Colorfly C4 in 2013/4 - still relevant?
Dec 20, 2013 at 11:12 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 81

KT66

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I wanted to get some opinions on how the C4 stacks up against the newer
'SuperDaps' like DX100, AK100 etc 
 
It certainly still catches my eye, and compared to some DAPs seems like quite good 
value these days.
 
How foolish would I be buying one now?
Having to convert my 24/96 flacs to WAV will be painful, but most of 
my collection is 16/44
 
thanks
 
Jan 6, 2014 at 11:24 AM Post #2 of 81

KT66

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bump! 
come on! no users anymore of C4?
 
Jan 6, 2014 at 11:52 AM Post #3 of 81

fleasbaby

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I read a post somewhere in the AK240 thread that Colorfly is talking about releasing another DAP this year...might just render the C4 properly obsolete...not too sure though.
 
Jan 6, 2014 at 11:53 AM Post #4 of 81

KT66

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Thanks, i hope they keep the style
 
Jan 6, 2014 at 12:18 PM Post #5 of 81

fleasbaby

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It would be nice...information is pretty sparse though. Should be interesting to see if anything comes of it.
 
Jan 6, 2014 at 9:20 PM Post #6 of 81

audionewbi

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Soundwise seems to be but what stopped me is the high price despite the UI issue and in terms of its relevance been outdate. I know they are coming with a new dap rumoured to come out thus year but the distributor was not certain about it.

the new ak flagship uses the same family of dac chip so hopefully it is well implemented and sound considerably better.
 
Feb 18, 2014 at 4:50 PM Post #7 of 81

VladGuardian

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KT66:
I wanted to get some opinions on how the C4 stacks up against the newer
'SuperDaps' like DX100, AK100 etc

I think AK100 NOT a competitor against C4... even AK120 not a competitor to C4. This touches sound only, of course.
(and I mean 6,3mm output of C4, of course)
Present time I seriously consider C4(used) and HiFiMAN-901(new) as improvement in sound over my AK120, because I often listening to various heavy music, and feeling not enough envolvement and enjoyment with it.
Still, for classical / electronic / ambient / jazz this DAP is perfect (AK120).
 
I think some iBasso DAPs may be considered as competitors to C4 (maybe DX100 and the new "dark horse" DX90).
And definitely the HiFiMAN HM-901.
You should also look to forthcoming Calyx M player (it uses double Saber ES9018 DACs, the same as in HiFiMAN-901), and it very advanced in many technical aspects (supported bitrates and bitwidths, very good screen, good overall design etc.). Calyx M should start being produced in April '2014 AFAIK
KT66:
Having to convert my 24/96 flacs to WAV will be painful

Yep, I also think this is the largest fail of C4.
 
Feb 18, 2014 at 7:11 PM Post #8 of 81

jwbrent

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Unfortunately, I think not ...
 
http://www.head-fi.org/t/663318/new-colorfly-c4-pro-owner-extensive-review
 
Feb 18, 2014 at 9:21 PM Post #9 of 81

audionewbi

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The only thing ak120 has better over c4 is better instrument separation at lower volume. C5 has a hard time besting C4 in terms of SQ.

i am pretty much happy about C4, flac to wav conversion is not an issue for me due to the fast cpu we have on our laptops.

my only issue is c4 doesn't like to play any cue file album more than 2GB, which means a lot if my 24/192 albums need to be downsampled.
 
Feb 19, 2014 at 2:14 AM Post #10 of 81

VladGuardian

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jwbrent
Many thanks for your "extensive review".
 
audionewbi:
i am pretty much happy about C4, flac to wav conversion is not an issue for me due to the fast cpu we have on our laptops.
my only issue is c4 doesn't like to play any cue file album more than 2GB, which means a lot if my 24/192 albums need to be downsampled.

Hmm... it's vice versa in my case...
constantly converting my collection from FLAC -> WAV is unnatural and unhandy process (slowiness of conversion is not an issue).
On the other hand, I always cut entire albums to tracks (no cue+superlarge flacs at all).
Sorry for too many IMO's, just my point of view of C4.
 
Feb 19, 2014 at 3:05 AM Post #11 of 81

audionewbi

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  jwbrent
Many thanks for your "extensive review".
 
Hmm... it's vice versa in my case...
constantly converting my collection from FLAC -> WAV is unnatural and unhandy process (slowiness of conversion is not an issue).
On the other hand, I always cut entire albums to tracks (no cue+superlarge flacs at all).
Sorry for too many IMO's, just my point of view of C4.

Yes C4 requires you to work with it and you have to certainly get used to its short coming (the fact that flac will drain the battery more, it does not support high res flac and the only way to get gapless is to work with cue sheet).
 
However where I stand the sound of it makes up for it. I have tried many different combination and frankly I avoided C4 because of the shortcoming I mentioned above. If it was not for its recent price drop I would have never tried it.
 
All and all I like it, it is certainly not perfect but its sound suits a large portion of my IEM and that is something that not even my AK120 can do. 
 
I certainly hope C5 is something that is on the same level as the other modern high res DAP. It has to be otherwise it will probably sale to a small perhaps a handful of people. 
 
Feb 19, 2014 at 4:28 AM Post #12 of 81

audionewbi

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After doing a bit more ABing with Ak120 to my years AK120 still sounds cleaner and bass extends further and it is certainly more detailed and balanced compared to C4 but despite that C4 overall signature is more energetic and despite not been as detailed paired with T5p sounds really reference like. This is something that I could never get with AK120. 

I did my ABing with IE800 which seems to pair well with both but AK120 has the edge on detail with this one but my ears like the C4. Bass is definitely much more extended on AK120. 
 
Feb 20, 2014 at 5:16 AM Post #13 of 81

KT66

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You should also look to forthcoming Calyx M player (it uses double Saber ES9018 DACs, the same as in HiFiMAN-901), and it very advanced in many technical aspects (supported bitrates and bitwidths, very good screen, good overall design etc.). Calyx M should start being produced in April '2014 AFAIK
Yep, I also think this is the largest fail of C4.

It does look very good, however I have no need for DSD, or a touch screen, it 
will be interesting to hear how it will sound, mind you by the time it lands in the UK 
it will be twice the price of a C4 !! 
 
I have the X5 on loan now, it sounds very very good for the money, but I do think i am looking
for a step above that.
 
Feb 20, 2014 at 5:19 AM Post #14 of 81

KT66

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  After doing a bit more ABing with Ak120 to my years AK120 still sounds cleaner and bass extends further and it is certainly more detailed and balanced compared to C4 but despite that C4 overall signature is more energetic and despite not been as detailed paired with T5p sounds really reference like. This is something that I could never get with AK120. 

I did my ABing with IE800 which seems to pair well with both but AK120 has the edge on detail with this one but my ears like the C4. Bass is definitely much more extended on AK120. 

Detail is all important to me, I think it's being a musician first that makes me crave it.
 
BUT it must be detailed without being bright, I think the 801 managed that, the X5 has
the detail but can sound a bit bright, (with DT1350), but I need to spend more time with it.
 
I have been listening to a lot of records on my LP12 recently, and am noticing the comparative 
harshness of digital more and more.
 
Feb 20, 2014 at 5:35 AM Post #15 of 81

audionewbi

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  Detail is all important to me, I think it's being a musician first that makes me crave it.
 
BUT it must be detailed without being bright, I think the 801 managed that, the X5 has
the detail but can sound a bit bright, (with DT1350), but I need to spend more time with it.
 
I have been listening to a lot of records on my LP12 recently, and am noticing the comparative 
harshness of digital more and more.

The only way you can know whether you like it or not is you have to listen it. I would have appreciate the sound of AK120 if I was to listen to it produce via a set of stereo speakers, it is simply not engaging enough for IEM. With IE800 perhaps it sounds nice but not for me.
 
On other hand C4 sounds really engaging and it lack of detail is not noticeable to ears unless one does a direct A/B testing side by side.
 
What I am trying to say soundwise alone C4 does not leave much to desire for unless we really spend time with other gears and compare them directly.
 
AK100 from day one left me wanting for me as a stand alone DAP, I had to amp it. AK120 was nice upgrade and I was happy with it till I had major issue with it playing my music on order. The sound allowed me to only pair few of my IEMs with it that left me annoyed. 
 

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