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The DX90 by iBasso . . . Sound impressions . . . . . . . New Firmware, 2.1.0 - Page 108

post #1606 of 1612
Quote:
Originally Posted by mp3 View Post
 

Has anyone heard the DX90 with PFE232?

 

I like the combination.  I hear nice bass, highs (no harshness), maybe somewhat recessed mids.  This is using neutral filters, most recent FW on the DX90.

post #1607 of 1612
Quote:
Originally Posted by frankrondaniel View Post
 

 

I like the combination.  I hear nice bass, highs (no harshness), maybe somewhat recessed mids.  This is using neutral filters, most recent FW on the DX90.

 

Excellent, thank you! Now with rockbox and all, it's time to get the DX90.


Edited by mp3 - Yesterday at 2:50 pm
post #1608 of 1612
Quote:
Originally Posted by mp3 View Post
 

 

Excellent, thank you! Now with rockbox and all, it's time to get the DX90.

 

I haven't felt the need for rockbox - the DX90 does everything I need as is.  Plus I have mostly hi-res files - rockbox won't help there.

post #1609 of 1612
Quote:
Originally Posted by frankrondaniel View Post
 

 

I haven't felt the need for rockbox - the DX90 does everything I need as is.  Plus I have mostly hi-res files - rockbox won't help there.

 

True, but I'm used to rockbox and appreciate the 100% working gapless and crossfeed.

post #1610 of 1612
Quote:
Originally Posted by mp3 View Post
 

 

True, but I'm used to rockbox and appreciate the 100% working gapless and crossfeed.

 

I hope that you end up enjoying your PFE232's with the DX90 when you get it!

post #1611 of 1612
Quote:
Originally Posted by frankrondaniel View Post
 

 

I hope that you end up enjoying your PFE232's with the DX90 when you get it!

 

Thanks, I'm sure I will. They sound excellent with my od Cowon D2, so the DX90 will, no doubt, be a giant killer.

post #1612 of 1612

Until lately, the best headphone pairing I have ever heard with my DX90 has been HO (I like simple portable setups) to my LCD2.2 or a friends HD800. See: http://www.head-fi.org/t/717989/totl-hp-shootout-oppo-pm-1-hd800-lcd2-2-t1-he500-fostex-th900-hd650-hd600. While the DX90 cannot take these TOTL headphones to their full potential, these headphones can take the DX90 to its full potential - or so I thought. This is comparing the LCD2.2, HD800, T1, HE500, PM1, TH900, as well as the HD600/650 head to head. In the end, the LCD2.2 and the HD800 stood significantly above the others in SQ and as unique in their own way through the DX90 as well as X5 and an array of high quality desktop equipment. I rated the HD800 and LCD2.2 as having comparable sound quality through the DX90 with very different signatures that supported different genres better than the other. So the winner between these two depended on the song played.

 

Lately, at a local retailer I got a chance to hear the HD700 (I know, its heresy - sorry), the HD800s little brother, with my DX90. Even though the HD700 is not technically the HD800's equal, it shares much of the HD800's characteristics while having some differences in the sound signature that makes it a better pairing with our portable gear - at least to my signature preferences. In fact, the HD700 sounded so good with the DX90 that I bought it on the spot! I should also mention the price was discounted new to $550 making it irresistible. 

 

Differences to HD800 (from memory):

  1. Sound Stage: While keeping much of the HD800 signature large sound stage, the HD700 pulls the mids forward for a more intimate presentation. The DX90 pairs well as it adds to the HD700 spaciousness.
  2. Thicker Sound: The HD800 has always been a little thin to me and a little too delicate keeping me from connecting emotionally to the songs. The HD700 not only has much greater bass impact through the DX90, but it adds a real thickness to the note, without losing its clarity, detail, nor transparency. The DX90's impressive bass impact pairs well with the HD700's thicker note so now I get emotionally connected.
  3. Easier to Drive: The DX90 drives the HD700 better than the HD800 or the LCD2. The HD700 has more to give, but doesn't feel like it is being held back so much.
  4. Brightness: While the HD700 shares the HD800's brightness, it feels more balanced with the thicker note for a very natural feeling presentation. The brightness may be the only turnoff for those that like a warmer signature, but it may ease up with burn in and may be able to be toned down with the DX90's EQ, but I am warming up to the detail it provides all the way down into the bass note so I leave it as it is.
  5. Size: Both the HD800 and 700 are extraordinarily comfortable, but the HD700 is significantly smaller, lighter, and more stable on the head. While smaller, the ear cup still easily encases my ear and even though still an open design, provides greater isolation. This makes it better for my portable uses which is primarily around the house and office as well as to sleep at night. 

 

At home, comparing the HD700 directly out of my DX90, to my LCD2.2 out of my desktop connected balanced through the Mjolnir - much to my surprise, I liked the HD700 better. It was close, but the HD700 was able to pull off the LCD2.2's bass impact and thick note while bringing clarity, intimacy, and with a significant increase in detail. The LCD2 held its own in rock and pop, but the HD700 sounded better with the majority of my preferred genres from EDM to new age to easy listening. Interpolating the results of the previous shootout, this is very impressive. Beating a LCD2 desktop setup with a portable is also very impressive. What can I say? My original intention was to get an HD800 knowing that I would still have to build a desktop unit around it to make it sing, but maybe now I can say that this is good enough - at least for now. I would highly recommend that DX90 owners should audition an HD700 if they get a chance to - it will shock you.

 

But then again, maybe it is just me and i'm happily delusional. :wink_face:

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