Originally Posted by willyvlyminck
Thx,looking Forward to read your Review, in the meanwhile I will wait to order, because if the FiiO E18 Comes Close, it could be the best deal at almost half the Price.
Though don't have the review yet (coming soon with a lot of pictures), just from a quick a/b comparison between A200p and E18
- using as usb dac connected to my laptop (Win7 ThinkPad), both improve the sound significantly, like lifting a veil where you get a lot more details, wider soundstage, better extension of lows and highs, and more clarity in upper mids (benefit the vocals)
- using both with my Note 2, the improvement in sound is not as drastic, but still noticeable with sound being more detailed.
- both have transport control to play/pause and skip next/prev that works with a phone and also Windows media player.
So the final decision really comes down to their differences. Due to a different set of DACs and overall footprint - they will have a different sound signature. A200p sounds more neutral and colder (digital) while E18 is warmer. I mentioned footprint because A200p is TINY and obviously can't fit big filtering caps like in E18. Strangely, while being significantly larger, E18 is more appropriate for use with a smartphone because you can piggyback it with a phone using rubber bands. A matchbox size A200p is more convenient to use as a laptop external usb dac with a quick access to a volume dial. IMHO, A200p would not be easy to attach to your smartphone for a portable use, unless you get very creative. Another big difference, E18 doesn't recommend to drive any headphones beyond 150 ohm and output power is not that high. In comparison, A200p is a little monster being able to drive up to 600 ohm with output level of 1.7 Vrms, so you can drive any top audiophile headphones (something you won't be able with E18).
So to be honest, it's not really about which one is better, but rather which one will fit your every day use better. Also keep in mind, A200p is a re-branded and improved Astell & Kern AK10 which Beyer sells for $33 less.