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Which digital audio player?

jonboywalton75

Well-known member
Jan 11, 2012
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I bought some B & W p5 wireless headphones, which I love.
I also have in ear phones, Soundmagic E80c.
I'm also using an HTC M one 8 with the headphones but I'm thinking I'm not getting the best sound possible, especially from the B & W's
I can hear a large difference when I listen on my Samsung note 4
The Samsung loses hands down to the HTC
I heard an Astell and kern ak70 in Richer sounds recently and was blown away
The price( £499) put me off.
I've seen a Pioneer XDP-100R advertised at £350 ish and maybe doable (as long as my wife doesn't find out, lol)
Richer sounds will let me take the Pioneer on 14 day approval
Just wondered if anyone has any experience with the Pioneer or any other DAP in this price range?
Suggestions avidly accepted
 

insider9

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Sep 20, 2016
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From what I've read these can be used as wired and wireless. If used wireless via Bluetooth the sound quality will depend on whether you use Bluetooth Aptx (lossless) or the old standard lossy bluetooth. HTC comes with Aptx hence the difference in sound quality to your Samsung. It won't matter what device you use to play as long as it supports Bluetooth Aptx. Then the dac in headphones will be the limiting factor.

If you connect them wired then on-board dac will not be used. (I assume so as it would be bizzarre if B&W decided to do adc so they can use their own dac.) At which point it will matter what device you connect them to and the quality of it's dac.
 

jjbomber

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Dec 22, 2006
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jonboywalton75 said:
I heard an Astell and kern ak70 in Richer sounds recently and was blown away The price( £499) put me off. I've seen a Pioneer XDP-100R advertised at £350 ish and maybe doable (as long as my wife doesn't find out, lol) Richer sounds will let me take the Pioneer on 14 day approval Just wondered if anyone has any experience with the Pioneer or any other DAP in this price range? Suggestions avidly accepted
There's also a whole range from Fiio. Depending on your budget and storage capacity needs, they will probably have something that suits.
 

muljao

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Jul 18, 2016
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It might be more cost effective to add on a headphone dac if you are happy with the extra bulk. Something like the oppo ha-2se might do the trick. Also as said wired headphones are generally a better bet

https://www.avforums.com/review/oppo-ha-2se-dac-headphone-amp-review.13351
 

muljao

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Jul 18, 2016
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To be honest i thought if you use even the black DAC in both devices it should sound identical as the DAC decides the sound quality assuming all music is same resolution.

Anyway that's a different argument, at least now it's clear you want a seperate music player
 

jonboywalton75

Well-known member
Jan 11, 2012
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I was definitely looking at a DAP with decent dac on board and selling the dragonfly
I suppose i should just take RS up on their offer and have a play with the Pioneer
 

jonboywalton75

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Jan 11, 2012
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Thanks all so far
I use them wirelessly and wired.
I have a dragonfly black which improves the sound from both phones
On the go though, it's just a lot of faffing about with the dac attached
I fancied more convenience than with the dac attached.
I would be using the DAP wired a lot around the house with the B & W's and also out and about with the e80's
When i tried the AK 70 in RS they were wired with a pair of sennheiser headphones (can't remember which model, around £250.00)

When I compared the sound in RS I was using my note 4 (wired)
I gather what insider 9 was saying that when used wirelessly if I bought the Pioneer, I won't see much improvement in SQ
 

insider9

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Sep 20, 2016
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jonboywalton75 said:
I gather what insider 9 was saying that when used wirelessly if I bought the Pioneer, I won't see much improvement in SQ
Quite right. Wirelessly you'd only see the difference depending on what Bluetooth protocol was used lossy or lossless. That's assuming same file is being played. In that regard hardly any difference what device you're using and your HTC would do as good as just about anything else.

If you're also using wired connection it gets tricky. You may find that some devices will sound better wired that's if the DAP will have a better dac than the headphones. To really establish what sounds best I'd suggest home demo. It's the best way to tell. The differences in some dacs will be small and associated cost might high.
 

tonky

New member
Jan 2, 2008
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If you get a Pioneer hi res audio player I'd be very interested to hear what you think about it - esp in the areas of - sound quality - usability - battery life - and how it integrates into a hifi set up (if that's one of your intended uses).

In fact if anybody on the site (as I value opinions from you all) has any personal experience of any Hi res players - dive in and share your experiences.

cheers all - tonky
 

jonboywalton75

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Jan 11, 2012
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Hi Tonky
I'll certainly let you know as much as I can if I buy
Not sure whether I will need or be able to integrate the Pioneer into my hifi setup by USB connection, obviously I would use it to control Tidal, Bubble un plug n play etc. wirelessly though.
I have a pre digital age Nad amp, a Marantz Na 6005 Streamer and Synology Nas
 

jonboywalton75

Well-known member
Jan 11, 2012
116
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18,595
Before I spend £350.00 on Wednesday, can anyone tell me am I looking for a placebo, sound wise?
Just wondering if the sound can be expected to be a big improvement on my HTC M8.
In RS when I listened to the Astell and kern I was comparing my Note 4, wired using the £250 sennheisers. Ak70 blew the Samsung away!!!
I sometimes use the Bluetooth with the B & W's but when I'm at home I intend to use them wired.
I would use my Pioneer with the soundmagic E80c s when I'm out and about.
I could keep the dragonfly and get a good sound but the convenience is not there, whereas a DAP surely is going to be much better ergonomically.
I'm always excited about spending on Hifi gear, but wonder if I'm expecting too much, remembering that I didn't compare the Astell and Kern to my HTC with Dragonfly but with the Samsung without the dragonfly
Sorry if I'm waffling but I get like this just before a purchase, as I'm not a millionaire with unlimited funds
 

Al ears

Moderator
jonboywalton75 said:
Hi Tonky I'll certainly let you know as much as I can if I buy Not sure whether I will need or be able to integrate the Pioneer into my hifi setup by USB connection, obviously I would use it to control Tidal, Bubble un plug n play etc. wirelessly though. I have a pre digital age Nad amp, a Marantz Na 6005 Streamer and Synology Nas
The best you can get in that sort of price range is currently the new Fiio X5 Mk3..... simples!
 

Al ears

Moderator
tonky said:
If you get a Pioneer hi res audio player I'd be very interested to hear what you think about it - esp in the areas of - sound quality - usability - battery life - and how it integrates into a hifi set up (if that's one of your intended uses).

In fact if anybody on the site (as I value opinions from you all) has any personal experience of any Hi res players - dive in and share your experiences.

cheers all - tonky
See below. It's my next planned purchase.
 

tonky

New member
Jan 2, 2008
36
0
0
Al ears said:
tonky said:
If you get a Pioneer hi res audio player I'd be very interested to hear what you think about it - esp in the areas of - sound quality - usability - battery life - and how it integrates into a hifi set up (if that's one of your intended uses).

In fact if anybody on the site (as I value opinions from you all) has any personal experience of any Hi res players - dive in and share your experiences.

cheers all - tonky
See below. It's my next planned purchase.
JBW and myself will look forward to any feedback you can provide - it certainly seems to be garnering some decent reviews.

cheers tonky
 

Al ears

Moderator
tonky said:
Al ears said:
tonky said:
If you get a Pioneer hi res audio player I'd be very interested to hear what you think about it - esp in the areas of - sound quality - usability - battery life - and how it integrates into a hifi set up (if that's one of your intended uses).

In fact if anybody on the site (as I value opinions from you all) has any personal experience of any Hi res players - dive in and share your experiences.

cheers all - tonky
See below. It's my next planned purchase.
JBW and myself will look forward to any feedback you can provide - it certainly seems to be garnering some decent reviews.

cheers tonky
It certainly should. I currently have the Mark 2 and if it sounds like that with the added facilities it has then it can be nothing but a bargain.

My next up would cost nearly £700.
 

jonboywalton75

Well-known member
Jan 11, 2012
116
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18,595
Gonna take the Pioneer on 14 day home approval from tomorrow
RE the Fiio
I had heard that the dap was a bit buggy, don't know if that is true!!
I fancied the Astell and kern ak70, but Just outside my price range
Today, while working I used my Soundmagic e10's with my HTC M one 8, sound was pretty good
This morning I had a session with my e80's and B&W p5 's, wired with the dragonfly to the HTC, sound was very good.
Anyway I'm treating myself tomorrow, I know it's a luxury item (for me anyway) but I deserve it
I'll let you know how it goes.
 

Al ears

Moderator
jonboywalton75 said:
Gonna take the Pioneer on 14 day home approval from tomorrow RE the Fiio I had heard that the dap was a bit buggy, don't know if that is true!! I fancied the Astell and kern ak70, but Just outside my price range Today, while working I used my Soundmagic e10's with my HTC M one 8, sound was pretty good This morning I had a session with my e80's and B&W p5 's, wired with the dragonfly to the HTC, sound was very good. Anyway I'm treating myself tomorrow, I know it's a luxury item (for me anyway) but I deserve it I'll let you know how it goes.
Please do. No idea what you mean about a buggy DAP though. It plays or it doesn't in my opinion and Fiio have it well sussed.
 

jonboywalton75

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Jan 11, 2012
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I think it was just one review on Amazon that mentioned some drop outs on the WiFi and Bluetooth etc with the Fiio
You can find bad reviews on anything on the net though!!!
 

Al ears

Moderator
jonboywalton75 said:
I think it was just one review on Amazon that mentioned some drop outs on the WiFi and Bluetooth etc with the Fiio You can find bad reviews on anything on the net though!!!
Ok, haven't heard that. I wouldn't bother with Bluetooth though, direct connection to home system best.
 

jonboywalton75

Well-known member
Jan 11, 2012
116
19
18,595
Al ears said:
jonboywalton75 said:
I think it was just one review on Amazon that mentioned some drop outs on the WiFi and Bluetooth etc with the Fiio You can find bad reviews on anything on the net though!!!
Ok, haven't heard that. I wouldn't bother with Bluetooth though, direct connection to home system best.
I hadn't intended connecting my dap to my home system.
Maybe I should.
I use my marantz Streamer in my hifi but was only intending to use the dap for wired and Bluetooth listening at home and out and about using my headphones.
Can I get improvements in SQ if I connect the dap into my hifi over and above what I'm getting from my Streamer?
I have a USB connection on the marantz but my Nad amp only has analogue connections
 

Al ears

Moderator
jonboywalton75 said:
Al ears said:
jonboywalton75 said:
I think it was just one review on Amazon that mentioned some drop outs on the WiFi and Bluetooth etc with the Fiio You can find bad reviews on anything on the net though!!!
Ok, haven't heard that. I wouldn't bother with Bluetooth though, direct connection to home system best.
I hadn't intended connecting my dap to my home system. Maybe I should. I use my marantz Streamer in my hifi but was only intending to use the dap for wired and Bluetooth listening at home and out and about using my headphones. Can I get improvements in SQ if I connect the dap into my hifi over and above what I'm getting from my Streamer? I have a USB connection on the marantz but my Nad amp only has analogue connections
I believe the DACs in a DAP of this quality are now better than the DACs in most other pieces of equipment so, although I use my Fiio for my travels and work offshore, when I come home it sort of acts as a NAS by plugging in directly to my preamp.

The Fiio X5 Mark 2 is currently best buy on the sound per pound front, if you cannot afford Questyle QPR-1, but if you need to download apps to device as well and need Bluetooth then the Mark 3 is the winner.

My old DAPs will appear on eBay soon.... all three of them. ;-)
 

jonboywalton75

Well-known member
Jan 11, 2012
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18,595
Can't believe what I've just done!!!!
I bought the Ak70
Got it for £450 though.
Maybe the fact that I got a bargain will placate my missus.
Maybe NOT though
 

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