That was a very balanced response...
I am particularly interested that you say the 901 is on the same level or better. I am ignorant of the development costs associated with creating a slick UI. Maybe that is worth the price difference.
If so the Calyx M looks like a huge Bargain. The sony MW ZX1 likewise.
Personally ZX1's sound doesn't click with me. I preordered it from Japan without demo mainly to get a high quality player for online streaming services like Spotify for my music discovery, as well as replacing the DX50 as a small pocketable DAP. I dropped the preorder after demoing the F886, and didn't went back to it after demoing it in the local Sony showroom. But they are on the right track with standard android with full Google Play Store support. I prefer the PHA2 type of sound sig over ZX1.
For the UI/firmware development, I strongly believe it is also heavily dependent on the experience of the developer (in terms of developing music player UI, as well as developing firmware for a particular chipset/SoC) gained by making these players. It won't be an easy problem for smaller niche maker to just throw money at it to solve.
That made me particularly impressed by Calyx's UI from earlier vids. They show sophistication and polish beyond your typical first generation products. If the firmware performance/stability and SQ matches the silky UI we really have a winner. Heck I'm even willing to endure some early firmware issues if SQ is good.
Edited by kkcc - 3/3/14 at 1:28am