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New model Cowon - Plenue D2

Discussion in 'Portable Source Gear' started by tiddlywinks, Jan 1, 2019.
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  1. counterclockwise
    in terms of SQ i'd call that a side grade.
    not in terms of battery life though. ^^
  2. mbphotox
    Can't hear a difference between X5II and PD2 either..

    The FiiO boots (and dies!) much more quickly than the PD2, but that's about all the difference there is.

    I used a small 32gb micro sd card now (sandisk extreme pro) and it boots up before I fall asleep. Although, it has turned itself off several times already, because it still takes very long and I simply leave it be while doing something else (fetch a coffee or something).

    The 128gb card is a Samsung evo and I never got the player to boot.. Only when I insert the card after it booted up.

    Maybe my PD2 is faulty, but PLEASE COWON, remove that fugging database update on startup!
  3. counterclockwise
    i find them quite different in character actually, but it's hard to pick one over the other. i'd say the x5ii sounds more classy, relaxed, and "reference" whereas the d2 is more fun and energetic. and of course in terms of UI the x5ii is waaaay ahead of the d2. ^^;
  4. trivium911
    depends on how you look at it, im having issues with the X5ii that wont go into sleep mode. Its a firmware bug they never fixed. The player will not go into sleep mode when paused in the now playing screen...i found the solution is to hit the back button to go back into the menu. It will than go into sleep mode.
  5. trivium911
    So why is it that dual DACs do not seem to sound better than single DACs? Is it all just a sales pitch?
    NotKunvinced likes this.
  6. jmills8
    The daps with the single dac have the same dac as the dual dac dap?
  7. trivium911
    No I'm just saying in general one would think having two DACS would sound substantially better, however this is usually not the case. The fiio x5ii has a single DAC, the Cowin has a dual DAC but yet you guys say it's a side grade. The fiio x5ii 3rd gen also has dual DACs and it doesn't sound any better than the x5 2nd gen with one DAC.
  8. mbphotox
    Dual dacs allow for faster processing, just like a dual core cpu in a computer will render your video more quickly. Doesn't mean that the video looks better in the end :)
    PaganDL likes this.
  9. counterclockwise
    so do you render audio tracks on your DAPs? ( ー_ー)

    the point of dual DACs is that you can dedicate one to each channel, which reduces crosstalk and increases SNR.

    but there's more to sound quality than crosstalk and SNR of course. a DAP with dual DACs does not necessarily perform better than a DAP with a single DAC. there's loads of factors at play. the x5ii has a single DAC, but its discrete amp stage seems like a plus over the D2 (the D2 uses low powered integrated DAC+AMP units). with different architecture, different DAC, different filters etc., it's hard to say which is supposed to be better.

    on paper the D2 wins the specs game, but that doesn't imply it actually sounds better.

    neither is perfect, but having used both a good bit i find the x5ii's UI more polished and responsive, more flexible in terms of settings, and about a million times more logically structured than the D2's. not to mention the D2's incessant database updating habits...

    don't let me stop you though, there's a lot to love about the D2.
  10. counterclockwise
    actually for the D2 the main motivation for using two DAC+AMP units was probably to boost output power for driving hard-to-drive headphones. single ended SNR and crosstalk for the D2 (2 x CS43131) are no better than for the plenue V (1 x CS43131). (^_^ゞ
  11. mbphotox
    Still, they have to decode those 24bit tracks asap.. :p

    Despite all your tech blurb, you end up preferring the X5II due to better UI and handling, and cannot differentiate the sound.

    They sound just the same to me, but having 10 times more battery life is a big plus.

    I prefer the FiiO for handling (custom fast boot firmware, forgot the name) and the Cowon for travel, but the latter desperately needs a custom firmware!
  12. counterclockwise
    didn't say i prefer the x5ii. did say they sound different to me.

    the tech blurb was mostly directed at trivium911 (i could have structured that post better...), who seemed surprised that dual DAC doesn't necessarily imply better sound.

    true dat.
  13. silverfishla
    Love my D2, but the most frustrating thing about it is the lack of memory space (128gb) max card + 60gb internal. Because, if you load those up, stuff slows down and gets laggy. Probably need to let up some space on the internal.
    NotKunvinced likes this.
  14. aaDee
    Has anyone compared D2 with Shanling M2x?
  15. castleofargh Contributor
    there is just a gap between consumer's imagination and reality. doubling stuff gives us the notion of twice everything and that's simply our misconception(same can be said of multidriver IEMs BTW). first, some modern DACs already have more than 2 channels available so one chip can already do in some ways, the doubling of whatever 2 simpler chips can do. but it's not a big deal because the end result of using 2 DACs is going to be something around 3dB improvement in SNR. hopefully that was already well above noticeable levels at the output of the DAC. so you do get the ability to improve things objectively(if and only if the rest of the playback chain can maintain those levels of fidelity which they probably cannot), but expecting night and day change in our ears is a little optimistic. if there is some audible difference it is more likely going to be due to the surrounding design changes or some serious improvement in the amp section when driving some specific loads. DACs have been pretty good for a good decade already.
    there is also the option of changing some of the settings offered by modern DAC chips(some are full of fancy settings), but obviously one doesn't need to stack up DAC chips on a board to play with those options and DSPs.

    IMO a certain stability in the sound of devices under most circumstances, may be seen as a testimony to how close they all come to audible transparency. people who can't stand "upgrading" without getting massive audio difference as a result will just move toward more "audiophile" gears with a house sound. it's much easier to get big changes by lowering fidelity than it is to do the same by increasing it. different desires lead to different products. on portable gears, I feel that the so called "balanced" trick is the obvious answer right now. between the change in loudness that most will subjectively mistake for a better sound, and the typical change in impedance that may alter the signature a little on some IEMs, we get a big opportunity for "night and day" difference without actually changing much when it comes to effective fidelity beside maybe crosstalk that should be inaudible under most circumstances and can be ruined by a plug just as easily as it can be by a complete DAC+amp design. it makes no sense to double components and battery use on portable gears IMO, but the subjective impact at the very least is sure to work on most people. and the small objective improvements may still interest the others.
    personally I'd rather get smaller long lasting DAPs, and simply use easy to drive IEMs(which in my book does not mean as low impedance and as sensitive as possible!!!!! average everything is my eldorado). but that's just my very personal opinion. looking at the market, I'm clearly not talking for most consumers. I never got that love for massive powerful portable stuff. I understand big cellphones because it's hard to watch porn of a small screen, but why seek big DAPs and hard to drive headphones for portable use? I don't get why there is a market(and a lively one) for that. don't get me wrong, choice is good and if many people want that, it's great that they can find those products. I'm not saying they shouldn't exist, just that I don't get why so many people care for them. perhaps it's thanks to all the misconceptions about more power making everything magically better? IDK.
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