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Old 12-05-2008, 10:41 AM
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dfkt dfkt is offline
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Location: Vienna, Austria
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Default Listening and RMAA Tests, Cowon O2 vs. D2

First the test with my own ears. I matched the volume of the O2 and D2 to within 0.1dB (volume 14 on the D2 equals volume 24 on the O2). I listened to various kinds of music with my UE11 IEMs, switching the phones between the two players. I used flat settings without EQ and enhancements, and also my favorite BBE settings (BBE@1, M3B@5, MP@on, no EQ, no other stuff).

The O2 and D2 sound pretty much the same to my ears, hardly any difference at all. The O2 does sound the tiniest bit "richer, fuller", though - which is probably because it has less bass roll-off than the D2 with the same impedance phones. I wouldn't really call it a "warmer" sound, though, treble is quite the same on both players.

Furthermore RMAA says the O2 has better stereo separation, less crosstalk than the D2. However I couldn't hear any difference with my own ears.

One thing where the O2 fails is the THD at the highest volume level, volume 50. It's somewhat acceptable without load (the way an amp would see this "fake line-out"), but with a 16 Ohm load it's really bad (probably doesn't matter much for real-life use). Contrary to the O2, the D2 sound perfectly fine at volume 50.

Cowon D2-O2 - 16+48 Ohm, Vol 34,35
Cowon D2-O2 - 16+48 Ohm, Vol 50
Cowon O2 - Impedances
Cowon D2-O2 - No Loads
Cowon D2-O2 - BBE-1, M3B-5, MP-on (normal listening volume)

Frequency response with loads:

Stereo crosstalk with loads:

THD+N - O2 distorts badly at volume 50, D2 doesn't:

THD+N - at volume 35 it looks much better behaved:
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