Sony ZX300

Discussion in 'IEMs and Portable Gear' started by Stuff Jones, Jun 21, 2018.

  1. Rockwell

    Rockwell Almost "Made"

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    So I just had a chance to a-b-c my ZX300 with a Cowon Plenue R and a Questyle QP2R. The Questyle rocked my DSD files better than any other player I've tried-- for the first time I actually felt I could hear a significant difference. The Plenue didn't sound so good out of the box but improved immensely once I applied JetEffect. With all my flac files though, the difference was less obvious. On the whole all 3 sounded amazing and I struggled to hear a discernible difference between them. The ZX300 is easily my favorite player of the 3 for its battery life, portability and that certain sexy "je ne sais quoi" that Sony puts into its devices. I'm starting to believe that significant differences in sound quality among DAPs-- at least in regards to easy-to-drive IEMs like the Solaris-- is largely an illusion.
     
  2. Stuff Jones

    Stuff Jones Friend

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    I don't know if its an illusion, but when you account for often noisy and distracting real world DAP listening environments , I think the minimal difference between DAPs past a certain level is of negligible utility.

    For those reasons, I just want small, good battery and good enough sound quality out of my DAP.
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2019
  3. Merrick

    Merrick A lidless ear

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    It’s also outputting a lot more power than the ZX2. Trade offs.
     
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  4. ValarMorgouda

    ValarMorgouda Rando

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    I feel the way way man. I don't understand how some people think that some DAPs have a better soundstage and stuff like that. Seems like crazy talk to me. The biggest difference between DAPs is power output, battery life, features, and UI/case design. I do think that power output can affect the sound, though.
     
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  5. jaker782

    jaker782 Rando

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    I wholeheartedly agree with this! I just received a new ZX300 and am loving the no-nonsense UI without the android bloat, apps, etc. I do not really need. Coming from a DX200, the ZX300 size, UI and battery life is quite refreshing and brings me back to my days with the original ipod! And dare I say I may actually prefer the sound of the Sony to the DX200 or is that heresy? It must be Sony's proprietary DAC or something, but this thing sounds way more analog and euphoric than the Ibasso to my ears, and I was using it with Amp 8! Perhaps it is just new toy syndrome, but either way, I am extremely happy, especially at this price point!
     
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  6. Rockwell

    Rockwell Almost "Made"

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    Honestly if this player added a quick and easy "favorites" feature as well as some slicker playlist functionality then it would be pretty much perfect.
     
  7. Cellist88

    Cellist88 Afraid someone will shit on his opinions

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    I think the difference between the daps would probably be attributed to house sound. I guess jaker likes some sony house sound over chifi. As good of a value the zx300 is, I have to say I wish it had a better blackground. I lose engagement rather quickly as I feel some greyness and compression esp in regards to dynamics, both macro and micro. Doesn't have the clarity like the wm1a or the richness or boldness of the zx2. I find the balanced port has better technical performance, but is also messier/greyer in this regard.
     
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  8. jaker782

    jaker782 Rando

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    Definitely! I do like the "hi-res" and "recent transfers" menu items though. Very handy!
     
  9. Stuff Jones

    Stuff Jones Friend

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    I'll need more time to confirm, but so far it seems like the batter saver feature is the culprit for the battery drain. It's the feature that stops charging at 90% to extend battery life. Since I switched that off I've gone several days, including several hours of listening, and the meter is still full. Hopefully this does the trick because otherwise it's a pretty great little DAP.
     
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  10. Rockwell

    Rockwell Almost "Made"

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    Can confirm this. After reading this post I switched off that feature and after two days and a few hours of listening I'm still running on full bars.
     
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  11. Stuff Jones

    Stuff Jones Friend

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    Still holding up for me as well.
     
  12. Merrick

    Merrick A lidless ear

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    I’m content to use the battery saver. It will extend the functional life of the battery.
     
  13. Stuff Jones

    Stuff Jones Friend

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    Even if you have to do more cycles because it discharges faster?
     
  14. gixxerwimp

    gixxerwimp Professional tricycle rider

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    I hadn't listened much to the ZX2 after getting the ZX300. New toy syndrome had me convinced it was better all round. Just did a quick AB with Andro and compared to the SE output the ZX2 is richer and bolder as you say, fuller sounding with more SOS™, better microdynamics, and more engagement. Treble is a bit smeared compared to the ZX300 or you could say the 300 sounds clearer. The balanced output improves the dynamics, but the ZX2 still sounds richer. This is with everything turned off on the 300. I have an EQ setting that warms up the sound on the Andros, but you're right that the ZX2 still sounds better.

    With my EX1000s, there's no doubt the ZX300 sounds better with its moar power (the main reason I bought it). The EX1000 is also able to take much more EQ adjustment, which I think is better implemented on the ZX300 than the ZX2.

    I'd been thinking of selling the ZX2, but now I have to consider having a dedicated DAP for my two main IEMs, which seems a bit ridiculous.

    As for battery drain, I get well over a week with occasionaly use and battery saver set on.
     
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  15. Rockwell

    Rockwell Almost "Made"

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    Would it be possible for me to make playlists on my Macbook and transfer them over to my ZX300? (Assuming I have the same file structure on both.)
     
  16. gixxerwimp

    gixxerwimp Professional tricycle rider

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    From what I've figured out, ZX300 playlists are stored in the "MUSIC" folder of either the onboard storage or SD card. You can't mix tracks from either of these locations in the same playlist. Both m3u and m3u8 formats are supported. If you create a playlist onboard and open it in a file editor, you'll see that the file starts with #EXTM3U and then has #EXTINF:, in front of the path and file name of each track. So if I have two tracks in the folder MUSIC/test/ that I want in the playlist, the contents of the file would be as follows. Spaces and line breaks seem to be ignored so it could all be on one line (thought this obviously makes it very difficult to read).
    So if you create a playlist on your Macbook, just use a file editor to change the contents into the required format. Then save it to the appropriate MUSIC folder on the ZX300.
     
  17. Merrick

    Merrick A lidless ear

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    From what I understand, frequently charging these batteries to 100% degrades the battery faster than more cycles of charging to less than 100%. Similarly, you want to avoid discharging the battery all the way to 0.
     
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  18. Lyer25

    Lyer25 Too sensitive for SBAF

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    80-20 rule. Charge when it hits 20% then stop around when it hits 80%; charging to capacity will stress the battery out more than stopping short and should only be done when you know you'll need the full 100%.

    At the same time, yeah, a charge cycle is a charge cycle. The only way to keep from stressing a battery out is to keep the tank near halfway full and just... not use your phone/DAP/vibrator/camera as much. Can't remember who it was but in a recent chat thread about new smartphones someone claimed that for all the advancements we've had in mobile technology to this date lithium ion batteries are still pretty shit, which I agree with.

    At the end of the day though, charge your gear however you want. If the battery starts losing capacity then you can likely replace it or pay someone else to. Everything will go to poop eventually no matter how much you baby it, so might as well make the most of it while you do have it. Also, it's not like every extant brand won't be trying to push an eventual Next Big Thing upgrade down the line right around when current units start giving up the ghost.
     
  19. bengo

    bengo Friend

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    Try using a regular (500mA) USB port, rather than a fast charger, when you can.
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2019 at 2:29 AM

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