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Still have not received mine yet !!! USA
Advanced Accessport powered by AAW
Presented here today is none other than the Advanced Accessport powered by AAW. This iOS lightning dongle lets you listen to music through a 1/8" or 3.5mm headphone jack. It is no coincidence that after iPhone 7 omitted the headphone jack, an after-market headphone dac/amp called Accessport came to existence; similar devices have been announced by various entities to fill this void. However Accessport is not just another device mind you that comes on to market just because. Advanced and AAW, both companies which have strong headfi community support, joined forces to bring a portable audio interface that will embrace the headfi communities' zest for hi-fidelity.
To make a long story short this device was born from the Kickstarter campaign. And to let the reader know as deemed protocol, my unit was sent to me at the cost of the minimum Kickstarter pledged value. Furthermore, I highly recommend this device.
But if you insist on reading more, be my guest as I will try to share my observations as
I embarked on this journey to find out more about the Accessport.
Please see the specification as written on the back of the packaging box. It has quite impressive numbers. However like with everything there are pros and cons.
The cons being the packaging only included the bare minimum you need to start listening to music, assuming the ios device is already at hand.
The pros are plenty and unfortunately may take some more reading to discover them all. The first real neat thing about the Accessport is that once you plug in the cable it starts working no questions asked. There is an app and firmware update made available, but the reviewer chose not to embark in those efforts as the music sounded too good to change the subject. Additionally the Accessport was originally specified to support lightning, micro-usb and usb C connections, but only the ios lightning appears to be made available at the time of this writing. Therefore it is not known if an ios version can later be updated to firmware to support android and pc, but potential is there for bonus.
Now here is the sound analysis. I'll be frank and disclose that I don't have highly technical measurement tools to evaluate spectral responses and what not. But I know a good product and good sound when I see and hear one respectively. My Accessport is a DAC and amplifier powered off the host ios device. Therefore the performance of the Accessport should be evaluated with the understanding that power is a limited resource. With that said however, Accessport still offers pretty decent low end rumble using KZ EDR2 and consequently manages to not draw a lot of power from the host. That is impressive. Yes it can get kind of loud, more so than the host ipad mini. But the most impressive part has to be that the frequency extension is quite imaginative. It's like it keeps going as to whenever I tried brighter and more treble extending earphones; Vivo XE800. I would imagine this Accessport was designed to accommodate even the most treble detail abound multi-balance armature earphones. And as the spec noted the less than 1 ohm output impedance will do much better for such earphones, unlike some devices like the walnut which has trouble with balance armature drivers with its 100 ohm output impedance and all. But the sound in comparison to the walnut v2.0 is just a show of different character. The clarity and blackness I prefer the Accessport. However the walnut really carries the muscle and also possesses a very polite acoustical manners if that makes any sense. The Accessport is about the absolute truth where as the walnut only wants to tell you what you want to hear. To be honest I kind of see the devil in the walnut with the half truth. Matrix analogy: Accessport is the red pill and walnut is the blue pill. But I digress.
The treble, mids, and bass are handled very diplomatically by Accessport without showing any favoritism. The Accessport demands quality source as rubbish sounds will be revealed without compromise, and it should be this way so the world can enjoy high res music. If you keep covering up the faults and defects be it digital artifacts, technology will linger and performance stagnate, and that will be bad for us.
The sound stage appears to support the sound stage the Vivo XE800 was able to deliver when listening through the walnut so they are comparable.
There are other products on the market that supports MFi like the Accessport, but I think the Accessport is the only device with a dedicated charging port. This means you can out last others who skimp on the details, unlike Advance and AAW. And the form factor I find quite useful with the bendable braided cable and very light weight tactile plastic housing.
I tried using a 30 pin to lightning adapter to see if iphone 4 supported Accessport to no avail. If a jailbroken iphone 4 could work then maybe here is hope. I think the Accessport sounds superior to iphone 4 headphone out. The power is similar, but similarity ends there. Accessport is much better.
Lastly I finally have been able to verify if the Accessport supports earphone or headphones with a mic. And it works. But ios requires Apple compatible mic control to work right. Apparently other MFi devices, not to be named here, have received unflattering remarks about the mic quality.
In summary, my Accessport does everything that can be done from a position of constraint imposed by the host ios device. However Accessport does not disappoint, and in fact it was quite surprising to see so much volume and bass rumble. The clarity and frequency response extensions are its native strength. Having only used the Accessport for several weeks now, I can certainly appreciate what Advance and AAW brings to the table. So consider a cyberspace trip over to Null Audio and see how deep the rabbit hole goes.
I updated my Accessport this morning to version 1.1.1, all went well according to the iOS app.
However, the buttons no longer work since this update. This unwanted behaviour is present on both my iPhone 7 (10.3.3) and iPad Pro (11.0 public beta).
Have contacted the support for a solution...
Anyone else here has had the same misfortune?
I chose not to update the Accessport because everything worked perfectly for me. I hope you have solved what it was that was holding you back.
iphone X announcement came out and I still don't know if my Accessport can work with it. I can pretty much be certain that it is among a short list of things holding me back. But I like how Apple hasn't fallen asleep at the wheel, instead they woke up everybody.
Any news on the USB-C version?
I've been using mine at work just about every day, and it is starting to bomb out. The audio cuts out when I'm moving around - probably a lousy connection to the lightning plug. I was hoping it would be more durable.
Yeah mine lost connection as well. Will AAW replace it for us?
I keep mine in a case when not in use. And for all the use cases I've put the Accessport through, I don't see the cable failing. I suspect though the assembly was done by a human and not a machine, and just like a Porche everyone's mileage may vary.
Getting cut connections, probably poor wiring somewhere, once i hold it down its fine! But really expected better quality though
I wonder if an immigrant finished assembling mine, one of the early first batch, and then got deported. And the legal residents hired to fill the gap have dropped the ball. Sometimes immigrants are agood thing. Anyway it looks like a heat shrink maybe a necessary safety precaution. But I've seen liquid stuff that maybe easier to apply like liquid electric tape, sillicone glue, plastidip, and not so liquidy silicone molds.
Anyone try using a good diy strain relief? I'd hate to cover the nice braided cable. I think the solder was not up to temperature when the new guys were ina hurry to ship these out the door.
Have you had any luck since this post? I haven't updated mine yet, as I'm waiting for further confirmation that this has been addressed first.
I haven't had any cutting out issues with mine yet, but one of my concerns has always been the non-detachable lightning cable. From my experience with TONS of varying quality lightning/micro USB/mini USB/proprietary cables, they will always be the weak link. I know even with detachable cables there can be issues with the port, but that seems to occur far less than problems with cables. I really wish they had gone with a detachable cable, which also would have allowed for switching between lightning and USB.
Can we get some update on the situation please.
Grace was last on here 9/7 so you might get a quicker response if you directly message her.