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Xperia Z1 working with USB DAC :)

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(Last edited by XP-Audio; 1st March 2014 at 01:38 PM.) Reason: Spelling corrections
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Info 2 Z2 and T2 USB Audio support

Quote:
Originally Posted by hikashi View Post
So now Z2 is out and it specifically mentioned it support USB DAC but not with Z1.
I have a usb DAC personally (Fiio E07k) and it works with xperia Z1 with usb micro to mini cable without any modification to the software.

Any difference between them Z1 and Z2 in terms of functionality?
As product owner for USB Audio in the Z2, I would like to explain about our USB support.

In the 2013 mid- and high-end products (Z, ZL, ZR, Tablet Z, Z Ultra, Z1, Z1 Compact) we support USB Audio from the Android Audio framework, which means that all audio is resampled to 48kHz/16 bits, and mixed in with notifications etc. This means that we have "bit-perfect" reproduction only for tracks with this sample rate originally (and such are not very common) and turn off all system sounds and all sound enhancements (and even then, I cannot guarantee that we are 100% bit-perfect).

In Z2 and T2, however, we have introduced a new mode, "High-res audio over USB", where the audio stream is sent directly to USB after unpacking/decoding (actually, when selected, this applies to all audio data, no only high-res, so internally it is called "Direct" mode).

The only exception is if a DAC does not support a particular sample rate, in which case it is sent to the audio framework in the previous manner - for instance, some DAC's which support 96kHz do not support 88.2kHz, strangely enough.

Anyway, in this feature we support 44.1kHz, 48KHz, 88.2kHz, and 96kHz in either 16 or 24bits using USB Audio Class 1, and also 192kHz and 176.4kHz using USB Audio Class 2 in Asynchronous mode. The file formats can be either WAV or FLAC for lossless compression, or MP3 or AAC (which decompresses to either 44.1 or 48kHz at 16bits). I guess other generic Android audio formats should work too but they are not in scope since I have never seen these at download stores.

One caveat with 192 and 176.4kHz files is that the Android downsampler does not handle more than 96kHz, so if you get such files, they will only play in High-res mode to a capable DAC, not in any other circumstances.

In this mode, since we bypass the mixer, ring signals and notifications etc are not passed to the USB DAC. If you want these in headphones connected to a portable DAC, you will need to turn off HigH-res mode and everything will then work as in the 2013 products.

I will be present in this forum for questions and problem reports when these devices are released. Currently we are testing with a limited number of DAC' and I will post a list of these soon.
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hikashi
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(Last edited by hikashi; 1st March 2014 at 04:11 PM.)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by XP-Audio View Post
As product owner for USB Audio in the Z2, I would like to explain about our USB support.

In the 2013 mid- and high-end products (Z, ZL, ZR, Tablet Z, Z Ultra, Z1, Z1 Compact) we support USB Audio from the Android Audio framework, which means that all audio is resampled to 48kHz/16 bits, and mixed in with notifications etc. This means that we have "bit-perfect" reproduction only for tracks with this sample rate originally (and such are not very common) and turn off all system sounds and all sound enhancements (and even then, I cannot guarantee that we are 100% bit-perfect).

In Z2 and T2, however, we have introduced a new mode, "High-res audio over USB", where the audio stream is sent directly to USB after unpacking/decoding (actually, when selected, this applies to all audio data, no only high-res, so internally it is called "Direct" mode).

The only exception is if a DAC does not support a particular sample rate, in which case it is sent to the audio framework in the previous manner - for instance, some DAC's which support 96kHz do not support 88.2kHz, strangely enough.

Anyway, in this feature we support 44.1kHz, 48KHz, 88.2kHz, and 96kHz in either 16 or 24bits using USB Audio Class 1, and also 192kHz and 176.4kHz using USB Audio Class 2 in Asynchronous mode. The file formats can be either WAV or FLAC for lossless compression, or MP3 or AAC (which decompresses to either 44.1 or 48kHz at 16bits). I guess other generic Android audio formats should work too but they are not in scope since I have never seen these at download stores.

One caveat with 192 and 176.4kHz files is that the Android downsampler does not handle more than 96kHz, so if you get such files, they will only play in High-res mode to a capable DAC, not in any other circumstances.

In this mode, since we bypass the mixer, ring signals and notifications etc are not passed to the USB DAC. If you want these in headphones connected to a portable DAC, you will need to turn off HigH-res mode and everything will then work as in the 2013 products.

I will be present in this forum for questions and problem reports when these devices are released. Currently we are testing with a limited number of DAC' and I will post a list of these soon.
Wow. Very insightful. Thanks.

One more thing, will this High Res over USB feature carry forward to the Z1? Or it is a new hardware feature.
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hikashi View Post
Wow. Very insightful. Thanks.

One more thing, will this High Res over USB feature carry forward to the Z1? Or it is a new hardware feature.
I cannot comment on unreleased features, however, this feature is not dependent on the specific hardware in Z2. Generally, backporting new features into older products is always a question of resources.
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by XP-Audio View Post
As product owner for USB Audio in the Z2, I would like to explain about our USB support.

In the 2013 mid- and high-end products (Z, ZL, ZR, Tablet Z, Z Ultra, Z1, Z1 Compact) we support USB Audio from the Android Audio framework, which means that all audio is resampled to 48kHz/16 bits, and mixed in with notifications etc. This means that we have "bit-perfect" reproduction only for tracks with this sample rate originally (and such are not very common) and turn off all system sounds and all sound enhancements (and even then, I cannot guarantee that we are 100% bit-perfect).

In Z2 and T2, however, we have introduced a new mode, "High-res audio over USB", where the audio stream is sent directly to USB after unpacking/decoding (actually, when selected, this applies to all audio data, no only high-res, so internally it is called "Direct" mode).

The only exception is if a DAC does not support a particular sample rate, in which case it is sent to the audio framework in the previous manner - for instance, some DAC's which support 96kHz do not support 88.2kHz, strangely enough.

Anyway, in this feature we support 44.1kHz, 48KHz, 88.2kHz, and 96kHz in either 16 or 24bits using USB Audio Class 1, and also 192kHz and 176.4kHz using USB Audio Class 2 in Asynchronous mode. The file formats can be either WAV or FLAC for lossless compression, or MP3 or AAC (which decompresses to either 44.1 or 48kHz at 16bits). I guess other generic Android audio formats should work too but they are not in scope since I have never seen these at download stores.

One caveat with 192 and 176.4kHz files is that the Android downsampler does not handle more than 96kHz, so if you get such files, they will only play in High-res mode to a capable DAC, not in any other circumstances.

In this mode, since we bypass the mixer, ring signals and notifications etc are not passed to the USB DAC. If you want these in headphones connected to a portable DAC, you will need to turn off HigH-res mode and everything will then work as in the 2013 products.

I will be present in this forum for questions and problem reports when these devices are released. Currently we are testing with a limited number of DAC' and I will post a list of these soon.
Well that's a good point. But how LG G2 (which is marketed to play Hi-Res audio) differs from the Z1?

For the "High-Res Audio over USB" mode on Z2, well, it is still unsure whether Sony will be porting this into the Z1 with the KK upgrade. Right now, what's clear is that USB DAC is supported but with limited audio sampling and frequency.
 
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Tested with Fiio e07. Working great.
 
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Default Compatibility with Z1

Quote:
Originally Posted by raginginferno View Post
I didn't see anyone mention about this here so I thought I post about it in case someone is wondering or is searching about it in the future.

For anyone that is an audiophile or just wants better audio... I have tried a USB DAC with our Xperia Z1 and it works great! As usual you need a USB OTG cable and plug directly to the DAC (or DAC/AMP combo). The USB port does output enough current to power the DAC and even charge it (a little... I don't think the Z1 outputs the full 500mA). Android volume controls also work and it controls it. All audio goes through the DAC and no additional software is needed. I even tried it on CyanogenMod 11 when I had it installed briefly, works just the same!

In my attached pic, the DAC Amp combo is the iBasso D2+ Hj Boa along with Audio-Technica ATH-M50 Headphones. It shouldn't be limited to this DAC. Once you have DAC support confirmation it should generally work with any driverless USB DAC.

And yes the DAC sounds way better than the built in audio. The built in audio chip is okay... but there's no life/fidelity in the audio. And no amount of equalizer can fix that.
Hey there, firstly I have to say I am amazed at the fact I found something online relating Z1's with M50s, so thank you for opening this thread. My question might be a bit off tangent, but I'm currently looking at buying some M50s, and Im sure you know as an Xperia user, the headphone glitch is one of the most frustrating parts about the phone despite it being an amazing device. Do your M50s work with your phone, when plugging them in the standard jack?
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leungerz View Post
Hey there, firstly I have to say I am amazed at the fact I found something online relating Z1's with M50s, so thank you for opening this thread. My question might be a bit off tangent, but I'm currently looking at buying some M50s, and Im sure you know as an Xperia user, the headphone glitch is one of the most frustrating parts about the phone despite it being an amazing device. Do your M50s work with your phone, when plugging them in the standard jack?
Headphones glitch? The only I can think of is if you use like iphone headphones it won't work because it uses the other mic/heaphone standard than the xperias do... is that what you are refering to.

In anycase what you are asking is not related. With any android phone, if you plug in any sort of regular (no mic) headphones the phone audio will go through the heaphones and the voice will be picked up by the mic on the phone. In the Z1 case, the bottom where the external speaker is. So it works just fine (I tested just in case). So if you are going to use it with voice calls, the phone cannot be on your pocket.

Btw side note, I am on cyanogenmod mod (it shouldn't make a difference) but unfortunately cyanogenmod no longer supports USB DAC. Kali mentioned that it screwed up the dock charger so he disabled usb dac support
 
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Default z1 headphone comparability

Quote:
Originally Posted by raginginferno View Post
Headphones glitch? The only I can think of is if you use like iphone headphones it won't work because it uses the other mic/heaphone standard than the xperias do... is that what you are refering to.

In anycase what you are asking is not related. With any android phone, if you plug in any sort of regular (no mic) headphones the phone audio will go through the heaphones and the voice will be picked up by the mic on the phone. In the Z1 case, the bottom where the external speaker is. So it works just fine (I tested just in case). So if you are going to use it with voice calls, the phone cannot be on your pocket.

Btw side note, I am on cyanogenmod mod (it shouldn't make a difference) but unfortunately cyanogenmod no longer supports USB DAC. Kali mentioned that it screwed up the dock charger so he disabled usb dac support
Thanks for the quick reply. I think I get your point, simplifying my question; I just wanna know if when you plug in your M50 standard headset in the normal jack at the top of the phone, audio plays properly. Sorry for the confusion lol. Also when did you get your z1?
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leungerz View Post
Thanks for the quick reply. I think I get your point, simplifying my question; I just wanna know if when you plug in your M50 standard headset in the normal jack at the top of the phone, audio plays properly. Sorry for the confusion lol. Also when did you get your z1?
LOL. That's a lot more simple question. Yes the Ath-M50 works just fine with the Z1 through the heaphone jack.
I got my Z1 in December. One of the first batches available in Canada.
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by XP-Audio View Post
As product owner for USB Audio in the Z2, I would like to explain about our USB support.

In the 2013 mid- and high-end products (Z, ZL, ZR, Tablet Z, Z Ultra, Z1, Z1 Compact) we support USB Audio from the Android Audio framework, which means that all audio is resampled to 48kHz/16 bits, and mixed in with notifications etc. This means that we have "bit-perfect" reproduction only for tracks with this sample rate originally (and such are not very common) and turn off all system sounds and all sound enhancements (and even then, I cannot guarantee that we are 100% bit-perfect).

In Z2 and T2, however, we have introduced a new mode, "High-res audio over USB", where the audio stream is sent directly to USB after unpacking/decoding (actually, when selected, this applies to all audio data, no only high-res, so internally it is called "Direct" mode).

The only exception is if a DAC does not support a particular sample rate, in which case it is sent to the audio framework in the previous manner - for instance, some DAC's which support 96kHz do not support 88.2kHz, strangely enough.

Anyway, in this feature we support 44.1kHz, 48KHz, 88.2kHz, and 96kHz in either 16 or 24bits using USB Audio Class 1, and also 192kHz and 176.4kHz using USB Audio Class 2 in Asynchronous mode. The file formats can be either WAV or FLAC for lossless compression, or MP3 or AAC (which decompresses to either 44.1 or 48kHz at 16bits). I guess other generic Android audio formats should work too but they are not in scope since I have never seen these at download stores.

One caveat with 192 and 176.4kHz files is that the Android downsampler does not handle more than 96kHz, so if you get such files, they will only play in High-res mode to a capable DAC, not in any other circumstances.

In this mode, since we bypass the mixer, ring signals and notifications etc are not passed to the USB DAC. If you want these in headphones connected to a portable DAC, you will need to turn off HigH-res mode and everything will then work as in the 2013 products.

I will be present in this forum for questions and problem reports when these devices are released. Currently we are testing with a limited number of DAC' and I will post a list of these soon.
thank you for the great explanation! this info is exactly what I was looking for. Does this also mean that I can send any audio out through usb? for example, Google Play Music streaming app, will the audio stream to my car's usb port? or does it only support locally saved files on the phone? Thanks!

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