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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. willcycle
    Do you also have mp3 files on your internal memory?
  2. metsat
    Just ordered one. Let's see how it compares to my rockboxed Sansa Clip Zip which is amazingly good for it's price. I was a Cowon user in the past. Have had the J3, the D2 and some iAudio players. Was always very happy with the sound quality. I have kind of high expectations for this player. I will find out when I receive it.

    I will be primarily using it with Denon AH-D7200 headphones. Anyone who is using the same setup?
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2019
    NotKunvinced likes this.
  3. gelocks
    I would really like to get this one, but man, is it really limited in storage? (i.e. no 400gb microSD accepted?) Or does it accept the card but doesn't index due to contents (more content) and not necessarily size? Cowon can be freaking weird! lol

    Also, if I cannot scan due to using 400gb, can you actually play (shuffle) full folders? (can someone try)
    And if you can't, is there another alternative with good battery life (30+) and decent sound?
    Right now I'm just using a Nokia 7 as source (headphones are easy to drive - Sony MDR-AM2, Ultrasone) so I'm guessing I don't need huge power.

  4. Ravix_04
    Just bought a new PD2, and are now looking for a case. Cowons own seems nice, but way to expensive. Is there any cheaper cases out there? Dosen't have to be leather.
    70 euors total is just too much in my opinion.
  5. gelocks
    I actually bought the previous gen for cheap on Amazon just to tests my 400gb card since I did not receive a reply on this.

    Hopefully, even if it doesn't properly scan the library, I can shuffle play whole folders pending the number of files/folders as per their manuals. If it works, I might jump to this updated D2 version.
  6. silverfishla
    Cowon’s Case is very nice. I agree, that it’s too expensive. I was lucky to find one on eBay for $40 US from a golf shop that had 1 in stock (go figure). Probably the guys own personal one, but it was new. I had contacted JetAudio and they said they were going to stock them.
  7. taffy2207
    I've just ordered one, curiosity got hold of this Cat :cat: Found a deal that was too good to miss. Should be arriving on Tuesday.
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2019
  8. metsat
    I’ve been using my Plenue D2 for four days extensively since I received it and I’m very happy with it. The sound quality without Jeteffects is ok, good but nothing extraordinary. But with BBE, Mach3Bass and MP Enhance activated the sound is stellar. Very fun to listen to. And the battery life is amazing as stated by Cowon. You get a lot of return on your investment with this great little DAP. Well worth the 300$. Highly recommended.
    Cat Music likes this.
  9. taffy2207
    I've received my PD2 about an hour ago. Just a heads up to all those worried about the cost of the Official PD2 Cases and lack of derivatives that the Official Cowon PD case also fits the PD2. It pertrudes a little but isn't a huge problem as you can see below. The screen is fully visible and the side buttons fully accessible. The PD case should be a lot cheaper and more readily available :-

    The Tuff Love also fits the PD2 but wasn't exactly well thought of in the PD thread if my memory serves correct. I can't find a Dignis one as of yet :-.

    Last edited: Jul 23, 2019
    Cat Music and gelocks like this.
  10. gelocks
    So, since I was skeptical regarding this player, I actually bought the previous version, Plenue D since the OS seem to basically be the same as well as memory support.

    So, good news:
    1. Player accepts 400gb cards
    2. Database update actually works fast in recognizing songs
    3. Can play folders! (Yay)
    4. I actually missed some of the BBE/Jet Effect settings lol!
    5. Good sound quality (using Sony and ultrasone closed back headphones)
    1. Although it accepts the cards it still has the file/folder limitation. Loaded my microSD with 11+k files on 10k folders or so and the player recognizes 9000 songs more or less which is NOT bad at all. But the player is a bit unstable and shuts off when changing songs. Worst is that it happens randomly so I can't narrow it down to bad files or metadata. If I try to access some of the newest folders, it also shuts off.
    2. Tries to update the database at every power on even though the settings menu has an option to manually scan...
    3. Sluggish scrolling and screen refresh rate but that was expected.
    So, based on the Plenue D's initial impressions, I don't think the D2 will suit me.

    Based on reviews, battery life, etc, if Cowon would fix the UI issues and accepted exFat (to remove file limitation) I think it would be perfect... maybe Plenue D3...

    I'm thinking that the Sony zX300 might be what I'm looking for although sound quality might not be as good as Plenue D/D2 possibly nor battery life but should be comparable.

    I'll try to run my collection through MediaMonkey or something like that in case my tags need to be cleaned or maybe organize the collection using less folders. Will also try a smaller collection on another card to see how it performs and if it keeps shutting off randomly before I give up on the D and acquiring a D2.

    Just thought I'd share in case someone else is on the same predicament.

    Last edited: Jul 23, 2019
    acroyear likes this.
  11. taffy2207
    Early impression after 4 / 5 hours playing, this is one damn fine sounding DAP. It trounces the original D sonically (SE) and anyone who knows me from the Plenue D thread knows how much I love the original PD. I'll give more impressions soon but not my Donald Trump, because that's just terrible.

    I want to get some serious listening hours under my belt before I say more but Mrs T already wants one.
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2019
  12. taffy2207
    Ok, I've spent quite a bit of time with it as of late, it's hard to put this thing down :L3000:

    With Firmware 1.02.


    Reference sound
    Battery Life (30- 45 hours)
    Balanced Audio
    Jet Effects 5
    Form Factor (This can be a love hate experience though)
    Power (That AMP!)


    Slow UI
    No streaming, wi-fi etc.
    Jet Effects 5 (Why not 7?)
    No USB-C, Charging time
    Limited Storage Capacity
    Firmware is in its infancy
    No Case / Screen Protectors

    Ok here's my opinion (it's just that), I'm not an expert, I'm barely even a hobbyist :ksc75smile:

    The sound is reference, it's just effortless and highly resolving. I once described the original D as having a black blackground (no hiss), I think I should have said dark grey, because the PD2's is black. It's quite forgiving of source material to my ears with only 1 album not sounding good so far (Quicksands Manic Compression (it doesn't sound good on anything)). I've tested most metal genres, electronic, rap, Jazz and acoustic and it sounds great with all of them. I haven't tested Classical as I don't have any Classical Recordings.

    If you own a Cowon you know how good Jet Effects is for EQ'ing, I just wish that they had put Jet Effects 7 in the D2. I use headphones and have noticed that the Filters do change the sound (that seems to be a bugbear of many headfiers with regards to other DAPs).

    It has plenty of power, though I have only used it single ended. I may experiment with the balanced in the near future as I now want a new pair of headphones thanks to the PD2. I am not a huge believer in Balanced. Hifiman Sundara may be my next purchase.

    The UI is bad, same as the original D. Scrolling makes you feel like time has slowed. It doesn't bother me though, I'm used to it having used the Original PD. The screen is low res as on the PD, again it doesn't bother me.

    Charging time is 3.5 hours, connection is via USB 2.0, Why Cowon don't implement USB-C is only known to Cowon but with the battery lasting 30-45 hours it shouldn't prove that much of a problem, it is what it is. I haven't tested the battery yet, others in this thread have.

    There's no case or screen protectors in the box. The price for the official Cowon PD2 case is ridiculously expensive. It's currently on sale in the UK for circa £50. I believe £20 would be a much fairer price. Screen protectors are cheap enough to be included IMO.

    I have noticed one bug where the PD2 states that a FLAC file is invalid then I rewind and it plays it. that's the only bug I've noticed so far and it's only happened twice. Cowon produces regular Firmware updates so I expect them to correct most bugs.

    I once described the Original PD as being the perfect Commuters DAP. I also stated that if you wanted Critical listening to go elsewhere. The first still holds true for the PD but I would use the PD2 for critical listening, it's that good to my ears.

    I think it's my end game DAP (Crazy at this price) but who knows that may change. I'm 48, I don't need any bangs and whistles like Tidal, wifi etc. and I can't hear Bats farting. .

    I've always believed that a players job is to play music as it was intended, nothing more. The PD2 does that for me, it just sings. I'm not picking out small details in the Music, I'm just drowning in it.

    For those considering switching from the original to the PD2, the annoyances of the original are still largely present with the PD2 but the things we loved about it are a lot better.

    Sonically, it's streets ahead.

    I'm a music fan, not a gear fan. There's a lot wrong here, but damn, that sound is something else in this price bracket.

    Final thoughts, I bought this with my own money from AMP3. I'm not affiliated with Cowon, I am not here to promote the PD2, it's just my thoughts on it, nothing more. Similarly, it's your job to spend your money, not mine, so if you purchase it based on my thoughts, that's on you. I haven't tested vast arrays of DAPS or headphones, It's not my job, I'm not a reviewer and I'm not interested in finding pots of Gold at the end of Rainbows. I have set criteria, and buy according to that.

    Thanks for reading the rambling thoughts of an ignorant Brit :upside_down:
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2019
  13. someyoungguy
    Damn, sounds great. Thanks for the detailed breakdown. I’ve been holding off but I feel my will growing weaker... :)

    I’ve owned a bunch of Plenues, like an inadvertent tour of their line-up: P1, P2mkII, M, M2, R, D and V. And actually - similar to your story - my favorite purely in terms of sound signature was the V - the cheapest! - which has a single CS43131 DAC/amp. Like the D & D2 (and J too) it has that small screen and sluggish UI though. Eventually I decided to move on and get one of Cowon’s larger screen players for the snappier UI, and currently have the M2.

    I’ve been holding out wondering what the next large screen Plenue will be. But well, given the D2 is so cheap and is probably similar in sound to the V, but with the bonus of balanced and more power, maybe I’ll just get it and bite the bullet on the sluggish UI after all.
    taffy2207 likes this.
  14. mbphotox
    So many owners and so much hype about it, yet nobody releases a custom UI?

    Why? My FiiO X5 II got one asap and it's much nicer with that..

    Come on guys, I'd even pay 10$ for a responsive and thought-out UI.
    NotKunvinced likes this.
  15. counterclockwise
    re: custom UIs

    i've gone over the official development guide and API docs (Korean):
    and i'm running the custom Plenue D UI available from that same page…

    now_playing.png menu.png
    (seems fully compatible with the PD2, but really no better than the default UI...)

    and confirmed i can compile and run arbitrary flash code on it…


    the custom UI comes with source code files but no resources (images etc.) so you can't just tinker and recompile like i hoped, and i've had no luck trying to decompile the flash file.

    so that leaves building from scratch... but it only eats flash built in actionscript 2.0 and i don't speak a word of actionscript 2.0. ^^;

    and given that actionscript 2.0 has basically been outdated since 2006, i'm having a hard time justifying investing much time in it...
    i was amused to learn that actionscript 2.0 didn't actually have support for touch screens. internally, touch input is converted into mouse input which is then handled using mouse routines. maybe not so surprising that operation doesn't feel so smooth. ^^;
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