Is Pono no more?

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by conjotter, Nov 4, 2016.

  1. rburly

    rburly Forum Resident

    Location:
    Orlando
    Or, No Mo Pono
     
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  2. oneway23

    oneway23 Forum Resident

    Location:
    NY, US
    Why would anyone ever listen to a dead musician? I mean, once they're gone, what they've created is no longer there to be enjoyed, right?

    It is? Oh!

    Company's dead....Product I paid for is still just as incredible...Sort of like a Crazy Horse performance with Danny Whitten...Why would anyone want to listen to one of those anymore? :tiphat:
     
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  3. TonyCzar

    TonyCzar Forum Resident

    Location:
    PhIladelphia, PA
    NSFW?
     
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  4. ThirdBowl

    ThirdBowl Forum Resident

    Location:
    Santa Cruz, CA
    Clear! That's awesome!
     
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  5. dtuck90

    dtuck90 Forum Resident

    Location:
    UK
    My Pono fell out of my locker at work and the 6ft drop caused it to break apart. Just about put it back together and seems to be working at the moment but we will see...
     
  6. KDubATX

    KDubATX Forum Resident

    Location:
    Austin
    I wish my Pono still worked. Mine has been sitting in a drawer for more than a year now. The repair cost was something like $250 and I just could not justify it given how quickly my original Pono started to fail. Technically I think I could still use it with the SD card only, but the on board HD is toast and the battery life is barley enough to play though a single album. I rebounded with a cheap Fiio X1 that I don't like half as much, but was all of $50 on clearence and has held up very well given the price point.
     
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  7. angelo73

    angelo73 Member


    I've heard this prediction before, but I still have every reason to doubt it. I am guessing as long as CDs exist ~ remember, they are designed to outlive the their owners, as long as they are handled and stored properly ~ there will be some company, somewhere, looking to make money off the people who have invested tens of thousands of dollars collecting them and aren't about to just throw them out simply because they're no longer in fashion. Remember in the early 80s when people were saying record players and vinyl will be extinct within 10 years?
     
  8. Colocally

    Colocally Forum Resident

    Location:
    Surrey BC.
    By the way all the no mo, mono jokes were done on the first few pages. ;)
     
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  9. Waymore Lonesome

    Waymore Lonesome Active Member

    I noticed that all too late, to my everlasting shame.

    While we're on the subject, what does everyone think is the best DAC on a portable out there? I got a 4th Gen iPod a year ago (it died on me) but I couldn't even comprehend how good the sound was, to hell with phone audio.
     
  10. Runicen

    Runicen Forum Resident

    With the thing just sitting in a drawer, is it worth trying to source the replacement parts yourself and do some DIY repairs? At the very least, having a functional MicroSD slot would mean replacing the battery would give you a viable player again...


    I can't speak for the best overall, but I've been enjoying Fiio's products. I've used an X3 Gen II and an X5 Gen II is my "daily driver." Great sound and the battery takes me through an 8 hour workday with some wiggle room at the end. The dual MicroSD card slots are also a selling point to me (X5 only).
     
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  11. oneway23

    oneway23 Forum Resident

    Location:
    NY, US
    Hey, Runicen. Love to hear your thoughts on the Fiio X5 as compared to the Pono in terms of sound, ease of use, etc,. Whatever you feel like sharing is appreciated, thanks!
     
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  12. Runicen

    Runicen Forum Resident

    Unfortunately, I've never laid hands or ears on a Pono, so I can't compare.

    I was one of those awful plebes who insisted "you can take my iPod when you pry it from my cold, dead fingers." Then, I fell down the rabbit hole of modding mine and realized that it was actually cheaper to buy a Fiio than to keep modding a 10 or so year old iPod. Once I did a few A/B comparisons, it was time to accept that it was the future.

    But, meanwhile, Pono came and went while I was stubbornly hanging on to old tech, so I can't speak to the sonic differences, unfortunately.

    Now, based on what I've heard, it does sound like the Fiio devices are easier to use than Pono devices and have fewer problems, but some people hate the interface with a burning intensity and some people have gotten faulty units, so it's all a bit of a gamble. At the same time, Fiio is still a going concern as a company and very easy to contact if you have a problem. That gives it a slight edge on Pono in the event of a problem.

    Given the choice and the same price point, Fiio's choice of form facto definitely entices me far more than Pono's. It may seem superficial, but from a "daily driver" perspective, it can be huge. I can't speak to the newest generation models though other than to say that the X5 III gets my inner gear nerd all hot and bothered. All metal bezel and touch screen... :drool:

    I realize this is a bit scatter shot, but that's the best I can offer unless someone wants to put a Pono in my grubby mitts to do some listening comparisons. Also, it's worth noting that my portable listening setup, when I'm not using the line out to feed music to my car stereo, is a pair of Sennheiser HD598s, so I'm not running $2k headphones like some on here.

    Hope that helps - if only a little. If anyone has specific questions about how the Fiio devices I've used function, the interface or whatever, feel free to send them my way.
     
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  13. bmoregnr

    bmoregnr Forum Resident

    Location:
    1060 W.Addison
    I can chime in a little on the X5II and the Pono, but I could probably only provide direct comparisons of them with any fairness via the desktop system. My headphones are Etymotic balanced armature IEMs and the higher output of the Pono seemed to really not work that great with them, so in that sense the X5II worked a lot better. When comparing the two on a NAD D 3020 into some NHT desktop speakers, the X5II would be called very accurate and uncolored, not quite stiff or thin, but certainly compared to the Pono shading more that way with the Pono of course being the Pono, simply more engaging more than any other description. The differences are not necessarily huge mind you; and you appreciate the X5II even in comparison, but while it doesn’t have that Pono engagement in the midrange, it does give you a bit more open/extended top end while never being bright/shrill or overly digital sounding; all in all the x5II is very balanced, neutral, uncolored—some are going to say that is thin and brittle, but I wouldn’t go that far.

    Since then I got Etymotic ER4 XRs, which if you know about Etymotic ER4s, is essentially an improved ER4 driver with a bass boost; but the way it is set up gives you more of a sense of deeper more engaging mid-range and, total balanced wise, maybe a little rolled off on the top; sound familiar? So that pairing shows me you can create a match with an X5ii pushing yourself towards Pono land—given that the X5ii is so neutral I guess—but again nothing seems to be like Pono so far as much as I know anyway.

    As far as usability, UI etc. they both have their quirks, but they are both pretty easy to get used to and live with. Battery life difference, forget about it; plus the 2 cards on an x5ii is really sweet. They are both great players, different flavors no doubt, but given my IEM use the X5ii easily works better for me.
     
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  14. oneway23

    oneway23 Forum Resident

    Location:
    NY, US
    Great impressions, Runicen & bmoregnr! I really appreciate the insights!

    Even though the onboard storage I/O time of my Pono is essentially shot, I've had no issues thus far transferring and listening via microSD, so, I'm definitely not ready to move on from the joy of Pono just yet, but, it is good to occasionally get a sense for what else is out there, aside from A&K, who make players which are, frankly, too rich for Papa Joe's blood. :cheers:
     
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  15. KDubATX

    KDubATX Forum Resident

    Location:
    Austin
    This is true and a big part of why it is still sitting in a drawer. One of these days I will at least change out the battery. Truth is the Fiio X1 has been 'good enough' as my daily travel player that my urgency to get the Pono back into service has been somewhat minimized.
     
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  16. jwb1231970

    jwb1231970 Forum Resident

    Location:
    USA
    Pono a No Go
     
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  17. Waymore Lonesome

    Waymore Lonesome Active Member

    Gee, glad I asked, tremendous responses. I did a bit of research after asking my question, at first I looked on ebay to see if I could get an old ipod, rockboxable of course, but then I started looking into the new players, and the Fiio series was the one that grabbed my eye. I think I'd prefer the non touch screen, non android versions, so up to X5 II but I'm not sure how much I need bluetooth and I'm a little unclear which versions have it or don't have it. I know that X3 III has it but it's not apk2 (is that what it's called), I also know X3 II can play dsd 128 and the X3 III can only play dsd 64.

    I did find one article going through all of the best players, and it had some kind words for Pono, particularly the sound quality for the value.

    I'm kind of tempted to go with a Bassplay purely for the price point, I'm sure the DAC's not comparable to the rest of the field, I assume it's not anyway for the cheap as chips prices, also no bluetooth as far as I'm aware.

    Or maybe I'll sell the yacht and get one of the new iRivers or whatever they're calling themselves these days.
     
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  18. 360-12

    360-12 Well-Known Member

    Pono sells NOS players for $200 + shipping.
     
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  19. Waymore Lonesome

    Waymore Lonesome Active Member

    Mo Pono NOS?
     
  20. 360-12

    360-12 Well-Known Member

    New Old Stock
     
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  21. ccbarr

    ccbarr Forum Resident

    Location:
    Iowa, USA
    Has anyone tried a 400 GB micro SD card in their Pono? Curious to see if they work, I'm using 200GB cards, so I'm assuming they will work. The Pono got a lot of crap, and a lot was deserved, but man does it put out good sound.
     
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  22. oneway23

    oneway23 Forum Resident

    Location:
    NY, US
    Looking on the site, and I see the t-shirts for sale, but, the "player" section appears blank. Do you happen to have a link to where I could buy one, please? Thanks!
     
  23. Nostaljack

    Nostaljack Resident R&B enthusiast

    Location:
    DC metro area
    Pono player | eBay

    Ed
     
  24. dtuck90

    dtuck90 Forum Resident

    Location:
    UK
    Contact phil@ponoMusic.com
     
  25. murch

    murch Member

    Location:
    Toronto
    I recommend the lg v30, it plays lossless hires music through a high quality dac and I think it sounds incredible. And you can make phone calls too :)
     

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