5 can be perceived as sterile, but I feel that the X3 is a warm player that adds a fun factor to the sound with a slightly more powerful amp section. Especially with the X3's hardware based bass and treble controls. Many players try to strike a balance between fun and detail/accuracy and I feel the X5 falls in the latter camp.

Give it some time. Let it burn in. Listen exclusively for a week with a variety of music and then go back to your old players. You should hear a clear difference.

With the current quality of digital music now I love the fact that I can take around a high resolution, high end music player with me and slip into audio nirvana on the go. I simply don't get the same fidelity from my iDevices, That's the whole point of the X5.

It all depends on what you are pursuing when you listen to music. Different strokes I guess.

Oh man, another essay.
post #9348 of 19524
Quote:
Originally Posted by x RELIC x View Post

It's really all about perspective.

I think this is where subjective taste and perceived SQ really hits home.

If you're getting the same sound with coaxial to your stand alone DAC (with coaxial the X5 just passes on bits) then I'd say the X5 is doing an admirable job of reproducing the music on its own as it was recorded and not adding coloration. You may not like the perceived sterile SQ and that's fine.

By the way, I hear very little difference from my X5 coaxial out vs my MacBook Pro USB out to the Oppo HA-1, if any. Even the line out to the HA-1 sounds close to the HA-1 DAC (Sabre ESS 9018). To me the biggest differences between the X5 alone vs through the HA-1 come from the amp section. More power, impact, dynamics, separation, especially with balanced headphones. So yeah, the amp may be the limiting factor for you. To be honest, once I hooked up my e12 I haven't listened to the X5 on its own so take that as you will.

I find the iDevices are tailored to the mainstream, and the mainstream audience seems to prefer the loudness wars that have been going on since the 90's (just ask my wife tongue.gif). To hear the nuances of well recorded music with great dynamic range you need a higher end player to appreciate it. I hate, hate, hate most of the music I purchased on iTunes through my X5. Not so bad on my iPhone 5S, still terrible on my iPod Classic though. On the other hand, when I play well mastered music through the iPhone I really miss the nuances I hear on the X5. The iPod Classic just sounds flat to me (Cirrus Logic DAC).

Just to bring another player in the mix - Compared to the X3 the X5 can be perceived as sterile, but I feel that the X3 is a warm player that adds a fun factor to the sound with a slightly more powerful amp section. Especially with the X3's hardware based bass and treble controls. Many players try to strike a balance between fun and detail/accuracy and I feel the X5 falls in the latter camp.

Give it some time. Let it burn in. Listen exclusively for a week with a variety of music and then go back to your old players. You should hear a clear difference.

With the current quality of digital music now I love the fact that I can take around a high resolution, high end music player with me and slip into audio nirvana on the go. I simply don't get the same fidelity from my iDevices, That's the whole point of the X5.

It all depends on what you are pursuing when you listen to music. Different strokes I guess.

Oh man, another essay.

Ok, so you are making the assumption that my music library consists only of modern day crap-pop music.  It's not about loudness, but really the subtlety in the sound with regards to instruments, and sound stage that sets apart a good DAC from an idevices or any portable one for that matter.  How a piano can sound based on the way the artist is playing, the strum of the guitar, the richness of the vocals... 

 

What are you listening to that seems to really bring out the X5?  

post #9349 of 19524
Quote:
Originally Posted by timeslip View Post

Ok, so you are making the assumption that my music library consists only of modern day crap-pop music.  It's not about loudness, but really the subtlety in the sound with regards to instruments, and sound stage that sets apart a good DAC from an idevices or any portable one for that matter.  How a piano can sound based on the way the artist is playing, the strum of the guitar, the richness of the vocals... 

What are you listening to that seems to really bring out the X5?  

Not saying you listen to anything. Just pointing out what I see as different strategies from iDevices you're comparing and high resolution music players. Your piano, guitar and vocal references are what I like on the X5 and what seem fake to me on the iDevices. I went down the exact same road where at first I preferred the iPhones and iPods and iPads, but giving it some time I can't go back. These things I would attribute to the DAC and its implementation as well as the way they can reveal what exists in the source music.

I did point out that the e12 is what I prefer to listen with so perhaps the X5 amp isn't powerful enough for you and doesn't provide enough soundstage or oomph. This is where the amp will fill out the sound if the source is good.

The loudness wars isn't just about loudness, it's about compressing the dynamic range in music so the smallest details (life, realism) are lost. The decay of a symbol, the vibration of the guitar string, the fade of a piano key, the difference between a whisper and belting out the vocals. I'd recommend the "Ultimate Headphone Demonstration Disc" on HD TRACKS if you haven't already heard it. There is a section of tracks comparing dynamic compression with clean recordings. I hear a big difference. This trend towards dynamic compression in the recordings doesn't just apply to modern day crap-pop music either. A lot of folk, rock, singer/songwriter and soundtrack scores are heavily dynamically compressed. The X5 shows the differences clearly unlike the iDevices.

Just like with video, Standard Definition content looks like crap on an HD TV. SD content looks fine on a standard definition tv, but the HD TV shows it's weakness.

Trying to help here. Sorry if you read any differently.

Edit: In response to "what am I listening to?" it isn't anything that was poorly mastered. The pursuit of high end audio has ruined me for that and to a degree that makes me sad, but I just can't listen anymore if it doesn't sound lifelike or was recorded poorly. Classical, folk, classic rock, current rock, pop, soundtracks, jazz, whatever. If it's good I'll listen.
Edited by x RELIC x - 5/16/14 at 7:23pm
post #9350 of 19524

I use Fitear to go 334 with my x5. tons of detail; much more so then Macbook Pro> i river > Emotiva Dac1> Fitear, although the later have a bigger soundstage, but mudier sound.

post #9351 of 19524
Quote:
Originally Posted by timeslip View Post

My problem with the X5 so far, is that I feel that it lacks detail or sound stage that makes it a big step from an iphone 5.  It is certainly better, but it really needs a major step up in order to justify having another portable device.  Maybe I was just spoiled by the HM-901... The sound stage on that is just incredible, as well as the crisp-ness in detail.

I've only given the X5 a few hours of listen... Maybe it'll change... 

I don't want to get into the whole burn-in issue with others. But many of us found an improvement in the sound after a few weeks.
post #9352 of 19524

I think the reason some guys are saying the iPod sounds better is because they got used to the colored sound of the iPhone/iPod. The X5 is pretty neutral in that regard with little to no coloration. It is an entirely different sound than an iPod.

 

I came from Cowon J3 and I felt the J3 had a better sound when I first got my X5. I haven't touched the J3 in over a month and just recently listened to it and man what was I thinking. The X5 is leagues ahead of it though it took time to get used to bare natural sound of the music and not the colored J3 sound. Stay away from the iPod/iPhone for a while and then see if you still feel the same.

post #9353 of 19524

Has anyone tried to pair the X5 with Heir audio 4a? noticed that it's soundstage is congested or rather that 'in-your-face' effect.

post #9354 of 19524
Quote:
Originally Posted by krayziehustler View Post

I think the reason some guys are saying the iPod sounds better is because they got used to the colored sound of the iPhone/iPod. The X5 is pretty neutral in that regard with little to no coloration. It is an entirely different sound than an iPod.

I came from Cowon J3 and I felt the J3 had a better sound when I first got my X5. I haven't touched the J3 in over a month and just recently listened to it and man what was I thinking. The X5 is leagues ahead of it though it took time to get used to bare natural sound of the music and not the colored J3 sound. Stay away from the iPod/iPhone for a while and then see if you still feel the same.

This.

Exactly what I was saying (with a lot more detail).
post #9355 of 19524
Quote:
Originally Posted by krayziehustler View Post
 

I think the reason some guys are saying the iPod sounds better is because they got used to the colored sound of the iPhone/iPod. The X5 is pretty neutral in that regard with little to no coloration. It is an entirely different sound than an iPod.

 

I came from Cowon J3 and I felt the J3 had a better sound when I first got my X5. I haven't touched the J3 in over a month and just recently listened to it and man what was I thinking. The X5 is leagues ahead of it though it took time to get used to bare natural sound of the music and not the colored J3 sound. Stay away from the iPod/iPhone for a while and then see if you still feel the same.

^This.

 

I came from a 5.5 rockboxed iPod paired with the iBasso D6 (+9db gain on) and Shure SREH750DJ cans. Yes, a bass head!! I was very hesitant to upgrade as I thought there would be little gain. I then purchased the NAD HP50's followed by X5/E12. I was determined to listen to my music in a more natural way without the heavy emphasis on the bass after reading more of the threads on these forums about different sound signatures. Yes the X5 is very neutral but coupled with the NAD's which have a slightly warm emphasis I am very impressed with the sound. It does not take long for my ears to get used to a "new" sound signature. For those that find the X5 too neutral then your choice of headphones I guess becomes more critical. My setup was a fluke in a way having purchased the NAD's before the DAP.

 

I definitely think it was a worthwhile upgrade and I am most definitely hearing more detail.

 

Just finished the lawns, so going to sit on the balcony in the sun, crack open a few Beck's cans and listen to some Tony Joe White with a stupid grin on my face. I love the X5/E12 combo. Sounds even better after the 3rd can!!


Edited by oldmate - 5/16/14 at 8:09pm
post #9356 of 19524

Maybe my problem is that there lis little synergy between the X5 and Grado RS1i.  Ran the RS1i through the Naim DAC-V1, iPod 5.5G U2 Edition and the X5.  The iPod was the most fun, the Naim the most neutral but less fun and the X5 just plain dull compared to the other two.  I was really hoping that the X5/RS1i combo would be mind blowing. NOT. Here are some other comparisons:

 

  • Eytmotic HF3 - same results between the iPod, iPhone5 and X5. Use the HF3/iPhone 5 on my daily train comment and love the combo
  • Sennheiser Momentum (which have been sitting in a drawer for the last 4 months) - a little better/not bad - The X5 almost makes the Momentums sound neutral :blink:
  • Sennheiser HD800 - Not bad at all to Nice, OK, very nice - this is where the X5 kicks the iPod's butt - I'm actually (really) liking this setup - BUT - I'm not going to use the HD800 on the road or around the house

 

So, all this leaves me in a quandary - is the X5 the right DAP for me on the road? 

Maybe it's a matter of synergy. I'm certainly not going to by another set of HPs just to mate with the X5 though I am thinking of the vModa XS for on-the-road and commuting.

 

Since I can't return it, i'll give it another couple of firmware update tries and maybe get the vModa XS.

 

Don't get me wrong. If it can mate well with the HD800, I've got a lot of respect for it but I'm still struggling where it fits for me or what my use case is.

 

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by krayziehustler View Post
 

I think the reason some guys are saying the iPod sounds better is because they got used to the colored sound of the iPhone/iPod. The X5 is pretty neutral in that regard with little to no coloration. It is an entirely different sound than an iPod.

 

post #9357 of 19524

Just read a review on the NAD's and they're definitely on my audition list.

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by mullos View Post
 
post #9358 of 19524
Quote:
Originally Posted by MickeyVee View Post


If it helps any I love the Vmoda M-100's with the X5, especially on the go. The bass needs to be EQ about -5db for me, but it's a great pairing IMO.
post #9359 of 19524

OK.. we're from different planets.. I hated the M100 (loved the M80) :blink::veryevil::blink: From what I've read, the XS is a more neutral M80. All in good fun! YYMV and all that jazz.

Quote:

Originally Posted by x RELIC x View Post


If it helps any I love the Vmoda M-100's with the X5, especially on the go. The bass needs to be EQ about -5db for me, but it's a great pairing IMO.
post #9360 of 19524
Quote:
Originally Posted by MickeyVee View Post


Hahaha! I guess so. wink.gif

Personally may favourite is the LCD-XC (very neutral, if not a bit bright among Audeze's top end cans). My LCD-2 rev2 sounds muffled in comparison. I did say I need to EQ the bass on the M-100 though and really only use them when out in public (noisy).
Edited by x RELIC x - 5/16/14 at 10:30pm
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Portable Source Gear
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Portable Source Gear › The Fiio X5 Thread