The FiiO (I haven't heard the E5 mind, but I have the E3) adds bass and rolls off the treble, making the sound a little darker. So clarity settings would counter-act this, I guess
Its not that one sounds is better or worse, just a matter of personal taste.
Although it seems unlikely it really is true line out, because sound straight from a DAC shouldn't have effects / EQs & stuff on it, MP3 player circuits are realistically much more complicated than a simple MP3 > DAC > AMP set up. Difference chips serve multiple functions, DACs have amps built in, and all kinds of crazy crap!
Oh, IMHO -
Sansa Clip (no eq) better Sammy P3 > No DSNe > Headphone Out
Sansa Clip (no eq) equals Sammy P3 > DSNe on > Headphone Out
Sansa Clip (no eq) equals Sammy P3 > No DSNe > LOD > Basic Headphone Amp
Sansa Clip (no eq) worse Sammy P3 > DSNe on > LOD > Basic Headphone Amp
Sansa Clip (no eq) worse Sammy P3 > DSNe on > Headphone Out
Sansa Clip (no eq) worse Sammy P3 > No DSNe > LOD > Good Headphone Amp
Sansa Clip (EQ on) worse than all above combo's (Clips EQ sucks!)
I gave my Sansa Clip to my g/f. I still use it occasionally, its a great little player. YMMV of course.
Samsung YP-P3 > LOD > Cmoy > Phonak Audeo PFE / Grado SR60i / ATH-AD900
Broke, Sold or Given Away - A couple of iPods, Gigabeat S30, Cowon D2, Creative ZWM, Clip, KSC75, Super.Fi 3
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