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Just Pure SQ & Power: Studio V 3ANV or Hifiman 602 or Fiio X5

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 

Hi Fellow Head-fiers,


I'm currently in search of my next DAP after my beloved J3 and need the help of the lovely people out here who have experience with either or all of the mentioned players. I have already made some self research on this but with the vast information that one could get from HF, I don't think I have read and have been confused enough. :biggrin:


Just basing on pure SQ & power to drive headphones/IEMs, which do you think is the one you preferred? I'm not gonna ask again about which is better as the answer is nowhere to find. People and music lovers as we are, we have different tastes or sound signature preference so I don't expect to get a definitive response for that. Also, I'm only limited to these players as I cannot afford the others which might be better or worse than these three (I can have either of the three between $250-$300 used). I don't have a specific sound signature preference. I just want to hear my music at its best with either of these. Appreciate your sharing of experience and even more a comparison of the three based on your personal liking. Thanks.

Edited by jrazmar - 5/8/14 at 12:34am
post #2 of 14
studio is much more powerful than X5

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post #3 of 14
According to the specifications Studio gives 80mW at 32 ohms load and X5 gives 255 mW at 32 ohms load. So, although I'm not a technical guy, it appears to me that X5 has more power.
post #4 of 14
Thread Starter 

thanks KT and shakur. How about FR? I'm guessing based on reading so far that the Studio is linear but a bit towards the bright side but still considered linear and the X5 is on the warmer side.

post #5 of 14
jrzamar, to my ears Studio V 3ANW and X5 (I have them both right now on my desk) suprisingly sounds similar although:

- Studio V is just a tad brigther and X5 is just a tad darker (to my ears Studio V is more neutral than X5 although this may result from the fact that if I had to choose between brighter and darker DAP/CIEM I would definitely choose the brigther one);

- Studio V has just a tiny little more air and better instrument separation;

- Studio V is a little bit more fatiquing in listening; X5 is so natural so you can just sink into the music.
post #6 of 14
Thread Starter 

Fatiguing!!! I hate that word second to sibilance. I love sparkly and glorious highs but if it's too much, it makes my ears itch and tingle to the point that I want to throw my earphones whenever it hits me. Is the Studio like that? Good sound is useless if one cannot enjoy it because of fatigue. How about soundstage? Is the X5 wider? I never hear about the 602 anymore. I've read that it has an amp almost similar to the 801. The sound is a bit dampened on the high side though making it a good synergy with brighter phones.

post #7 of 14
No, no. Maybe word "engaging" would be more better in case of Studio V and word "relaxing" for X5. Treble is not harsh at all on Studio V. There is no sibilance on Studio V (unless sibiliance is already in the track).

Soundstage width is similar. X5 has more depth in comparison to Studio V.
post #8 of 14
Thread Starter 

I see, shakur. So no treble spikes then. When you mean similar soundstage, does it mean similarly wide or just same okay soundstage? I've heard the DX90 and C3 have some of the widest soundstage in a portable player but it might be different from person to person. How about dynamics and imaging? Is it also close for both?

Edited by jrazmar - 5/8/14 at 3:01am
post #9 of 14
For me the soundstage widith is more or less the same.

X5 has more depth i.e. it has first and second level in front of you (Studio just have one, straight level, going from one ear to the other). I don't actually how to explain this in words.
So you can say that X5 has more 3D imaging i.e. it plyas in width, in depth and you have upper and lower levels. Studio plays lineary.

Dynamics is in on pair although I sometimes had a feeling that Studio V is a tad slower (possible dynamics of X5 may come from the bass impact of X5).
post #10 of 14
Thread Starter 

I'll take note of these helpful points even though my only tool for now is my imagination. :atsmile: 


if you're given a situation where you have to choose only 1 of the two, which one will you take?

post #11 of 14
It is very hard question. FYI, I'm waiting for dx90 and I hope that it will be in between X5 and Studio V in sound signature:D.
But, if I had to choose between Studio V and X5 I would probably choose X5. Why? Because although Studio V fits more to my SQ expectations (but again I have to stress that the differences are not so big assuming that you volume match the DAPs) X5's UI is more user friendly, X5 has two microSD card slots, can be used as USB DAC/Amp and has true line out.
Two or three months ago I would choose Studio V only to the SQ (but again please remember that the differences are very very small; the only thing which sometimes distracts me from X5 is this very little darkness which I hear in some songs - probably pairing X5 with a little bit brigther headphones is a good solution to skip this "problem), but now besides SQ there are other things which are important for me:D
post #12 of 14
Thread Starter 

I understand and I already get the hint in between the lines which one you prefer. I will wait for more responses here and see if people have different or the same take as yours JUST ON PURE SQ and POWER. It's been nice reading your responses - very fair and reliable. sorry for giving you a hard time on that question. :ksc75smile: thanks.

Edited by jrazmar - 5/8/14 at 3:57am
post #13 of 14
I'm happy to help (if I can obviously:D) since I received some help here previously.
post #14 of 14
Thread Starter 

i went straight to the Studio and still waiting for its arrival. I got it used from a fellow head-fier. very excited about it. will post some impressions later.

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