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2012-04-12 05:51 AM
The large HD screen and 3G connectivity have got me interested in the Xperia S, after initially being interested in the Walkman Z series as both a media player and mini-tablet. The screen and mobile connectivity benefits of the Xperia would be great for email, business Web applications and e-books, but I would not want to sacrifice the acknowledged high-end sound quality of the Walkman.
What is your experience of the Xperia's sound quality? Can you compare it to any other devices you have used?
Please note, I am not interested in features such as equalizers, music store, etc. I want to know if, when you plug in a good pair of headphones, how the accuracy and musicality of the audio compares with other devices, particularly dedicated music players such as Walkman, iPod, Cowan, etc.
Many have noted the similarity in form factor and OS between Xperia S and Walkman Z series and assumed the Walkman is an Xperia without the phone. However, I note that Walkman Z is advertised as featuring the S-Master MX Digital Amplifier, but Xperia S advertising is silent on such audio technology.
Look forward to hearing your thoughts.
2012-04-12 11:16 AM
The audio quality is very good. There has been some negativity over its ability to drive less sensitive cans. I don't think many people have realistic expectation over what a phone amp can deliver, without an external amp. I found the output volume to be quite low when using my Sennheiser HD200's.
I don't use headphones much, but it works very well in my car setup and attached to my Naim hifi at home.
Overall despite the low output gain, the sound is very detailed, with a nice wide soundstage.
I've owned the following devices as a comparison -
Samsung galaxy s2 (complete junk, from an acoustic point of view)
Iphone 3GS (good solid performer, but find the xperia S nicer to listen to)
2012-04-12 11:44 AM
Hey, thanks, that's a really useful set of data points. So, it sounds like the Xperia won't be a starter for my AKG501 cans. But knowing that you are a Naim owner and you like the sound of the Xperia S tells me it makes pretty good music. It would be interesting to try out the new Sony XBA series in-ear 'phones with the Xperia.
Line inputs vs headphones is pretty interesting with these devices. My current Walkman makes sweet music with headphones, but my Xperia Mini Pro, which is very brash and monotonous on the headphones, makes much better music in the car. I guess its an impedance-matching thing.
2012-04-13 12:59 PM
I'm bar far no audio expert and I do not use Xperia S as my private phone. I have of course used it and I have listened to music with it though. I've done so together with LiveSound headset. To me this sounds great but as I said, I'm no expert on the field of audio quality.
I'll keep monitoring this thread and answer what I can answer.
Any user with an Xperia S - please post your thoughts on the audio here.
2012-04-13 02:04 PM
Hi I've tested and compared the Xperia S with my Sony NWZ-A866 Walkman and used both Sure 315s and Sennheiser HD 595s. I totally agree with pixate, full size cans are never going to sound great without an external amp and my Sennheisers sounded pretty weak with the Xperia S.
My Sure 315s on the other hand sounded pretty good with the Xperia S but the sound was definitely more refined when hooked up to the walkman. I also gave the Sures a go on the iPhone S4, Samsung Omnia 7, HTC Mozart and personally I do think the Xperia S came out on top audio wise.