Feb 16, 201976 views

DAP recommendation?

So I am planning to buy my first DAP but am having trouble choosing since there are so many choices. The things I'm looking for in a DAP are Bluetooth and Wi-Fi (for spotify) functions firstly. Well I plan on using them with IEMs mostly so if it can power up for example my fiio f9 pro louder than my galaxy s8 I'm ok . Other than that I guess the battery is big enough for one day of use. Touch screen would be preferable. My budget is also 700usd$. Tbh other than that I don't know what other features I should look for in DAPs. Any recommendations would be hugely appreciated.

I’ve been using the Fiio M9 for a couple of months now...quite impressive...swiss army...jack of trades kind of DAP IMO.

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Thx for the insight , did not know about the on-board gain settings . That will be useful . But can I just ask what is YMMV
Your mileage may vary.
Do you have much of your own music (i.e., downloads)? I went through this same process about a year ago (to upgrade a from an iPod Classic with a dying battery), and storage capacity was one of the biggest differences across DAP models. I needed as much as I could get, and that narrowed my choices considerably. If you’re looking for WiFi for streaming, you probably do pretty much need a touch screen. How are you going to search for music (e.g., typing in artist, song or album names), or browse a collection? I may be wrong, but I don’t think DAPs have adopted voice recognition yet—at least I haven’t heard of any. After storage, user interfaces were the next biggest deciding factor. I was surprised by how many players I found with glowing reviews for sound quality that also had slow, poorly design or buggy user interfaces. Try to figure out if the UI is any good from reviews, videos or hands-on time if possible. Since you specifically mentioned Spotify, make sure that’s compatible with any DAPs you look at. Spoiler: I ended up with an Astell&Kern AK380, and it natively supports Tidal, but I don’t think it will work with Spotify? In any case, some newer DAPs support downloading apps to work with a variety of music services, whereas most older ones seem to be closed systems where you get what you get. I may be wrong about AK380 and Spotify since I don’t use Spotify. FWIW, Tidal has been excellent for HiFi streaming. Apart from that, I started my search by looking up “Best DAPs” on Google and then digging into the various models to figure out their limitations. FWIW, Astell&Kern seemed to dominate most of the lists and searches I found. Based on my AK380, I can see why: very good UI, extremely good sound quality, great storage capacity and—in the case of the 380 at least—tons of secondary capabilities, like the ability to act as a music streamer for a HiFi setup. You’ll pay through the nose for A&K, though, so shop around and see if any competitors check enough boxes to get you more bang for your buck. Hope this is enough general strategy to help you with your search. Once you start narrowing your choices to a few interesting models, ask some specific questions about them and I’m sure you’ll find people with experience who can help you to make a final decision, Good luck!
thx for the insight . When you ask about downloads , quite a little though around 8gb of music but that does not include spotify. Using spotify I download my music and I use spotify premium. Also thx for bringing into my knowledge some factors I gotta look for in a DAP . About the touch screen for streaming , making sure the DAP is compatible with spotify heck I though if the DAP has wifi it would automatically work with any streaming app lol.