portable DAP or not: can you help me?

M

Moscamax

Audiophyte
Hi
i am new here and this is my first post, so first of all "greetings to you all and thanks for your help"!!

next issue, please forgive for my bad english. english is not my mother tongue, i am italian and i am writing for Italy (and it's pretty hard here in these days....).

I need our help to make a decision about my portable music devices...

I have an iPhone 11 Pro and Bose 700 Headphones and I use Apple Music or spotify to listen to my music while I am at work or while I commute, but I am not satisfied with that setup.
I used to have in my office an Headphone amp and Sennheiser HD650 and I used my PC to listen to a vast library of FLAC files that I have, but then, due to a few changes at work, I sold everything...

I am thinking to buy a portable Digital Audio Player (DAP) and a good pair of closed headphone (a confortable one...) to listen to my FLAC files and to TIDAL, since I am too addicted to a streaming service.

I have read tons of reviews and discussions, but I can't make up my mind

So, here are the doubts:
1) is a DAP really much better than my phone? since those devices cost a lot of money, I'd like to be sure that they are whorty
2) I couls easily afford the Fiio M9, I could buy (with a little sacrifice) the Fiio M11 or I coud wait, save some mony and buy the ASTELL & KERN SR15.
Which one would you suggest??
3) which headphones should I pair?? should I continue using the Bose? or should I buy a new pair? I have listened to a pair of beyerdynamic dt 770 pro and I loved them (are they any good?? they are really cheap...)


I listen to rock music and folk music and a little bit of electronic music

thanks in advance for your advices
Max
 
P

PENG

Audioholic Overlord
That's a tough questions because it depends much on your applications. Comparing the specs, the iphone+dongle should perform audibly as good as the M9 but the M9 will give you more storage capacity obviously. Neither one could drive the HD650 with ease due to the relatively high 300 ohm impedance.

It seems to me for use with your main hifi stereo or desktop, you are better off getting a good portable/desktop DAC, assuming the iphone 11 pro can be set up to bypass its internal DAC. I am not up to date on this so I hope others will chime in. I have only used an iphone 6 with external DAC so it is reasonable to assume the iphone 11 pro can do that too, but you never know. If it works, then it may be a much better/cheaper alternative for you than the Fioo M9.
 
P

poleepkwa

Audioholic Intern
I would first get a good pair of sealed headphones and IEMS for commuting. Most of them are fairly easy loads, and they do not need a lot of current like the HD650 does. The DT770's are a comfortable and tough design, but quite V-shaped. The Oppo PM3 as a very good even sounding closed back headphone. Sony WH-1000XM3 has a lot of bells and whistles, but a good allrounder. Focal Elegia is a very nicely build headphone that does not sound like a closed headphone. DAPS that can do streaming, built on android gets old...fast. Also carrying 2 "bricks" around is not very convenient (been there, done that). These days I stick with cheap and cheerfull alternatives like the ES100. Good luck!
 
P

PENG

Audioholic Overlord
I would first get a good pair of sealed headphones and IEMS for commuting. Most of them are fairly easy loads, and they do not need a lot of current like the HD650 does. The DT770's are a comfortable and tough design, but quite V-shaped. The Oppo PM3 as a very good even sounding closed back headphone. Sony WH-1000XM3 has a lot of bells and whistles, but a good allrounder. Focal Elegia is a very nicely build headphone that does not sound like a closed headphone. DAPS that can do streaming, built on android gets old...fast. Also carrying 2 "bricks" around is not very convenient (been there, done that). These days I stick with cheap and cheerfull alternatives like the ES100. Good luck!
It is not that the HD 650 need a lot of current relative to the lower impedance, the issue is that its 300 ohm nominal impedance means the driving device must be capable of higher (relatively speaking) voltage, in order to pass high enough current into the high impedance load (Ohm's law). If not, it may not sound loud enough and/or good enough to the users.
 
P

poleepkwa

Audioholic Intern
It is not that the HD 650 need a lot of current relative to the lower impedance, the issue is that its 300 ohm nominal impedance means the driving device must be capable of higher (relatively speaking) voltage, in order to pass high enough current into the high impedance load (Ohm's law). If not, it may not sound loud enough and/or good enough to the users.
Yes, you are totally correct. Good someone noticed, thanks!
 
P

PENG

Audioholic Overlord
Yes, you are totally correct. Good someone noticed, thanks!
What you said was correct though, that all headphones need current to play loud, the more the louder. I simply go into further details.

By the way, the Beyerdynamic dt 770 pro the OP mentioned is very interesting, in that it has offered the choice of 3 difference nominal impedance spec, based on the order#.
1584979181478.png

That means it easier to pick a DAP or DAC for optimal performance. For example, if the device is mainly current limited, the 250 ohm version would be better, conversely, if the device is mainly voltage limited than the 32 ohm or 80 ohm versions should do better assuming the audio quality specs remain the same.
 
P

poleepkwa

Audioholic Intern
Yes, those DT770's have been around for quite some time. I find them a bit "bright", but if you like that kind of exciting sounding headphones( also look at the Custom One Pro) they are a good option. I also like that everything on those Beyers are replaceable. In that pricerange, another option could be the ATH - M50X. It is not as comfy in fit, but it does fold out for portable usage and a is more even sounding.
 

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