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The DX90 by iBasso . . . Sound impressions . . . . . . . New Firmware, 2.1.0 - Page 99

post #1471 of 1751
Quote:
Originally Posted by borrego View Post
 

The fellows in the our local Hong Kong and China DAP forums are usually more critical on Chinese brand DAPs. We generally have fewer brand worshipers here and opinions are more objective.

 

The common consensus in the Hong Kong and Chinese forums is the DX90 LO is very good and the DX90 HO is just "ordinary'... to the point that there is already fellow removing the TI634 BUF chips (to reduce current drain) and converting the HO to Balanced LO similar to that of RWAK120-B (http://www.um-audio.com/forum.php?mod=viewthread&tid=1333&extra=page%3D1) :

 

 

This pictures can be from a DX50? The capacitor have a gold color on the DX90 board :

 

 

Source : http://headphoniaks.com/blog/?p=807&preview=true


Edited by Migou67 - 6/15/14 at 4:32am
post #1472 of 1751
Quote:
Originally Posted by Migou67 View Post
 

 

This pictures can be from a DX50? The capacitor have a gold color on the DX90 board :

 

 

Look's like a DX90 board, but with capacitor also changed to a lower quality, not the gold serie used in the orginal, it's curious.

 

Edit: I believe in iBasso engineers, I keep my device burning :smile: 


Edited by Migou67 - 6/15/14 at 4:53am
post #1473 of 1751
Quote:
Originally Posted by borrego View Post

The fellows in the our local Hong Kong and China DAP forums are usually more critical on Chinese brand DAPs. We generally have fewer brand worshipers here and opinions are more objective.

The common consensus in the Hong Kong and Chinese forums is the DX90 LO is very good and the DX90 HO is just "ordinary'... to the point that there is already fellow removing the TI634 BUF chips (to reduce current drain) and converting the HO to Balanced LO similar to that of RWAK120-B (http://www.um-audio.com/forum.php?mod=viewthread&tid=1333&extra=page%3D1) :




Interesting given that Vinnie from RWA said it was impossible to make a balanced LO mod on the DX90 when he was approached with this request
post #1474 of 1751

To me that means it's considered worthy of a custom LO. If it was about the HO, why not improve it instead of eliminate it and go balanced? If I wanted to add bulk and the expense of an amp and, I'd just buy an HM901. Personally, I don't want the added bulk.

 

There is big difference in the AK120 mod and the that of the DX90. In the AK120, the WM8740 DAC is upgraded to a WM8741. Since the WM8741 feature set can't be operated by the serial control afforded the WM8740, a V control is no longer accessible which means no viable HO capability. On the DX90 balanced mod, nothing has been changed in the digital domain and is LO only because space had to be sacrificed to accommodate balanced out. We also don't know if this the optimum path for same. To do a balanced HO even more circuitry would have been needed to be added and there is clearly no space for that. These may be the reasons that Vinnie mentioned it was too much to ask.


Edited by goodvibes - 6/15/14 at 7:16am
post #1475 of 1751
Quote:
Originally Posted by Migou67 View Post
 

 

Look's like a DX90 board, but with capacitor also changed to a lower quality, not the gold serie used in the orginal, it's curious.

 

Edit: I believe in iBasso engineers, I keep my device burning :smile: 

In the DX50, caps are used as HO coupling, here, they could be used for LO coupling as the HO is DC coupled.  With the higher impedances and low current requirement of LO, it's not nearly as critical as in HO. It can actually have less sig than a offset circuit. If so and this is actually balanced LO out, there should be a couple more hiding somewhere. They are obviously being used in circuit or they wouldn't have been bypassed with solid caps. Could also be that they're additional local filtering for the PS but less likely.


Edited by goodvibes - 6/15/14 at 7:18am
post #1476 of 1751
Quote:
Originally Posted by goodvibes View Post

To me that means it's considered worthy of a custom LO. If it was about the HO, why not improve it instead of eliminate it and go balanced? If I wanted to add bulk and the expense of an amp and, I'd just buy an HM901. Personally, I don't want the added bulk.

There is big difference in the AK120 mod and the that of the DX90. In the AK120, the WM8740 DAC is upgraded to a WM8741. Since the WM8741 feature set can't be operated by the serial control afforded the WM8740, a V control is no longer accessible which means no viable HO capability. On the DX90 balanced mod, nothing has been changed in the digital domain and is LO only because space had to be sacrificed to accommodate balanced out. We also don't know if this the optimum path for same. To do a balanced HO even more circuitry would have been needed to be added and there is clearly no space for that. These may be the reasons that Vinnie mentioned it was too much to ask.

Vinnies words were that it was impossible to do balanced LO due to the way the signal path is designed. I have no knowledge to comment on that, just his words
post #1477 of 1751

That's why I mentioned optimum path. May be why Vinnie said what he did. I personally have no idea what that is without more looking or knowing what actually was done in this mod. I'm an all in one kind of guy so not that critical to me.

post #1478 of 1751

The fellow who did the balanced output mod stated the other side of the circuit board is "too messy" to be shown in photo. But it is more likely he wants to conceal thing as he also earns money from doing player mods.

 

The stock "Gold" color Nichicon capacitors used in the DX90 are just mid range FW series caps. Above FW there are till KW, FG and KZ series. The silver color caps used by the fellow were likely to be from Toshin Kogyo, which do not technically measured well but has a following in Japan.

post #1479 of 1751
Thread Starter 

FW, KZ, KW it all depends upon application and tuning. Superphon was a company that made some great sounding gear using mid to lower mid resistors, caps and so on but by interfacing right, their equipment was an excellent buy and sound. They even made a space case, made of plexiglass, that allowed the preamps to sound better. Stan Warren, who I used to correspond with quite a bit, some years ago, was a lot of the design idea behind them but Stan went his own way and . . . . well that is a different story. . Thoughtful implementation is the key, whether it be the top of the line cap or bottom. And in the end, the hearing of end results. 


Edited by jamato8 - 6/15/14 at 9:04pm
post #1480 of 1751
Quote:
Originally Posted by borrego View Post
 

The fellow who did the balanced output mod stated the other side of the circuit board is "too messy" to be shown in photo. But it is more likely he wants to conceal thing as he also earns money from doing player mods.

 

The stock "Gold" color Nichicon capacitors used in the DX90 are just mid range FW series caps. Above FW there are till KW, FG and KZ series. The silver color caps used by the fellow were likely to be from Toshin Kogyo, which do not technically measured well but has a following in Japan.


I just read Migou67's (thanks) post from the previous pages and apparently the caps are for local filtering on the output stage and not coupling the LO so 2 makes sense and there wouldn't be any hidden. I was just talking to Jamato about enhancing this sort of thing if not already there, which we thought would be but not necessarily at that spot, physically.


Edited by goodvibes - 6/16/14 at 5:38am
post #1481 of 1751

after weeks of lurking and reading the thread from page 1, finally i went to a local store for two days in a row to audition X5 and DX90. ended up pulling the trigger on DX90.

 

with my unique melody Mentor, i find that X5 presents a more (for lack of a better word) "in your face" sound compared to DX90. like it has more punch, and the bottom end feels (slightly) more weighty. but on day 2 i grow to fond DX90 more. the trebles of DX90 feels a little bit hurting at first, but then i resolved by assessing this characteristic as more details compared to X5 which somewhat put some details on the trebles a little bit on the back seat (in my opinion). pardon for my lack of knowledge in putting a word for this impression. but the store owner said that what i described above as "X5 has warmer sound compared to DX90". 

 

so regarding the sound i feel that X5 has more punch, but DX90 has better (or should i say more natural?) presentation in putting the layers of the instruments in the headstage array. after a few days i started to get used to the treble and now in love with the overall sound, detail, separation and especially headstage and presentation of DX90. i'm starting to more appreciating the process of producing and mixing music as i realize details and sound layering that i didn't notice in my previous sources. sometimes i (just a little bit) wishing for the more punching bottom of X5, but i think DX90 has more extension regarding the low end. (or maybe this is just my feeling? sort of self-justification for already chosen DX90? hahaha)

 

i love the wheel and the feel of X5 in my hand better than DX90. but then again the sound wins (in my ear).

 

compared to my previous sources, which is iDevices (iPod nano 6g, iPhone4, iPad mini) and playstation vita slim, the difference regarding the soundstage is like chatting with some people in an elevator compared to chatting with some people while sitting in the dining table. DX90 has more space and proper placement, while idevices feels more cramped. vita slim sounds better for me than iPhone/iPad though. feels like vita is slightly bigger and has more (very slightly) authority in presenting the sound. but of course they all lags (way) behind DX90 (and X5).

 

the difference between iDevices and DX90/X5 with my v-moda M100 somehow i don't find it as impressive as with Mentor, but then again my M100 is not particularly picky.

 

on an added note, with iPod nano 6g i find Mentor has better detail and headstage than M100 but the M100 gets me dancing and singing in excitement (i listen to ALAC/AIFF post rock/rock in general, progressive house and trance, and a little bit of classical). it feels like the energy of the music gets through to me in nano+M100. but when i tried Calyx M with Mentor, boy that guy can sing! i get the excitement and the detail and the soundstage. but then again Calyx M is unwieldy and simply cost twice the price. but anyways i'm happy with DX90. got the detail and soundstage, while the excitement is halfway there (or maybe almost there). if one day DX90 gets an update with cover flow, then i wouldn't ever trade it for calyx or anything else. (yes i do listen to music while staring at the cover art)

 

sorry for the long post folks. just trying to be thorough. hopefully it makes sense though. hahaha

 

one more thing, when i turn on and turn off DX90 there is a faint pop/click from inside the DX90. anybody knows what is that? is it dangerous? 


Edited by clubberkamar - 6/21/14 at 8:54am
post #1482 of 1751
Quote:
Originally Posted by clubberkamar View Post
 

after weeks of lurking and reading the thread from page 1, finally i went to a local store for two days in a row to audition X5 and DX90. ended up pulling the trigger on DX90.

 

with my unique melody Mentor, i find that X5 presents a more (for lack of a better word) "in your face" sound compared to DX90. like it has more punch, and the bottom end feels (slightly) more weighty. but on day 2 i grow to fond DX90 more. the trebles of DX90 feels a little bit hurting at first, but then i resolved by assessing this characteristic as more details compared to X5 which somewhat put some details on the trebles a little bit on the back seat (in my opinion). pardon for my lack of knowledge in putting a word for this impression. but the store owner said that what i described above as "X5 has warmer sound compared to DX90". 

 

so regarding the sound i feel that X5 has more punch, but DX90 has better (or should i say more natural?) presentation in putting the layers of the instruments in the headstage array. after a few days i started to get used to the treble and now in love with the overall sound, detail, separation and especially headstage and presentation of DX90. i'm starting to more appreciating the process of producing and mixing music as i realize details and sound layering that i didn't notice in my previous sources. sometimes i (just a little bit) wishing for the more punching bottom of X5, but i think DX90 has more extension regarding the low end. (or maybe this is just my feeling? sort of self-justification for already chosen DX90? hahaha)

 

i love the wheel and the feel of X5 in my hand better than DX90. but then again the sound wins (in my ear).

 

compared to my previous sources, which is iDevices (iPod nano 6g, iPhone4, iPad mini) and playstation vita slim, the difference regarding the soundstage is like chatting with some people in an elevator compared to chatting with some people while sitting in the dining table. DX90 has more space and proper placement, while idevices feels more cramped. vita slim sounds better for me than iPhone/iPad though. feels like vita is slightly bigger and has more (very slightly) authority in presenting the sound. but of course they all lags (way) behind DX90 (and X5).

 

the difference between iDevices and DX90/X5 with my v-moda M100 somehow i don't find it as impressive as with Mentor, but then again my M100 is not particularly picky.

 

on an added note, with iPod nano 6g i find Mentor has better detail and headstage than M100 but the M100 gets me dancing and singing in excitement (i listen to ALAC/AIFF post rock/rock in general, progressive house and trance, and a little bit of classical). it feels like the energy of the music gets through to me in nano+M100. but when i tried Calyx M with Mentor, boy that guy can sing! i get the excitement and the detail and the soundstage. but then again Calyx M is unwieldy and simply cost twice the price. but anyways i'm happy with DX90. got the detail and soundstage, while the excitement is halfway there (or maybe almost there). if one day DX90 gets an update with cover flow, then i wouldn't ever trade it for calyx or anything else. (yes i do listen to music while staring at the cover art)

 

sorry for the long post folks. just trying to be thorough. hopefully it makes sense though. hahaha

 

one more thing, when i turn on and turn off DX90 there is a faint pop/click from inside the DX90. anybody knows what is that? is it dangerous? 

Congratulation clubberkarma for your new DX90, actually I can't say that DX90 sounds better than X5 they both have different sound signature as you mention that X5 is more warmer and IMO DX90 is more wider sound, importantly which is suitable to you yourself.

 

Mine also have the popping/clicking sound when turning on/off the DX90, I think is not dangerous might be some sort of electrical sounding 

post #1483 of 1751

agree, it's different instead of better. sorry for giving the impression that DX90 is better than X5. they are different. before paying for DX90 a little voice in the back of my head says "maybe you can buy them both?" hahahahha

 

this adventure of finding DAP/amp for Mentor does give me a perspective why a lot (if not all?) head-fiers has a boat load of IEMs/cans. no one gear can rule them all.

post #1484 of 1751
There are mechanical relays in the DX90 that click twice on power on and off
post #1485 of 1751

i see. thanks for the explanation nc8000

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