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Creative Sound Blaster E5 USB DAC/Amp Combo
Creative Sound Blaster E5 USB DAC/Amp Combo
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does anyone know how this compares to a Fiio E17K? I can get it around the same price and i want to pair it with my AKG K7xx for my PC AND android phone (Xperia Z2)
Is there a reason that you would lean towards the E17K instead of this product? Technically, f it matters to you, the E17k is using TI chips for the DAC and op-amp, while the E5 sources a Cirrus Logic DAC and a TI op-amp. The E5 has optical, and the E17k does not. The E17k's impedance is rated 16 - 300 Ω while the E5 is rated up to 600 Ω (input).
Based on those stats alone, I strongly believe that this E5 will perform better than the E17K, and is definitely much more versatile as a DAC/Amp combo. For the same price, I'd get the E5 no doubt in my mind.
Note that the E17k would drive your K7XX's fine, but why would you pay the same price for 1/3 of the impedance rating and less features, especially if you may drive other cans off it in the future?
If you are OK with the discoloration (of the rubber) issue, I would think the E5 better than the E17K for you. For sure if your PC has optical out and you won't be listening to DSD files the E5 should be better. I suppose that depends on you consideration of size and connection options though. It also depends on what you will be listening to and how. If you want to use the PC and the Z2 at the same time then the E5. If you will listen to DSD, then the E17K. Keep in mind with the E17K you only get 192khz/24bit over coaxial, otherwise 92khz/24bit and 92khz/32bit over USB. I doubt your looking at the DSD support of the E17K, otherwise you wouldn't be looking at the E5. If you want DSD support I REALLY like the iFi iDSD Micro, and would recommend it even though it's more expensive than the E17K. I think it punches well above it's weight. That said, it's not exactly portable compared to the E5 and certainly not so compared to the E17K. Anyhow, if you would like a specific comparison let us know what it is your most concerned with. I'll try to check back and answer.
Lol agreed, if they were looking for DSD support they definitely wouldn't have asked about the E5 vs. E17k. I think they were just looking for a good comparison with any differences highlighted to help him make a choice on what amp would get the best bang for the buck :)
Thank you for the fast response.
This is my first endeavor into Quality audio.
So I have not yet used DSD.
I was Leaning more towards the E5 because it offers more versatility?
My PC does not have optical out so the E5 does not give me an advantage there.
BUT I am interested in the
Phone>bluetooth>E5>Headphones capability since my Phone has a cover on the micro USB.
In theory this shouldn't affect Sound Quality because the audio is converted by the E5?
and bluetooth 4.0 should be enough to handle the data of lossless audio files? Or is this just oo much wishful thinking?
E5 offers more versatility than the E17K. Sound quality is effected by using Bluetooth, even on the E5. I don't know exactly what the E5 supports for sample rate via its Bluetooth connection. I do know it supports AptX low latency which means it supports the specification of total end-to-end latency of approximately 40 milliseconds (ms) – far less than the standard Bluetooth latency of more than 150 ms (+/-50ms), and meeting the 40 ms recommended latency for audio/video applications. AptX itself is capable of:
•Sample rate: supports HD-Audio up to 96KHz
•Word depth: 16-bit or 24-bit
•Compression ratio: dependent on content, but average 2:1 for 16-bit audio
•Delay: scalable to 1ms@48kHz
This is to say that if your phone supports the protocol you can see high quality music via Bluetooth, but not the highest quality the E5 is capable of. It's commonly said AptX support CD quality music streaming. You can find if your phone supports AptX here: http://www.aptx.com/category/phones .
Based on your questions, I think the E5 would be better for you. It is my go to for portable wireless music. That said, you should consider the main "cons" for this use being the thickness of the E5 and eventual discoloration of the rubber portion which is more noticeable with use of the mic stand.
Can you elaborate on the discoloration issue? the rubberized back or what?
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