Home » Best Portable Music Player For Audiophile in 2020 | Top 7 Picks

Best Portable Music Player For Audiophile in 2020 | Top 7 Picks

by DarkCoder
Best Portable music player for audiophiles techreview.jpg

Are you a music lover? Do you love listening high quality music while going on a walk or working out?  There are a lot of things to consider while checking out the best portable music player for your audiophile friend or for yourself, because music is one of the most important things in life for a lot of people. These portable audio players come in many shapes sizes, and styles.

If you want to maintain the high quality sound  which really, is the way the artists intended for you to hear their sound tracks — you’ll want to pick up a hi-res portable digital music player. As the name suggests, these devices are small enough to slip into your pocket or can easily fit in the palm of your hand, and they run sans wires. Either charge them up or change its battery and you’re good to go.

Our Top 4 Recommendations

Best Choice
Sony NW-A55/L Walkman NW-A55 Hi-Res 16GB MP3 Player,...
All Rounder
Apple iPod touch (32GB) - Blue (Latest Model)
Budget Friendly
32GB MP3 Player, Mibao MP3 Player with Bluetooth 4.2,...
Best Performance
Astell&Kern A&Ultima SP1000M High-Resolution Audio...
Sony NW-A55/L Walkman NW-A55 Hi-Res 16GB MP3 Player,...
Apple iPod touch (32GB) - Blue (Latest Model)
32GB MP3 Player, Mibao MP3 Player with Bluetooth 4.2,...
Astell&Kern A&Ultima SP1000M High-Resolution Audio...
$439.90
$194.95
$39.99
$2,399.00
Best Choice
Sony NW-A55/L Walkman NW-A55 Hi-Res 16GB MP3 Player,...
Sony NW-A55/L Walkman NW-A55 Hi-Res 16GB MP3 Player,...
$439.90
All Rounder
Apple iPod touch (32GB) - Blue (Latest Model)
Apple iPod touch (32GB) - Blue (Latest Model)
$194.95
Budget Friendly
32GB MP3 Player, Mibao MP3 Player with Bluetooth 4.2,...
32GB MP3 Player, Mibao MP3 Player with Bluetooth 4.2,...
$39.99
Best Performance
Astell&Kern A&Ultima SP1000M High-Resolution Audio...
Astell&Kern A&Ultima SP1000M High-Resolution Audio...
$2,399.00

In addition to the amazing audio hardware and performance, it’s important to consider the amount of available storage capacity an digital MP3 player offers. You should either consider a product with huge built-in memory, or one with a built-in microSD card slot for effortless and affordable storage expansion. Today’s many of MP3 players will most likely offer you a combination of both Internal and SD Card Storage option.

We have compiled a list of some of the best portable digital players recommended for audiophiles. So, without wasting anymore of time, Let’s get started!

1. Sony NW-A55 Hi-Res Portable Music Player – Best Overall

Sony NW-A55/L Walkman NW-A55 Hi-Res 16GB MP3 Player,...
  • Precision engineered for improved sound quality
  • Truly authentic sound with Hi-Res Audio
  • S-Master HX digital amplifier for pure sound quality
  • DSEE HX upscaling restores quality to compressed files

The Sony NW-A55 MP3 player has all those features which you’re looking for: amazing sound quality,  wide range of audio files supported including Hi-Res audio content, long battery life (up to 45 hours ), expandable storage supported, and intuitive controls that include a LCD touch screen and tactile buttons, among many other features.

This product is also reasonably priced, especially considering how much it is capable of. It comes with S-Master HX digital amplifier which brings outstanding sound quality. As part of Sony’s iconic Walkman product family, the music player has a brand cachet that similarly priced competitors cannot match. It comes in two colors to pick from: black and blue.

This portable player’s impressive audio quality comes courtesy of a High-Res amplifier. It also supports Bluetooth connectivity for use with wireless headphones. You can even use as a desktop USB DAC with your Windows PC or Mac.

Pros
  • SX H-Master Amplifier
  • DSEE HX Upscalling Support
  • Easy Interface
  • Library Management Via System
  • Bluetooth Connectivity

Cons

  • Proprietary Port
  • Some Ui Lag

2. FiiO M6 Hi-Res Portable Music Player For Audiophile

FiiO M6 High Resolution Lossless MP3 Music Player with...
  • Exynos 7270 (Dual-core 1GHz 14nm) with DAC ES9018Q2C for superb performance
  • USB Type C symmetrical connector丨2GB internal storage + micro-SD card...
  • Dual-Mode Bluetooth 4.2 with full format support--aptX/aptX HD/LDAC/HWA/SBC
  • Wi-Fi Music Streaming丨AirPlay丨FiiO Link丨USB DAC丨USB audio out丨13...

The FiiO M6 portable music player is a solid runner-up and best suited for an audiophile. it’s elegant, feature-packed, and more affordable. The audio performance of the M6 is quite amazing thanks to its high-quality audio components, as well as a speedy Samsung-made advance chipset. It has less battery life (up to 13 hours) as compared to its competitors and considerably low internal storage (only 2 GB ). The latter makes purchasing a microSD card alongside the device is mandatory if you want to fit more songs in this device.

Read Also: Best Laptops Under 600$ 

What makes this product stand out in its price range is a LCD 3.2-inch touch screen, having intuitive user interface, as well as compatibility with all major streaming services. FiiO has made this possible by equipping this device with a customized version of Android OS, thus bringing compatibility with Spotify, Tidal and among others. The FiiO M6 supports a wide range of audio formats, including Hi-Res audio files. Other highlights of the product include wireless connectivity via Bluetooth and the ability to work as a USB-DAC on your Windows PC.

Pros
  • Pretty Loud Sound
  • Good Build Quality
  • Decent Battery Life
  • Upto 2TB Memory Card Support
  • Dual Mode Bluetooth

Cons

  • A Little Messy Ui
  • Only 2GB Internal Storage

3. Sony NWZX300/S Player – Best For The Buck

Sony NWZX300/S Walkman with High-Resolution...
  • Hi-Res Audio compatible
  • DSD and PCM file support
  • S-Master HX digital amplifier for pure sound quality
  • DSEE HX upscaling restores quality to compressed files

Its another Sony’s beautifully designed Walkman , the best portable MP3 music player for audiophile. It comes with a standard 3.5-mm audio jack, as well as a balanced audio output for high-end headphones or earphones. The device also has the ability to play Hi-Res audio files, as well as upscale compressed audio files to a higher quality. This product has very sleek design, a milled aluminum frame, which keeps electrical noise or static out of the audio experience.

The device also has support for all major audio formats, including lossless ones. You can also use it as a desktop DAC with your system. The gadget also supports high-quality Bluetooth streaming, as well as NFC for one-touch pairing of a compatible device.

Sony also has equipped the device with 64 GB of expandable storage. The battery of this device can last up to a whopping 30 hours on a single charge. The NW-ZX300 has handy audio control buttons on its side, as well as a high-resolution color LCD touch screen for navigating through its features and settings. Note that there are no headphones in the player’s retail packaging.

Pros
  • High Quality Integrated DAC For Clear Sound
  • MicroSD Card Support
  • Touch Sensitive Glass For Smooth Experience
  • Hi-Res Audio Files Compatible

Cons

  • No Wi-Fi Support

4. FiiO M5 Portable Music Player – Budget Friendly

FiiO M5 AK4377 32bit /384kHz DAC chip Mini Touch Screen...
  • We have upload operation videos of M5 function.Ingenic X1000E processor...
  • Bluetooth Flatship chip CSR8675 with bluetooth transmitting and receiving.
  • Dual microphone with calls and sound recordings丨Asynchronous USB...
  • CNC+2.5D glass 丨Touchscreen gestures 丨Customizable screen...

The FiiO M5 delivers all the essentials in very tiny package. Weighing just a tad over an ounce, the M5 has a tiny LCD touch screen with having ultra slim bezels. Its metal body is available in black, blue, red, silver, and titanium.You can also control the audio experience of the FiiO M5 via intuitive gestures.

The audio player has no built-in storage, so you’ll need to insert and microSD card for storing music. You can expect up to 10.5 hours of audio playback on a single charge. It also comes with Bluetooth connectivity, a built-in voice recorder, and even the ability to count your steps. You can also use the product as a desktop DAC too. Overall, the device is pretty high-tech and elegant in equal measure.

Pros
  • USB Type-C Supported
  • Smooth User Interface
  • Bluetooth Codec Support
  • Decent Performance

Cons

  • No Built-in Storage
  • Average Battery Life

5. Astell & Kern A&ultima SP1000M Mini Audio Player – Best Quality

Astell&Kern A&Ultima SP1000M High Resolution Audio...
  • 4.1 Inch HD Display
  • Portable and Durable Aluminum Body
  • AK4497EQ Dual DAC for Highest Sound Quality
  • Enjoy original sound playback anytime and anywhere

The feature-packed Astell & Kern A&Ultima SP1000M Mini is the potable music player to buy if you are a true audiophile having limitless budget. It has a cool design, lovely craftsmanship that’s worthy of its price tag, and the ability to consistently deliver uncompromisingly superb sonic experience. A Digital Trends review editor praised the device for its compact size, sleek design and excellent audio performance. He also noted that having a device this nice in your life will cost you a pretty penny. The player comes in black or blue.

As expected from a product in this price point, it’s  packed with top-shelf hardware. Some of the most noteworthy highlights include a speedy Octa-Core Processor, a duo of AKM AK4497EQ dedicated DACs, and a duo of audio outputs (a balanced and an unbalanced one). The device can deliver up to 10 hours of audio playback with a single charge.

The portable music player is equipped with a LCD 4.1-inch touch screen, up-to 128 GB of expandable storage, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity, as well as a USB-C connector for charging and data transfer. In addition to the ability to play almost every digital audio format out there, the player also comes with access to today’s popular streaming services such as spotify, sound-cloud etc out of the box.

Pros
  • Amazing Crystal Clear High Quality Sound
  • Compact Design
  • Quad Core Processor For Smooth Performance
  • Dual DAC For Loud Sound

Cons

  • Expensive

6. Apple iPod Touch – Best For Overall Entertainment

Apple iPod touch (32GB) - Blue (Latest Model)
  • 4-Inch Retina display
  • Your favorite music, gaming, and AR apps in your pocket
  • A10 Fusion chip for up to 2x faster performance, Up to 3x faster graphics
  • Group FaceTime with family and friends

Apple’s latest iPod touch is truly in a league of its own when it comes to high quality music experience and entertainment capabilities. It’s equipped with the same Apple proprietary A10 Fusion chip as the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus has. This product comes also comes with an 4-inch Retina touch screen display, an 8 MP camera, and Apple iOS software, the device can do a whole lot more than just playing your music collection.

Apple iOS operating system is what sets the iPod touch apart from all of its competitors. iOS will give you access to a vast selection of high-quality applications and games, including access to all major music and video streaming services. It also has the ability to FaceTime and iMessage.

Thanks to its powerful fusion chip, iPad touch can also entertain you with augmented reality apps. The iPod touch has a standard 3.5-mm audio jack, and it comes bundled with Apple’s iconic EarPods. It is available in around six color (pink, blue, gold, red, silver, and space gray) and comes with three storage options to select from (32, 128, and 256 GB). We highly suggest that you avoid the entry-level one.

Pros
  • Fast Processor
  • Includes Earpods
  • Internal Storage Up To 256GB
  • Retina Touchscreen Display

Cons

  • Battery Life Not Great
  • Average Camera Quality

7. FiiO M11 Pro For Audiophile – Best Portable Music Player

FiiO M11 PRO Bluetooth Music Player Bundle with 1MORE...
  • OFFERS IMPROVED SOUND QUALITY - FiiO M11 PRO employs two AK4497EQ chips and...
  • ACTS AS A BLUETOOTH TRANSMITTER AND RECEIVER - You can use M11 PRO with...
  • CONNECTS YOUR MUSIC IN VARIOUS WAYS - Install the FiiO Music or AirPlay to...
  • SUPPORTS ANY 3RD-PARTY APPS - M11 PRO uses open-source Android 7.0 Nougat...

It is another great product for music lovers. The M11 Pro uses the same processor (Exynos 7872) as the basic M11 variant. But the major change is dual DAC chips have been upgraded from the AK4493 to the AK4497 making its sound a lot better. The product also employs play/pause and skip buttons on the side of the player, as well as pretty good looking shiny gold volume dial.

The product has LCD touchscreen which is pretty responsive to touch, especially when you compare it to much older FiiO DAPs.  it also supports many 3rd party apps, such as Spotify, Tidal, Amazon Music, Deezer, etc. The product supports up to 64GB of internal storage which is expandable via SD Card. The M11 pro can play music upto 9 hours on a single charge.

Pros
  • Bluetooth Advanced Codec Support
  • Advanced User Interface & Easy To Navigate
  • Super Clean & Loud Sound
  • Great In This Price Range

Cons

  • No Google Play Support

8. Mibao Digital Audio Player For Audiophile

Sale
32GB MP3 Player, Mibao MP3 Player with Bluetooth 4.2,...
  • 💾【32GB Large Memory & Up To 128GB Expansion】32GB large internal...
  • 🎶【2.4 Inch Large Screen & Double-sided Acrylic Glass】MP3 player is...
  • 🎼【Wireless Bluetooth 4.2 & HIFI Lossless Sound Quality】This MP3...
  • 🔋【 600 mAh Large Capacity & Intelligent Power Saving...

If, you are on a tight budget and looking for a budget-friendly digital audio player than mibao Mp3 player is for you. This product has all those features which a mp3 player should have and it is not expensive at all. The product has a high resolution 2.4 inch TFT display screen. The player comes with 32 GB internal memory which is pretty huge as compared to competitors. It also comes with an SD card slot and can support up to 128 GB of memory card so you won’t run out of space for your songs.

As for connectivity, it comes with Bluetooth 4.2 wireless technology ensuring stable connection, better sound, and enhanced audio experience. The screen on this digital audio player is not touchable, it has physical control buttons using which you can pause/play or change the song. The product comes with 600-mah Li-ion rechargeable battery which can provide up to 30 hours of audio playback. Overall considering it is price, pretty solid device I would say.

Pros
  • 128 GB SD Card Support
  • Up To 30 hrs Backup
  • Very Affordable Price
  • Intelligent Power Saving Feature

Cons

  • No Touch Screen

Conclusion:

When you’re shopping for an portable digital audio player, though, consider the size and the quality of your music collection. If you own a lot of music in lossless formats and don’t want to compromise on quality of sound, consider a more advanced music player having dedicated DAC (digital-to-analog converter) technology. An high-end MP3 player will also have the ability to power high-impedance, advance audiophile headphones. Otherwise, you can consider a more reasonably priced offering.

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Last update on 2020-06-02 / Affiliate links / Prices / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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