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Why my Smartphone sounds better than a DAP?

Discussion in 'Portable Source Gear' started by ChrisHeld1989, Sep 13, 2018.
  1. ChrisHeld1989
    Hi there guys. As you can see in my title, i have the problem that my smartphone sounds better than my dap. I have an Axon 7 and it sounds a lot better than my Onkyo DP-S1 in balanced-mode. My In-Ears are the ToneKing T88K with MEE Audio MMCX Cable. The Onkyo sounds in balanced-mode thin, harsh and have thin bass. My Axon 7 sound cleaner, have more body and the bass ist really punchy and thicker. Why is that so? Are the ToneKing so sensible, that the balanced-output have problems to drive the iems so well. I have no idea why is that so. When i try the output with a coppercable instead the Mee Audio cable, which have silvercoated cables, the sound is much thicker, cleaner and better. It sounds as good as the Axon 7 but i miss many details and the highs are muffled. What is wrong with my onkyo? Have anyone an idea? Sorry for my bad english.
  2. artpiggo
    Buy DX120 will solve this problem.
  3. Redcarmoose
    We just had a similar thread made. The concepts listed in the previous thread may pertain to you.

    I had the same thing where my IPod Touch had better sound than the Cambridge Audio DACMagic Plus I was using. At times in can come down to IEM/Headphone synergy or the phone your using has your preferred sound signature.

    For me my DAC at the time (Cambridge Audio DACMagic Plus) was thin sounding and my IPod simply had a sound I was more into.
  4. ChrisHeld1989
    Should i buy an external dac/amp like the ifi nano dsd bl or chord mojo for the onkyo or should i buy a new player like the iBasso DX120? Which is the better option? Since i have the ToneKing T88K, which i like very much, my Onkyo sounds kinda cheap and harsh. I dont like the sound of this player anymore. :frowning2:
  5. Quasimodosbelfry
    With that amount of effort to add more hardware, you might as well sell the Onkyo off and get another DAP..
    No point investing more into something and trying to make it perform better. You're better off getting another DAP.
    yong_shun likes this.
  6. KT66
    I'd sell the DAP then, and get a Mojo to use with your smartphone.
    Quasimodosbelfry likes this.
  7. Redcarmoose
    See that’s just the thing. Combining stuff each time gets you a different signature. And..........even if we had all your equipment ourselves to try we most likely don’t have your desired goal sound signature just like you.

    The elephant in the room is WHAT. What is it that you think you liked about your smartphone? When you list cleaner and punchy and thicker that sounds like you like more detail/warmth.

    I have the same Mee adapter set as you do. I would try to get a listen to a Sony ZX300 in 4.4mm balanced mode. Only because at times a multi BA driver can get a nice upgrade with warmth.

    I’m just suggesting to try the combination. As it may add the quality your looking for.
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2018
  8. ChrisHeld1989
    Does the iBasso DX120 sounds warm or neutral and analytical like the Onkyo? I think about to buy one, when it sounds warmer, punchier and not so harsh like the Onkyo. Can someone compare these two players? That would be nice.
    1. Got multidriver IEMs? Prepare for unexpected results
    2. DAPs intended for high ohmage may suck at driving IEMs
    3. DSP in phone's audio chain
  10. ChrisHeld1989
    Now i have no idea what i should buy. What about the chord mojo? Is this thing much better than a dap above 500€? Can it drive multidriver iems without issues? When i sell my onkyo, i have to use the mojo with my smartphone. Is this a good option or must i buy a player/transport for great sq?
  11. KT66
    To me a transport is a transport, one job to move ones and noughts. I use my Mojo with S7 edge and it sounds superb, I come from the school of all transports more or less sound the same, in fact have no sound.
    I think it can drive anything portable.
    How much above €500? I'd put it equal to my hifiman hm-901, different but both equally as good.
    It's all very personal this, try to get to hear one. Sonically I can't fault it. Only downside is the buttons can be a PITA when in a bag or pocket.

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