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I simply do not see how this can compete with my FiiO BTR 5.
BTR 5 provides wireless connectivity, better DAC, better battery life, allows using a headset with a mic and not headphone only.
And BTR 5 costs like 65% of this.
Sounds like an out-of-date product for me.
65% I think it costs like 85-90% of this? Btr5 is 130 bucks?
Let's say 70% as I need to pay for delivery to the UK for this and not a dime for the FiiO BTR 5.
But boy, if buy it from Helm directly - it just becomes like 55%.
But feature wise it's not worth it anyhow.
OH I was more fishing for where you got the btr5 for cheap! haha at 130- I would just make the jump to a nicer DAP- but if you know where to get it it cheaper than 130....
Different strokes for different folks. Sounds like you're happy with your FiiO BTR 5 and that's great. Helm was receiving requests for a smartphone amp solution that was clean, small, and simple and the DB12 AAAMP was the result.
Sure, I understand where you are coming from.
I put down my 2.5 cents on the common table as I see a better value in the FiiO BTR 5 feature and value wise.
Regarding the sound - that can be decided only by a comparison test, technical data doesn't suggest any big difference.
Amazon UK does the trick, the total price is actually US$115 delivered, not US$130.
Naturally depending on exchange rate which in turn depends on how deep Trump's or BoJo's head in the sh!tter ATM :)
I like it for the features it provides and for the fact that I can use it in my home office as well.
I connect it to my desktop's bluetooth source which allows me to plug into it my Beyer MMX300 while I can also connect it to my Sansui old boy which in turn is more than willing to drive my speakers as well.
With one click I can switch between outputs on the computer, and I can use the Beyer to make calls as well - bit of an overkill, I know :)
And I can pair it easily with my mobile and can use it to listen to music and it is so much better than what the phone can produce sound wise, it is an amazing quality difference.
The DAC it has is what made me do this comparison between the BTR 5 and the DB12 - a simple phone or laptop just has a sh!tty DAC and whatever amp you connect to that the result won't be that good IMHO.
"better DAC"...I would hope so since this doesn't have a DAC lol
That was exactly one of my points...
When you use the BTR5 you get a much better DAC than you have on your mobile device, and when you use the DB12 - you don't.
Hope this clears this issue for you - LoL
Oh I got your point but it's unfair to judge a product on something it's not meant to do. It's like saying this car doesn't fly as well as my plane. Well yea the car wasn't designed to fly...
I get it though you are comparing it to dongles or other portable audio devices in the price range but I do think it's still important to differentiate what the products do. This might not be able to do everything the Fiio can but what it does do, it does better than the Fiio. It's a specialized tool rather than a do it all. A product for someone that wants to mix and match DAC's and amps.
I don't agree on that, as your example is not adequate.
I made the comparison based on the proposed usage (see the ad pictures) and the outcome, and this clearly shows an advantage for the BTR5.
On the other hand I don't really undersand how you can state that the DB12 does what it does better than the BTR5.
It is simply not true, as you have to check the target audince and the mode of usage and measure the outcome for the audience.
Both are targeted on mobile device users, who are most unlikely to use a separate DAC and AMP - come on, what else do you want to attach to that poor mobile phone of yours? Separate DAC and an AMP? Really? Christmas Tree? :)
Not even to a laptop.
Without having the two compared and heard side-by-side I do not consider a mobile THX AMP fed from a shitty consumer grade DAC a better solution than a high grade DAC+AMP combo, and then there is the pricetag also, and I don't even mentioned all the feature-richness of the BTR5.
I agree that DB12 can provide a good solution for people who already have a (portable?) headphone DAC that is attached to their desktop or to another audio source, and may be willing to bring 3 - mobile? - devices to the bedroom to listen to some music in bed.
But that does not mean that my comparison doesn't stand when takeninto account the targeted audience - which is, by the way, also represented by the pictures used for marketing!
IMHO the product targeting is wrong, which can be traced back to either a bad product development concept or can be the result of mistargeted marketing.
The problem though is you are comparing an AMP with a BT/DAC/AMP/ combo. They are by nature in fact NOT targeting the same target audience. Just because they are both mobile audio tools don't mean they belong in the same category.
You keep on mentioning target audience but fail to realize that they are not targeting the same audience. The Fiio and DB12 have different use cases. Those purchasing something like this don't need a DAC or BT which is a big difference. It's obvious what your preference is but you cannot speak for everyone. Yes I agree the DB12 is definitely more niche and that's fine. It's OK to have niche products that don't have to appeal to the general audience and every use case. Just because you have or see no need for something that's fine, just move on.
And yes this does do what it does better than the BTR5, which is amplification. It gives 111mw @32ohms vs 80mw @32ohms and measures better in THD etc with it's THX AAMP.
It's awesome you don't need it though as you prefer a do it all mobile device, and there's nothing wrong with that either. I'm not sure what you mean by the "proposed" usage though. My analogy is spot on, whether it's attached to a stand alone DAC dongle or a 3.5 output of some random device is up to the user. Quite obviously they can't do a product shot of everything that has a 3.5mm port that you can plug into....and also note that in the same product shot is their standalone DAC which it would make sense for them to promote using them together from a marketability standpoint - LoL
Yes, they do target the same audience.
Four out of four product usage photos are about mobile users.
Have you seen the marketing photos?
Take a look.
Not to mention size, shape, build, etc.
Fully focused on mobile users.
Now on specs.
Let's leave it at the fact that the BTR5 has a 2.5 balanced output, so the glorious mWs are there to be found.
SNR and THD - one is better the other is worse than the DB12 has.
So - no, actually no etc... :)
So, when you consider that usage the BTR5 should definitely perform better and does offer better and more features than the DB12.
Therefore my arguement stands.
As I see this is a mistargeted product for mobile users, which could be targeted for a very small niche of non-mobile users that I mentioned already above - and definitely should not be advertised with those product photos used above which actually mislead people in a way - with the also abovementioned caveats.
And I hope that our conversation will make people hate me and buy the DB12 as a revenge, as we know well that there is no such thing as bad publicity - just publicity that draws attention and helps sales :)
Wow, you really are reserving a special place in h-e-double-hockey-sticks for this product. Why? Have you not figured out their product segmentation? Helm offers the Bolt for USB usage. Sounds like a product you would applaud. They offer the DB12 for those who still have access to 3.5mm jacks (for example laptops, iPads, and just about every DAP). You have made your point clear. This product does not work for you. You don't think it will work for others. We get it. Please now just let consumers decide. BTW, I have purchased both myself and I’ll determine for myself if the DB12 makes sense for me. My guess is I will agree with your overall assessment and find the Bolt to be more versatile. But, it’s my money and if I want to spend it on an audio experiment, well, there are worse ways to blow my money.
And no one told otherwise... :)
The nicety of this thing is that I can tell my opinion and stand by it and even argue for it.
Can you imagine?
And unfortunately it seems I figured out (a) better product segmentation... :)
Now, just tell me, why does it hurt you so much that you are trying to prove me that you have the right to buy it?
Who denied that?
You spent an entire - otherwise information-lacking - comment on this issue so this must be really important for you.
The thing is - it just doesn't make sense.
"And I hope that our conversation will make people hate me and buy the DB12 as a revenge, as we know well that there is no such thing as bad publicity - just publicity that draws attention and helps sales :)"
Wow. Where to start...
You made 7 posts railing against this product before your response to my one post. You absolutely have a right to post what you want, of course, but then ***I also have a right to ask you to give it a rest with one post***.
I even acknowledged in my post I will probably come to similar conclusions that you do. But 7 posts... that’s a lot of “ink to spill” over something no one is forcing you to buy.
By the way, “Gotcha”? Gotcha where and how? Who or what were you quoting with the quote there? Mixing up people or posts maybe?
Cheers, Mate, relax!
No, you don't have any right that would command me on not posting on this matter any more.
You are mistaken.
Also, I do reply on people's posts as I wish.
Comprende, Senior Miller? :)
And of course no one is forcing me to buy - as no one can.
So, that's not quite the/an arguement from you.
You: "But, it’s my money and if I want to spend it on an audio experiment, well, there are worse ways to blow my money."
Me (in a post before your's): "And I hope that our conversation will make people hate me and buy the DB12 as a revenge, as we know well that there is no such thing as bad publicity - just publicity that draws attention and helps sales :)"
Maybe you didn't read that post of mine, but no worries.
Command? Who is commanding you? I make 1 comment which offends you compared to the seven long posts of yours preceding mine. I don’t command you to do anything. I do implore you... give it a rest already.
Cheers, Mate, you take this too seriously.