UI & Usage
By a small margin, the iBasso DX300 offers a similar experience to the DX160, but snappier.
Android 9.0 + Qualcomm 660
Like every modern player, the DX300 comes with android, the most popular OS, with iOS.
This makes a big difference in terms of UI and usage, even more with APK Pure installed as standard. Still, no Google Play Store out of the box, but since APK Pure gives you the same options (and more…) that’s no big deal. In a few seconds, you’ll have all your usual apps up and running, like most modern smartphones
Thanks to the new Qualcomm 660 CPU and 6Gb of Ram, the iBasso DX300 moves and feels fast. Very fast! In fact, none other players I had recently come close to iBasso’s DAP in terms of snappiness. Everything open/close in the blink of an eye and for the first time with a DAP, downloading tracks from Qobuz didn’t take hours, but seconds.
That’s also thanks to the new WiFi chipset, supporting 2×2 MIMO and 5GHz, no more bottlenecked by the CPU. It’s staggering to see how much other players seem to struggle compared to the DX300 once you’ve tried a fast connection. It really feels like going from ADSL to Fiber, you don’t have to prepare your travel music days ago now, you can just click download before you leave the house, and… pouf, all is here.
I tried all the streaming apps I use on my iPhone, and everything went well. Overall, it’s one of the most seamless experiences I had with a player. Yet, if you’re a purist, you can switch to Mango Player, the iBasso player, and OS.
Now available in its 5th generation, Mango player is both a third-party app and a separate OS made by iBasso.
Once the player is turned on, you really can’t miss the app, safely docked in the lower half of the screen. A black icon, displaying the brand logo, the mighty white triangle. It’s still the main app for music playback, but if you want to completely turn off the Android experience, this isn’t an option anymore.
The app is fast, well-designed, and it really feels like the brand took time to improve the UI and fix various bugs: it’s much easier to use than before. The sorting options are numerous, the equalizer settings are awesome, and if it crashed a lot when I received it, after a few software updates, everything seems flawless now.
Audio Setting menu
- Gapless: off/on
- Gain: low/medium/high
- Playback mode: normal/repeat/shuffle/repeat one
- Equalizer: graphic equalizer / parametric equalizer
- Balance: Left -10-0 / Right -10-0 // if you have an auditive deficiency, this might help
- Filters roll-off: fast / short delay slow / short delay fast / slow / NOS // I like the way each one of them is represented by a small graphic.
USB-C and SD Card
All iBasso players use the future-proof USB-C connector and the iBasso DX300 makes no exception. The transfer rate is great, thanks to USB3.1 and transferring big chunks of music takes 10 times less time, with the right cable. Also, the DAP supports Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0, Power Delivery 2.0, and MTK PE Plus Quick charge.
The DX300 offers 128Gb of internal memory, as much as some Astell&Kern players, and relies on micro-SD cards for any additional storage. Every type and size are supported, from micro-SDHC to micro-SDXC up to 2Tb. Also, I can’t stress you enough about how many fake and counterfeits micro-SD cards selling out there now, so check twice before you get one.
Again, the USB-C port supports two-way transfers and the player can be used as a DAC on a computer, or as a source once paired with a DAC.
Airplay / DNLA / WIFI
Unsurprisingly, the iBasso DX300 supports all major streaming providers!
You can download your favorites app through APK Pure, or the Google Play Store (if you install it afterward), and every app worked well. The only app you won’t be able to use, remains Apple Music, requiring an official Google Play Store certification.
Mango player doesn’t support DNLA, but if you install a third-party app like HiBy, you’ll have no issue connecting the DAP to your local server.
Battery Life and Charging
The iBasso DX300 battery is quite unique, as it embeds not one, but two batteries. So much that, the brand even patented the Dual Battery Power Supply Structure, where the Digital section gets its own battery, while the amp gets another one. More about that on the next page.
Both are respectively rated at 2000mAh and 4000mAh and take 2.5h to charge, for 15h of playback in single-ended mode. To my surprise, those numbers seemed pretty accurate and I almost hit the 14h bar with WiFi enabled and my usual CIEM
Charging is fast, but you still have to wait an hour and a half to refill 80% . Charging through a classic USB port can be painfully long, but on a modern USB-C port, it will be almost 5 times faster. Also, remember that since your DX300 embeds two batteries, depending on your charger, each one will have to charge one AFTER the other. The Amp battery will always be the first to charge, and the player can’t turn on if the digital one is empty, so I strongly advise you to invest in a good charger.
Compatible with apt-X, AAC/SBC, and LDAC, the iBasso DX300 now supports Bluetooth 5.0. Also, if LDAC, AAC, and SBC get bidirectional support, apt-X (HD) can only send music to a headphone/speaker, no reception. If your source supports LDAC, no worries, if not you’ll be stuck in AAC or SBC.
Apart from that, it works perfectly well, and it’s a great option if your smartphone doesn’t have a headphone output anymore. Compared to DNLA, you get controls directly on the player but lose album covers, your call.
Time for specs !
The review continues on PageFour, after the click HERE or by using the jump below.
Page 1: about the brand
Page 2: Design, bundle
Page 4: Technical specifications
Page 5: Sound performances