iBasso DX80 . . impressions and reviews. . and discussion NEW FW: 1.6.0 ** link . . 1st page . . .

Discussion in 'Portable Source Gear' started by jamato8, Nov 2, 2015.

  1. jamato8 Contributor
    MICRO SD CARD ORIENTATION:
    The card closest to the screen is inserted with the lettering on the card up, toward the screen. The card for slot two, furthest from the screen goes in with the lettering down, the opposite of the card in slot 1. If a card does not go in easily and click into place, do not force the card as you can cause damage to the slot as the card is most likely being inserted in the wrong orientation. 
     
     Firmware 1.4.2 is up. Here. The changes are noted in the download once the file is unzipped. 
     
    Batch Tool to use if you are having any difficulty with the FW update. It wipes the internal memory and installs a clean FW update but there are a few more steps but it is great if something gets messed up: http://www.ibasso.com/uploadfiles/20151210/201512100333294318.rar
    You can download a .rar app for free to unzip the .rar. There are instruction with the download on how to install on a Microsoft OS computer. It can also be used on the DX50 and DX90 to load FW's. 
     
    From Lurker0:
     
    "I remind you all that the fastest and safest method to perform the firmware update is via recovery console: press and hold Vol+ while turning the device on. It flashes the firmware and then performs the factory reset and then boots the device, all automatically! So, you turn DX80 once, press Vol-, then press Power to start the process, and in a few seconds you have your DX80 turned on, updated and in the initial state, to start using again."
     
    ==========
     
    Starting from firmware 1.1.4, it works flawlessly from my 128GB SanDisk microSD, exFAT formatted, in the 1st slot. If you have two cards, you might need to find out once which one is the right place for update.img.
     
     
    Yes there is a DX80 thread but most was all speculation and now that the DX80 is out, it would be nice to get to more meaningful posts regarding sound and in hand use of this dap. 
     
    I just got a DX80 and will be giving my impressions and later a review. Let's see how this puppy does. 
     
    =========
     
    One thing I notice right off is a totally different UI and a screen that is very fast. 
     
    ======
     
    To me the sound at this point is different from the other daps from iBasso. It is a different dac chip of course but also just a different sound. The soundstage is large but cohesive. 
     
    ======
     
    To me the DX80 has a larger soundstage when compared to the DX90. It is one of the largest soundstages I have heard. And yet, it images well, which is important to me. I don't like large soundstage that are diffuse. There is good layering and musicality. I always enjoyed the DX50 for its musical quality and to me, the DX80 increases that musicality, as very good detail and imaging and has a grounded quality acoustical presentation. By acoustical, I mean that it isn't just large but also give you a feeling of where things are within the space of what you are hearing.
     
    *Si TIme MEMS Oscillator X2
    *XMOS USB receiver with Thesycon USB Audio driver. Easy to use USB DAC. 
    *Line out has a set voltage. 
    *Dual CS4398 dacs and native DSD.
    *Dual micro SD slots.
    *3600mah battery.
    *Optical and coax digital output. 
    *3.2 inch screen with a resolution of 480*800 IPS screen.
    *Native DSD64 and 128 from SD card or USB input.
    *Line out:Output Level: 1.6Vrms (1kHz0dB) 
    --Frequency Response:17Hz ~20KHz +/-0.1dB 
    --S/N:-116dB +/-1dB 
    --THD+N: 0.001% Crosstalk: 107d B (1KHz) 
    *Headphone out: Output Level: 2.9Vrms(32ohm Load).
    *260mW into a 32 ohm load. 
    --FrequencyResponse: 17Hz~20KHz +/-0.1dB 
    --S/N: -114dB +/-1dB (32ohm Load) 
    --THD+N: 0.002% (32ohm load)
    *Output Impedance: <0.1ohm
    *Size: 120mm*63.2mm*16.8mm
    *Weight: 178g


     

    **Retail price: $359.00

     

    ==========

     

    Excellent info on doing a playlist as posted by:

     

    1. [​IMG]
    1. Scottes7
    2. [​IMG]
    3. Quote:



    I have no problems creating and importing playlists on my DX80. I first used MediaMonkey to create a playlist in .m3u format, and that needed editing before it would import into the DX80 (see below). Now that I know how to do this, I wrote a simple program that will create playlists and those import in one step.
     
    I wrote the instructions below for someone else. They cover using the DX80 to create a playlist, and how to import a .m3u playlist created on a PC.
    These instructions kinda did not work for him - he could not get the DX80 to export a playlist (steps 9-13), and thus couldn't complete them.
    These steps do work for me, since I performed the steps as I wrote them down.
     
    Hopefully it will work for you.
    It's a lot of instructions but I'm a very detailed guy... It doesn't take all that long - besides waiting for the DX80 to actually do the import.
     
     
    I'm assuming you're on a Windows PC. If you're on a Mac this will be a little different - and I have no idea how it will be different, but probably in steps 15 and 16 when dealing with the slashes and backslashes.
     
    1. Copy all the music you want to your DX80.
    2. Copy the playlist file to the device - someplace easy to find like the root directory.
    3. Using the DX80, play a song. Tap on the album cover until 2 symbols appear at the top - a plus sign on the left, and something on the right.
    4. Tap the plus sign. You'll see all your playlists - which is probably blank except for a box with a plus sign in it.
    5. Tap that box with the plus sign. This will create a new playlist called Playlist1.
    6. Click the Back arrow in the top left to go back to the song that's playing.
    7. Swipe right to get to the My Music screen.
    8. Click on Playlist on the bottom right. Again you'll see all the playlists on the device.
    9. Long-press Playlist1 until the next screen pops up.
    10. Tap Export. It will take a second or so, and you'll be back on the screen showing all the playlists.
    11. Plug the DX80 back into your computer.
    12. Open the drive that is the DX80, and browse to the \m3u directory.
    13. You should see a file called Playlist1.m3u
    14. Open that file in a text editor. You'll see something like:
     
    /mnt/external_sd/The Edgar Winter Group/They Only Come Out at Night/Frankenstein.flac
     
    Note a couple things here - the slashes / not backslashes \, and the first two paths. In my case, "/mnt/external_sd" - you might see "/mnt/firstsd" since it depends on which slot your music card is in.
     
    15. Using a text editor, open your playlist that you copied to the DX80 back in Step 2. You'll see a list of songs but they'll be in DOS format, something like:
     
    C:\Music\The Edgar Winter Group\They Only Come Out at Night\Frankenstein.flac
     
    16. Now perform 2 search-and-replace actions in the text editor:
    16a. Replace all occurrences of "C:\Music\" (or whatever you have) with "/mnt/external_sd/" or "/mnt/firstsd/" (whichever one appeared in Step 14).
    - NOTE: It may just be "C:\". Compare the paths and only replace what is different.
    16b. Replace all occurrences of "\" with "/"
    17. Save the file, which should overwrite the one on the DX80.
    18. Unplug from your PC and start the DX80 up again.
    19. It should be showing a song, so swipe right to get back to the My Music screen.
    20. In the middle-right, tap on Directory.
    21. Tap on your card that contains your music, either SD card 1 or SD card 2
    22. Find your playlist that you edited in Step 16
    23. Tap on your playlist. A box will pop up, asking "Import Playlist?" Tap Yes.
    24. It will scan the media looking for each song. Depending on the number of songs in the playlist and on the device, it could take some time.
    25. When it's done it will pop back showing the files in that directory. Click the Back arrow a few times until you're back on the My Music screen.
    26. On the bottom right, click on Playlist.
    27. Tap on your playlist. A list of songs in that playlist should appear. Scroll through if you wish to see if they're all there.
    28. Click the back arrow to show the list of playlists.
    29. Long-press your playlist. A window will pop up. Hit Play.
     
    A review: 
     




     
    thewarder500 likes this.
  2. haens
    comparison with dx90 is eagerly awaited, thanks [​IMG]
     
    Mython likes this.
  3. AndrewH13
    Come on jamato, you can't say different, and not give the slightest hint in which way :)
     
  4. jamato8 Contributor

    Sorry, I am just trying to form an initial opinion on what I am hearing and I know the sound will change some with burn in but I have always experienced that with iBasso products that as they burn in, they improve. IMO
     
    I would say that right now the sound is a little warmer than the DX90 but not unnaturally so and the details are there, so what you might call more analogue like? 
     
    AndrewH13 likes this.
  5. H20Fidelity Contributor
    Thanks for creating the thread Jamato.
     
    I had a visit from DHL earlier today.
     
     
    dx80arrival.jpg
     
     
    I've spent roughly one afternoon with DX80 using one of my favourite hybrid IEMs - Fidue A83.
     
    Firmware: V1.0.0
     
    I'm going to keep it brief until I settle in however I can tell you I inserted my 32gb card which was scanned no issues in 3-4 minutes, the screen displays a readout percentage when scanning from 0%-100% and immediately afterwards I started playing music without any stress. I can browse my folders, select albums, tracks which DX80 plays no problems using the directory (folder browsing), I have not tried any tag browsing yet. From moving around the menus the unit has performed everything asked without any major hiccups or drama. Once when changing tracks from the directory list DX80 quickly reset itself, the screen flashed before going back to my previous last resumed track on start up,(I have seen DX90 and DX50 do this before)  its only done so once from a few hours navigating so I selected my song again in which DX80 played no problems. I've tested features like gapless which appear to be working with my FLAC files, my album art is displayed using 16/44 FLAC files, no problems.
     
    I want to clear one thing up as its probably an important question: Does DX80 resemble a buggy DX50 we had on release?
     
    In my personal opinion and experience so far I would say certainly not. From the time I've spent which is 4-6 hours I've only come across that one issue mentioned above, no major shutdowns, no freezing, no popping noises, no forced resets its been resemblant of a practically stable player for me. There are a few little things like the player defaulting to high gain each startup, I just need to switch to low gain each boot for the time being. But if you think your DX80 is going to explode in front of you or combust into flames on arrival I really don't see it happening this time round personally people. I think iBasso have got themselves's sorted.
     
     
    For those of you who have owned DX50 or DX90 you will find resemblances in the user interface, there's many of the same options available in settings and advanced settings, some screens even look the same. The major change would be the way you navigate around DX80's interface using side swipe motions to flick back to your track list from the now playing screen, or swipe the opposite direction to bring up the settings menu.
     
    Features like:
     
    The DAC filter (present and working, slow or sharp roll-off)
    High or low gain
    L/R balance
    Gapless
    Equalizer (have not tried yet)
    Music info
    USB settings
    Play mode
    Advanced settings
     
    dx80ui.jpg
     
     
    The now playing screen:
     
    (notice additional features like the battery percentage readout top right)
     
    dx80nowplayingscreen.jpg
     
     
     
    A few things I notice straight away is the volume representation are more in sync with your allocated volume level. I know some people thought 250 steps on iBasso's previous players were left a little redundant under a certain level, this has been corrected and the volume now goes from only 0-150 smoothly. The volume also reacts faster, meaning it accelerates and decreases faster, you no longer need to hold the volume buttons as long. Speaking of volume buttons, around the casing have also been improved, they're bigger and easier to press, there's less resistance which takes away the feeling you're forcing them or pushing them strenuously. A good thing for people who were worried about their DX50/DX90 volume buttons breaking.
     
     
    And the sound... 
     
    What I hear in DX80 is a similar iBasso house sound present on both DX50 and DX90, although DX80 is 'very' revealing and to my ears a little bright. For those who enjoy high detail levels its especially rewarding, little things like the depth of detail in each instrument stands out and vocals will reach those eargasm levels using the correct tracks. The low end sounds tighter than both DX50 / DX90 and the quantity to my ears seems 'slightly' increased especially when extension is concerned, I really hear an 'atmosphere' of sub-bass when it decays in a track, its quite pleasant to hear. The layering is also quite competent around the stage and I think anyone thinking of purchasing would be overly pleased with the sound from the short time I've listened Honestly, I'm not sure where iBasso are trying to position DX80 whether it be between DX50 and DX90 or a DX90 successor, I'm certainly leaning towards the later atm.
     
     
     
    I know some of the main questions are: 

    Is it BETTER than DX50?
    Is it BETTER than DX90?
     
    Those questions will surely be answered, but not from me yet having spent only the afternoon with DX80. 

     
    proedros, Tony1110 and d marc0 like this.
  6. EagleWings
    Thank you for your impressions. Sounds impressive. I particularly like the way that you just swipe to go to the settings and music library. I look forward to your full review.

    Also, in your review, it'd be great if you could mention if the device gets warm or stays cool with continuous playback of lossless files.
     
  7. H20Fidelity Contributor
    Keep in mind I haven't taken the factory 'DX80' screen protector off my unit yet (hence the photos). After I get some sleep I'll come back with some pictures right around the unit. Both Jamato and I can answer any questions you guys may have. I've also just been informed were waiting on a new firmware this week to smooth out the unit running with 2 cards. Atm I'm only using one slot.

    About the heat, it doesn't seem to get warm, let me test this further.
     
  8. jamato8 Contributor

    It stays cool charging and listening. Well very slightly warm but I am surprised at how cool it stays while charging and playing at the same time. I have it using the burn in cable when not listening and a few times I thought it had shut down, because it wasn't warm at all but it was still playing. lol 
     
  9. Splutje
    I have a faulty DX50 and i can switch it for another device. 
     
    I liked the DX50 (SU 1.3.3) very much, but now i have to choose between a DX80, or maybe a Fiio X5ii or maybe even a Fiio X3ii. It would be nice if someone could compare the different DAC's. 
     
    I have a RHA MA750 and i like a full sound, although not a basshead, i do like a firm bass (Lorde, 24 bit, really rumbles, and ' Hifi going under' , flac 16bit, from Kruder and Dorffmeister [​IMG]). And of course, layering, extension and detail are also very appreciated.
     
    And: Will the DX80 able to run on custom made firmware's like SU and Doc's? (Is it possible to create custom FW?)
     
  10. meat01 Contributor
    When you listen to songs in random mode and you hit the back button, does it go to another random song, or the last song you heard?
     
  11. Splutje
    I'm curious about the playing time on a full battery?
    And whats the difference between the three physical buttons (rew, play/pause, fwd ) and the three buttons on the touchscreen (rew,play/pause, fwd)?
     
  12. proedros
    i had a DHL packet notification today and at first i was 'wtf , i didn't order anything from China' [​IMG]
     
    but then i remembered that Paul asked me to review DX80 , so i guess my questions has been self-answered [​IMG]
     
    cheers  to Ibasso , impressions to follow [​IMG] 
     
  13. pholcus1975
    When a folder finishes playing, what happens?does it go to next folder?
     
  14. nmatheis Contributor
    Nice impressions so far, guys!

    As long as sound is comparable, I'd rather have this over DX90. On comment, though. Did it really take 3-4 minutes to scan 32Gb card? That's soooo long compared to other DAPs. C'mon, iBasso. You can do better than that!
     
  15. H20Fidelity Contributor
    Ok guys, here's some photos. These are totally random off the camera, (will organise things after some sleep)
     
    IMG_1374.jpg
     
    IMG_1376.jpg
     
    IMG_1379.jpg
     
    IMG_1380.jpg
     
    IMG_1381.jpg
     
    IMG_1382.jpg
     
     
    IMG_1385.jpg
     
     
    IMG_1386.jpg
     
    proedros, DJScope and sledgeharvy like this.

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