Sony NW-WM1Z/WM1A DAPs

Discussion in 'IEMs and Portable Gear' started by mrweirdude, Sep 1, 2016.

  1. mscott58

    mscott58 Friend

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    Hey 1A/1Z owners! Sony released new firmware for the NW-WM1_ series a few days ago. New build is V2.0. Just downloaded it and installed it on my 1Z and had no issues.

    Here's the link to the site for the 1Z - https://esupport.sony.com/US/p/mode...te_id=1&region_id=1&tab=download#/downloadTab

    And for the 1A (although I don't think there's any difference) - https://esupport.sony.com/US/p/mode...te_id=1&region_id=1&tab=download#/downloadTab

    Per the Sony site, here's what changed from V1.2 to V2.0:

    What Does This Do?
    This utility updates your Walkman® player to firmware version 2.00 and provides the following benefits:

    Improvements over version 1.20:

    • Adds support for the aptX and aptX HD Bluetooth codec
    • Adds support for the APE and MQA music formats
    • Makes the Shuffle and Repeat settings available from the playback screen
    • Adds the Auto power off function to help prolong battery life
    • Increases the methods of displaying song information
    • Other minor function improvements
    Benefits provided by previous updates and included in version 2.00:

    • Fixes an issue where characters in the display appear corrupt when the content contains song titles and other information in Thai
    • Improves touch panel response when pressed or scrolled
    • Fixes an issues where the sound is skipped or chopped under certain conditions
    • Fixes an issue where, in rare cases the characters may become corrupt when the content includes Simplified Chinese or Traditional Chinese
    • Fixes other minor issues
     
  2. Grahad2

    Grahad2 Red eyes from too much anime

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    I wonder if they will ever backport the ZX300's USB DAC mode to the WM1 series.
     
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  3. mscott58

    mscott58 Friend

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    Great question. Wonder if that falls into the realm of HW or SW for the WM1's?
     
  4. Khai

    Khai Rando

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    As an owner of the 1Z since Feb and having tried the Hugo2 on several occasions with my SE5U, I would be lying if I said that Sony is giving Chord a run for their money.

    Just based on sonics, it's my personal opinion that neither the WM1Z nor any version of the SP1000 from AK can rival the Hugo2 at the moment; nor can any other DAP on the market for that matter.

    Having said that, it would still be interesting to hear about your experience when your loaner arrives. Have fun and cheers!
     
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  5. Mimouille

    Mimouille Facebook Friend

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    I haven't tried the Hugo 2 but was not such a fan of the Hugo 1 with my SE5U.

    I believe you when you say the Hugo 2 overperforms every DAP. However it is a DAC and is much larger than any DAP, without a transport or a screen. If Chord is able to create a DAP that sounds as good, then it will be more comparable.
     
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  6. Peter78

    Peter78 Rando

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    I'm glad that I saw this post. I couldn't figure out why the album art was not showing up for some albums on my WM1A (and I'd edited all of the images myself and tagged all of the audio files all using the method). I'd checked file size, resolution, aspect ratio, etc., and found no commonality. Sure enough, progressive mode JPEGs were the culprit. I'm not sure that I would have figured that out on my own (especially since I did not even see that property anywhere with image-viewing or image-editing software, including Photoshop). Thanks!
     
  7. drgumbybrain

    drgumbybrain Science Nut

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    I don’t believe hugo2 out performs every dap. IMHO Sony 1z is overall better. Hugo2 has better instrumental separation, a little better sound stage. Just that. Oh, almost forgot. Hugo 2 has the magnificent chord marketing and gospel. That’s very important
     
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  8. beyerdramatic

    beyerdramatic Rando

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    From my experience with the ZX100 and ZX2, album cover images from Amazon always work, although most of them are rather small, just 350x350. But I don't stare at the screen all the time when music is playing, so it's not a problem for me.
     
  9. Panohm

    Panohm Friend

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    Has anyone been able to find a nice 4.4mm female to 3.5mm single ended adapter that doesn't cost $100+?
     
  10. Panohm

    Panohm Friend

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  11. lerrens

    lerrens Rando

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    I was initially looking for a DAP as digital transport and ordered a Fiio X5iii because of its glowing reviews, yet sent it back because the coaxial output sounds terrible and the design & UI is not as polished as expected. Sound-wise X5iii’s tonality is very balanced yet I somehow prefer my Mojo’s cleaner presentation of sound.

    [​IMG]

    Playing with the ZX300 & AK70mkII at a local store alongside WM1A, using Audeze iSine 10 and a MDR-1R (All using SE), I feel like ZX300 and AK70mkII is at the same level of sound quality with different approach of sound presentation: ZX300 being large and warm but sometimes a bit fuzzy and details are blurred, AK70mkII is cleaner and more precise, but has an overall smaller soundstage. AK70mkII also exhibits potential of listening fatigue over time. WM1A is clearly a notch above the other 2 device, having the largest soundstage with details better resolved and noticeably better dynamics.

    The AK70mkII is a really beautiful device: Smooth volume knob with a distinct click when turning, gorgeous front panel which turns into a consistent black glass when turned off (the blackness consistency between bezel & screen is pretty much like my iPhone 6S), and the curves on the right side of the body is just smooth and sexy. I really wanted to like this device but the sound quality IMO is but a sidegrade (if not downgrade) to my Mojo. It’s after comparing various DAPs that I found my renewed admiration of Mojo: for portable usage, Mojo’s sound quality could really be a reference for this price point.

    I wasn’t considering the WM1A before but after comparing them side by side and using them in person, I found the WM1A to be a really really solid device with an authenticity of a professional gear. The blackness consistency between bezel & screen is close to AK70mkII, but because of its larger bezels, the bezels sometimes seem obvious when seen in photos. Comparing screen quality between AK70mkII and WM1A, although the pixel density is slighty lower on WM1A, it actually has a more vibrant color and makes the AK70mkII seem washed out. User interface is also more responsive and intuitive on the WM1A, text is clear and the information displayed on screen uses a very nice font that looks great in at least three languages (English/Chinese/Japanese, which are my primary concern)

    [​IMG]

    And to be honest, Sony’s spectrum analyzer just kills it.
    Back in the iPod-era, lots of MP3 players in the market has been providing spectrum analyzer visual effects. At that time, my number one MUST HAVE when choosing a MP3 player is to have a beautiful spectrum analyzer. I remember that’s why I chose Samsung YP-T9 over an iPod at the time.

    [​IMG]

    Now in 2017 sadly, although our graphically superior smartphones has become the mainstream go-to music device, spectrum analyzers are rarely implemented in any of the common apps.
    I’m very glad Sony paid attention to this detail and implemented one of the best spectrum analyzer I’ve seen recently in any player (any platform), it’s smooth, responsive, and just feels right. I guess Sony had a lot of design input from their own AVR/Recorder department. Sony DAPs also has a VU meter and it’s equally gorgeous.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    The 2017 model ZX300 also has a L/R channel dB meter when acting as USB-DAC mode.

    [​IMG]

    Well, at this point I’m already willing to pull the trigger for WM1A because it sounds great AND looks great. But having CES 2018 near the corner, I’m guessing it’s about time Sony brings out a successor for WM1A (Life cycle 1~1.5 years for pass models). I really hope the WM1A successor will add USB-DAC function and bring ZX300 design cues to the front panel (etched Sony logo, subtle walkman mark)
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2017
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  12. m17xr2b

    m17xr2b Friend

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    I've been using the WM1A for the past couple of days upgrading from a ZX100. I found the WM1A is a huge upgrade I didn't really expect. I've written my thoughts on the Antromeda on the ZX100 and they were great but there were a few areas I felt it was lacking and the WM1A fixed everything.
    I always loved Sony player ever since the Sony S736F and nothing I have tried from Cowon,AR,Questyle had the same feeling or sound. The WM1A for me feels like a true upgrade to my old one and made me a sony fanboy for their players.

    No point in going on how well it sounds with IEM we know it's great, I was curios how it handles full size headphones using the SE output as I don't have an adaptor yet for balanced and I'm waiting for parts to build one.
    HD800 is a no go, no bass and bright even if it goes quite loud.
    HD600/650M were quite surprising. I found the volume to be more than enough for most tracks. I listen at around 85dB so this fits the bill nicely.
    Let's start with the positives, treble and midrange. Treble on both sennheisers is top class. Clear, well extended, zero fatigue or brightness which I do get on lesser amplifications like the Ember. It's such an easy and relaxing listen, I feel the high end is better than on the Andromeda because it has more air due to the better extension. I don't think I've heard better treble on the HD650 on solid state amplification but I've not listened to the big boys like Cavalli. From memory I don't remember the GS-X MK2 to sound better.
    The 600 sound a bit more extended but the 650 is smoother. Again these are subtle differences.
    Midrange for the HD650 is super close to the Andromeda. Maybe a tad more details where some vibrations seem clearer but I have to search for the differences. The HD600 is a bit cooler but with the same level of detail.

    Low end is where things go south. The HD650 needs a bit more control and I feel it bleeds into the mids a bit. Because of this I prefer the Andromeda since it sound better balanced and even the superior treble of the 650 is not enough to tip the sclae. For music instrumental or acoustic I prefer the HD650 because the low end is not such a problem. For everything else the Andromeda is best.
    The HD600 low end is lacking too much and it's too unbalanced compared to how well the rest of the frequencies sound.

    I've been searching for a good portable setup for some time but didn't want to go into separates with things like alo dual mono.
    For the bad I don't like the weight, size, recessed buttons, the lag between songs even if it's better with the upgraded firmware. These are things I put up with just because of the sound quality.
     
  13. drgumbybrain

    drgumbybrain Science Nut

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    Hello friends. I would like to know your impressions and usability of the Sony dhex, dc phase linearizer and others options. It worth it?
     
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  14. Overkill Red

    Overkill Red Friend

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    In my experience I found the loss to resolution to be audible, but not that bad. As far as EQ goes, the implementation of it on the 1Z is very good for portable players IMO. I don't use it/haven't experimented extensively myself, but its promising.
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2017
  15. cooperpwc

    cooperpwc Friend

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    Am I the only one surprised that a DAP as expensive at the WM1Z does not implement USB3.0? With 256GB onboard, this is not an irrelevant issue. Lottoo Paw Gold has had this since it first came out more than three years ago. It makes copying music so much faster.

    Otherwise, like the LPG, the lack of USB DAC functionality is a shame. (sigh) Nonetheless the 1Z does look droolworthy on so many levels.
     
  16. Overkill Red

    Overkill Red Friend

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    Don't quote me on this, a friend of mine Mr. Sato Tomoaki, the Walkman project leader, and the latter says the USB DAC is still being worked on. Apparently there are jitter and noise issues that Sony is working to fix. :(

    Can't wait for the USB DAC too, it'll make traveling with my laptop much less painful.
     
  17. Cellist88

    Cellist88 Afraid someone will shit on his opinions

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    By the time its implemented on the 1Z, most likely the next Flagship will be out with USB dac functionality built in.
     
  18. Kattefjaes

    Kattefjaes Mostly Harmless

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    No, actually. It's nice to have a device that does one thing and does it well. There are plenty of Chifi DAPs with feature lists as long as your arm, where everything is a compromise, and nothing quite works properly. While those might be "nice to have" features, if they stood to reduce battery life, sound quality or presented other issues then they're better skipped.

    I can wait for the first initial big FLAC sync. Subsequent syncs are much shorter if you update in a non-stupid way.

    I'm happy to live with the WM1* series as nice DAPs which are good at playing music. Feeping creaturism bullshit on half-assed devices full of compromises is just tiring.

    There are plenty of Ad-Fi threads with people hyping random DAPs that double as public hair trimmers and head torches, though, for people who can't live without.
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2018
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  19. cooperpwc

    cooperpwc Friend

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    USB3.0 is feature creep? Disagree. And as a communication protocol, it should easily be completely isolated from any SQ circuitry.

    Perhaps the issue is power usage, i.e. it may burn more power than the USB can provide while Sony seems to have prioritized long battery life in its advertising.
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2018
  20. matique

    matique Rando

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    USB 3.0 would seriously really help out with transfer speeds and it's a feature that will be much appreciated by all. I too am holding onto the next wm1a release. (wm2a?)

    Ideal WM2A:

    -USB 3.0
    -Fastcharge
    -USB DAC
    -Offer a 256gb option without spending $1.5k more. Either that or 2 SD slots
    -Faster CPU as current UI is a little sluggish...
    -utilise the matte ZX300 screen.

    If they manage to slot in these upgrades with a considerate 10-15% increase in price i'd be all over it. I think these would be good, functional upgrades without deviating too much from its focus as a player.
     

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