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Ibasso DX90 or Fiio X3ii (Second Generation)

Discussion in 'Portable Source Gear' started by moodyda, May 7, 2015.
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  1. moodyda
    I have both the Ibasso DX90 and Fiio X3 second generation.  I like both but prefer the sound on the DX and the UI/size on the X3.  While sound is the most important....I wonder if it is worth double the price.  Also I think that I may like the sound of the DX90 better because I know that "it should".  
    I prefer progressive type of music to metal.  Examples of most listened to are...Rush, Dream Theater, Marillion, Police, Dire Straits,  Deep Purple, Coheed and Cambria, Old Foreigner, ELP, Genesis, Journey, Black Sabbath, Judas Priest, Metallica, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, Yes and Guitar greats like Yngwie, Satriani, Vai and Eric Johnson.  
    Which unit is more suited to this type of genre.  My ears say Ibasso and my wallet says Fiio, but I am no golden ear.  Also I am 50 and I can tell no difference between Mp3 320 and 96/24 Hi res type music. Is either unit better at playing back Mp3?  
    I own Audio Technica M50x (closed type), Grado Sr 325is (open), and Shure Se 535 iem plus assorted bluetooth units to go with my phone when being more active or needing wireless.  
    I did get the Ibasso for $479 that included the Dignis Leather case, wall charger, and 128 gb card as extras and the X3 for $199.  
    Is it that this type of playback units are in their infancy or they continually evolving?  Fiio seems to move more quickly to improve vs Ibasso.
  2. moodyda
    Another thing.............I noticed that on the Ibasso when using the eq it can make some improvements on Mp3 whereas turning on at all on Hi Res is a drastic difference and the eq, perhaps because of loudness, seemed useless.  I have noticed that Fiio has chosen to eliminate the use of eq during Hi res playback.  
    What gives.......Is Hi res Unfriendly with equalization?
  3. moodyda
    Nobody wants to weigh-in on this?
  4. moodyda
    Need Help!!!
  5. moodyda
    Hello................Ibasso DX90 or Fiio X3II
  6. moodyda
    Helllllllllllp!     The more I A&B it the harder it gets.this Fiio just keeps getting better......or am I wanting it to?
  7. jamato8 Contributor
    Trust your ears and enjoy the music. You don't need other people to tell you what you are hearing. 
  8. moodyda
    I know that.  I am just hoping for a little more insight on these devices because my hearing isn't what it used to be.
  9. H20Fidelity Contributor
    I don't see what the problems is? 
    In the very first post, first sentence you said...
    What is it you want us to tell you? If anyone knows the best choice for yourself its (you)
    I could understand if you were looking to buy, but you have both units? 
  10. moodyda
    I know H2O, but I only have a few days left with the Ibasso (which has over 400 hours of burn in), and the more A/B testing they seem to be getting closer.  Sound signature seems to still be a little different, that's why I referenced the type of music that I listen to.  What is the best way to compare the 2?  I feel that by the time that I swap the headphone cable from one to another I lose the feel and impact of the 2.  Its like I have some sort of short term memory when it comes to auditioning the 2 this way.  Perhaps there is a better way, I need to hear the 2 units almost side by side.  And getting them to the exact same level is another problem.
  11. H20Fidelity Contributor
    I figured it might have been something like that (add information like that next time). 
    What I can tell you is an MP3 player or DAP (especially the FiiO and iBasso units) measure flat. Meaning besides the differences you can slightly hear neither player enhances bass, increases treble or alter the frequency response (when using no EQ), their purpose is to simply play the recording back and let the headphone or IEM use its signature.  So what it comes down to is your headphone or IEM, the synergy between them and those slight differences you can understand. Obviously you're hearing a slight advantage from DX90 as you've mentioned. 
    What you need to ask yourself is, how much that money means to you, can you afford to keep the iBasso and not stress out about the funds, if you can do this I would personally keep the iBasso, (I love mine) but have not heard X3K yet, its coming in a week or two. You, yourself must decide if the difference is worth it.
    I can also tell you rather than switch back n forth between the two players quickly changing the headphone jack, just listen to one for 1/2 a day, get to know it then switch over to the other. I've found long term sessions between the units achieves better results than quick A/Bing. Again though, how much does the money of DX90 mean to you if you don't do the return. 
    There is the official way of using an A/B switch and volume matching, but you would need to obtain the A/B switch. 
  12. moodyda
    Thanks H20....I thought I was going insane as they seem to be getting closer.  Never heard of an A/B switch for a comparison  Where would you get one?
    In the meantime, I will take your advice and try one for a longer period and then switch.
  13. H20Fidelity Contributor
    Here's the switch in question. 
    If you want to learn more about volume matching and setting this up please contact Brooko via PM. (he will explain)
    If anything its going to be educational for you. 
  14. moodyda
    Again, Thanks!
  15. goodvibes
    Where do all these 'used' returns go?
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