Pioneer XDP-300R DAP Now Available – Features Dual ES9018K2M DAC: See Specs, Features and Price
Last month, Pioneer has officially announced the successor of the XDP-100R, called the Pioneer XDP-300R digital portable audio player. The XDP-100R was pretty much a mid-range audio player based on specs and price. Its high-end counterpart was the Onkyo DP-X1, which is now also succeeded by the Onkyo DP-X1A (which we’ll discuss in another article). The Pioneer XDP-300R features improved design, internals, and is now built with a dual DAC and AMP system. It somehow sounds like a rebadged DP-X1 (I could be wrong), but I think this DAP can no longer be considered as a mid-tier DAP. Based on the set of features, specs and pricing alone, the XDP-300R looks like a high end DAP for me. It comes with a suggested retail price of £599.99, or 69,800 JPN Yen (excluding tax), or probably around $750 USD; and it’s already listed on Amazon.com right now. I was excited about the Onkyo XDP-X1 before, but now I am definitely leaning towards this new XDP-300R. Let’s see what other features this new DAP has to offer below.
The Pioneer XDP-300R Portable Digital Audio Player
Let’s start from what’s under the hood of the Pioneer XDP-300R. The XDP-300R features a dual DAC / dual AMP system, featuring two ES9018K2M DACs and two Sabre 9601K Amp chips. There are also two separate and independent circuit boards inside; one for the CPU part, and the other for the DAC and Amp section. This basically reduces the digital noise coming from the CPU section that could affect the audio section of the device. By the way, the CPU part is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 APQ8074 APU clocked at 2.2GHz.
It also features two output terminals; a 2.5mm 4 pole balanced headphone out and a 3.5mm three-pole unbalanced out. The unbalanced output features 16 Ω ～ 300 Ω – 75 mW + 75 mW, while the unbalanced out features 32 Ω ～ 600 Ω – 150 mW + 150 mW. There are also four gain settings; two lows 1 and 2, normal and high gain settings. In terms of storage, it has 32GB of internal storage that can be expanded up to 400GB via two microSD card slots. Not to mention, there is a built-in mic too located at the bottom, near the micro USB port.
The Pioneer XDP-300R is based on Android 5.1 operating system and it supports Google Play and third party applications. Deezer, Spotify, TIDAL are included among “Useful Apps” tab, plus you can stream music, watch videos, play games and etc. The XDP-300R also supports the new MQA format (a revolutionary coding system that offers extreme High Res Audio in streamable file sizes).
In terms of connectivity options, the XDP-300R has a micro USB port that supports OTG and digital output, in case you want to pair it with an external DAC/Amp. It also has WiFi 802.11a/b/g/n/ac （Wi-Fi Direct/WPS） and Bluetooth with Apt-X support. The Pioneer XDP-300R features a 4.7-inch display with a display resolution of 1280×720 (HD). Not many pays attention to the display, but I like my DAP to have a good display as well (especially if you are paying this much).
Pioneer engineers have decided to remove the speaker and bumper bracket that we saw on the old XDP-100R (good!). And the volume knob features a 161 step position for a fine granular control. It measures 128.9mm x 75.9mm x 12.7mm and features a rigid machined aluminum body design, weighing 200 grams.
Of course, the XDP-300R supports most popular audio formats (both lossy and lossless) including MQA, DSD, DSF and DSD-IFF formats. Aside from audio, it also supports video formats such as H.263, H.264 AVC, H.265 HEVC, MPEG-4 SP, VP8, VP9; and image formats like JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMP and WebP.
Honestly, based on paper alone, the Pioneer XDP-300R has most of the things that I am looking for on a portable digital audio player. Specs-wise, it’s impressive. The only thing left in question is the sound quality. If this is indeed better (in terms of performance and sound quality) than the Onkyo DP-X1 then take my money!
Pioneer XDP-300R Specifications
|Operating System||Android OS 5.1|
|Display||4.7 inch (1280 x 720) capacitive touch screen|
|Built-in memory||32 GB (including system area)|
|Extended memory||MicroSD slot × 2 (maximum 200 GB × 2, corresponding to SDXC)|
|Wifi||802.11a / b / g / n / ac (Wi-Fi Direct / WPS)|
|Bluetooth||Profile: A2DP / AVRCP / HSP / OPP / HID / PAN
Codec: SBC / aptX
|Audio format||DSD (DSF / DSDIFF) / FLAC / ALAC / WAV / AIFF / MQA / OggVorbis / MP3 / AAC|
|Playback compatible sampling frequency and number of quantization bits||44.1 kHz / 48 kHz / 88.2 kHz / 96 kHz / 176.4 kHz / 192 kHz / 352.8 kHz / 384 kHz (16 bit / 24 bit / 32 bit *)
* Down convert 32 bit float / integer to 24 bit and play
DSD 2.8 MHz / 5.6 MHz / 11.2 MHz (1 bit), convert to PCM and play
|Supported playlist method||M3U / PLS / WPLU / PLS / WPL|
|Supported video format||H.263 / H.264 AVC / H.265 HEVC / MPEG-4 SP / VP 8 / VP 9|
|Supported still image format||JPEG / GIF / PNG / BMP / WebP|
|Practical maximum output||75 mW + 75 mW (Unbalanced, JEITA)
150 mW + 150 mW (Balanced / JEITA)
|Distortion ratio||0.006% or less|
|S/N ratio||115 dB or more|
|Playback frequency band||20 Hz to 80 000 Hz|
|Applicable impedance||Unbalanced: 16 Ω to 300 Ω
Balanced: 32 Ω to 600 Ω
|Input / output terminal||2.5 mm 4 pole balanced headphone output (corresponding to Line out mode) (R - R + / L + L - from the tip)
3.5 mm Three-pole headphone output (compatible with Line out mode)
Micro USB-B / OTG digital output (also used for charging and data transfer)
|Gain switching||Low 2 / Low 1 / Normal / High|
|Playback time||About 16 hours (at 96 kHz / 24 bit FLAC unbalance playback)|
|Dimensions (H × W × D) mm||128.9 mm x 75.9 mm x 12.7 mm|
|Accessories||Micro USB cable (1.0 m) * For charging / data transfer|
Pioneer XDP-300R Price and Availability
Like I said earlier, the Pioneer XDP-300R comes with an SRP of £599.99 or 69,800 JPN Yen. At the time I published this article, the XDP-300R is already listed on Amazon.com with a retail price of $799 (sold by Premium-Japan). It’s available in both black and silver colors. Not sure when will other sellers will have it on stock as well, or how soon will the price change though; but its predecessor (the XDP-100R) just went from $699 down to $399 only; making it a really attractive DAP specially for those who are on a budget.