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Sony NW-A40 Series NW-A45/A46/A47

Discussion in 'Portable Source Gear' started by bizkid, Jul 11, 2017.
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  1. BbOO
    I am planing to buy my first dedicated DAP and i am between the A45 and Cowon Plenue D. What i want mostly in a DAP, is:

    1. Long battery life.
    2. Lots of storage/expandable storage.
    3. Attractive, easy to use UI & good and easy to use physical design.
    4. Sound quality.
    5. Easy to transfer music with a Mac (preferably drag-and-drop method).
    6. No additional apps, features, whatever. This will be used purely to play music files (MP3 and FLAC).

    Based on everything i have read, A45 easily wins on point 3, but Cowon is a winner in points 1 and 4, while both are same-ish on point 2.
    Still undecided though...
  2. kismetsky
    That about sums it up. I haven't heard the Plenue D to compare SQ, but if there's any chance that you'll use wireless headphones or a wireless speaker, the A45 has bluetooth and supports LDAC and aptX-HD. One huge knock against the Sony is its WM-PORT cable.
  3. BbOO
    Thanks! Not planing to use any wireless thingies, so i do not care about that. I do not get the cable hate the A45 gets all over the internet. I mean i need a dedicated cable for my iPhone as well and i am still sane and alive. Plus with the battery life on A45, it is not like you would need access to the cable that often (unless you need to add/remove music often).
  4. kismetsky
    I have two cables - one that came with the player and the small adapter that changes the port to micro-usb. There’s been more than one occasion where I needed to pull the microsd card to add music or where I was left with a dead battery with no way to charge it. Then again I travel quite a bit and bring the player everywhere with me.
    BbOO likes this.
  5. BbOO
    And it seems i was mistaken regarding memory; Plenue D supports cards only up to 128 GB while the A45 can accept cards up to 400GB (based on posts in this thread).
    Another plus for for A45.
  6. twd2003
    1)A45 has better battery life...48 hours max continuous playback.
    2)According to Sony, it supports up to 2 TB microSD cards.
    3)The Linux OS is slightly laggy when scrolling but overall is better than the Plenue D (with two 'oh crap go back' buttons always visible)
    4)Can't really compare sound quality as I have not heard the Plenue D
    5)It's easier to transfer to the Sony's Linux than Android I think
    6)It's Linux so it wins on this

    I've been using an NW-A45 for the past half a year and the only really annoying thing is WM-Port. My knowledge of the Plenue D comes from YouTube. Also, consider the Hidisz AP80 cos apparently the UI is quite good
  7. twd2003
    I think the difference is that you can walk into basically any store and pick up a Lightning cable whereas Sony is the only manufacturer who makes WM-Port (apart from those on AliExpress and other Chinese outlets) which makes it difficult and expensive to source a new one. Plus I like using docks and I can't find any for WM-Port as Sony stopped making 'em and used ones are like USD 60 on eBay (making it over USD 100 if I ship it to where I live in Asia). It's even worse if you're using a modern Android phone, tablet/iPad Pro, laptop etc that use Type-C 'cos you then have to carry more than one cable which should be a thing of the past. Sony really needs to get its act together on the whole WM-Port/Type-C thing...even USD 60 DAPs are using Type-C whereas Sony's flagship at over USD 7000 are still using WM-Port. Finally, it's also slower at data transfer and more fragile (like mini HDMI)
  8. BbOO
    All valid points, just the Plenue D has a battery life of approx. 100 hrs playback, so it wins there.
  9. BbOO
    Not sure if it is a fair question, but has anyone compared the NW-A45 with an iPhone 6 in terms of sound quality (without amp)?
  10. twd2003
    Better than the iPhone 7+ I've used so presumably yeah
  11. kismetsky
    Every new headphone I get, I give my iPhone 7 with lightning audio adapter a chance, and every time I feel like my ears are assaulted with a wall of sound. The A45 in comparison is refined, warm, and detailed with proper placement of vocals and instruments. The iPhone audio adapter gets loud and certainly has presence, but it's tiring to listen to for extended periods. Adding an amp to the A45 helps with impactful music while keeping the clarity on higher impedance headphones.
  12. BadReligionPunk
    A45 isn't a real great sounding dap to be honest. High output really screws up hybrids, but single dd iems do well as do earbuds.
    Also 35mw at 16ohm is rather weak and also does not synergize with a lot of iems and headphones.

    Just some valid bearish views on it that never really get talked about.
  13. harpo1
    What is the output impedance? I've never been able to find out what it is.
  14. twd2003
    Sony doesn't advertise it cos its pretty pathetic- supposedly between 2 and 5 ohms
  15. harpo1
    Yeah I've read that guess elsewhere but there's a big difference between 2 and 5. Sony needs to start publishing this info.
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