I've been adding to my audio equipment collection in search of something to add a more warm tone to my extensive and varied collection of digital music. I listen to all kinds of stuff from ambient to rock, and while I've got the ambient covered, I still can't get some of my rock collection to have the right sound. I've tried upgrading to 24-bit FLAC, Westone 4 IEM's, and a variety of amps and players but I can't quite get what I want. I have a variety of DAP's including the Marantz NA7004, the FIIO X3, the IBASSO DX50 & the Sony F886. I used to have a FIIO E18 until my husband borrowed it... I would have replaced it but I'd like to see what people have to say about what to try next. Oh, as far as the amps go, I have the JDS C5, FIIO E11, & the FIIO E12DIY (which I just got). I'm starting to think that there's no one combination that is best for each genre of music & that's OK. Once I got my Westone 4's I was finally able to hear the clarity in my 'test track' of Olafur Arnalds' 3326. The Marantz as well as the 2 Wilson DAC players provides a nice warmth to most of my music but none of them (so far) have the fullness of sound when I listen to classic rock (like the remastered Beatles 24bit FLAC). Perhaps there's some combination that will work on the FIIO E12DIY but I haven't played around with it beyond the stock build.
Anyhoo, I'm wondering what I should try next in my never-ending quest. Should I try a different amp (like the HIFIMAN EF-2A) or should I try a different DAC? I need something that has a coaxial input, unless there's absolutely no other option than to go with USB input. I liked the sound of the FIIO E18 but it didn't have the accuracy that some of my other products have & it's also limited to USB input. So I'm leaning towards something with a Burr Brown DAC, but I'm curious about the ESS Sabre as I've never heard one yet.
So, basically I want a warmer more analog sound but with accuracy/clarity & a wide sound stage. Do I need a different DAC, amp, or scrap it all and start from scratch? Any help would be appreciated.