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FiiO E17 USB DAC Headphone Amplifier EXPIRED

DJ3xclusive 83,538 June 14, 2013 at 12:48 PM in Free Shipping (6) More eBay Deals
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Promoted 06-15-2013 at 03:21 AM View Original Post
BuyDig via eBay.com has Fiio E17 USB DAC Headphone Amplifier on sale for $94.99. Shipping is free. Thanks DJ3xclusive

Price Research: Our research indicates that this Fiio E17 USB DAC Headphone Amplifier is $44 lower (31% savings) than the next best available price from a reputable merchant with prices from $139. - Discombobulated

Review courtesy of Engadget.

39 Comments

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#16
Quote from evo3rs View Post :
iPhone specifically 4S has a very good DAC already and can't tell the difference when E17 is hooked up. Fostex and VMODA makes very good DACs but expensive.
I never said the iPhone had a bad DAC. I agree the iPhone has a pretty decent DAC. That is one reason I have not switched to Android yet. If you are hooking the E17 up to you 4S though I doubt you are even using the E17's DAC so it should sound the same as it is just the iPhone's DAC paired with the E17's headphone amp.
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#17
Quote from cnhardwick View Post :
You are more or less right. Unless your phone can make use of the DAC via either USB or optical then only the headphone amp is being used which only makes it louder, not better. If your phone does work with the DAC then it might be an improvement over your phone just depending on how good your phone is to start with.

Oh and the DAC will not work with iPhones (as far as I know). Only the headphone amp would work. So unless you have headphones that the iPhone can't power then the E17 doesn't make much sense.
Thanks for the info. I didn't want to spend 20 minutes sifting through headfi posts to figure out the right answer, and I figured someone else here would have a good response.
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#18
All top of the line smartphones have decent DACs inside. That said, it's only a part of the sound. The amplification is the biggest part. All digital audio players sound different for that reason. Even cheap DACs, these days, are really quite good.

Why then, should you get the E17 instead of an amp-only? Because it's more flexible. Some devices don't incorporate their DAC chips well. The iPhone sounds different in each generation...sometimes a big difference, other times not. Sound quality on iPhones typically will perform better than on other devices because more thought has been put into it. After all, Apple wants you to buy music on iTunes.
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#19
in for one.. thanks OP!...
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#20
is this a good choice for a headphone amp for a turntable?
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#21
Quote from Cujobob View Post :
All top of the line smartphones have decent DACs inside. That said, it's only a part of the sound. The amplification is the biggest part. All digital audio players sound different for that reason. Even cheap DACs, these days, are really quite good.

Why then, should you get the E17 instead of an amp-only? Because it's more flexible. Some devices don't incorporate their DAC chips well. The iPhone sounds different in each generation...sometimes a big difference, other times not. Sound quality on iPhones typically will perform better than on other devices because more thought has been put into it. After all, Apple wants you to buy music on iTunes.
Just add to this, the E17 is more flexible than portable amp like the E11 because you can use it as a portable amp with your phone and use it as a DAC with your PC.

For iPhone users just needing a amp the E11 will do, just make sure and get a LOD like the Fiio L9 so you are bypassing the internal amp.

That said, if your headphones cost less than the E17 then you would be better off investing in new headphones right now and just using the headphone out on you phone. The improvements of a DAC/amp are low compared the improvements of better headphones sense most nice phones today sound pretty good already.
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#22
would the ath-m50 benifit with a e17?
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#23
Quote from danny.p View Post :
would the ath-m50 benifit with a e17?
What is your source? That is the real question here. If your source is a PC with noisy soundcard then yes. If your source is an iPod then probably not enough to justify the cost. It mostly comes down to whether or not you would benefit from the DAC on the E17. While the M50 would benefit from the amp a little, the M50 do not need a amp to power them. What it comes down to then is diminishing returns. Would it be better? Probably. But $100 better? Maybe not.
Last edited by cnhardwick June 14, 2013 at 10:16 PM
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#24
If you're using $100 headphones, spending another $100 on an amp is a bit unwise. The M50s aren't bad headphones, but for a bit more you can get AD900 or AD900X which would be a bigger improvement in sound, I would wager. I really don't recommend an amp over...$30 or so unless you're using headphones that cost greater than $300 (in that area). If you had some nice Beyer 880 250 ohm version...I'd say go right ahead. For $100 M50s...I'd re-invest in headphones (and sell off what you have).

Just my opinion, of course.
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#25
Quote from Strmtrper6 View Post :
Shipping seems to kill most Massdrop sales from what I've seen.

*edit - Looks like it will be $93 after shipping so I take that back.
Don't forget that you will get 1.9 $ in Ebay bucks, so roughly the dame kind of a deal...
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#26
Quote from cnhardwick View Post :
You are more or less right. Unless your phone can make use of the DAC via either USB or optical then only the headphone amp is being used which only makes it louder, not better. If your phone does work with the DAC then it might be an improvement over your phone just depending on how good your phone is to start with.

Oh and the DAC will not work with iPhones (as far as I know). Only the headphone amp would work. So unless you have headphones that the iPhone can't power then the E17 doesn't make much sense.
What setup should I use then so I can bypass the internal DAC on my android phone?
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#27
Quote from Cujobob View Post :
Something like that...I think they said it's going to drop to 89$ or so +shipping in a few days if they get enough buyers.

Massdrop has had a few deals...the O2 amp sale was decent, the Aune T1, also good.
That was a great deal on the Aune T1 - dropped to $109+shipping.
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#28
I have one of the cheaper smaller Fiio's (not sure the model number) they are very well made.
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#29
Quote from nyankana View Post :
What setup should I use then so I can bypass the internal DAC on my android phone?
The problem here is there are so many different Android phone. Some work with the E17, others don't. Your best bet is to search through this thread for your phone and see if anyone has gotten it to work with the E17. That or look into a DAC that is known to work better with Android. I believe the Fiio E07k is such a DAC.
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#30
What is the Fiio E17?

The Fiio E17 is a DAC/portable headphone amp combo.

What is a DAC?

DAC stands for digital to analog converter. Speakers and headphones need an analog signal to play music. Most music these days is stored in a digital format (e.g. CDs, MP3s, FLAC, etc.). In order to play these on speakers or headphones they must be converted to analog first. This is where the DAC comes in. Any device that can play CDs or MP3s has a DAC already built in. One a PC you might call it the soundcard. On a CD player or iPod you might not even realize it is there but it is. So what is the point of the E17 having a DAC if everything you would use it with already has one? Because built in DAC just aren't very good. In the past this has been especially true of laptops and phones. Unlike CD players and iPods they were not made with the sole intent of being used for listening to music so has long as it make sound it was good enough. Today both most laptops and phones have good enough DACs built in for most people. For serious audio lovers though DACs like the E17 exist.

What is a portable headphone amp?

Headphones require a power source. Usually this power source is the amp built into PC or iPod they are plugged into. So the same question as with the DAC, if my player already has an amp, then why would I need the E17? Two reasons this time. One, like the answer to the DAC it is possible your laptop or phone has a bad amp that results in your headphones having a buzzing noise when you use them. In this case a headphone amp like the E17 could replace the bad amp in your player and make your headphones sound much better. Two, some headphones require more power than the tiny internal amp in your iPod or phone can provide. In this case a headphone amp like the E17 is need to power your headphones. It is important to note that the E17 is a portable headphone amp, meaning it is battery powered so you can carry it with your phone or iPod without having to plug it in.

Will the E17 work with my [fill in the blank]?

What makes this a tricky question is that the E17 is a combo DAC/portable headphone amp. Chances are the headphone amp will work most anything you have. The question is will the DAC work? For the DAC to work you need to be feeding it a digital signal. The E17 can accept a digital signal two ways: USB and SPDIF. USB makes it easy to connect to a PC. But that is where it stops being easy. iPhones and iPods have no USB or SPDIF out so they cannot use the E17's DAC. Android phones use micro-USB for charging so it possible they could be used with the E17's DAC. The problem is no two Android phones are alike. E17 reportedly works with some Android phones but not others. Searching for your phone in this thread on head-fi is your best bet to find out if your phone will work with the E17's DAC. Alternatively, you could look for a DAC like the Fiio E07k that is known to work with Android.

Back to the headphone amp. Chances are it will work with whatever you source you have. The question is will it make your headphones sound any better? If your player can already power your headphones right now then probably not. All the headphone amp will do is make your headphones go even louder--which might be bad for your headphones and your hearing! The exception to that would be if the amp on your device is noisy and making your headphones hum or buzz. The important thing here is that if you do use the E17 as a headphone amp is to use the noisy line out on your device. Otherwise you are just repeating the same bad signal. This is where the line out on the DAC helps.
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