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Sony XBA-N3AP and XBA-N1AP — Impressions thread

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  1. Damz87
    I feel like the Z5 & EX800ST would be a pretty similar combination to what you already have, with Z5 being an upgrade to N3, and EX800ST being a downgrade to M9.

    I love the Z5's ultrawide soundstage and deep bass, along with its smooth yet detailed treble. M9 has the best mids out of all 4 in my opinion, but the BA bass doesn't suit my taste in music (mainly electronic) compared to the others. EX800ST is nicely balanced plus has the DD bass that I prefer, but doesn't quite have the same level of detail retrieval as M9.

    The other thing to consider is fit. Z5 & EX800ST are similar in that they both protrude out of your ear and look a bit weird compared to M9 & N3.

    If it were me and I had to choose one to add in your collection, I would go for the Z5 :)
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2019
    udesign48 and anarch1st like this.
  2. Thesonofkrypton
    For those that have the balanced cable as well - what kind of differences in sound can I expect by listening to the N3 via balanced? Thinking of getting a pair back, I opted for the V-moda ZN a couple of years back because I felt the Zn had better sub bass and more soundstage.
  3. CyberAthlete
    I haven't opened my Balanced cable N3 yet (that's my backup) but I will be getting a balanced cable soon. I'll let you know then. 7-10 days to get it. I will be testing it out on the NW-WM1A player. Which will also be arriving around the same time
    Thesonofkrypton likes this.
  4. Thesonofkrypton
    That sounds like a good combo. Would appreciate the feedback, thanks.
  5. Raketen
    This is dependant upon the source not the headphone. Often dual-output sources will have different/inferior or underpowered single end from which you'll probably notice improvements (typically in presentation related areas like stage & imaging). Often the balanced end will also have a different output impedance which can alter the frequency response of some IEMs (for better or worse), although in my (admittedly not closely observed) experience the N3 seems minimally affected by this. IMO (again, not a critical listener) from good single end the changes/improvements are not readily apparent, or at least not obviously attributable to the balanced design rather than some other design difference, of course YMMV.

    I'm not much of a cable person either, but the stock N3AP cable certainly does not inspire confidence - mine even had loose connectors, so conceivably there could be some change in just having a better electrical connection (and certainly you will feel better about yourself and the world, dressed to the nines strutting around with a shiny new leash for your ears :robot:).
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2019
  6. HaloGenZ
    How does XBA-N3 compare to the Tanchjim Oxygen? I'm using XBA-N3 However, Tanchjim Oxygen seems interesting.
    I used my N3 to enjoy all of genre but I'm not sure that the Oxygen can satisfy me.
  7. Share2Care
    Hey Peeps,

    Do hope all us well!

    Looking to make my Sony XBA N3AP Bluetooth so looking for all those who either have personal experience or advice nevertheless.

    As ever, it is really appreciated.

    Cheers :)
  8. daveyostrow
    I can recommend the MEE audio BTX2. I have not spent so much time with it but it sounded just fine to me, and it's BT 5.0.
    Share2Care likes this.
  9. Reeshar
    I occasionally use a FiiO BTR3 which is well made with an aluminium case and supports a very wide range of encoding systems. For me its biggest plus is support for Sony's own LDAC which gives near wired connection quality. Currently being discounted in the UK from £55 to £42 on Amazon.

    Be aware though that higher performance codecs require a good BT connection so close proximity to your DAP or phone. Base-level codecs such as SBC are much more tolerant of distance and BT interference in areas where lots of people in close proximity are using BT eg, on the tube/metro.
    Share2Care likes this.
  10. Thesonofkrypton
    Still no word on a successor to the N3s? Noticed they're not listed in the lineup anymore on the Sony UK site.
  11. udesign48
    I got my AKG K3003i and Sennheiser IE800 (not the fake ones!).
    Well, I can definitely tell AKG K3003i sounds more detailed and bassier than N3 but IE800 isn't really better.
    Surprisingly IE800 sounds just as good as XBA 300... can't tell if it's better. XBA 300 sounds more organized in some ways.
    I think I'll stop buying IEMs... no more purchases need to be made.
    $900 IE800 sounds just similar to N3 and XBA 300... so I'm starting to realize there's no point in buying more expensive IEMs.
    Gandasaputra likes this.
  12. CyberAthlete
    Hey guys
    I attached the Kimber Kable to the N3. Is that small gap between the cable and earphone normal? I can't seem to get the perfect fit no matter what I do. Got the cable from Japan and earphones from Sony Store in Singapore. The cable does click in though. Thx! 20191119_172837.jpg
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2019 at 6:32 PM
  13. Damz87
    Yep, mine are the same :) 5B9FAC38-B513-4E31-BD92-FDB0A589CB97.jpeg
  14. rustyvinyl
    How's the sound stage with the N3?
    Is it more in your head ?
  15. udesign48
    N3's MMCX connectors are pretty weak btw.
    I'd like to warn everyone. It's best to avoid using any third party MMCX cable with N3.
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2019 at 10:16 PM
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