Ok, so I figured... maybe I misheard something and the V20 is better than what I thought it was...and all these V20 users jumping in here to say how they've found Nirvana with the V20 (and how the issues with the downsampling and funky drivers...and 3rd party music support issues aren't happening over on the V20 thread).
I just played a bit of Diana Krall through the V20 again using my Venture Electronics Zen 2.0 earbuds (love those things).
The V20, in High Gain mode... sounds nice. Very airy... but somewhat artificially so (maybe I have an EQ setting on somewhere). I thought it was Great sounding. I then popped in my Zen into the X5iii. Nope. The X5iii sounded better in both the SE and especially in Balanced. My V20 will go back to duty as my phone, and I'll use it when I don't have other audio devices available. If you like the V20 signature, then more power to you. I'm happy to use mine as a phone.
The V20 though, is the best sounding phone that I've ever heard IMHO.
I have to say, it's not about nice sound, energetic sound, interesting fancy sound, it's about accuracy. IMO FiiO has matured, they are quietly going about their business designing audiophile daps, which many untrained ears won't appreciate.
How do I know that the FiiO X5 III is pro-grade? I have some songs that I'm extremely familiar with, my favorites for 20 years, so I know them inside&out, music that is particular in the signatures. The X5 III is the first DAP ever to pass the test on all of them, I'm talking esoteric frequencies in these songs that are highly volatile if not recreated properly, believe me, and the X5 III nailed it across all of them. There is a delicate coherency in these songs which Won't quite sit right if something isn't right in the tuning of a DAC, and most DAPs (even the AK380s of this world) can't handle it, whereas the X5 III is the first DAP to nail it on every aspect of fine gradations and characteristics within these songs, not only the song as a whole, but also the lesser known balance of the frequencies delicately interlinked, and the inherent topology of the cascading nuances.
Take it from me, I can confidently say that the X5 III is the best music player for 'audiophile' playback.
Other players (whether a laptop or high end DAP) insist on their own quirky presentation of one sort or another, but the X5 becomes invisible (the true job of any DAC) while also dishing out the exact combination of PRAT required to 'properly' reproduce the song. I'm not interested in a DAC signature. I'm interested in neutrality, and FiiO has done it with the X5 III. I'm adamant. Anyone claiming it's treble is soft or smooth needs to get new ears and new headphones. IMO the X5 is ACCURATE, adds nothing, takes nothing away, all with superb dynamics.