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Sony NW-ZX300

Discussion in 'Portable Source Gear' started by riotgrrl, Jul 10, 2017.
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  1. Lookout57
    The N40 uses MMCX connectors so you will be able to find lots of cable options.
    GreenBow likes this.
  2. ncristia
  3. GreenBow
    You know I am wondering if either of the cables that come with the AKG N40 are balanced. They put a balanced armature driver in it. ... (Again sorry if I am not right or using wrong terminology. I am a total newbie to the balanced thing.)

    It might be worth getting an adapter to see what happens.
  4. crabdog
    If you want to try balanced with the N40 it's as simple as this (with the 4.4mm jack). Of course, that's just a very entry-level cable - you can spend however much you want to get a better one. But that's an inexpensive way to test balanced out from the ZX300.
  5. Marvellous_DAP
    Have been using ZX300 balanced with my Hyla CE-5 and Sony EX1000 for more than 200hrs burned in.

    It sounds good, being really portable, but just not as good as the Chord Mojo to my ears (YMMV). Mojo just have better texture, more 3D imaging to me, especially vocals that I like. Playing mainly in DSD (iPhone with HFPlayer via Mojo) vs ZX300 balanced (with PW No 5 and Hyla CE-5 balanced, and for EX1000 standard 7N cable terminated with 4.4m balanced plug).

    In quiet setting at home and work, ZX300 just can't match the sound quality of Mojo and using Mojo in my serious listening. On the move, ZX300 is a good DAP to bring.

    You probably know this. Mojo+iPhone is just not as portable as the ZX300, and on the move, ZX300 is a better companion. But I ended up using mainly iphone most of the time on the move, as the sound quality of the ZX300 on the move just can't let you hear much difference vs a standard iPhone anyway.

    So for sound quality, Mojo wins for me. For portability, you can consider ZX300, or if you can find a ZX2, I think you may just like the sound of ZX2 more than ZX300. I have both ZX2 (wife is using) and ZX300, and the ZX2 sounds better for vocals. Again, this depends on your preference.

    Agree that Mojo does not need a balanced output as it sounds better than most DAP with balanced out, including my ZX300 or my X7II that I have since sold. The only thing I don't like is to stick another cable between the iPhone and Mojo, and having 2 items together kind of defeats the purpose of the lightness and thinness of the iphone. Soundwise, no comparison, whether it is ZX300 or ZX2.

    BTW, anyone has any good suggestion for an adapter to convert the 4.4mm balanced plug into a standard 3.5mm stereo male plug? Easier to use a plug on the flight than bringing extra cables to change?

    Last edited: Sep 25, 2018
    Question, with the new firmware update can I connect the ZX300 to my phone wirelessly and use it as a bluetooth amp for my Z1Rs?
  7. kms108
  8. kms108
    You have many cheap options from Amazon or eBay, if you want the go the expensive way, go for the Musashino Label.

    BTW I agree, about the ZX2, I think It sounds better that the ZX300, but as said, it's all personal preference.
  9. SteveOliver
    Yes that is how I understand it will work. Similar to the functionality already in some Shanling DAP's
  10. GreenBow
    The Mojo would only potentially be a better option if the Poly was faultless. Had it been perfect I would probably have one already. (It may be worth trying a Poly, if you're prepared to have to return one.) The Poly has been a bit of a disaster for Chord. I personally do not own a smartphone to drive a Poly, but any old cheap fully functioning phone will do. (I need to get one though, to get a decent phone/camera.)

    The ZX300 wins out for battery life though. Plus as you say, for on the go, it's sound quality is fine. That's how I find it, even with only twelve hours running-time, and only the single ended port. .......... A Mojo - Poly would mean charging almost every time you came home. It would mean disconnecting the Poly from Mojo, if you wanted Mojo to use elsewhere. (Like maybe on a PC.)

    I think the a Poly would be a viable option is if you were lucky and got a faultless one. There are people totally happy with their Poly, so Chord got it right somewhere. ... However all things said, I think I might still prefer to use the ZX300. I bought mine for £450, and that is half the price of a Mojo - Poly. Were I to lose the Mojo Poly, I would be distressed. Battery life also matters to me. ZX300 is perfectly adequate to me. (Seriously adequate.) ..... Therefore I bought a ZX300 and not a Poly.
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2018
  11. GreenBow
    I want to add after my last post though, just how good this ZX300 is sounding right now. Even with Mojo and Hugo 2 sat next to me at my desk, I am listening via ZX300.

    The sound changed quite a bit during the first twelve hours. At first the ZX300 sounded off tonally, and sounded a bit lower quality. Making some sounds literally sound not right, compared to how I had heard them before in music. Once I had heard a sound, 'sound wrong', the music did not flow into the next sound properly. A sort of effect of thinking to the artist, "really, you ran that sound after that one". ....... Also all this thinking made the music not flow. I couldn't just let the music play away, without being in a conversation with it.

    Now, however, this has improved quite a lot. That is why I have said the music has become more cohesive. It's more together, flowing, and cleaner in tonality.

    I think though that the synergy with these AKG N40 is doing a lot. There is something very good about them. I wrote about the AKG N40 in the Mojo and Hugo 2 threads. I was saying that the synergy they had with both Mojo and Hugo 2, was something else. For the price I honestly believe you could not find a better in-ear. They are straight down the middle of the road in terms of all audio qualities. Tonal balance between bass and treble, not thin - not thick sounding, smooth and stunning, with detail and excellent resolve.

    Honestly my ZX300 sounds purrrfecct. .......... If it improves in sound by 200 hours, what is not to like, since I already like it now?
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2018
  12. superuser1
    You should seriously consider getting a balanced 4.4mm cable off Aliexpress
    crabdog likes this.
  13. ailean
    Actually this is the combo I'm using now and to my ears it's perfect, also heard improvement from SE to Balanced but that also involved cable swap and my balanced had many more hours of burn in already.
    I like the extra bass, very controlled and powerful for such a small IEM. I know the AK players are meant to be more thin hence the AK version of the Xelento was tuned a bit warmer but I prefer a warmer sound so long as it doesn't loose detail across the other frequencies.
    So I'd say there's nothing wrong with the combo but depending on your tone preference it might not match. :)
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2018
  14. pr0b3r

    Just got my DIY 2.5mm to 4.4mm ultrashort adapter made by a friend. Time to burn in from the balanced port. I just tried it and immediately noticed the added airiness. I hope it will still get better later on.
  15. GreenBow
    I was thinking about buying a genuine Sony case of my ZX300. However that would lake a month to get come from Japan.

    I bought a £6 (iGadgitz) silicone one for now. I thought the silicone one might be all I need.

    The Sony one covers the screen, but leaves the buttons exposed to maybe get scratched. The silicone one covers the buttons, but leaves the screen with only a screen protector. Not bad though for £6.

    My ZX300 is the silver one, but it looks stunning in the black silicone case.

    Last edited: Sep 25, 2018
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