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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars HOLY
I dont consider myself an audiophile as such, but i love good sounding music - to the point where i've had sennheiser momentums, currently have some fidelio l1's which are amazing, and a range of less exciting headphones ranging from £30-250.

I suppose what i never really considered was just how well good headphones, or hell any headphones, might sound when...
Published 12 months ago by Joel Russell

versus
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Tragic: totally let down by buggy and misguided user interface
Firstly, I have to say that this is a lovely machine - it seems to be very well made and it sounds fantastic (when paired with decent headphones or a hi-fi system). The tragedy is that it could easily be a five star device if only FiiO would fix the user interface (UI) software instead of trying to make it look like a windows 8 wannabe.

Most seriously, there is...
Published 5 months ago by Pete


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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars HOLY, 4 Dec 2013
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This review is from: FiiO X3 Portable MP3 Player (Personal Computers)
I dont consider myself an audiophile as such, but i love good sounding music - to the point where i've had sennheiser momentums, currently have some fidelio l1's which are amazing, and a range of less exciting headphones ranging from £30-250.

I suppose what i never really considered was just how well good headphones, or hell any headphones, might sound when plugged in to an exceptional source. I was using my ipod, yes DAP and DAC people out there my ipod, to listen to the vast majority of music on my headphones.

I can tell you now the sound quality on this X3 is exceptional. Blows the ipod out of the water. I dont care that its four times as thick, more clunky and only plays music in comparison to my ipod. Sound quality is paramount to me and this delivers it. For those who have good headphones and haven't really considered how much a good player can make a difference, i can tell you now it is unbelievable.

My Fidelio's have always produced a fairly good soundstage, bass response is below par and can vary track to track but the definition and depth they produce is fantastic for the price. Listening on the ipod was pleasurable. Listening on the X3 was crazy. i was blind and now i see. I was deaf and now i hear, you get the jist. Just a crazy amount of good.

The soundstage is the very first thing i noticed to massively open up, instrument separation is excellent and everything is so crisp. The mids are blended superbly and come through powerfully, and for the first time since wearing the fidelio's the bass actually sounds incredibly punchy and smooth. the definition is incredible, simply incredible. For those who have the X3's you'll know what im talking about when creepy Dr. Chesky walks up to you and whispers in your ear. For those who don't its an binaural audio test which displays the accuracy of voice representation, where a man walks from 30 feet towards you on one side and eventually whispers in your ear. At the time of trialling this i was sat in bed grinning at the footsteps and then was creeped out when he started whispering because it was so damn real.

A worthy note to take on this though is that it WILL pick up bad files. I'm talking MP3's here. A few days ago i blindly thought that 320kb/s held a good level of clarity, which i suppose they do. But lossless files sounds exceptional (WAV and FLAC files etc) so make sure you have some at your disposal to put onto your X3, i had to convert a lot of my CD's to lossless formats before putting them on, but the difference is so worth it. This does take a lot of storage space however and the 8GB doesnt cut it. I found that 3.5GB was already used when i bought my X3 with software and hardware i assume, amidst the 27 odd tracks already downloaded on the X3. I will shortly be buying some SD cards i think.

Build quality seems sturdy enough, i removed my silicone case and screen protector because i wanted to see the product in its pure form. Now i dont want to put them back on because i quite like the feel of the product as it is, it feels sturdy enough to be protected from plenty of bumps and knocks, perhaps even a few drops, not that any would be intentional.

The navigational system is very easy to pick up and works. it is a bit slow at times but as i said before, im here for sound only so i really am not fussed as long as i can find my tracks (which i can). Charging is a breeze, takes 4 hours roughly through a mains charger and about 7 through the computer according to the FiiO manual. I found mine took about 4 hours to charge from dead, so this seems perfectly correct. Apparently use can last 10 hours, i haven't had this long enough to fully test and i've been constantly plugging it back into the computer to add files (and hence charging it) so i cant really comment on longevity yet.

Another note to make however is that after some research, the successor to this the X5 will be released early 2014. Sources do say it will be nearly double the price but its worth considering if you're thinking of getting one of these nonetheless. Perhaps i will have to upgrade when it comes out! Until then, this is the beast to get. If you want a step up from the ipod there is no question about it. Get it
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31 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent!, 30 Sep 2013
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This review is from: FiiO X3 Portable MP3 Player (Personal Computers)
This is an excellent piece of kit, and well worth the cost. Just be aware that if you use a 64GB memory card, this must be formatted as FAT32, NOT exFAT. Windows 7 will only allow you to format in exFAT, which the player cannot read. HP have a downloadable utility that will allow you to format in FAT32 format.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Remarkable, 19 Oct 2014
This review is from: FiiO X3 Portable MP3 Player (Personal Computers)
Fantastic! Ignore all the silly moans about not being able to use 64gb cards, I inserted one and it was formatted straightaway in the Fiio and there is no need whatsoever to download any software to do otherwise, formatting took about 20 seconds if that. I assume that newer models have up to date firmware anyway.
Sound quality is superlative with a magical dynamic range which will leave you questioning any other device you have ever owned, ripping at lossless flac will do the business easily. The user buttons are easy to work out and the menu does what it says, no fancy touch screen nonsense to cloud the issue. If you are after a truly great sounding portable player then bin those ipods now, this one knocks them into touch and then some.
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25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb sound quality, 18 Dec 2013
By 
This review is from: FiiO X3 Portable MP3 Player (Personal Computers)
Let me start by saying I didn't by my FiiO X3 from Amazon as I got a discount voucher for ebay, but the player is what I'm reviewing and what a player superb sound quality, I have used a number of DAPs and so far the best have been Cowon and Iriver both of which were far better than the 3 Ipods I have owned, other brands I have owned include Sony Philips Sandisk and Creative, but the X3 far exceeds all of them, As soon as I received the player I charged and then uploaded the latest firm ware 2.10 then listened to some of the onboard samples very impressive 24-96 stuff, then ripped 20 or so CDs to FLAC and installed to the player and a new Sandisk 32gb ultra card, on to testing attatched my Senheiser HD595 headphones set the player to high gain and away. Emerged 2.5hrs later totally amazed, this player really shone and drove the HD595s perfectly, more detail better musicality more energy fantastic at the price, makes Ipod classic sound flat dull and lifeless. Wonderful.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent quality music, really well made and easy to use, 20 Oct 2014
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This review is from: FiiO X3 Portable MP3 Player (Personal Computers)
Excellent quality music, really well made and easy to use. The software upgrade instructions were clear andit worked fine when I downloaded it. The player picked up the micro sd card straight away so I have 32Gb of music space available plkus the internal storage. It's probably the way I store my music as simple mp3 files but the music on the sd card doesn't appear as genres, albums etc, on the home screen just in the 'folders'. Overall I am very pleased with it. The quality of the music is excellent, I often run it through a FiO portable amplifier which makes it even better.

It comes with an authentication scratch pad to upload and check authenticity. Also comes with a silicon case so you don't need to order this separately.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I decided to get the Fiio X3 as a replacement as I'd read good reviews and also, 4 July 2014
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This review is from: FiiO X3 Portable MP3 Player (Personal Computers)
Superb. I had a Colorfly C3 before which, unfortunately, I dropped on the pavement and it fell apart shortly afterwards.
I decided to get the Fiio X3 as a replacement as I'd read good reviews and also, thinking longer term, it plays hi res files.
I'd find it hard to separate the Fiio and the Colorfly on detail but the Fiio has a much warmer sound and is less 'clinical' than the Colorfly.
The Fiio is also more user friendly than the Colorfly although, imho, Colorfly get too much flack(FLAC?) for that. It really isn't difficult once you realise it is controlled in the same way as a hifi cd player, not a smartphone. It could do with real buttons though, rather than virtual ones.
I choose to browse my music on the Fiio by file anyway, rather than by the album and artist tags, as they are organised in the way I chose to organise them on my PC not with albums scattered everywhere because there is a guest singer or the artist's name was spelt slightly differently etc.
In my view the Fiio X3 is great value for what it is and is a superb player at the bottom end of the high quality portable music player price bracket. If you'd rather spend £70 on a Colorfly C3(E Bay from Hong Kong) that is a great deal too, albeit a less refined sound that the Fiio X3 and a clumsier interface.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Fiio x3 really sounds fabulous - 2 reviews, 7 Aug 2013
This review is from: FiiO X3 Portable MP3 Player (Personal Computers)
I took delivery of the first batch into the uk in August 13 having per ordered in June and wow it was worth the wait.

The sound is awesome its so "live" when listening through respectable head phones All of my music sounds different and better

It sounds as if the instruments are right in the room with you The sound stage is so precise. I just listen out for the different instruments never their before! The craft of the musician and production really is apparent when I use the X3 which where not there with my iPod.

The sound is truly 100% better than my nano 5th gen and even the 1st gen with wolfson chip

The layout of the controls makes it easy to navigate and although not 100% there yet may be with further updates , I refere to the poor favorites feature.
It seems that you have to play the song to be able to put the song into favourites Fiios answer to playlists

This feature is poor in fact. You don't seem to be able to put a whole album into favorites
That said You can filter by category -artist album or genre. I was unable to do this at first getting frustrated until I learned to use the update library feature after adding songs to the X3. This can be set to auto but comes in manual mode setting. FIIO don't tell you this in the pigeon English manual!

At £159 the X3 is truly a bargain. I was hoping it would somehow improve my listening experience and my expectations have been surpassed by far!

On style the X3 is a bit like a mobile phone of 3 years ago - a bit slab like It is quite weighty but I like it as it feels like its built to last and does not feel like its going to slip out of the hand unlike the nano

If you like to listen to HQ recording then this is for you. You won't be dissapointed I won't return to an IPod that's for sure Thats why it's on preloved

Hope this assists the prospective buyer to take the plunge. Written by Kate's hubby

Three months on
Kates hubby writes - update on Fiio
Well the iPod nano has been sold. After several fiio. iPod AB listening tests I found the iPod sounding very dull in comparison. I still however have the first gen nano though as this is approaching the x3 and is respectable due no doubt the the wolfson chip

I have done the X3 updates and can say the fiio is now slicker than before and gets better to use. The sound of course is still fabulous and all of the above 1 st review holds true- more so in fact it's a great listen

I recently added some classical tunes and I am taken into the auditorium The sound stage is one of the main delights and I marvel each time I listen. No I am not getting paid for any of this drooling over the X3 This is my genuine opinion. I could not be more delighted with this kit
Christmas coming treat yourself. You won't be disapointed but use decent cans
Steve
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If like me you had/have a iPod but hate iTunes then ..., 7 Nov 2014
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This review is from: FiiO X3 Portable MP3 Player (Personal Computers)
Wow, Wow and Wow. If like me you had/have a iPod but hate iTunes then buy one of these. Sound Quality better, memory expandable through Micro SD cards. Built in DAC & Headphone Amp. Make sure you have a decent pair of headphones. I'm I impressed with the Fiio X3, oh Yes.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Sound lovely; but its missing beslls and whistles., 27 Oct 2014
By 
Max Dutton (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: FiiO X3 Portable MP3 Player (Personal Computers)
Everything you play through this will sound beutiful. The Fiio is the perfect way to redoiscover music in Flac, and it is simply stunning. If you do buy this remember to update the firmware; available from Fiio's website BUT: In order to do so youn must load it onto a Micro SD Card. I tried to do so with my 128gb MSD, but it wouldn't reconise it was there. I scavenged a 2gb SD card from an old phone and then updated it no problem, and then the 128gb card was working.

There are three things which really do suck about the Fiio though. I can overlook these things becase of the great audio quality, but...
1. The Fiio diesn't orginise items by metadata. When putting album on, be sure the number the file name.
2. No playlist support. The only way to make playlists is to make sepaerate copies of songs in a seperate folder. This isnt very data efficient though.
3. No Shuffle.

Still nice, but just don't expect an iPod with Flac support.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Freedom from my desktop setup. Money well spent., 1 Dec 2014
By 
B. Atkins - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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This review is from: FiiO X3 Portable MP3 Player (Personal Computers)
There are more comprehensive reviews on the actual sound quality and features of the device so i'll keep my comments brief. The Fiio X3 was a bit of a side project for me. I have a Beresford TC-7520 desktop DAC/headphone amplifier and some Sony MDR-1R over ear headphones. The sound produced is nothing short breathtaking. However, i do dislike having to be forced to sit at a desk to listen to my tracks via pc.

So i set aside a few of my finest english pounds to see how close portable audio can get to a desktop setup. Im not going to beat around the bush so ill just say that portable dacs and amps (in this price range) are still not going to be able to compare to the performance of a desktop dac/amplifier. This was never expected or promised but i was just curious and thought i would mention it.

At the very least i wanted an X3 to stop me using my phone for audio when out and about or pottering around the house. I think this is where the X3 really shines. No longer do i have to consider what audio circuitry is in a phone when choosing one. Neither is my phone battery flat when i need it because its been playing audio. Thanks to the x3's awesome battery i can have audio playing pretty much all day without bother.

I dont have much to compare the X3 to but i have found the iphone to have a great sound. I listened to a few tracks on a friends iphone (sorry didnt catch the exact model) and was very impressed. So one of my requirements was iphone quality dac but with a more powerful amplifier. Again, i feel the X3 has delivered that and more.

The sound is warm, a touch too warm for my liking but still good. Listening to Line out reveals a really nice DAC sound so i would say that the amplifier section is the weakest link in the chain. Again, we have to remember the price and its small form factor so im completely ok with it.

A lot of people give the UI a bit of a hard time but as i only do folder browsing and am not the type of person so skips songs ive never really had a problem with it.

The only thing that bothers me is the slight delay on the UI. I can even forgive delay on the UI options as its not exactly critical. However, When adjusting the volume, there is a delay and it bugs me as i would like the volume to be responsive. I dont quite understand why this is as the CPU should not be taxed by simply changing the volume. I am running the 3.2 firmware so maybe it will be fixed with further updates.

In summary i would say it beats most if not all phones when it comes to sound quality. If you have a desktop setup be prepared to take a drop in sound quality but you gain the freedom a portable device gives you.

Anyway, theres nothing here that warrants me to knock off a star so 5 stars it is.
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FiiO X3 Portable MP3 Player
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