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Best portable digital music player?

Printed From: Graham Slee at Hifi System Components
Category: Headphone Audio
Forum Name: Portable Headphone User
Forum Description: Technical Q&A, hints and tips
URL: https://www.hifisystemcomponents.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=783
Printed Date: 19 Nov 2019 at 1:17am
Software Version: Web Wiz Forums 12.01 - http://www.webwizforums.com


Topic: Best portable digital music player?
Posted By: Fattybatty
Subject: Best portable digital music player?
Date Posted: 26 Jan 2010 at 9:25pm
Whats the best portable digital audio player?
 
Whats the best size memory?
 
Whats best for portability?
 
Whats best for sound reproduction?
 
And of course best for price?
 
If it's Ipod, which model?
 
It's time I took the plunge for holidays etc.
 
Adrian.


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Fattybatty



Replies:
Posted By: discrete badger
Date Posted: 27 Jan 2010 at 9:14am
Due to work/life balance / domestic noise issues, I spend about 80% of my listening time using my DAP, and the other 20% using the laptop, in each case driving headphones via the Novo or the Voyager (but mostly the Voyager due to its portability).

In my opinion the iRiver H140/ihp140 is still the best. The out-of-the-box sound quality is several notches above most portable gear I've heard and compares very favourably to my Quad 77 CD player. With the excellent Rockbox software, a number of lossless codecs are available and lossy oggs and mp3s also sound great, and there is high quality digital EQ etc. Driving the voyager and my favourite grados or the shure ear canals, I really do feel that I can get most of my big system sound from my portable rig.

To get even higher sound quality, one can drive an external DAC via the optical audio out, which I believe is a unique feature even after these years. Plus you have an analogue mic/line in/optical in for recordings up to 48Khz, line out for connecting to the voyager, and an FM radio. Battery lasts forever, hard drive upgradable to 60Gb.

It's quite amusing to spot the number of H140s in photos of portable hi-fi meets!

The downsides: newer players are much thinner and have prettier colourful displays (although do we really care?) It's long out of production, but there are plenty turning up on eBay. I got a spare one for £50 recently - just in case! If they haven't already had a battery change, most will need it - they take the same battery as an iPod 1st generation.



Posted By: ServerBaboon
Date Posted: 27 Jan 2010 at 3:48pm

I haven't compared it to others except for a brief listen to iNano (not that impressed) but I have a Sony Walkman (SSD 8GB) which sounds good. Its generally reviewed as having better sound quality than the Apple stuff.

The small size does mean I have to move things off but it is small and slim with good battery life  and plays video, the one think I would change is to get one with an FM radio.

iRivers and Cowans seem to get good writeups but not heard them

However if you want any of the dock stuff then generally only Apples are the only ones supported. 

Some larger players do have the flexibility for digital outputs to connect to your hifi. 

What do you want large capacity, best battery life or size?



Posted By: mrarroyo
Date Posted: 30 Jan 2010 at 1:14am
For portable use I believe in convenience, unfortunately I got started w/ the iPod 4th generation and iTunes in 2005. Since then I have had various models from the Nano to the iPhone. I tried the H120 and sold it right away since it was not supported by iTunes and I did not wish to figure out how to use. I also have a relatively large musical library and want to carry as much as I can. So I am back to a 160 Gb iPod Classic.

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Miguel


Posted By: discrete badger
Date Posted: 07 Feb 2010 at 2:28pm
For me, the requirement to use any particular software to access the DAP is basically a showstopper, having suffered greatly in the past with three well-known manufacturers who shall remain nameless, but who made devices which were quite good but accompanying software packages which were rather less so.

I can understand the convenience thing, and I know iTunes is better than many, but in my view many of these DRM'd locked-in software packages have thrown the baby out with the bath water by a) being generally cr@p and b) forcing the user to use them to access their portable device.

When you lose all your music (ripped from CDs you legally own, over the course of many months) due to a hard drive failure, and the stupid software didn't let you make a backup, because it thinks backups = illegal copying, you get annoyed.

When the software is so buggy, badly-written and clunky that it randomly loses your music, and forces you to do things in a GUI-centric brain-dead time-consuming way, and cannot be upgraded as ripping / encoding techniques in the free software world ( eg. Exact Audio Copy, OGG Vorbis ) simply crush the ones the manufacturer bothered to implement you get even more annoyed.

When the software will only run on particular versions of a particular operating system, and everything else you use your computer for works far better on free alternatives, you get more annoyed at having to reboot just for the privilege of moving your music around.

The H110/H120/H140 appear as a completely standard external hard disk to whatever computer you connect them to (including Apple and Linux), so you could merely use them as a backup drive if you wished, without having to install any new software or drivers. However, once you disconnect the USB cable the device is capable of playing any music files you happen to have copied on there. So, you are free to use whatever tools you like to manage your music files, and the chances are that the file manager application in your operating system will do a vastly better job than the rubbish that some DAPs come with.

I'm really not trying to be an evangelist for the iRiver devices. It's just for me the design does everything right.


Posted By: discrete badger
Date Posted: 07 Feb 2010 at 2:50pm
Portable music heaven:




Posted By: Fattybatty
Date Posted: 07 Feb 2010 at 5:19pm
Some interesting info.
 
Having researched Confused it appears latest models come with cameras, videos, phones etc.
 
I only want music and radio with a good memory. Is there sucha thing?
 
Adrian.


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Fattybatty


Posted By: mrarroyo
Date Posted: 07 Feb 2010 at 11:38pm
You could add an iBasso D10 to function as a DAC via optical and then feed the Voyager.

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Miguel


Posted By: discrete badger
Date Posted: 04 Mar 2010 at 6:44pm
Funny thing is, I've just done exactly that - iBasso D10 to take the optical out from the H140. (I'll still buy a Slee DAC if/when that appears!). The H140 line-out quality is head-and-shoulders above many portable players but with the wolfson DAC in the iBasso we're into a whole different realm - real "I just got a whole new music collection" territory. It's quite extraordinary to be able to get this sort of music on the move and from 3 small self-powered boxes!

Note the 3 boxes! The iBasso DAC is excellent (taken from its line-out) but it also has a built-in headamp and I was curious to see whether I would be able leave the Voyager at home from time to time. I guess, given its pedigree, I always expected the Voyager to do better, but I'm surprised at how much better it is.

The iBasso headamp is by no means bad but the difference isn't subtle. No matter what the complexity of the music, Voyager presents it all in the same unflappable clean and open way, detailed without ever losing the flow and rhythm. The iBasso headamp gets confused with the musical line foremost in the mix and everything else gets smeared over. I know soundstaging is a "hi-fi" term but it does apply here. Voyager has real depth and width compared to the D10.

I'm being slightly unfair as this is a thoroughly burnt-in Voyager versus a new D10 but Voyager did have this sound on the very first listen, which is why buying it was a complete no-brainer.




Posted By: mrarroyo
Date Posted: 04 Mar 2010 at 11:31pm
Let the iBasso DAC burn in for a good 350 hours or so. If you wish to further enhance its headphone performance contact Ron (HiFlight at Head Fi) for one of his "top-kits" of op-amps to improve the D10's headphone output.

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Miguel


Posted By: Fatmangolf
Date Posted: 05 Mar 2010 at 9:22pm
My iPOD 160GB is small and holds plenty of 320kbps and lossless AAC files. It's a good compromise for travelling with in-ear phones, but sounds much better with its line out going into my DAK Novo (which is superb) and SR80i's.

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Jon

Open mind and ears, whilst owning GSP Genera, Accession, Elevator EXP, Solo ULDE, Proprius amps, Cusat50 cables, Lautus digital cable, Spatia cables and links, and a Majestic DAC.


Posted By: dillon
Date Posted: 17 Oct 2013 at 2:32pm
Hullo everyone

October 2013 update.

There's loadsa love being shown to the new Fiio X3 player on other well respected forums. It's certainly smashed into the affordable DAP market with a bang and may upset the established applecart somewhat. Might be worth investigating as the SQ is supposed to be great. Expandable to 64GB with external flash cards.

The Cowan X7 holds upto 170 plus GB with 2 SXDHC cards and the consensus seems to be its top top SQ. BUT its OS is buggy as hell and zillions of users are complaining about this reliability issue so you may wish to investigate but read those comments far and wide. And, oh, it's ugly and big as hell. Yuch I'm not carrying one of those ever!

For myself, I rock a 160 GB 7G Ipod filled entirely with ALAC files. I run it through to my Fostex HP P1 DAC/Headphone Amp feeding a pair of Senn Momentum On Ears. The SQ is fab..no complaints on listening on the move at all. 

One more point related to this: There is a lot of hogwash around among ill informed  peeps on the supposed bad SQ of the Ipod. I have to agree with Graham, it's a portable wonder if you want loads of GB's on your DAP. And it sounds great. Measurements tend to show the DAC is fine, nothing wrong with it at all. 

To test this for myself, I used the Ipod through the headphone output alone and yes it leaves a lot to be desired! There is definitely an issue IMO with the Ipod Headphone out. Then I used my LOD from Fiio (excellent and reliable by the way) to feed a Fiio E11 headphone amp and the SQ jumped to another level entirely - excellent! Plenty of seperation, the soundstage widened and deepened, there was now power, poise and a balanced sound that was never brash or fatiguing..love this tiny combo I do!

Then I fed the Ipod to my Novo via a LOD to Phono connection - and here it is just lovely!

I then fed the Ipod into the Fostex DAC and I got a similar level of excellent sound quality. 

So the lesson for me was simple. Don't use the headphone out of the Ipod EVER. Use the LOD to feed an external amp or dac. I can only surmise from all this experimentation that the Ipod DAC on my 7G anyway - whatever it is - is absolutely fine.

One more important point and it has to do with the law of diminishing returns. There simply - for me anyway - was not a massive jump in SQ from the tiny Fiio E11 to the Fostex! a 50 quid amp basically held its own against a 500 quid one. The differences are there but only really in terms of subtlety and air and space..and then not that much. I am more than happy to carry the tiny Fiio around with the Ipod rather than the larger Fostex oftentimes.

I am not an Apple fanboy at all. Like others here I absolutely loathe the Apple lock in and ITunes, but I work around those to fill up the Ipod - easily done! 
  
I don't have a Voyager but am hoping to hear one in action with my set up if its possible to LOD it to my Ipod.

Regards

                


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Nottingham Analogue Hyperspace w Space Arm & Dynavector 10x5 HOMC/GSP Revelation M/John Sampson upgraded Meridian 508.24 CDP/Sony 777ES SACD/ProAc Response D18/GSP Solo ULDE/GSP cables and ICs


Posted By: less
Date Posted: 17 Oct 2013 at 3:03pm
Quote I don't have a Voyager but am hoping to hear one in action with my set up if its possible to LOD it to my Ipod.

Regards

                



Try Darren / Ian at Audio Elevation, they do a good connector for iPod to voyager.

Regards

Les


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I don't do mediocrity!

Les Sutherland


Posted By: dillon
Date Posted: 17 Oct 2013 at 6:37pm
Cheers for the heads up Les..yes I just caught that thread and that sounds extremely promising as I really do want to check out the Voyager. 

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Nottingham Analogue Hyperspace w Space Arm & Dynavector 10x5 HOMC/GSP Revelation M/John Sampson upgraded Meridian 508.24 CDP/Sony 777ES SACD/ProAc Response D18/GSP Solo ULDE/GSP cables and ICs


Posted By: kt66
Date Posted: 07 Dec 2013 at 1:09am
The best portable music player is currently the Hifiman HM901
followed by the AK120 and Ibasso DX100
All in my humble opinion of course! But this
is my specialist subject :-)


Posted By: discrete badger
Date Posted: 07 Dec 2013 at 10:15am
I am still using an iRiver HD140 (now with an 80Gb disk in it) which is 10 years old and long "obsolete".

I have kept an eye out for a more modern replacement but nothing has appeared which offers the same combination of high quality (because I use the optical out to drive a separate DAC and then the Voyager), easy interface (RockBox), ogg compatibility, high music capacity, and long battery life (40 hours).


Posted By: Ash
Date Posted: 07 Dec 2013 at 11:33am
This morning, as I was listening to the Solo ULDE and Voyager from my Sony portable player, I found myself wishing that Graham Slee himself would design and make an excellent portable player compatible with all major file formats and with a Bitzie "soundcard" and analogue output stage. I love the Bitzie but I can only use it with a computer. The Voyager is great but it is potentially limited by the soundcard of the portable device used...

Graham has been talking about a "Super Voyager" so what if this were to be an entire portable audio player (internal GSP-standard DAC) with in-built Voyager/Bitzie analogue output?? This would be the icing on the cake for digital audio, I feel.

Basically, take the Bitzie circuit design and add a media player interface on its upper fascia. The USB input would be used for recharging an internal battery and for data transfer onto the player. Just an idea.


Posted By: hotmog
Date Posted: 05 Apr 2014 at 2:21pm
For portable use outside the home, I use a Creative Zen/Voyager, accessing mainly WMA and some MP3 files. Inside the home for headphone use I am currently using an iRiver H140 accessing OGG format files, with the optical out going into a Fiio Taishan D03K DAC (superb quality for the money, mine was virtually brand new and cost under £20 delivered from eBay) which feeds into my Solo UL.

Unfortunately, without upgrading the HD, there is not enough room on the iRiver to accommodate all my music collection in lossless (FLAC) format. I also find the primitive UI on it more than a little frustrating at the best of times. I thought about getting an Android tablet and using that to stream lossless files from my PC via my home wireless network, which would replace the clunky UI of the iRiver. However I'm not quite sure how all that would work, plus I realised that I would also need a good quality USB/SPDIF converter if I was to get any improvement in audio quality, which potentially could rack up the price by another £hundred or more, even looking to the secondhand market.

However I have just come across the Fiio X5 - http://www.ea-audio.co.uk/fiio_x5.html - http://www.ea-audio.co.uk/fiio_x5.html , which is being released on Monday. It could represent the solution I am looking for, and I feel I may rapidly be becoming seduced....Big smile


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<font color=BROWN> http://www.victorian-breweriana.me.uk" rel="nofollow - Hotmog's Victorian Breweriana [/COLOR]


Posted By: discrete badger
Date Posted: 05 Apr 2014 at 4:24pm
Hotmog, I take it you've upgraded to RockBox on your H140? Much better UI than the iRiver firmware and completely reversible if you want to go back to stock.

Also the 80Gb HDD upgrade (MK8007GAH), a direct replacement, is usually available on a well known auction site for about £25. I've upgraded both my H140s.


Posted By: hotmog
Date Posted: 06 Apr 2014 at 10:49am

Many thanks for that, DB. I'd seen many references to Rockbox but never thought to install it. Now I have done so, and it is brilliant! Thumbs Up 

I will also get a replacement 80GB HD. I did consider a 128GB SSD, but they are about £95 and I doubt I would need that much capacity.

Do have a link to a DIY guide to replacing the HD on the H140? I seem to remember reading somewhere that you need a special type of screwdriver to open up the case.

EDIT: Have now found that info here: http://www.head-fi.org/t/649299/iriver-ihp-1x0-with-msata-ssd-drive-mod/15 - http://www.head-fi.org/t/649299/iriver-ihp-1x0-with-msata-ssd-drive-mod/15



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<font color=BROWN> http://www.victorian-breweriana.me.uk" rel="nofollow - Hotmog's Victorian Breweriana [/COLOR]


Posted By: discrete badger
Date Posted: 06 Apr 2014 at 3:28pm
The 120GB and above mSATA drives do require the PATA adaptor as noted in the link and a bit of squeezing to fit it all in the case, which is what put me off those sizes. The 80GB MK8007GAH doesn't; it simply connects directly in place of the 40GB drive.

Many recommend setting the hold switch to on before the process so you don't accidentally power up a drive half connected.

To open the case you need a torx T6 screwdriver; that is the only tool you need as all the 12 screws to be removed fit the same screwdriver. Mine came from a Rolson precision screwdriver set from Maplin. 4 screws on each end and two tiny grub screws on each side to remove enough of the case; then two screws holding the drive connector/rubber surround in place. All the screws except these grub screws are the same length so no need to keep careful track of which screw is which. The case is quite stable with the 8 end screws removed since the silver plastic top and bottom bands stay on easily by friction. This is worth noting for when you initially test with the new drive in. 

The battery will likely have stuck to the back of the case and will come away with it when you lift the back away. The battery wires running to the tiny molex plug on the hidden side of the PCB are not too delicate, but the internal mic wires attached to one of the side panels are quite delicate, something to watch if you value recording from the internal mic (personally I don't).

To get the drive out it's easiest to lift the far (non-connector) end slightly - it may have stuck slightly to the PCB under it - then pull away from the connector.

Reassembly is just the reverse of assembly - but do make sure the battery wires don't get trapped in the case. There is plenty of space for them at one side of the drive connector. 

I've always had to press the hardware reset after a drive change; then after powering on (not before, otherwise RockBox will try to boot from USB) you can connect up a USB cable and use a PC to partition and format as FAT32 and copy everything over. Don't forget the .rockbox folder which some copy tools miss. If you miss this you'll have no rockbox settings and codecs.

All in all a pretty straightforward process. I've done it about 6 times in total with no problems.

Apart from size, the other advantage of the 80GB drive is much lower access noise and better performance.

Battery replacement is trickier since unless you snip the wires and solder the new battery wires to them, you have to remove the PCB and then do battle with the tiny molex connector that joins the battery to it. The back of the 5v DC in socket fouls the space that you need to remove the plug horizontally so getting it out is tricky enough (out and up at the same time) but getting it in is even trickier. The only effective method I've found is to wedge the plug in at an angle then push it down and in at the same time. The unit is very well designed generally but this is an oversight.


Posted By: hotmog
Date Posted: 06 Apr 2014 at 4:14pm
Many thanks for that very helpful information, DB.

I bought the 80GB HD here http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/281299289317?ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1439.l2649 - http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/281299289317?ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1439.l2649 . It's used and already formatted (although the seller doesn't state whether it's FAT32, so I've asked him to clarify). I also got an 8-piece Torx screwdriver set on eBay for £1.59, so will be all ready to go once they arrive!


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<font color=BROWN> http://www.victorian-breweriana.me.uk" rel="nofollow - Hotmog's Victorian Breweriana [/COLOR]


Posted By: Fatmangolf
Date Posted: 06 Apr 2014 at 5:54pm
Apologies for the late contribution - the Fiio X5 looks very exciting. I have an X3 and enjoy its sound quality when I travel, taking a few Maplin 32GB cards in a modified SD case. The UI is basic but useable, if you can live without a touchscreen. It's bang for the buck is hard to argue with.



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Jon

Open mind and ears, whilst owning GSP Genera, Accession, Elevator EXP, Solo ULDE, Proprius amps, Cusat50 cables, Lautus digital cable, Spatia cables and links, and a Majestic DAC.


Posted By: ServerBaboon
Date Posted: 06 Apr 2014 at 6:11pm
Originally posted by Fatmangolf Fatmangolf wrote:

..If have an X3 and enjoy its sound quality when I travel, taking a few Maplin 32GB cards in a modified SD case. The UI is basic but useable, if you can live without a touchscreen. It's bang for the buck is hard to argue with.



How much music do you have?   ...... I still have not filled my first 32gb SD card.

The UI is a bit of a pain though, I use it in the car and I have to pull over to change albums, or pray for red lights.


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Steve

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Various bits of GSP Kit ..well two so far, unless you count the cables that is.


Posted By: Fatmangolf
Date Posted: 07 Apr 2014 at 12:53am
Tens of thousands of tracks, nearly all lossless 44k1/16 or 48k/16 and a small proportion is 24 bit and 48k or above.

I use it on trains so the UI is acceptable.


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Jon

Open mind and ears, whilst owning GSP Genera, Accession, Elevator EXP, Solo ULDE, Proprius amps, Cusat50 cables, Lautus digital cable, Spatia cables and links, and a Majestic DAC.


Posted By: Fatmangolf
Date Posted: 07 Apr 2014 at 12:59am
There is a mod for the X3 where you change the op amp driving the headphones. I have thought about it but not done the changeover. As stock the X3 can drive my LCD-2's which is quite impressive, although my Solo UL is much better.

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Jon

Open mind and ears, whilst owning GSP Genera, Accession, Elevator EXP, Solo ULDE, Proprius amps, Cusat50 cables, Lautus digital cable, Spatia cables and links, and a Majestic DAC.


Posted By: hotmog
Date Posted: 09 Apr 2014 at 11:00am
Hi DB

I'd be grateful for your advice, again.

The 80GB HD arrived yesterday, as did the Torx screwdrivers. I'd already copied all the folders, etc, from the original HD to my PC. I didn't have a chance to do anything yesterday (and I won't now today until later this afternoon). But earlier this morning I followed your instructions, removed the old HD and replaced it with the 80GB one. All seemed to go very straightforwardly.

On first powering it up, it displayed the following message:

ATA error -11
Insert USB cable and press a button

(Nothing happens even if I do that)

I then pressed the Master reset switch, and it displays

iRiver H-100 series

Check HDD connection, followed by the usual default screen

0001  0000 Folders
         0000 Songs

I then connected it via the USB cable to my PC, where the device was recognised as an 80GB external HD. I reformatted it from NTFS to FAT32, and copied back all the folders, including the Rockbox one, taken from the original drive (apart from most of the music files).

I disconnected it, switched off and then rebooted, however I still  get exactly the same sequence of events as above.

Pressing the central toggle button brings up the main menu. I tried going to General/Firmware upgrade/Yes, but nothing happens.

Any suggestions?



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<font color=BROWN> http://www.victorian-breweriana.me.uk" rel="nofollow - Hotmog's Victorian Breweriana [/COLOR]


Posted By: discrete badger
Date Posted: 09 Apr 2014 at 8:19pm
Keep the faith - sounds like you're very nearly there to me. The disk is clearly connected and working, otherwise you wouldn't have been able to access it from the PC. It seems simply that the iRiver firmware isn't recognising what's on it.

My guess is that the partitioning scheme and/or the format isn't quite right, or there's some residue from the old NTFS configuration that's confusing the iRiver firmware. I just checked on one of my H140s and the setup which definitely works is a single partition in the first slot occupying the entire disk, filesystem type Win95 Fat32. 

I used fdisk on linux to set this up, then mkfs.vfat, which works straight out of the box. It's possible that whatever you used is creating the newer format of partition table which wouldn't be recognised by the firmware. 

I've read that a windows tool swissknife is able to partition and format these drives correctly, so that might be worth a try. I'd start by deleting everything you possibly can from the disk, all the partitions, everything, then recreating and formatting a single FAT32 partition taking up the entire disk.



Posted By: Ash
Date Posted: 09 Apr 2014 at 9:11pm
Best portable digital music player??

A. Any portable device that works with a Bitzie. The Bitzie is the king of portable audio. Approve


Posted By: hotmog
Date Posted: 09 Apr 2014 at 11:54pm
Originally posted by discrete badger discrete badger wrote:

Keep the faith - sounds like you're very nearly there to me. The disk is clearly connected and working, otherwise you wouldn't have been able to access it from the PC. It seems simply that the iRiver firmware isn't recognising what's on it.

My guess is that the partitioning scheme and/or the format isn't quite right, or there's some residue from the old NTFS configuration that's confusing the iRiver firmware. I just checked on one of my H140s and the setup which definitely works is a single partition in the first slot occupying the entire disk, filesystem type Win95 Fat32. 

I used fdisk on linux to set this up, then mkfs.vfat, which works straight out of the box. It's possible that whatever you used is creating the newer format of partition table which wouldn't be recognised by the firmware. 

I've read that a windows tool swissknife is able to partition and format these drives correctly, so that might be worth a try. I'd start by deleting everything you possibly can from the disk, all the partitions, everything, then recreating and formatting a single FAT32 partition taking up the entire disk.



Well, I think I've completely buggered it up now. I thought I'd try swissknife as you suggested to reformat it yet again as FAT32. Somehow it managed to delete the single partition that was already there, but couldn't reformat another one greater than 32GB. Then I got a Windows error message saying that there was a problem and the program had to close. Although the device is still connected via the USB, it won't switch on and is no longer recognised as a drive. Is there any way back from this, or is the HD now totally screwed? Ouch


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<font color=BROWN> http://www.victorian-breweriana.me.uk" rel="nofollow - Hotmog's Victorian Breweriana [/COLOR]


Posted By: hotmog
Date Posted: 10 Apr 2014 at 1:23pm
Crisis over, phew! It took me most of the morning, but I've finally managed to get it back. Somehow it had also corrupted the USB port on my PC, as the external HDD I use for disk image backups wouldn't connect either until I tried it in a different USB socket. After that, it worked OK too in the original socket.

Connecting the iRiver, I could see the Toshiba MK8007GAH in Disk Manager as having one Master Boot Record but with no partition and unformatted. It allowed me to format it as NTFS and assign it to the e: drive. I then reformatted it to FAT32 using the command line option (see below).

This time I recopied everything over from the backup I took of the original 40GB HDD, disconnected the USB link to my PC and rebooted the iRiver. On starting up, it went straight into Rockbox mode, with the all the menu and display options as they should be. However, the problem is that as soon as I then power down and reboot it, it starts off with Rockbox Boot loader, then reverts to the ATA error -11 message, the only escape from which is to press the Master reset switch, which then brings up the old default iRiver menu showing zero files. Trying the upgrade firmware option in General is futile, as nothing happens.

As you said, I am sure it's something to do with the way it's formatted. My PC is running Windows 7, and the only format options available are NTFS or exFAT (which is not the same as FAT32). I therefore followed the advice in this link http://www.head-fi.org/t/434921/iriver-h120-with-80gb-hdd-guide - http://www.head-fi.org/t/434921/iriver-h120-with-80gb-hdd-guide : Download fat32format, #8 in list of things you need. Extract file into C drive. Click Start>Run, type in these things:

cmd
CD /D c:\
fat32format e:

I'm a little confused why that appears to work at all, given that FAT32 doesn't support partitions greater than 32GB. I don't really understand also, why the software needs to be on a FAT32 file system, rather than NTFS - and if so, how that is supposed to work with 80GB or higher capacity HDDs.

So, I'm basically back to where I was earlier yesterday, and still looking for a solution.


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<font color=BROWN> http://www.victorian-breweriana.me.uk" rel="nofollow - Hotmog's Victorian Breweriana [/COLOR]


Posted By: discrete badger
Date Posted: 10 Apr 2014 at 8:48pm
Think this is now beyond the level of general interest so I'll PM hotmog. We'll sort this out.


Posted By: Bradders
Date Posted: 28 Apr 2014 at 10:39am
I've bought the Astell and Kern AK100 mk 2 and I find it great significantly better than the iphone. Seems OK driving my LCD2'S too.SmileSmileSmile


Posted By: Justin122
Date Posted: 20 Feb 2015 at 12:50pm
iPod definitely


Posted By: Ash
Date Posted: 20 Feb 2015 at 1:49pm
Maybe if iPods were to work with the GSP Bitzie, yeah. But as it stands, no.


Posted By: Fatmangolf
Date Posted: 22 Feb 2015 at 9:42pm
I have a Fiio X3 which sounds a lot better than the iPods I owned (I gave my last one to my brother after using the X3 for a while.

The X3 can drive my LCD-2 and HD250/II headphones reasonably loud, not as good as the Solo UL or the Bitzie's headphone amps but pretty good for such a small box and ideal with my X10 in-ears.


-------------
Jon

Open mind and ears, whilst owning GSP Genera, Accession, Elevator EXP, Solo ULDE, Proprius amps, Cusat50 cables, Lautus digital cable, Spatia cables and links, and a Majestic DAC.


Posted By: Fatmangolf
Date Posted: 22 Feb 2015 at 9:49pm
The X3 doesn't connect to a Bitzie as far as I know. I like its small size because I can get it and my X10's in a small camera case that will fit in my pocket.


-------------
Jon

Open mind and ears, whilst owning GSP Genera, Accession, Elevator EXP, Solo ULDE, Proprius amps, Cusat50 cables, Lautus digital cable, Spatia cables and links, and a Majestic DAC.


Posted By: ServerBaboon
Date Posted: 22 Feb 2015 at 10:44pm
Originally posted by Fatmangolf Fatmangolf wrote:

The X3 doesn't connect to a Bitzie as far as I know. I like its small size because I can get it and my X10's in a small camera case that will fit in my pocket.

But maybe a super voyager via the digital out. Wink

You managed to get a 64gb sd card working?


-------------
Steve

-------------

Various bits of GSP Kit ..well two so far, unless you count the cables that is.


Posted By: Fatmangolf
Date Posted: 23 Feb 2015 at 6:46am
Yes indeed! The digital out works well with my Majestic DAC.

Yes it was fine once I'd got a Windows utility to format the 64GB micro SD. The X3 is supposed to work with 128GB cards so I'll probably get one or two of those in due course. Currently I swap between 32GB cards.


-------------
Jon

Open mind and ears, whilst owning GSP Genera, Accession, Elevator EXP, Solo ULDE, Proprius amps, Cusat50 cables, Lautus digital cable, Spatia cables and links, and a Majestic DAC.


Posted By: suede
Date Posted: 23 Feb 2015 at 1:01pm
http://www.cnet.com/uk/products/ponoplayer/ - http://www.cnet.com/uk/products/ponoplayer/

This could be interesting.

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Proprius, Reflex M, Solo UL, Bitzie, CuSats & Spatia
---------------------------------
Johan


Posted By: earwiggo
Date Posted: 23 Feb 2015 at 3:14pm
I know two other Naim and L*nn enthusiasts and they both love the Pono (I missed read initially for Porno!) so they must be pretty good...I still quite like the Galaxy S3 phone. Wink

-------------
...If only I knew that yesterday!


Posted By: Ash
Date Posted: 23 Feb 2015 at 4:15pm
Samsung Galaxy S3 still gets my vote, as it works flawlessly with the Bitzie, which, IMO, is the best sound quality you're going to get from portable audio.


Posted By: Fatmangolf
Date Posted: 24 Feb 2015 at 9:57pm
I've got an S4 mini but it doesn't like lossless files.

-------------
Jon

Open mind and ears, whilst owning GSP Genera, Accession, Elevator EXP, Solo ULDE, Proprius amps, Cusat50 cables, Lautus digital cable, Spatia cables and links, and a Majestic DAC.


Posted By: ServerBaboon
Date Posted: 24 Feb 2015 at 11:31pm
While able to play lossless my LG G2 has no expansion, neither do the Google phones so decided divorce my music playing from speaking to SWMBO, especially now I have an 64GB memory card.

It is worth noting that the latest x3 firmware version now supports exFat for better space usage and native windows formatting.




-------------
Steve

-------------

Various bits of GSP Kit ..well two so far, unless you count the cables that is.


Posted By: Fatmangolf
Date Posted: 25 Feb 2015 at 11:23pm
You are right Steve and the GUI is better. However I wish the new X3 firmware recognised sides rather than just track numbers.

-------------
Jon

Open mind and ears, whilst owning GSP Genera, Accession, Elevator EXP, Solo ULDE, Proprius amps, Cusat50 cables, Lautus digital cable, Spatia cables and links, and a Majestic DAC.


Posted By: dillon
Date Posted: 09 Apr 2015 at 1:34pm
Seeing as new posts have been posted, I guess I better update and say that I demoed a Fiio X5 not too long ago and found it to be rather excellent in price to performance. As my collection of 24 bit files is now rather large - and hell yeah, me myself and I can spot the difference betwixt lower bit rate files and higher ones - my trusted ole Ipod Classic now needs to retire with grace and thanks.

However, I got hold of a loaned A&K 120 Titan Edition the other week. Holy smokey! Beautiful is the only word. Sound and looks wise. Had to have one!!! Then got told the flaming price. £1200..like really??? Nah too much dosh on a fancy but fragile flash drive no? Except one dealer in the UK had it at half price. Still a lot of dosh. But......

Here I sit today with a shiny new one playing all my files over again. As if it were the first time. That good.

Oh the 240 is supposed to be endgame better. If you've got £2k handy.

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Nottingham Analogue Hyperspace w Space Arm & Dynavector 10x5 HOMC/GSP Revelation M/John Sampson upgraded Meridian 508.24 CDP/Sony 777ES SACD/ProAc Response D18/GSP Solo ULDE/GSP cables and ICs


Posted By: mitch65
Date Posted: 09 Apr 2015 at 2:34pm
Originally posted by dillon dillon wrote:

Seeing as new posts have been posted, I guess I better update and say that I demoed a Fiio X5 not too long ago and found it to be rather excellent in price to performance. As my collection of 24 bit files is now rather large - and hell yeah, me myself and I can spot the difference betwixt lower bit rate files and higher ones - my trusted ole Ipod Classic now needs to retire with grace and thanks.

However, I got hold of a loaned A&K 120 Titan Edition the other week. Holy smokey! Beautiful is the only word. Sound and looks wise. Had to have one!!! Then got told the flaming price. £1200..like really??? Nah too much dosh on a fancy but fragile flash drive no? Except one dealer in the UK had it at half price. Still a lot of dosh. But......

Here I sit today with a shiny new one playing all my files over again. As if it were the first time. That good.

Oh the 240 is supposed to be endgame better. If you've got £2k handy.


Looked at one of those myself but gauped at the price......the performance is stunning though and I can understand why some people are hooking these up to their main systems. I understand the price reduction is down to the new version just released, 700 quid is still out of my range thoughWink


-------------
Greg

Auralic Aries Mini
Naim muso qb
Solo
HIFIMAN HE-400i


Posted By: dillon
Date Posted: 09 Apr 2015 at 3:48pm
Hey man

Yeps supposedly so. I will of course try it thru my Naim and ProAc set up but it's on burn in duties till next week. My silent PC is rather spectacular at playing back 24 bit files thru the stereo system. And my Meridian 508.24 CDP is soooo silky analogue. Those will take some beating!

Regardless, my primary use is for out n about - and in that regard the 120 is rather top notch. And before anyone says I coulda done this at less expense using a smartphone and dac...well I much prefer bespokey DAPS to using noisy multi purpose bleedin phones every day of the week

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Nottingham Analogue Hyperspace w Space Arm & Dynavector 10x5 HOMC/GSP Revelation M/John Sampson upgraded Meridian 508.24 CDP/Sony 777ES SACD/ProAc Response D18/GSP Solo ULDE/GSP cables and ICs


Posted By: Fatmangolf
Date Posted: 09 Apr 2015 at 4:42pm
I'll bring my Fiio X3 along to the Rotherham roadshow if anyone is interested? It's not 'stock' as I replaced the op amp that drives the headphones, so it's more detailed. I am jealous of your shiny new toy!

-------------
Jon

Open mind and ears, whilst owning GSP Genera, Accession, Elevator EXP, Solo ULDE, Proprius amps, Cusat50 cables, Lautus digital cable, Spatia cables and links, and a Majestic DAC.


Posted By: dillon
Date Posted: 09 Apr 2015 at 6:24pm
Hey Jon

Yeah I quite fancy a roadshow me self down South one day hopefully. Defo gonna bring my gear...and really wanna test out a senn 250 ii wiv it If someone brings a pair along.

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Nottingham Analogue Hyperspace w Space Arm & Dynavector 10x5 HOMC/GSP Revelation M/John Sampson upgraded Meridian 508.24 CDP/Sony 777ES SACD/ProAc Response D18/GSP Solo ULDE/GSP cables and ICs


Posted By: mitch65
Date Posted: 09 Apr 2015 at 6:36pm
Originally posted by dillon dillon wrote:

Hey Jon

Yeah I quite fancy a roadshow me self down South one day hopefully. Defo gonna bring my gear...and really wanna test out a senn 250 ii wiv it If someone brings a pair along.

Sounds like a plan if a roadshow happens this year maybe??


-------------
Greg

Auralic Aries Mini
Naim muso qb
Solo
HIFIMAN HE-400i


Posted By: ServerBaboon
Date Posted: 09 Apr 2015 at 11:11pm
Originally posted by ServerBaboon ServerBaboon wrote:

While able to play lossless my LG G2 has no expansion, neither do the Google phones so decided divorce my music playing from speaking to SWMBO, especially now I have an 64GB memory card.

It is worth noting that the latest x3 firmware version now supports exFat for better space usage and native windows formatting.



Not sure whenit started but the latest firmware supports NTFS which is more space efficient as you don't get prompted to repair every time you insert into a windows PC.




-------------
Steve

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Various bits of GSP Kit ..well two so far, unless you count the cables that is.


Posted By: dillon
Date Posted: 12 Apr 2015 at 12:45pm
Gang

The new X3ii is due out now, and is superior in every way to the X3...and is close to the X5 I have been reliably informed. On paper definitely so. Holds a single micro sdxc/sxhd upto 128gb. Priced around £160 it sure looks like the best option at anywhere near this price category. The UI has been vastly improved and is pretty bug free. Looks nothing like the old X3 lol. Actually it's a lovely looking all metal bit o kit. If I didn't now own a AK 120 Titan I would now look at an IBASSO DX9 or DX100 as I rate them pretty high now after a weekend demo at home with mates.

I put the AK 120 thru my stereo by the way as a source. Not wholly broken in yet but no it can't hold a candle to my Meridian 508.24 CDP! Did you really expect it too lol??? Very digital sound..lacks scale and sounds tiny in comparison. Highs screech..bass is cold and mids are thin.

Let portable DAPS be portable DAPS. it's wot they do innit.

-------------
Nottingham Analogue Hyperspace w Space Arm & Dynavector 10x5 HOMC/GSP Revelation M/John Sampson upgraded Meridian 508.24 CDP/Sony 777ES SACD/ProAc Response D18/GSP Solo ULDE/GSP cables and ICs


Posted By: Ash
Date Posted: 12 Apr 2015 at 3:23pm
A Samsung Galaxy S3 (64GB micro-SD inserted) into Bitzie via Lautus USB is my idea of a high standard for portable audio. Somehow, I just don't think that any DAP DAC/amp would be any match for this fantastic device. I sold my Bitzie to put into the Majestic kitty but I'm still confident that the Bitzie would slaughter most of the competition.


Posted By: dillon
Date Posted: 12 Apr 2015 at 5:03pm
Originally posted by Ash Ash wrote:

A Samsung Galaxy S3 (64GB micro-SD inserted) into Bitzie via Lautus USB is my idea of a high standard for portable audio. Somehow, I just don't think that any DAP DAC/amp would be any match for this fantastic device. I sold my Bitzie to put into the Majestic kitty but I'm still confident that the Bitzie would slaughter most of the competition.


Yes it would Ash. Probably. I wouldn't know as I've not had the opportunity to test that theory out with more than my note 4 And a few other Sammy's - It worked well. But so much bleedin noise was going on in the bleedin phone what with it doing a zillion things in the background that it's pretty difficult for me extracting those digits cleanly. Same with other phones. And phone media playing software is...lame. My old ipod 6g 2009 model into the brilliant, absolutely brilliant Voyager had no such hassle - and funny enuff sounded far better. Take that how you will. I use phones for what they were designed for. And audio gear for what audio is designed for. My particular sensibility yes. I had the Bitzie on loan and worked it in a variety of settings. But for travelling use I kept coming back to the Voyager which only does headamping, and nothing else. Wonderful!

As I have actually demoed at length the Bitzie..own the Voyager and ULDE now, with all Lautus interconnects, and AN Other DAC, I think I have a feel for what works for me and what doesn't. But I can't make absolutist statements or speculate based on unknowns as I cannot and do not trust them either way. All I know is from what I hear and know from first hand experience. Audio is personal. We each of us have different wants and needs. We have differing audio palates no? Anyone saying anything else is pure snobbery.

The AK 120 Titan does everything I want and need in a truly portable easily carried travelling setup. With and without the Voyager. It wont fit others' bill.....easy really innit?




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Nottingham Analogue Hyperspace w Space Arm & Dynavector 10x5 HOMC/GSP Revelation M/John Sampson upgraded Meridian 508.24 CDP/Sony 777ES SACD/ProAc Response D18/GSP Solo ULDE/GSP cables and ICs


Posted By: Drewan77
Date Posted: 12 Apr 2015 at 6:00pm
Regarding the last couple of posts, I spend much of each week travelling around & use Bitzie / GalaxyS3 / in-ear Shure 535s so I feel well placed to comment

Whilst this is a great sounding combination, it doesn't quite compete with the Bitzie & Shures via a Macbook Pro / JRiver Media Player ('hog' mode) so Dillons' explanation about the benefits of a pure music player make sense to me

Likewise I agree that none of us can make absolutist comments without listening to every possible alternative. Even though I am as big a fan as anyone with GSP products (& own a lot!), there are no doubt many other very fine engineers out there making audio products. I possess a few from non-competing manufacturers and hold these in similarly high regard


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Older than I once was, younger than I'll be
.............................
Andrew


Posted By: Ash
Date Posted: 12 Apr 2015 at 9:06pm
I apologize if my previous post seemed a little confrontational or aggressive. That wasn't the intention. I simply have ambitious expectations of equipment, that's all.


Posted By: Fatmangolf
Date Posted: 13 Apr 2015 at 11:02pm
It's good we all care about getting the best sound and respect each others' approach to this. Beauty is in the ears of the beholder.


-------------
Jon

Open mind and ears, whilst owning GSP Genera, Accession, Elevator EXP, Solo ULDE, Proprius amps, Cusat50 cables, Lautus digital cable, Spatia cables and links, and a Majestic DAC.


Posted By: miT
Date Posted: 14 May 2017 at 8:50am
Good morning all,

After yet another break, I'm back seeking advice in the never ending pursuit of REAL HiFi mixed with changing circumstances. As this thread already exists, it makes more sense to resurrect it rather than start a new one.

Due to how bad the sound system is in my new car I am planning a system overhaul, but the one outstanding feeling is how bad head units are nowadays! After meeting some nice people on the sound quality competition circuit, my eyes have been opened to the idea of using a DAP as the main source instead. When the whole system gets replaced I'd need either USB, optical, WiFi or aptX Bluetooth streaming to connect to the processor (currently just a 3.5mm stereo jack to the standard head unit), but for now I need to get the DAP so I can start enjoying music again!

Things have moved on a lot since this thread was last updated and iriver now only release players under the Astell & Kern brand. On top of them you have FIIO, Cowon, Cayin, iBasso, Questyle and Colorfly to name a few, although most come with a laughable price tag. Does anyone have any up-to-date recommendations of DAPs to go for?

Apart from the requirements above, I manage all my music manually in folders in Windows with all tags removed so a player that views by folder mode would be ideal. I have no need for album-art, just a dedicated music only DAP. Expandable memory via microSD card is also a must for high speed file transfer.

I have used my phone up to present but I'm not overly keen on the results I've had and don't want to buy a software player for it if I could better invest that in a dedicated DAP which shouldn't have any glitches.

If you can recommend anything, that would be most appreciated but I accept that most of us have proper HiFi systems indoors instead.

Thanks in advance,


Tim


P.S. The first person to recommend Apple gets shot. Tongue


Posted By: ServerBaboon
Date Posted: 14 May 2017 at 10:09am
The Fiio range are good value, i have a 1st generation x3 which has headphone, line and optical out. Terrible ui though on the gen 1.

Not sure how any will be with no tags though on the usability front.




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Steve

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Various bits of GSP Kit ..well two so far, unless you count the cables that is.


Posted By: oldagetraveller
Date Posted: 14 May 2017 at 11:01am
Cowon all the way and their price tag isn't laughable. Knocks the socks off the chewed fruit variety for sound quality!
Try and listen to a S9 if you can get hold of one, not available new though.Smile


Posted By: miT
Date Posted: 14 May 2017 at 3:17pm
Cheers guys. I agree on the pricing of both brands; they seem very realistic compared to everyone else. I mean seriously, even Apple are cheaper than your average Astell & Kern or Sony. These manufacturers must be loving the ludicrous profit margin. The funniest thing is IMO FIIO and Cowon's players are generally better looking! I do love the common sense you get from this forum!

ServerBaboon - One of the Euro champions from the competition circuit uses FIIO. How do the newer ones compare in your opinion?

oldagetraveller - I was looking at Cowon years ago but then stopped commuting to work on public transport. I guess it's pretty much the same question for you too: how do the newer versions compare?

Any other suggestions out there? Or should I hold out for the Graham Slee DAP? Wink


Posted By: DaveG
Date Posted: 14 May 2017 at 5:32pm
I use an AK70 and am pretty happy with it. SQ is impressive, the firmware update means you get wireless & bluetooth & it works with Tidal. Downsides - max 256gb SD slot (I only store uncompressed files) & if ur using wifi and/or bluetooth it sucks the battery dry in a few hours, but switch them off and it's OK -  I've never run out of juice yet. If I was buying now I would be looking very hard at the FIIO x5 v3. On paper it's agreat spec.. reasonable money and it looks nice too.


-------------
Dave

Michell Gorbe + HR PSU -> Cadenza Bronze -> SME V -> Elevator -> Accession -> Proprius -> B&W CM6 s2 | Cusat 50 & Spatia cables ->


Posted By: Ash
Date Posted: 14 May 2017 at 5:52pm
A cheap second-hand smartphone like a Samsung Galaxy S3 with a 64GB micro-SD card, a couple of spare batteries and a Bitzie with or without powerwire would be my approach. Wouldn't have to spend too much to achieve excellent sound.


Posted By: miT
Date Posted: 14 May 2017 at 9:44pm
DaveG - The FIIO X5 gen 3 is getting a lot of love! And coming from an iriver/AK user, that says a lot! I'm currently working through both manufacturers' websites but FIIO's pricing is almost unbelievable!

Ash - You must be happy with that setup if you still recommend it two years down the line! That "system" would cost more than the X5 gen 3 though. I'm currently using my OPPO Find 7 which is also Android for media only (it lives in flight mode as it's SIM-less) but as an earlier poster mentioned, phones run too many background operations in comparison to a DAP. I occasionally get a glitch where the music "stutters" but I'm loathe to buy Neutron if a DAP would work better. I already have Neutron on my BlackBerry and it's excellent but I use it as a SatNav (best one I've used) but the commands interrupting my music every few seconds are downright annoying. Shame too as more than one distraction on the dash isn't my cup of tea.


Posted By: Ash
Date Posted: 15 May 2017 at 7:45am
I only suggested this combo because I thought you had a Bitzie with powerwire already so adding an older cheaper phone with a long battery life and using USB power from the car and the microSD is straightforward to swap if you need more than 64GB storage.

Although the Bitzie is going to be overkill for the car amp and speakers. Probably just ignore my suggestion...


Posted By: Ash
Date Posted: 15 May 2017 at 7:54am
(The problem is inadequate power for Proprius in a car so can't do what I'd really want to do...)


Posted By: Graham Slee
Date Posted: 15 May 2017 at 6:11pm
The Bitzie and an S3 can do 7.5 hours continuous on one S3 charge. I remember driving for 8 hours once (to Wales...), but most journeys are less...

OK, I'm biased, but then again if something is sh*t I say so. I will say that I decided to use my Bitzie with my cheap Huawei/EE Kestrel for use in the garden (with my HD250s) when the sun decides to shine again. Although the current cabling is messy, it sounds bloody good to me. Overkill? Why should anyone want to deny their enjoyment of music?

I have hunted down a solid micro-USB OTG adapter to save on the bulk of two cables ( https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B01B7OVW36/ref=od_aui_detailpages00?ie=UTF8&psc=1" rel="nofollow - https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B01B7OVW36/ref=od_aui_detailpages00?ie=UTF8&psc=1 ), and so the Lautus USB ferrite is now at the correct distance from the source. So I now have a micro-USB OTG version of the Lautus USB.

The files on my phone are FLAC and are no worse than CD quality. The USB signal is as good as it gets IMO - the connection direct to the Majestic USB input tells me that.

Therefore any suitable phone, the adapted Lautus USB and a Bitzie will perform the desired function of portable music player. The Bitzie will output to a line input/headphones, convert to toslink and coax, all at the same time as you know.

It's a simple solution. Now, if it's the cable that's the problem, I'm looking to try a shorty cable from China. It may sound OK, we will have to wait and see (hear).


-------------
Not simple enough for Google-Bot to understand...


Posted By: Ash
Date Posted: 15 May 2017 at 8:44pm
I still remember how superb a S3-OTG-LautusUSB-Bitzie-HD540II combo sounded but for car audio, I would assume that he would want to listen with stereo speakers instead of headphones. He'd need a decent car amp and speakers with a well balanced sound otherwise it would severely hold the Bitzie back. If you can suggest a way around the big bottleneck here Graham (e.g a GSP car stereo amp that runs off 12V and gives the Proprius a run for their money), I'm all ears.


Posted By: miT
Date Posted: 15 May 2017 at 9:56pm
Sadly my Bitzie needs to stay indoors as it will be feeding my custom Mark Audio speakers music (when we move again and I can start using them!). However the thought of having a Graham Slee source in the car is REALLY appealing! The issue I have with my phone is that music sometimes stutters (pauses for less than a second) and then plays normally. Both phones do this and I have no idea why.

Graham - I'm intrigued how you can survive any car journey while listening to music. What system is in your car??

Ash - Graham Slee car audio ay? I probably shouldn't encourage you but call me selfish, I want some of that too.


Posted By: Graham Slee
Date Posted: 15 May 2017 at 10:44pm
Have you tried winamp? Maybe try a cheap sim free like the P6?

I don't listen to music or radio while driving. I have the basic radio with CD slot which came with my Transporter Kombi Startline (it's a van), and I only use it if I'm stood waiting for my son to come out of college. My wife has one of those new fangled touchscreen things in her Vitara which does everything, and every time you start it the radio comes on and it's a scramble to make the thing turn off. I suppose if I drove long distances on motorways I might be tempted to listen to Radio 4...

Making an amp for a car might not throw up too many problems, but where do you put the speakers? The built-in ones always seem to have plasticky grilles which rattle and vibrate. Nothing much seems to have changed since my MK3 Cortina...


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Not simple enough for Google-Bot to understand...


Posted By: Ash
Date Posted: 15 May 2017 at 10:59pm
A Graham Slee car DAC/amp that plugs into the 12V lighter plug or similar would be good. Or just an amp that plugs into the 12V supply and we drive it through a Bitzie. Doesn't need to be a really powerful amp, just very low noise so sensitive high resolution speakers can be driven well. Speakers would need to be braced securely in the front insert to help dampen vibrations that would affect playback.

I'm quite surprised that Graham hasn't already pimped his vehicle's sound system to the max. Probably too busy concentrating his efforts into vinyl reproduction and audio applications where mains power is a single cable away.

And how would the user be able to have the car audio electronics powered on all the time to achieve a stable optimum performance? They wouldn't; the battery would go flat.


Posted By: Graham Slee
Date Posted: 15 May 2017 at 11:22pm
Could stick an inverter in the boot?


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Not simple enough for Google-Bot to understand...


Posted By: Chris Firth
Date Posted: 15 May 2017 at 11:25pm
Originally posted by Graham Slee Graham Slee wrote:

Could stick an inverter in the boot?


Sense at last Wink


Posted By: Fatmangolf
Date Posted: 16 May 2017 at 2:01am
For one box convenience I picked up a discounted Fiio X5 Gen 2 and like the sound. Two 128GB micro HD's and I can carry a lot of music when I go away. Playback through my Klipsch X10's as before.


-------------
Jon

Open mind and ears, whilst owning GSP Genera, Accession, Elevator EXP, Solo ULDE, Proprius amps, Cusat50 cables, Lautus digital cable, Spatia cables and links, and a Majestic DAC.


Posted By: Graham Slee
Date Posted: 16 May 2017 at 10:54am
If 20 watts (maximum with engine running and charging at 13.6V) into 4 Ohms would suffice I suppose I could make 2 bridge amps for 12 volt operation and stick them in a box.

But I have a pile of things to develop and productionize (as most of you know). Wink


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Not simple enough for Google-Bot to understand...


Posted By: miT
Date Posted: 23 May 2017 at 8:06pm
Sorry guys, work has been exhausting as always so I haven't been able to reply until now.

Graham - Yes, I've been using Winamp on my PC since version 1 and never needed anything else. Do they do an Android version now?

I could always use my existing Android phone, at least as a test...

In recent months I've learned quite a bit about car audio and to say the least, car audio is an expensive nightmare to get right. Doing it properly though the imaging is sublime, hence they actually compete for the best sounding system. There are only a handful of good installers/tuners in the country though.

Ash - I'm also surprised Graham hasn't done anything with car audio. Even talk radio would sound better through GSP Audio kit!

Fatmangolf - Another vote for FIIO ay? If I can't work out how to get the Bitzie working in the car, that will definitely be my back up plan. In fact it may end up winning simply due to the convenience!

Graham - You're tempting me more and more! I'll try and find some driver specs so you can tell me if it could work.


Posted By: Richardl60
Date Posted: 23 May 2017 at 9:35pm
"Ash - I'm also surprised Graham hasn't done anything with car audio. Even talk radio would sound better through GSP Audio kit!"
I suspect the substantial improvement in ICE over the last 30 years, the many in-built in dash systems, the propensity of people to change their cars quite regularly these days, those bought with PCPs and company cars may limit the interest as will the need for many to have them hard wired in.  I also strongly suspect that a lot of the younger owners may be more interested in lots of watts rather than sound.
 
That said the comment is probably very true.


Posted By: miT
Date Posted: 24 May 2017 at 5:24am
I agree, youths nowadays think Beats headphones are the best so you've got no chance of teaching people like that!


Posted By: charlesjohny8
Date Posted: 22 Sep 2017 at 1:45pm
7 Years old thread but it was very helpful for me and learned a lot about digital music players.


Posted By: Ash
Date Posted: 17 Jul 2019 at 10:53pm
Has anyone used the LG V30 smartphone? I just received a brand new LG V30+ today and the sound quality is pretty incredible through just the stock earphones. The bass and imaging are very good indeed! I can hardly wait to try it with my MySphere 3.1 headphones. It has an FM Radio too, which is the icing on the cake. I decided to try this phone after reading much praise for it online. I now don't regret the £320 I paid for it. I shall have to try connecting it OTG to my Majestic DAC at some point too. Runs Android 7 Nougat but should be able to update it to Oreo. Beautiful display and sound, with very promising cameras. Really pleased.


Posted By: miT
Date Posted: 18 Jul 2019 at 5:37pm
Hi Ash,

Been a while...

Sounds like you got a good price there!

I personally have not but the in-built DAC can't hurt the overall sound presentation.


Tim


Posted By: Ash
Date Posted: 19 Jul 2019 at 10:18pm
Battery life with screen brightness turned down and hi-fi DAC on seems to be really good. Well over 100GB of internal storage and a slot for a huge capacity micro-SD as well. Best player I've owned so far. Really decent.

More and more, I find myself growing tired of hi-fi and the whole obsession with "quality" and equipment. I just want simple, capable devices that are enjoyable to listen to and this phone and MySphere 3.1 tick the boxes. I don't care about the latest hi-res formats and all the other typical hi-fi hype. I probably shouldn't even be on a hi-fi forum really as I enjoy music in all forms and fidelities and probably don't have the cognitive ability to appreciate a lot of the differences.

As long as my music source/files and headphone are decent, I'm happy to call the whole journey to an end and settle for what I have.

P.S Great to have you back.


Posted By: capetownwatches
Date Posted: 20 Jul 2019 at 5:33am
I enjoy the simplicity and excellent sound quality of my LG V20 with KZ ZSN earphones. Although it's getting on a bit now, the V20 remains a truly great DAP capable of driving full sized headphones with it's 2.1Vrms output and playing just about any type of file including DSD128. 

The ZSN is a true audio bargain and shows how far Chinese IEM products have come. It's a hybrid design with one 10mm dynamic driver and one balanced armature per side.25Ω and 104dB/mW means it can be driven by a potato. I shan't go into detail about the sound, suffice it to say that it's brilliant and I happily use this combo at the office when I need to shut myself off.



To my mind the LG V series phones can compete with most standalone DAPS of reasonable cost and score huge on convenience.


-------------
Solo Ultra Linear=Kingrex HQ1=NFB11.32=Little Dot Mkll=SRM252S=Benchmark DAC1 USB=RL Concero
LCD2F=HD600=SR207=DT990 600Ω=K612Pro A=K240S=K171Mkll=M4U2=Y50
RCF Ayra 5=Mogami/Sommer->Neutrik/Amphenol


Posted By: Chris Firth
Date Posted: 20 Jul 2019 at 12:18pm
I've been using Foobar2000 for Android on my aged Samsung Galaxy S5Neo, and I wish I'd done it earlier.
All the bare bones basic simplicity of the Windows Computer version, and because it's basic it doesn't hog resources.

I have driven a number of different hire vehicles this year, and they all integrate with the phone to a greater or lesser degree.
Basic integration is phone over Bluetooth.
Better integration allows the car stereo to pull files in from your phone, just so long as it's happy playing the format.
The best integration allowed me to play the files from the phone using Foobar, so take a bow Vauxhall and Ford.


Posted By: miT
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 7:49am
Originally posted by Ash Ash wrote:

Battery life with screen brightness turned down and hi-fi DAC on seems to be really good. Well over 100GB of internal storage and a slot for a huge capacity micro-SD as well. Best player I've owned so far. Really decent.

More and more, I find myself growing tired of hi-fi and the whole obsession with "quality" and equipment. I just want simple, capable devices that are enjoyable to listen to and this phone and MySphere 3.1 tick the boxes. I don't care about the latest hi-res formats and all the other typical hi-fi hype. I probably shouldn't even be on a hi-fi forum really as I enjoy music in all forms and fidelities and probably don't have the cognitive ability to appreciate a lot of the differences.

As long as my music source/files and headphone are decent, I'm happy to call the whole journey to an end and settle for what I have.

P.S Great to have you back.

Thanks Ash. Sadly nowadays the hectic nature of life leaves me limited time on here as I have nothing to bring. I only started listening to music again (listening in the car does not count) since I started this new job 4 weeks ago so it felt right to pop back in.

That sounds like a decent DAP there Ash. And far more realistically priced than the dedicated DAPs of today. As always, popularity = money spinning opportunities. Have you compared it to a phone and a Bite? I would consider that if it wasn't for the logistical nightmare while carrying a laptop, backpack, etc.

I completely understand about getting to the end of the journey. Nowadays it seems you have to wade through 85% of the rubbish out there to find the few decent items. Once you have found something you are happy with, I say just enjoy it. You never know what new responsibilities you could suddenly have that then prevent you from enjoying what you have. After all the recommendations on here I got myself some custom made speakers running Mark Audio drivers, only to then find myself having to progress through the career ladder and having extra mouths to feed. I don't think I have even listened to them properly since I got them two years ago. Confused


Posted By: miT
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 7:56am
Originally posted by Chris Firth Chris Firth wrote:

I've been using Foobar2000 for Android on my aged Samsung Galaxy S5Neo, and I wish I'd done it earlier.
All the bare bones basic simplicity of the Windows Computer version, and because it's basic it doesn't hog resources.

I have driven a number of different hire vehicles this year, and they all integrate with the phone to a greater or lesser degree.
Basic integration is phone over Bluetooth.
Better integration allows the car stereo to pull files in from your phone, just so long as it's happy playing the format.
The best integration allowed me to play the files from the phone using Foobar, so take a bow Vauxhall and Ford.

Hi Chris,

Have you ever tried Neutron MP3 player? That is all I use (unless wanting to sample new music via Spotify) and it is great.

If you are using Bluetooth, have you compared to the aptX Bluetooth profile? I must admit that in my [limited] critical listening it sounds as good as a cable connection compared with the standard profile. How technology has progressed!


Posted By: Chris Firth
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 10:37am
Originally posted by miT miT wrote:

Hi Chris,

Have you ever tried Neutron MP3 player? That is all I use (unless wanting to sample new music via Spotify) and it is great.

If you are using Bluetooth, have you compared to the aptX Bluetooth profile? I must admit that in my [limited] critical listening it sounds as good as a cable connection compared with the standard profile. How technology has progressed!


Hi Tim

I'm sure the Neutron MP3 player is good at what it does.

I have enough stuff to cart around when leaving the house as it is, so another device is out of the question.
For me it has to live on my Swiss Army Knife of a Smartphone.
When I listen to music off the phone it's generally using wired AKG branded Samsung earbuds.

The beauty of using Foobar is that it plays everything gaplessly, and I don't worry about format.
I was using AAC files, because space was limited, but I now have a a 128GB MicroSD fitted and I just drag FLAC folders around every now and then.



Posted By: miT
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 11:04am
Hi Chris,

To clarify, Neutron is an Android app rather than a standalone music player. It is however one of the most customisable and even has a 30-band EQ which is rather useful.

I am in the same boat as you there; I would love to put my Bitzie back into  service and start using it with my phone but have to think very carefully about the additional devices to carry around.

I recently got an amazing deal on a 512gb MicroSD card so for the first time in history, I have all of my music with when I go out. Pretty mind-blowing when you think about it.


Posted By: PaulRS
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 12:04pm
Originally posted by Fatmangolf Fatmangolf wrote:

For one box convenience I picked up a discounted Fiio X5 Gen 2 and like the sound. Two 128GB micro HD's and I can carry a lot of music when I go away. Playback through my Klipsch X10's as before. 

Another vote for the Fiio X5 Gen 2.
For long haul travel i also use a Fiio M3 for its 24 hours battery life and the $50 price tag that means if i lose it i will not slap myself. 




-------------
No Music, No Life!
Paul


Posted By: Chris Firth
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 12:07pm
Originally posted by miT miT wrote:

To clarify, Neutron is an Android app

My bad Embarrassed



Posted By: miT
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 12:10pm
Originally posted by Chris Firth Chris Firth wrote:

Originally posted by miT miT wrote:

To clarify, Neutron is an Android app

My bad Embarrassed

LOL


Posted By: Fatmangolf
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 1:22pm
Welcome back Tim.

Other options are out there. I particularly enjoy my X5 playing back my v-rips. In the album name I include a reference in square brackets like [Hana SL AccMC] which makes it easy to select and copy them onto the 128GB cards.


-------------
Jon

Open mind and ears, whilst owning GSP Genera, Accession, Elevator EXP, Solo ULDE, Proprius amps, Cusat50 cables, Lautus digital cable, Spatia cables and links, and a Majestic DAC.


Posted By: miT
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 1:40pm
Gone but not forgotten, nice. Big smile

I have started looking all the different DAPs which reminded me about FIIO. I am currently reading through their lineup as it seems like a dedicated unit will probably be the wisest way to go.

This of course would be much simpler if Graham produced his own DAP... Wink

As for managing my music, I have always been extremely organised with it (possible OCD Embarrassed) so it is all immaculately in folders as per album name, genre, etc. Drag and drop is all I need as I am happy navigating through the file menus to play specific folders/albums. Neutron is great for that, as were my old Sony Walkmans of old.


Posted By: Fatmangolf
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 2:14pm
Agreed! Source\artist\album is my folder structure and I get the tags right, easier to with the sleeve in front of you.

-------------
Jon

Open mind and ears, whilst owning GSP Genera, Accession, Elevator EXP, Solo ULDE, Proprius amps, Cusat50 cables, Lautus digital cable, Spatia cables and links, and a Majestic DAC.


Posted By: miT
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 2:43pm
That is pretty much the same structure I use, although mine is source/genre/artist/year & album title. And I am totally with you on getting the tags right. The challenging one is when sometimes there are clashes and you have to pick your preferred version. Oh the pressure. LOL

To push my mental boundaries further if the album is a concert or should be listened in one session (e.g. Pink Floyd), I now rip the album twice; once as individual tracks and again as a single track to maintain the purity of the listening session...

Ok, I win the OCD championship.


Posted By: Fatmangolf
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 3:21pm
Happy to concede that one and agree that the music is what matters.

-------------
Jon

Open mind and ears, whilst owning GSP Genera, Accession, Elevator EXP, Solo ULDE, Proprius amps, Cusat50 cables, Lautus digital cable, Spatia cables and links, and a Majestic DAC.


Posted By: miT
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2019 at 9:11pm
Originally posted by Fatmangolf Fatmangolf wrote:

Happy to concede that one and agree that the music is what matters.
Does my victory come with a restraining order? LOL

I have Graham's creations and the collective wisdom of this forum to thank for understanding how it truly matters. Thumbs Up



Posted By: discrete badger
Date Posted: 29 Jul 2019 at 9:14pm
Another vote for the superb Neutron app (+ spotify for new music). For portable, I use now use exclusively these two on Blackberry (can run android) smartphone, with a 64Gb card holding my entire CD collection as OGG.

I used to lug around the iRiver hard disk player and a separate DAC and the Voyager. In present times, that would be daft, as to my ears the DAC in the phone is extremely good; more than good enough.

The headamp in the phone, on the other hand, has about 1% of the capability of the Voyager. So, smartphone + Voyager + HD250 Linear II mk2 is my happy portable listening these days. 


Posted By: miT
Date Posted: 29 Jul 2019 at 9:58pm
Originally posted by discrete badger discrete badger wrote:

Another vote for the superb Neutron app (+ spotify for new music). For portable, I use now use exclusively these two on Blackberry (can run android) smartphone, with a 64Gb card holding my entire CD collection as OGG.

I used to lug around the iRiver hard disk player and a separate DAC and the Voyager. In present times, that would be daft, as to my ears the DAC in the phone is extremely good; more than good enough.

The headamp in the phone, on the other hand, has about 1% of the capability of the Voyager. So, smartphone + Voyager + HD250 Linear II mk2 is my happy portable listening these days. 
I was a late convert to BlackBerry as my first was one of the Curve models. I have not bothered with any other brand since (for actual phone duties) and think BB10 OS was the greatest ever, enjoying it on the Q10 and then the Passport. Absolutely gutted with their short-sightedness and the loss of the true BlackBerry phones. I personally find Android a frustrating experience in comparison to BB10 and it ruins some of the benefits of the PKB; great for "toys" but not for grown ups IMO. Don't start me on the "fruit brand"... Ok, rant over. Which BlackBerry do you use as your DAP? I remember them sounding pretty good with Neutron as well...

I understand the feeling about lugging around lots of devices; a single device for all your needs is the ideal, but what is music without the Graham Slee magic? Thumbs Up



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