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👍DAP-off: Astell&Kern AK240, HiFiMAN HM-901, Sony ZX-1, FiiO X5, Chord Hugo, Calyx M, Aurender Flow, Lotoo Paw Gold - Page 4

post #46 of 1415

This thread is so exiting and will be the decider to getting the AK240.  Thank you so much for all your time doing this.

 

Had heard from my local store that people are using the Chord Hugo with the AK240 and are quite blown away!  Looks like my AK120 is up for sale now.

 

Did you like the AK120 out of interest.

 

Regards

Spitfire

post #47 of 1415
Only thing missing is calyxM.
post #48 of 1415
Quote:
Originally Posted by spitfire777 View Post

This thread is so exiting and will be the decider to getting the AK240.  Thank you so much for all your time doing this.

Had heard from my local store that people are using the Chord Hugo with the AK240 and are quite blown away!  Looks like my AK120 is up for sale now.

Did you like the AK120 out of interest.

Regards
Spitfire

Correct me if I am wrong, but if you just need a source to feed the HUGO by digital Toshlink, then Ak100, Ak120 and Ak240 Will provide exact same SQ ! I am right ?
post #49 of 1415
Quote:
Originally Posted by bmichels View Post

Correct me if I am wrong, but if you just need a source to feed the HUGO by digital Toshlink, then Ak100, Ak120 and Ak240 Will provide exact same SQ ! I am right ?
You are right theoretically unless the way digital signal leave the DAP varies ( how clear is the digital out? Is the jitter more)
post #50 of 1415

Great thread! Just received the UERM w/balanced cable and will be testing out with AK240.

post #51 of 1415
Quote:
Originally Posted by Currawong View Post
 

It's rather like: 

 

Portable audio:

1. Inexpensive

2. Convenient

3. Transparent and capable.

 

Pick two.

 

Assuming that I pick #2 and #3, which DAP is in the lead so far?

post #52 of 1415
Quote:
Originally Posted by warrenpchi View Post

Assuming that I pick #2 and #3, which DAP is in the lead so far?

I pick AK240.... Amos would probably agree smily_headphones1.gif
post #53 of 1415

number 2 is really hard to actually fulfill

post #54 of 1415
Quote:
Originally Posted by kkcc View Post

I pick AK240.... Amos would probably agree smily_headphones1.gif
HM901 scores all 3 at least for me
post #55 of 1415
Thread Starter 

kkcc is right. Warren is cheating, because he already has the answer. :wink_face:

 

 

For @purk I played Amber Rubarth through the Sony to the Roxannes with and without the Pico Power in the chain and I agree with what he says: There is something a bit funky about the amp, with multi-BA IEMs at least. With the Pico Power, a bit of glare in the treble has gone and the sound is more sweet. I feel it brings the level of detail a bit closer to the AK240, though that still reveals yet another layer of subtleties in the music still.

 

I'm starting to get a good picture of the strengths and weaknesses of the DAPs. IMO, so far the best all-round DAP, allowing for everything from sound quality to form and function to value is the Sony, especially if you're just sticking to IEMs. Full-sized headphones changes the game quite a bit, obviously. Then you have to consider expense (the AK240) or bulk (the HM-901 or adding an amp to the Sony).  Cutting features and price to the bone the X5 (possibly with an E12 for use with full-size headphones, though I don't own one to be sure) looks to be an excellent bargain if you don't already own an iPhone or iPod or want a separate, dedicated music player.

post #56 of 1415
Amos you should try to get a classic card, a minibox and a discrete card for the 901 to sample the versatility and different voicing possibilities with it smily_headphones1.gif

More than bulk the key issue of the 901 is the built and appearance. It just doesn't look premium sigh.... okay I know I'm superficial haha!

I really thought the Sony zx1 is exactly what i want and need. Android (for streaming services), sleek design, exquisite built, pocketable, IEM power friendly. Despite a few less than impressive demos, I still logically picked one up as it really checked all the boxes. Unfortunately its sound really doesn't jive with me and I end up selling it to a friend shortly. And I am left without a internet streaming DAP again frown.gif
Edited by kkcc - 4/17/14 at 6:13am
post #57 of 1415
Thread Starter 

@kkcc The same thing almost happened to me. I tried the Sony while in Tokyo next to the AK120 and preferred the latter. I'm not sure how much it would bug me if I'd bought one.

 

So there's a point I feel I should make: Even though I think the Sony has the best all-round value allowing for everything I don't think it would suit a lot of people. A full Android UI and streaming aren't important for a lot of people (eg: the Chinese market) and having removable storage might be, so for many people the X5 or HM-901 might be a better purchase. The Sony's bad points are the issue with the treble that bothers us plus the lack of removable storage.

 

The FiiO's bad points are lack of full-size headphone drive and no playlist support (yet), but it is inexpensive.

 

The HM-901 is very flexible if you can ignore the UI and scroll wheel frustration and sounds better than the Sony IMO. 

 

An AK120, now I think of it, would be better for me than the Sony, as versus the HM-901, in exchange for having a good UI I'd lose amp flexibility (if I cared about it).

 

So we are back to trade-offs. 

post #58 of 1415
Amos, do you use ALAC files? If so, what Mac app are you using to embed the album art on those files? Any issues getting it to show up on the various players? I used to have a hard time with it when I owned the AK100.
post #59 of 1415
Quote:
Originally Posted by Currawong View Post

kkcc is right. Warren is cheating, because he already has the answer. wink_face.gif




For @purk
 I played Amber Rubarth through the Sony to the Roxannes with and without the Pico Power in the chain and I agree with what he says: There is something a bit funky about the amp, with multi-BA IEMs at least. With the Pico Power, a bit of glare in the treble has gone and the sound is more sweet. I feel it brings the level of detail a bit closer to the AK240, though that still reveals yet another layer of subtleties in the music still.

I'm starting to get a good picture of the strengths and weaknesses of the DAPs. IMO, so far the best all-round DAP, allowing for everything from sound quality to form and function to value is the Sony, especially if you're just sticking to IEMs. Full-sized headphones changes the game quite a bit, obviously. Then you have to consider expense (the AK240) or bulk (the HM-901 or adding an amp to the Sony).  Cutting features and price to the bone the X5 (possibly with an E12 for use with full-size headphones, though I don't own one to be sure) looks to be an excellent bargain if you don't already own an iPhone or iPod or want a separate, dedicated music player.

I just noticed that you are amping the phone out of the zx1. You should get a proper lineout cable from the WM Port Amos. The improvements are substantial in my opinion. The sound quality of the ZX1 & Pico Power is nearly a match to what I am getting from my Audio-technica AT-DHA3000
Edited by purk - 4/17/14 at 9:09am
post #60 of 1415
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by shotgunshane View Post

Amos, do you use ALAC files? If so, what Mac app are you using to embed the album art on those files? Any issues getting it to show up on the various players? I used to have a hard time with it when I owned the AK100.

 

Yes. I need to figure this out as well. If I buy something from HDTracks the album art copies across fine, but I'm sure I have music that has album art that doesn't show on players. I never bothered to try and figure this out but it is starting to bother me a bit now, so I'll see if I can't work out what is going on.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by purk View Post
 
I just noticed that you are amping the phone out of the zx1. You should get a proper lineout cable from the WM Port Amos. The improvements are substantial in my opinion. The sound quality of the ZX1 & Pico Power is nearly a match to what I am getting from my Audio-technica AT-DHA3000

 

I might if i owned it and I don't doubt that you are right. I just noticed though the FiiO dock is $12.

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