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The Sad State Of The So Called Audiophile DAP Market - Page 47

post #691 of 1307

Well that didn't take long...

 

People in the Asian market have just started receiving their FiiO X5, with initial reports being pretty good, but now we have a user posting this:

 

http://www.head-fi.org/t/661411/fiio-x5-thread-info-updated-on-jan-17th-2014/3780#post_10210774

 

Ugggh!  

post #692 of 1307
Quote:
Originally Posted by zilch0md View Post

Well that didn't take long...



 



People in the Asian market have just started receiving their FiiO X5, with initial reports being pretty good, but now we have a user posting this:



 



http://www.head-fi.org/t/661411/fiio-x5-thread-info-updated-on-jan-17th-2014/3780#post_10210774



 



Ugggh!  


 



Shoddy.
post #693 of 1307
Quote:
Originally Posted by zilch0md View Post
 

Well that didn't take long...

 

People in the Asian market have just started receiving their FiiO X5, with initial reports being pretty good, but now we have a user posting this:

 

http://www.head-fi.org/t/661411/fiio-x5-thread-info-updated-on-jan-17th-2014/3780#post_10210774

 

Ugggh!  

i think...what bowei have is a review unit......not the real production unit...

post #694 of 1307

And something already addressed by Fiio later in that thread:

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Bloggs View Post


James and co. mentioned there should be threadlock of a black or yellow color applied to the screw, and bowei doesn't see any on his. They also say the screw should break before the threadlock unbinds.

While I must admit that it doesn't exactly inspire confidence when such an omission is made on a review unit, at least now we know that this should be considered a returnable defect, not a "situation normal" snafu redface.gif
 
 
In short, sounds like they missed that part of the review unit by accident and if this occurs, your device would be covered under the warranty for a replacement.   A big of egg on their faces, but I can't think of a better way to respond.
post #695 of 1307

I feel you man..

 

No offence to chinese hifi makers ( me being chinese as well), they have no idea how software works.. or at less not interested in it. That is y i refuse to by any DAP from a chinese company. I have been looking at getting a high end DAP myself for over a year now and I have narrow down 2 options worth considering. It is the sony zx1 or the new AK240. The Hifiman 901 may sound good but the UI is from the 1980s..and not to say build quality...I am so not paying $1000 for a piece of plastic with crap software..

post #696 of 1307

I hear you eso6686!  I think many people share your sentiments.

 

I'm a huge Sony fan, but their NWZ-ZX1, which no doubt has a great UI, only offers 15mW into a 16-Ohm load - too weak for anything except IEMs and the most efficient of headphones.  With the right transducers, the ZX1 might make an awesome DAP.

 

But worse, Sony designed their PHA-2 portable DAC/amp, with the convenience of USB charging (5V), which limits them to using a single-cell, 3.7V lithium-ion battery, the voltage of which probably has some role to play in limiting the output power of the PHA-2's headphone amp to only 58mW into a 50-Ohm load - per their specs.  

 

Ironically, the PHA-2 uses a chip amp, called the Texas Instruments TPA6120, that's capable of outputting 1500 mW into 32-Ohm (or 960 mW into 50-Ohm) when given a 12V supply voltage, and a whopping 2000 mW into 32-Ohm (or 1280 mW into 50-Ohm), with a 15V supply voltage!  See Figure 8, on page 8 of the TPA6120A2 data sheet: http://www.ti.com/lit/ds/symlink/tpa6120a2.pdf

 

But the PHA-2's TPA6120 isn't putting out 2000 mW into 32-Ohms. That chip needs 12V for 1500 mW or 15V for 2000 mW (into 32-Ohms). The PHA-2 is using a one-cell, 3.7V battery.  ?????

 

The iBasso PB2 portable headphone amp uses a 3-cell, 11.1V battery (with different op-amps, of course).  The RSA SR71B uses a four-cell, 14.8V battery (with different op-amps).  The HiFiMan HM-801 and HM-901 DAPs use an 18V serial array of two 9V batteries to power their amp sections - that's why they run so hot.  Triad Audio's L3 offers an external battery option that can supply up to 30V to the rails. The correlation is obvious: Weak battery = weak power output.

 

So, even though the Sony PHA-2 portable DAC/amp allows something akin to an I2S digital connection from the ZX1, after spending about $750 for the ZX1 and another $500 for the PHA-2, you'll still be looking for efficient headphones -or- you'll be looking for an external amp that can be connected to the PHA-2's Line Out jack!  

 

Unfortunately, Sony is (smartly?) going after the much larger community of buyers who demand small devices with long play times.  It kills me that the PHA-2 contains a TI chip capable of producing 2000 mW into 32 Ohms (with a 15V supply voltage), but Sony gives us no way to connect anything but a 5V external supply!  They could have satisfied both markets (with sufficient heat sinks...).

 

Arrrrgh!  

 

Mike


Edited by zilch0md - 1/28/14 at 9:45am
post #697 of 1307

I'm having second thoughts about the FiiO X5 though - going on reports of its sound quality and learning that it puts out 460mW into 16-Ohms:

 

http://www.head-fi.org/t/661411/fiio-x5-thread-info-updated-on-jan-17th-2014/3840#post_10213951

 

I'm not going to be an early adopter, though.  I'll wait for firmware revision number 100, at least...  

 

:-)

 

Mike

post #698 of 1307
Quote:
Originally Posted by zilch0md View Post
 

I'm having second thoughts about the FiiO X5 though - going on reports of its sound quality and learning that it puts out 460mW into 16-Ohms:

 

http://www.head-fi.org/t/661411/fiio-x5-thread-info-updated-on-jan-17th-2014/3840#post_10213951

 

I'm not going to be an early adopter, though.  I'll wait for firmware revision number 100, at least...  

 

:-)

 

Mike

 

I was part of the tour, the X5 still has shoddy Media Library refresh issues (just like the X3). Both are being overhauled but I'm not sure. I'll definitely wait for firmware updates. Other than that the player served me well while I had it. Right now I'm using the AK100 MK2 with Sennheiser Momentum on-ears. Not bad and NO issues building the library ;) but... there's always a but... traversing music with the tiny touch screen is meeeeh-rific... :(

post #699 of 1307

Thanks gelocks!  

post #700 of 1307
Quote:
Originally Posted by Saidear View Post
 

When I purchase a DAP from the likes of Sony, Apple, Phillips, or Sansa who have a proven history in the market, you bet I do.  When I purchase it from a relatively obscure and niche company like FiiO, AK, etc - I do so knowing full well I am sacrificing the comfort of a proven track record for the thrill of getting something just that more enjoyable.  I've already had to retag my music with Apple in order to get my files to play the way I want them, doing so for a non-mainstream player isn't that big of a deal to me.  

 

I am not normal in that regard, I suppose, and I can understand that many others would prefer a far more mainstream experience to their audiophile-grade DAP. I'd love it if the next iPod sported some serious attention to audio quality.  Here is the sad reality though: this is a niche market.  That means the main players aren't too interested in catering to us since there isn't enough money to justify the modest returns they would see.  The smaller players who can make gains by eating at the edges of the PMP market where the big fish don't go unfortunately lack the resources to offer the same quality outside of the big differentiator: sound. 

 

I disagree. Most people don't even know they want better quality, but once they've had it... You might remember a company that designed a VERY expensive phone for people who didn't realize they "needed" a $500 phone?

 

The reason this currently a niche market is twofold:

 

1) The big players like Sony and Apple are comfortable making money on equipment that S. Jobs would call s#!t. They feel more comfortable reporting volume to shareholders at a price-point that has proven acceptable to a majority of consumers. They will cost/corner cut as long as the numbers hold out... And S. Jobs is dead...

 

2) They little guys are either unwilling or unable to create the NEW market by taking a risk and creating awareness. One that makes the iPod as obsolete as the flip-phone.

 

Unfortunately for us, with more consumers accepting crap products, it's very unlikely that we'll ever see a market defining portable music device again. The launch of the iPod classic and iPhone were probably the end of the possibility in my opinion.

 

Music is on the cloud, people have more readily accepted a phone that will provide media access, rather than carry a phone and a pmp. I have a younger cousin who asked my why I still had iPods, and didn't understand why i didn't just use my phone. 

post #701 of 1307
post #702 of 1307


Damn! Did I write an article under an assumed name in my sleep ;)

 

My favorite part:

 

"iPod accounted for just $973 million of the company's record $57.6 billion revenue last quarter."

 

WAKE UP IRIVER!

post #703 of 1307
I would still like to get an iPod 5th gen with a fresh battery, clear case, and faster hard drive. My current iPod 5th gen lasts just a few hours on its current battery, and the hard drive takes a while to spin-up to load tracks.

That is, unless the FiiO X5 completely blows me away.
post #704 of 1307
Quote:
Originally Posted by miceblue View Post

I would still like to get an iPod 5th gen with a fresh battery, clear case, and faster hard drive. My current iPod 5th gen lasts just a few hours on its current battery, and the hard drive takes a while to spin-up to load tracks.

That is, unless the FiiO X5 completely blows me away.


You may be better off with just upgrading the battery on the ipod and taking a look at doing the compact flash mod on it at the same time you have it open for surgery.  Dminor has reported success with a 256 gig compact flash card.

post #705 of 1307
Quote:
Originally Posted by davidcotton View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by miceblue View Post

I would still like to get an iPod 5th gen with a fresh battery, clear case, and faster hard drive. My current iPod 5th gen lasts just a few hours on its current battery, and the hard drive takes a while to spin-up to load tracks.


That is, unless the FiiO X5 completely blows me away.


You may be better off with just upgrading the battery on the ipod and taking a look at doing the compact flash mod on it at the same time you have it open for surgery.  Dminor has reported success with a 256 gig compact flash card.
I was hoping not to open this unit since it's the family unit and not my own personal one.

But yes, I've seen Dminor's collection of OVER 9000!!! iPods + mods. XD
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