Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Portable Source Gear › The Sad State Of The So Called Audiophile DAP Market
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

The Sad State Of The So Called Audiophile DAP Market - Page 16

post #226 of 1302

The answer is DIY and you got the best of everything - UI, free rockbox, big SSD storage, quality cables, long hrs of battery - all at much low cost. On top of that, you have tons of fun.

 

Here are some of my diyimods. Everyone of them has a clean sound bypassing PCB circuit immediately after the Wolfson with some astonishing caps.

 

post #227 of 1302
Quote:
Originally Posted by DMinor View Post
 

The answer is DIY and you got the best of everything - UI, free rockbox, big SSD storage, quality cables, long hrs of battery - all at much low cost. On top of that, you have tons of fun.

 

Here are some of my diyimods. Everyone of them has a clean sound bypassing PCB circuit immediately after the Wolfson with some astonishing caps.

 

 

Where can we buy iPod Classic with big SSD storage? (by big I mean more than 240 or something?) If you can provide a link in Europe it is even better.

 

PS: I have literally zero DIY skills so making my own is not an option.


Edited by AmberOzL - 9/30/13 at 7:51am
post #228 of 1302

C'mon guys, let's be good to one another!  :smile:  And remember...

 

post #229 of 1302
Quote:
Originally Posted by DigitalFreak View Post


Nope, there's apps available on the App Store that play FLAC

 

That's good news. My dad is getting an iPad and he promised it to me. I wanted to use it with an external DAC+amp but was not eager to convert my collection of music, so nice to hear there are apps that play flac.

post #230 of 1302
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by warrenpchi View Post
 

C'mon guys, let's be good to one another!  :smile:  And remember...

 

I wanna pet you and adopt you as my new pet for some reason

:blink:

post #231 of 1302
Quote:
Originally Posted by DMinor View Post
 

The answer is DIY and you got the best of everything - UI, free rockbox, big SSD storage, quality cables, long hrs of battery - all at much low cost. On top of that, you have tons of fun.

 

Here are some of my diyimods. Everyone of them has a clean sound bypassing PCB circuit immediately after the Wolfson with some astonishing caps.

 

 

 

I was actually looking into getting one of those iPod Classics with 240gb hard drive and bigger battery. I believe a banned member here "builds" them (I wouldn't do anything like that 'cause I also have 0 DIY skills!). I think he even updates them to read either SDD or microSD cards (not sure which!).

post #232 of 1302
Quote:
Originally Posted by gelocks View Post

I was actually looking into getting one of those iPod Classics with 240gb hard drive and bigger battery. I believe a banned member here "builds" them (I wouldn't do anything like that 'cause I also have 0 DIY skills!). I think he even updates them to read either SDD or microSD cards (not sure which!).


I do admire the DIYers. I was able to get my classic apart, but later found it to be more delicate than a Swiss watch inside. I'm clumsy like the big guy in Of Mice And Men.tongue.gif
post #233 of 1302
Quote:
Originally Posted by AmberOzL View Post
 

Where can we buy iPod Classic with big SSD storage? (by big I mean more than 240 or something?) If you can provide a link in Europe it is even better.

 

PS: I have literally zero DIY skills so making my own is not an option.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by gelocks View Post
 

 

I was actually looking into getting one of those iPod Classics with 240gb hard drive and bigger battery. I believe a banned member here "builds" them (I wouldn't do anything like that 'cause I also have 0 DIY skills!). I think he even updates them to read either SDD or microSD cards (not sure which!).

 

If you don't feel comfortable swapping the HDD for SSD yourself, buying from eBay may be an option. Just type "ipod classic ssd" and you may be able to find some ebayers who are selling the ones refurbished with the SSD's.

 

The 240GB SSD option is still limited and costly tho.

post #234 of 1302
Quote:
Originally Posted by DigitalFreak View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by warrenpchi View Post
 

C'mon guys, let's be good to one another!  :smile:  And remember...

 

I wanna pet you and adopt you as my new pet for some reason

:blink:

 

You had me at hello.  :D

post #235 of 1302

I had a whole post written on how two-device solution is the way to go, but that was before I watched the video.  Silly me -- do your homework.  

 

Now that I've watched the video, I think I know what the issue is.

 

It is all about expectation.  With personal music, we got spoiled with records.

 

Records worked. Well, except when they got scratched, but they still made sound.  

 

When cassettes came along, the key thing was, they had to work.  They more or less did (except when the tape came out of the shell).  If the tape was in the shell and you could still see it, they worked.

 

When CDs came along, they worked.  Well, except when they got scratched, but you kept them pristine, and they worked.  They were digital, they ran using programs, and there was a miniature computer inside of the players to run the buttons.  But everything was designed to work when it shipped.  

 

Sony got this, and when they made cassette Walkmans -- portable music! -- they worked.  Discmans worked.  Well, except that they skipped when they moved, but put in some RAM, and they worked again.

 

Apple, when they made their iPods, they said, "they've got to work."  Think records. Cassettes.  CDs.  Gotta work.  They were little computers with click wheels and hard drives, but their designers set the standard that they had to work without the user needing to worry too much about it.  

 

Somewhere along the way, we got clever.  CDs probably started it.  "Shuffle play," they called it.  Hmm, a new feature.  Random song order. Then programmable song order.  Then CD Text, so I can see the music title.  Multi-disc players, first 3, then 5, then 100, then 200, then 400.  Lots of silly clicking to enter in the CD names using a remote.  To save time, attach a keyboard, just like a computer.

 

We got clever with features.  It wasn't just about playing the music any more.  How about auto-tagging the music?  Cover art?  Compress the music when you load it in to save space?  How do you want it compressed?  Do you want streaming?  

 

As the feature count grew, the software to run things got more complicated.  What did the audio device manufacturers do?  

 

Field-updatable firmware.  Yes, the manufacturer can reprogram the device after the user bought it, with the user's "help."  So, things can be "fixed after purchase."

 

Without this feature, devices would have to ship "working."  Now they could ship with limited functionality, with a fix coming later.  

 

Some people consider this capability a feature.  Obviously, when misused, it is a rather messy bug. 

 

Music is less fun when you are worried about playing the music in the first place.

post #236 of 1302
Thread Starter 

Well in a way you're right. I don't think it's to much to expect a passably good user experience especially when the user is paying a higher premium for a product. Yes, when I look into an audiophile DAP I expect audio quality to be the overriding factor in development. BUT, I also expect a passable user experience especially when mobile is concerned. I'm not asking for smart playlists or a 5 star rating system or a prettier looking carbon copied iOS interface system. All I'm expecting is a fluid UI that when I navigate it it's fluid and is set up well enough so that I can find what I want within an acceptable amount of time. Playlists would be nice but not a deal breaker and I think in this day and age options such as gapless should be a standard feature and not something that should be treated as some sort of special feature. If there's no palylist well fine, there's no playlist on the player. The last thing a company should ever do is advertise there's a playlist feature only to have the user accesses the playlist feature and find out it doesn't work. That's just dumb in my opinion and serves to only to put the offending company is a bad light in the eyes of it's customer base.

post #237 of 1302

@ Jazzman,

 

Yes, you are right but then you have comparison b/w manufacturers.  Some put more efforts into releasing a truly finished product right out of the door while another put out half-baked but advertised as being finished, hence we have angry customers and damaged has already been done.  Don't released your products unless it is ready for primetime.  After all, we paid our hard earn for it and we are entitled to get what we paid for.  Unlike Sony or Apple, these audiophile DAPs company do not offer a full refund.  Even if they do, buyer will have to spend $$$ on return shipment.

post #238 of 1302

As a headphone enthusiast who likes to run with an external amp while remaining "portable," I have no interest in a DAP with built-in headphone amp.  I'm only interested in a well-built DAP with a card reader, a bug-free UI, a good 96/24-capable DAC and an analog Line Out jack.  

 

That doesn't exist, but my Sony PCM-M10 recorder/player comes very close with its a MicroSD card reader, an absolutely error-free UI (noteworthy for being at firmware version 1.0.0), gap-less playback of MP3 and WAV up to 96/24 (via its proprietary sigma-delta DAC), and a 3.5mm TRS Line Out jack.   

 

The shot that gets the most hits on Google Images when you search for "Toxic Cables" !

 

The $214.00 (currently) Sony PCM-M10 is mass-produced, and thus, offers build quality, reliability, and ergonomics the likes of which we will likely never see from any of the small companies who are dishing out half-baked "audiophile" DAPs.

 

Yes, it's a recorder, with mics and pre-amps I really don't use.  But how is that so much different from buying a DAP that has a headphone amp I don't use?   And besides, we're talking $200 for something that works as designed, right out of the box, vs. a lot more money for something that has you downloading firmware updates right up until the day the device is discontinued - never really fixing all the bugs!

 

I recently bought a refurbished HM-801 (my first-ever HiFiMan purchase), on the assumption that with the release of the HM-901, I would not suffer the pain and anguish of an early adopter, but...  Even with the last firmware revision (v1.23), the HM-801 had me jumping through a lot of hoops just to get it to play 44.1/16 and 96/24 files without popping loudly between tracks.  It's bad enough that the HM-801 doesn't offer gap-less playback, but the loud pops (and sometimes, double-pops) between tracks was unbearable.  Three days later, having figured out on my own, with no responses from Head-Direct or HiFiMan support, that only WAV files cause the popping, I spent an entire Saturday, using dbPoweramp to batch-convert my entire SD card library from WAV to FLAC.  But then, having put the FLAC files back onto the same FAT32-formatted 64GB cards on which my WAV files had resided, I discovered that the total number of FLAC files per fully-loaded 64GB card exceeded the capacity of the HM-801s internal database - it would lock up during the scan of the 64GB card, forcing me to power down to reset the HM-801.  (The HM-801 had scanned those same FAT32 64GB cards without difficulty when the total file count was less with WAV files instead of FLAC files.) Then I spent several more hours at my computer, loading all of my FLAC files onto 32GB SD cards - and could only then, finally play the HM-801 without popping between tracks, with both 44.1/16 and 24/96 files.

 

Then and only then, was I ready to start actually using the HM-801, to discover its battery life is deplorable!  My Sony PCM-M10 gives me 35 hours of Line Out playback on a single pair of AA NiMh Eneloop batteries.  No brainer!

 

Lastly, I did a lot of A/B testing of the Line Outs and concluded that the HM-801 implementation of PCM1704U-K DACs doesn't offer enough of a sound quality advantage over the Sony PCM-M10's proprietary DAC to warrant putting up with all the problems that accompany using the HM-801!  What a relief it was to invoke HiFiMan's 30-day refund policy and get back to using my spectacular PCM-M10!   I loaded everything back to WAV on my 64GB MicroSD cards and was good to go!

 

 

Sony has recently released (in China and Japan) a US $980 big brother to the Sony PCM-M10...

 

The Sony PCM-D100

 

To start with, just look at the build quality compared to the stuff we for which we pay equal or higher amounts, from the likes of HiFiMan or iBasso!

 

 

 

 

 

And this bad boy will no doubt work perfectly, right out of the box.  It could end up being at firmware revision 1.0.0 forever, just like the PCM-M10.

 

And get this:  It supports gap-less playback (and recording) in WAV, FLAC, and other formats, at resolutions up to 192/24, plus DSD -and- it has native support for SDXC-formatted cards!

 

With its combo TRS and optical Line Out, I can't wait to get my hands on one of these!  I don't care that its UI is designed for recording more so than for playback, as I've been using the PCM-M10 UI for nearly three years, now and don't find it to be lacking in any way.  I don't need playlists, shuffle, etc. 

 

No date has yet been announced for its release in the Americas, but I will gladly be an early adopter of this puppy, to run with my current "transportable" rig.  (And I might even make a few recordings with it!)

 

 

 

HPRC 2400F case, with Touch shown for scale.

 

Mike


Edited by zilch0md - 10/1/13 at 3:30pm
post #239 of 1302

Nice pics, Mike.  The Sony PCM-D100 sure looks like a beast.  I think the big difference is that no DAP that was ever created and targeted towards this community can be considered as "Professional" grade.  They are just audio toys that sounds subjectively good, IMO.

post #240 of 1302
My second hand 801 has been problem free, so has my 601 and Studio, sure both are painful to use, but so is my LP12 !
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Portable Source Gear
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Portable Source Gear › The Sad State Of The So Called Audiophile DAP Market