Very briefly, random notes. Note the ZX1 has hardly had an hour of burn in since it spent the last 3 hrs copying (and I had an afternoon siesta) :-Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Sonics so far (all this with no EQ, no Clear Audio, etc.)
- the AK120 (f/w 1.37) seems to sound a little "brighter" than the ZX1 but the HM-901 sounds warmest
- bass seems to hit a tad harder on the ZX1 compared to the AK120 (is this cos of its 3 ohm Zout?). Haven't compared bass response against the HM-901 yet
- AK120 does exhibit the "bigger sound" especially in terms of depth and filling in the space
- ZX1 OTOH seems to sound a little wider but flatter in terms of depth perception
- AK120 does present a slightly more refined sound but the ZX1 isn't far behind
- AK120 takes the lead for harder-to-drive cans. With my V-Modex (V-Moda with Fostex T50RP drivers), I'm on max volume and it just satisfies.
- Although overall the AK120 seems to take the crown over the unburnt in ZX1, at least to my (and my wife's) thoughts it does so marginally. The justification of an extra $450 (or in Japan Y47,000). But this is just typical of HF, the law of diminishing returns apply. Whilst on the topic of value for money, note I don't own a DX50 nor Fiio X3 therefore cannot compare.
- Media Scanner indexing approx 1400 tracks took about 5 mins
- ZX1 album/track UI scrolling, etc. is faster than the AK120
- ZX1 has a search feature (very welcome!!)
- ZX1 does slight delay when the player switches from speaker to headphone out when you plug your headphones in (this is whilst the player is playing, won't bug most ppl unless you're testing and playing two DAPs in sync and switching the headphones back 'n forth)
- ZX1 having a speaker is a little annoying (or embarrassing as it could play your music out loud in public without any headphones)
Some Why Questions
- Why would I keep the AK120 and sell of the ZX1?
1) 'cos I want to have the refined sound and prepared to pay for it
2) 'cos it plays DSD even though not natively
3) 'cos I need a USB DAC to plug to my notebook
4) 'cos i need optical out
5) 'cos I can take expand to beyond 256GB with upcoming 128GB MicroSDs and don't care if the AK120's CPU is going to slowdown in processing/scroll through all my content.
6) 'cos it uses a generic microUSB interface instead of some proprietary connector
7) 'cos I can switch off Media Scanner whenever I can't be bothered to wait for the player to reindex the track list
- Why would I want to keep the ZX1 and sell the AK120?
1) 'cos it comes very close to the TotL players like the AK120 and HM-901 but at 40% cheaper.
2) 'cos I like the way it hits the bass
3) 'cos i can USB out to an external DAC/Amp
4) 'cos it's faster to scroll through an extensive track list
5) 'cos it provides more functionality with it's track/album/artist search feature
6) 'cos it's I can choose my player (Sony, Google Music, etc....note I've not downloaded Poweramp yet)
7) 'cos it's a generic touch device of which I can browse the web, access social media apps, access DLNA, etc where Wifi is available. Store my photos, Contacts, etc.
8) 'cos it's lighter than the AK120
thanks so much for the impressions. i was deciding be tween the AK120 and the ZX1.........leaning tower the zx1 now....