Astell&Kern XB10 Extreme Bluetooth Adapter

Discussion in 'Portable Headphone Amps' started by gr8soundz, Sep 6, 2016.
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  1. rade363
    Thank you for the response! I'm looking forward to purchasing the XB10 then.
  2. k4syx
    The difference comes not from the aptx itself - both devices have more or less the same implementation of the CSRs algorythms. But the analog audio path is completely different story - XB10 is leaps and bounds above E3, even with regular SBC. Just not in the same league..

    Sorry, I have not used FiiO device myself so I cannot comment on that.
    As for the headphones, the nice thing about XB10 is that it scales well with them. It is even able to propoerly drive my AKG K7XX, though the battery lasts short in such scenario.

    No problem, you're welcome.
    one of the reasons that XB10 sits on top of my list is this lack of hissing and quiet, clean background. Literaly every other device that I had (and there was a time when I was buying ANYTHING mobile with AptX just to find the best one) hissed, and only solution to make hissing less audible was to use additional resistance between the plug and socket (you can order or build these easily).

    XB10 is the first and (at least for now) last device for me: nor only it has superior SQ, but also there is no hissing present. Never ever.

    Sorry for typos and other stuff - english is not my native language and my browser tries to help my by checking my spelling... so every single english word here is underlined in red :D
    rade363 and mellda like this.
  3. mellda
    I read from more sources that there is not audiable difference between headphones connected directly to the iphone or using the BTR1. But I read that XB10 makes audiable difference. BTR1 doesn't have AAC in comparison to XB10 so I'm not sure if this is the reason. With BTR1 I think iPhone use only SBC. With XB10 I think iPhone use AAC. But I have Sony Z5, which has only apt-X. Still hasitating between cheap BTR1 or more expensive XB10. I have Shure 1540 with impedance 50 ohms both of them should be sufficient.
  4. Audiowood
    XB10 hiss a lot with Noble K10 CIEM, that the reason I attached a Pico Slim amp to it.
  5. Audiowood
    I also got the Centrance Blue DAC coming in next week, so I can do a quick comparison. Reason I upgrade is the superior DAC and AMP of BlueDac but then it cost 2.5X more.
  6. Audiowood
    ALso BlueDac cannot receive call or skip forward/back and is way larger than XB10.
  7. tryzub
    Hey, that works!
  8. k4syx
    I can see no problem here :)
    There may be no difference between BTR1 and phone outputs, but trust me, there is a significant difference between phone output and XB10 output :)
    IMHO it all boils down to the fact that XB10 has a very good DAC/headphone amp combo, way better than things that are integrated in phone mainboards (though I have yet to hear and compare LG's new Quad DAC's, G3 has still one of the best SQ in mobile phones)

    What kind of sensitivity are we talking about here?
    My IE800 are 125dB/16Ohms and they are dead quiet with XB10, no hissing here.
    mellda likes this.
  9. Audiowood
    K10 is one of the most sensitive IEM out there. I can hardly find any source that does not hiss with it. Even the Pico slim still has a very slight hiss.
  10. tryzub
    I, too, have the S8+. According to Samsung support, the S8(+) both support broadcasting in Apt-x and HD. My thought is, the XB10 is pulling in the HD signal. Someone correct me, if they know unequivocally different.
  11. sandy1010
    The volume this little thing can produce is insane. Drives my AEON’s pretty well. Wasn’t it’s intended purpose but very happy.

    One negative, the latency for watching videos isn’t good. Ok for my laptop as you can adjust the audio delay, but not great for an iOS device. But this wasn’t really my main reason for purchasing.
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2017
  12. Baroninkjet
    Oh my goodness! I got mine today. I just don't know what to say. Listened for a few minutes that turned into a couple of hours on Spotify and Tidal HQ -- Pixel 2 + aptX HD + RE400 (3.5). Some things were not quite a clean and pure as a wire (and I am being very picky), but the overall presentation blows away any smartphone I have ever heard.This is not your momma's bluetooth!

    I wonder if they might be near releasing a new model. I've noticed that they are the Black Friday price everywhere again now.
  13. tryzub
    ...or an Android. From all the research I've done, it appears to be an issue that was introduced in one of the Bluetooth stack's 4.x releases. It is supposed to be fixed in 5.0.
  14. slackerpo
    next gen receivers should come out in 2018 with bluetooth 5.0 by several brands
  15. Baroninkjet
    Have you heard of any updates to aptX? Looking at A&K description of the codecs, it seemed that it might be possible to get a lossless CD quality given higher speeds. All the hype is on higher resolutions, but lossless CD quality would be a more practical step forward.
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