Headphone Reviews and Discussion - Head-Fi.org
The Fed
The Fed
Hey John, did you get any input from Pioneer on why they don't have Apple Lossless or AIFF support? Are there firmware updates that could theoretically eliminate this?
It seems like a big oops to design a device with a digital iPod dock, Air Play, and obvious integration with Apple/ iTunes/ iOS and not offer compatibility with Apple's own lossless codec or its most friendly cohort AIFF.
Jochen Reinecke from Fair Audio said you can enable "transcoding" in your playback software and the N50 will convert formats on the fly.... but I am not sure how that would affect sound quality.... I know that playback happens from cached memory with a lot of playback software, and the signal is buffered and reclocked before it gets decoded.... but an extra step of processing doesn't seem ideal.... assuming you have playback software with this 'allow transcoding' feature.
It just seems like someone stubbed their toe really bad in the design process. I was stoked when I heard about this unit with what seems like a pretty strong DAC and future proof connectivity. Now not so much.
There was a recent firmware update. I think it now supports ALAC, AIFF and gapless playback. I have yet to connect mine to a network to tell; I've only used it as a DAC so far. Obviously, when using it as a D2A, it will play any file your playback software can play.
To date, I only have a few complaints:
(1) It won't play 176Khz files via USB.
(2) I have not yet found a way to disable the standby timer.
(3) When using SPDIF input, the display give no useful information. E.g., there is no display of file bit depth or sample rate.