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Head-Fi.org › Forums › Help and Getting Started › Introductions, Help and Recommendations › FiiO E17 for 103USD and E17K for 141USD - which one should I buy?
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FiiO E17 for 103USD and E17K for 141USD - which one should I buy?

post #1 of 26
Thread Starter 

Hi Head-fi community!

 

I am new to the world of DAC and AMPs for headphone and can't seem to decide between E17 and E17K.

 

I like the new minimal design of E17K more than E17 and it's supposed to be better sound quality,

also it's with common usb plug which can be used from any cell phone to connect with laptop.

 

I read a few reviews saying E17K is not as well built and still has some hardware (scroll wheel) and software issues.

I guess E17K is still very new and will need some time to iron these issues out. Also it doesn't have optical (which is not a huge issue for me).

 

 

Now, I am getting

E17 for 103 USD

E17K for 141 USD

Also E07K for 88USD

 

 

Which is better to buy? Is E17K substancially better in terms of sound quality?

If I buy the older model E17 is there any implication in terms of future compatibility etc?

 

Could anyone help me to decide?

 

Thanks in advance! :)

post #2 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by saiko7 View Post

I like the new minimal design of E17K more than E17 and it's supposed to be better sound quality,

also it's with common usb plug which can be used from any cell phone to connect with laptop.

 

"Common USB plug can be used from any cell phone to connect with laptop"?

You thinking the E17/E17K can be used to connect a cell phone to a laptop?

 

 

 

post #3 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by saiko7 View Post
 

I am new to the world of DAC and AMPs for headphone and can't seem to decide between E17 and E17K.

I like the new minimal design of E17K more than E17 and it's supposed to be better sound quality,

also it's with common usb plug which can be used from any cell phone to connect with laptop.

I read a few reviews saying E17K is not as well built and still has some hardware (scroll wheel) and software issues.

I guess E17K is still very new and will need some time to iron these issues out. Also it doesn't have optical (which is not a huge issue for me).

Now, I am getting

E17 for 103 USD

E17K for 141 USD

Also E07K for 88USD

Which is better to buy? Is E17K substancially better in terms of sound quality?

If I buy the older model E17 is there any implication in terms of future compatibility etc?

 

The New FiiO X3K should be out really soon, might be a better choice as it can be used as a portable audio/music player, but also can be connected to a computer (like a laptop).

post #4 of 26
Thread Starter 

I meant that E17K uses USB Micro which is very common now a days compared to USB Mini which is there in E17.

I am planning to use it with my laptop which doesn't sound very good with earphone or headphone.

post #5 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by saiko7 View Post
 

I meant that E17K uses USB Micro which is very common now a days compared to USB Mini which is there in E17.

I am planning to use it with my laptop which doesn't sound very good with earphone or headphone.

 

The X3K can provide the same USB/DAC/amp function with the laptop, as the E17/E17K

The X3K should provide better audio quality, then a smartphone and using the X3K as your portable audio source means you cell phone battery charge lasts longer.

post #6 of 26

I feel you would be happy with any of them. If you don't need a portable model with a battery, there is the e10k too.


Edited by mindbomb - 3/22/15 at 2:44pm
post #7 of 26
Thread Starter 

E10K available for 84 USD, But it doesn't have SPDIF (I want to use it with my stereo amp and speaker)... is there any advantage for E10k?

E17 for 103 USD comes with many more features...


Edited by saiko7 - 3/22/15 at 6:55pm
post #8 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by saiko7 View Post
 

E10K available for 84 USD, But it doesn't have S/PDIF (I want to use it with my stereo amp and speaker)... is there any advantage for E10k?

E17 for 103 USD comes with many more features...

 

The FiiO E10K comes with a S/PDIF coaxial output.

As you have a stereo amplifier and as amplifiers are analog, you could not directly connect a S/PDIF (optical or coaxial) cable to the amplifier.

The E10K does come with a separate line-output (analog), which could be connected to a amplifier.

If your using a modern A/V receiver, which would have digital input and one of those digital inputs might be coaxial.

post #9 of 26
Thread Starter 

Thanks Purple angle.

 

 

I think at this point only for E17 I am getting a very good deal - perhaps because it's phasing out. 

I would like to know if I should go FiiO E17 for 103USD or is it worth paying 35-40 USD extra for the new E17K?


Edited by saiko7 - 3/22/15 at 7:29pm
post #10 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by saiko7 View Post
 

Thanks Purple angle.

I think at this point only for E17 I am getting a very good deal - perhaps because it's phasing out. 

I would like to know if I should go FiiO E17 for 103USD or is it worth paying 35-40 USD extra for the new E17K?

 

Best if you read up on the E17K, if it does not seem like it offers any feature you really need, over the E17, then might as well get the E17.

post #11 of 26
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post
 

 

Best if you read up on the E17K, if it does not seem like it offers any feature you really need, over the E17, then might as well get the E17.


I am concerned about the sound quality. Is it substantially better?

It would be great if I could hear from people who used both.

post #12 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by saiko7 View Post


I am concerned about the sound quality. Is it substantially better?

That's a personal value judgement because it's a relative, subjective evaluation. And there are people that attribute fantastic improvements between DAC/headphone amps that scientifically measure so well that such differences should not be as great as described. In other words, what anyone else thinks will be unreliable for determining how much better you would find one over the other. The best you might can discover is if one generally sounds better than the other. How much is impossible to know.
post #13 of 26

I just went through a very similar process. I was deciding between the E17, E17k, E07, E18, or E07k. If I chose the 07, 07k, or 17, it would be with the intention that I would later get the E09 or E09K up the road. Also under consideration were the SMSL M2 and Topping NX2.

 

I previously have had the E6. The DAC + amps I have now are all USB powered. Many of them were meant for pro audio as recording interfaces and not marketed for audiophile use. I like the E6 very much, but it doesn't have quite enough headroom to it. I wanted something portable that could function without USB power when needed - plus that could function as a stand alone amp when needed. I've noticed that any outboard DAC + amp I've used sounds better than the onboard audio. This is irrespective if the onboard audio is attributed to some sound specialist company.

 

The NX2 had great battery life and a minimalist interface. The SMSL had a minimalist interface. The E18 seemed neat because it had transport controls on it plus battery capacity that was almost 3x the capacity of the others and also could be used as an external battery that could charge the phone. The 07, 07k, or 17 could be used with available docks to step up the robustness and quality of the amped sound.

 

The E017k ended up winning. The coax digital in helped it win and so did the undocumented USB OTG function.  Although there is no E09 type dock for it yet, rumor is there will be one, but I'm not counting on it.

post #14 of 26
Thread Starter 

Thanks for your reply Mtliu.


I really liked the new minimal look of E17K and its white monochromatic display....

but  finally ended up buying E17 - for about 93USD, mainly because of two reasons

 

1. The local dealers are selling it for 150-160 USD, so not as good a deal

2. My experience with just-released products hasn't been very good :( so prefer to wait a while after any product is released so that the bugs are ironed out.

 

It's not most holographic sound for sure - but for what I paid I am quite happy with my new-old E17! :)

post #15 of 26
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mtliu View Post

 

The E017k ended up winning. The coax digital in helped it win and so did the undocumented USB OTG function.

 

How do you connect it to a phone? Does it need any special app or works with any audio/video app?

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