The different types of devices and the various ways of transmitting music

The different types of devices and the various ways of transmitting music

Many currently use the smartphone as the main and unique way to listen to music. But what other devices and ways do we have to enjoy a good album?

Nowadays, perhaps people think that the best way to listen to music is through a smartphone, after all, it is an all-in-one solution. However, for those who want more sound quality or even more convenience, there are several options that can make listening more enjoyable. The solutions range from using accessories in conjunction with cell phones to devices dedicated only to the audio playback function.

The different types of devices and the various ways of transmitting music

DAPs (Digital Audio Players)

You may know them under the name of MP3 Player, but these audio devices today do much more than that! Today, these music players are capable of supporting various audio file formats such as FLAC, DSD, ALAC, WAV, among others, in addition to having extra functions such as USB DAC , Bluetooth receiver and transmitter, support for music streaming services etc. .

Although DAPs have several functions, this is not all that they have to offer. These digital players have, in most cases, buttons dedicated to controlling the music such as play / pause, next track / previous track and volume increase / decrease, in addition to a touch screen to view albums, song information and other information such as the activation or deactivation of functions, equalization, among others.

Going to the hardware, depending on the player model, there is a superior quality both in the DAC chip and in the amplification section (stronger). In addition, there are manufacturers who are concerned with the design of the integrated board, with a better separation of components, which are of quality, where every detail is thought to have a better performance in audio.

When we stop to analyze the battery life of DAPs, we see that depending on the amplifying power of the devices, the lithium-ion cells provided power for more hours or less hours. The players with stronger amplifiers, usually have a duration of approximately 10h, whereas the weaker devices in this regard, can last, for example, 50 hours or even longer.

Examples of DAPs:

  • Cayin N3
  • Cayin N5 II
  • Cayin N6 II
  • Cayin N8
  • Cowon Plenue D2
  • Cowon Plenue L
  • Cowon Plenue R2
  • FiiO M11
  • FiiO M15
  • FiiO M5
  • FiiO M6
  • FiiO M9
  • Hiby R3
  • Hiby R5
  • Hiby R6
  • iBasso DX160
  • iBasso DX220
  • Sony Walkman NW-A105
  • Sony Walkman NW-WM1A
  • Sony Walkman NW-WM1Z
  • Sony Walkman NW-ZX500

Bluetooth Receivers

Bluetooth receivers , although still little known, are an excellent alternative for those who want to transform the wired headset into wireless. Basically they internally have a Bluetooth chip (to receive and decode the signal), a DAC, an amplifier, an output for SE headphones (single-ended) of 3.5mm, a balanced output for headphones (some models have) of 2, 5mm, a microphone (to answer phone calls or turn your headphone into a headset), a screen (some have it) and physical buttons (for music control).

These Bluetooth devices are the size of a cigarette lighter or even smaller depending on the model. In addition, they are able to improve the sound quality compared to the DAC / amp integrated in the smartphone board depending on the model. Thinking of these advantages added to the ability to be able to move freely (it is possible to fasten them on clothes) due to wireless technology, they are an unbeatable accessory compared to the unified solutions of the gamer heasets .

Examples of Bluetooth receivers:

  • Earstudio ES100
  • FiiO BTR1K
  • FiiO BTR3
  • FiiO BTR5
  • UBTR FiiO
  • Hiby W3
  • Hiby W5

USB DAC / amp

A USB DAC / amp can be mobile or desktop. When your project is designed for mobile use, it is interesting to see the performance offered in terms of perceived sound quality (depending on the headset, it may be more or less noticeable due to the greater or lesser need for amplification) when connecting to a cell phone , especially when we realize that the smartphone does not have enough power to make the headphone play well . Remembering that the mobile device can also be used in notebooks, computers or tablets.

Examples of mobile USB DAC / amp:

  • Hidizs S3
  • Hidizs Sonata HD II
  • iBasso DC01

There are models of desktop DAC / amp, which can be powered only through a USB port, but are not considered ideal for charging, due to their shape and / or size. However, there are those that have a USB output with the function of only receiving data, from the desktop or notebook, in addition to a separate source to plug into the outlet. That is, in this case, the device is really fixed.

Normally, DAC / amps have a headphone output (or two if there is a balanced one), a gain control (low, medium and high, which should be chosen according to the need for amplifying the phone) and a knob (cylinder ) to control the volume.

Examples of desktop USB DAC / amp:

  • Apogee Groove
  • Chord Hugo
  • Chord Mojo
  • Earstudio HUD100
  • FiiO K5 Pro
  • iFi Micro Black label
  • iFi Nano Black Label
  • JDS Labs Atom
  • Schiit Audio Fulla 3
  • Schiit Audio Jotunheim

Multifunctional Bluetooth Transmitter

Basically it is a USB DAC / amp, generally having more input options like coax, optics and RCA , adding a Bluetooth transmitting / receiving antenna. In this way, it is possible to connect it to a desktop, a notebook or even a TV to send audio through the smartphone or receive audio to listen using a headset or a Bluetooth speaker.

It is a very versatile solution to easily connect any Bluetooth device and dribble


FiiO BTA30