iBasso DX50 is a bit larger and heavier than FiiO X3. It has sharper edges and is not as polished. But it fits nicely in your pocket and we like the touch screen. DX50 can not be used as a USB-DAC with a computer, but have a coaxial digital output and both headphone and line output.
Even DX50 has a limited 8GB internal memory, but it can be extended with SDXC cards. iBasso ensures that the player can handle up to 2TB of additional memory, the day such a card will be available. In the current situation you´ll have to settle for the largest memory card at 128 GB.
Battery life is listed at 14 hours and the battery can be replaced. That means you can fill your pockets with extra batteries if you need to. The battery is the same as in the Samsung Galaxy S3.
Easy To Use?
The touch screen makes iBasso little easier to use than the FiiO and there's a physical gain switch with low, medium and high modes, which can be chosen depending on how power hungry your headphones are. The best signal/noise ratio can be achieved with high gain, but I think the music sounds a bit more controlled with the low gain setting. This, of course, depends a lot on your headphones.
Regarding playback, the DX50 is not as intuitive as a typical smart phone, but at least categorizes the albums of each artist, which makes it easier to listen to your favorite music. Additionally, you can store playlists and add songs directly into the player – but not change the order. This player also gains by getting the playlists directly from your computer. Another thing I do not like is that the play/pause button has a far too long delay before anything happens.
However, I like that the player shows the song's audio resolution on the display.
Most of the above is forgiven when the music starts. As with the FiiO player, it improves the audio compared to my iPhone 5 and paints a both airy and juicy sound. But there is indeed no significant differences between the iBasso and FiiO. And it's not unexpected as they have the same DAC chips. Yet I feel that iBasso has a slightly warmer, more controlled bass response, while being a little softer and lighter in the upper register. It is slightly more powerful, it keeps better control when playing loud, which can be important if you have more demanding headphones than the Klipsch Status I'm testing with.
When it comes to high resolution music, there are little nuances that distinguish it from lower resolutions. It´s quite obvious when going from high resolution back to low resolution after listening for a while. iBasso extracts that little bit extra in a convincing way and can play both classic and funky electronic music without blinking.
Compared to the more expensive Astell&Kern AK100 the iBasso has a little bit left to go. AK100 is even more relaxed and stable in cool bass rhythms and have more space. And it should when it costs twice as much!
iBasso DX50 is larger and heavier than FiiO X3. It also can´t be used as a USB-DAC. Like its rival, there is room for improvement in the management of playlists, even if iBasso is better in this department. Not least thanks to the touch screen. But most importantly, it sounds a little better. It is somewhat more potent and presents the music in a little calmer and more resolved manner.
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- Bit Perfect, Support up to 24Bit/192kHz
- WM8740 24Bit DAC Chip
- Built-in 9V Voltage Swing Headphone AMP
- 2.4" IPS Screen(320*240) with Capacitive Touch Screen, Bonded by OCA
- Up to 24Bit/192kHz Mini Coaxial Output
- 3.5mm Headphone Output, and Line Out
- Three Physical buttons (Rewind, Play/pauses, Forward) on The Top Panel.
- 256-Steps Digital Volume Control
- 8GB Onboard Flash
- Support SDXC and SDHC MicroSD card, up to 2TB
- 3-Setting Gain Switch
- Audio Formats Supported: APE, FLAC, WAV, WMA, AAC, ALAC, AIFF, OGG, MP3, DSF
- User Replaceable Battery(Compatible With S**sung S3), 14hours Play Time.
Frequency Response: 20Hz~20KHz +/-0.2dB
S/N: -109dB +/-3dB
Output Level: 1.5V rms (1kHz 0dB)
Frequency Response: 20Hz~20KHz +/-1dB
THD+N: 0.004% (32ohm load)
Output Level: 1.2V(Low gain), 1.7V(Mid gain), 3.1V(High Gain)
S/N: -103dB +/-3dB(Low gain), -106dB +/-3dB(Mid gain), -108dB +/-3dB(High Gain) (32ohm Load)
Output Impedance: <0.5ohm
Battery Life: 14hours
Battery Charge Time: 3hours with AC adapter, 5.5hours with PC USB port
Case dimension: 2.52W x 3.98L x 0.67H (inch)
64W x 100L x 17H (mm)
Weight: 146g or 5.15oz