Fiio e17k review: Even though it’s a higher model, the e17k is also older than the Q1. The 17k employs the same DAC chip as the Q1 (PCM 5102) but has a more advanced amplifier section. The USB receiver has also been enhanced to support files with a higher bit depth. The e17k outperforms the Q1 line-out through my JDS Labs Cmoy BB by a large margin in terms of sound quality. It offers several unique capabilities not found on any other AMP/DAC, according to the fit e17k review.
E17k is one of Fiio’s newest and most attractive devices, with a tiny square box and a record format front cover. A few quick specs can use on the back of the box to compare the e17k to other Fiio e17k review models according to the fit e17k review. Despite its simple appearance, the line-up of Fiio e17k review products appears to have a lot of potentials.
The e17k’s accessories, on the other hand, are a big improvement over the Q1 in this area. The e17k and a micro b cable can be seen when the protective interior tray is slid out. Three screen protectors, two mounting bands, a neoprene pouch, an authenticity and instruction booklet, and a 3.5mm connector are included in the package.
Despite the additional functionality, the e17k is a well-thought-out device with a more complicated design but the same dimensions as the Q1. As an alternative to adding extra hardware, Fiio keeps things simple by housing much of the charging functionality within the software. There are a few more steps than Q1’s physical buttons, but the menus are basic, and the most often used features are available from the front buttons.
Because of its flat design, the e17k can be stacked more easily than the flask-like Q1. It is also polished to a similar or better standard than the Q1. The front and rear edges are finished in gloss black and feature a tiny chamfer, which gives the design a retro feel. The chamfers on my e17k had slight scuffing, revealing the underlying aluminum, but the device’s faces showed no signs of wear, which is a good indicator.
While the chamfers of this item are the most susceptible to wear, the brushed-finish faces are surprisingly durable. All of the words have been laser etched onto the aluminum to not fade over time. In front, there’s a little OLED display. It’s black and white and low quality, but it works perfectly for the purpose for which it was designed. I like this black and white colour scheme to the vibrant stained screens on most Chinese DAPs and DACs.
Changes are perfect:
OLED displays are naturally visible in bright light, and I didn’t have any issues using the e17k in the sun over a two-week testing period. The bass boost is effective, and the intervals between changes are perfect. Because it scrolls at 2-second intervals, the +-10 on either side can be difficult to locate. However, the UI is perhaps too simplistic to allow for eQ profiles to be saved.
The front buttons can also switch between USB, AUX, and COX. You’ll see the sampling rate and bit depth at the very top of the screen. A possible issue with this feature is that it’s stuck at 96 kHz 24 bit on my laptop and 44.1 kHz 16 bit on my phone regardless of the file. Thus I’m unsure of its accuracy. An LED that glows blue indicates that it is powered on, and red indicates a low battery level.
Compared to the Q1’s front-mounted light, the Q2’s LED is a lot less invasive at night. There is no pop when plugging in or removing headphones, but there is some crackle and some crackle when the device is turned on and off. Although the Q1 may have a weaker amp, it is silent whether connecting or unplugging and turning the device on or off, according to fit e17k review.
It’s hard to beat the e17k for DAC/AMP sound quality for the money. In terms of value for money, it doesn’t come close to Q1’s incredible value/performance ratio, but there are definite tweaks here and there that offer a substantially stronger audio performance. Although the e17k costs AUD 180, it is still an excellent value for the money, according to Fiio e17k review.
At higher gain settings, the noise level on the e17k did not increase much; however, on the Q1, it went from near-silent to perceptible. Those who use larger gains and less sensitive earbuds will benefit from this, but headphones should not detect any hiss. Compared to the Q1, the bass is richer, but it also has more resolving power, and the mids are more transparent.
An improvement over the Q1 in terms of sound:
Highs are where the e17k has the largest improvement over the Q1 in terms of sound quality. Although the Q1’s sound was a little more rolled off and rougher in comparison to my laptop’s built-in sound card, it was still a noticeable improvement. Even though the soundstage is larger than the Q1, it’s not noticeably so; it’s just an extra stride or two of openness, which benefits image and separation. The timbre has also been enhanced.
Although the drawstring isn’t able to close, it works well as a pouch. The interior of the leather is soft and supple. There is a small sponge in the material, which the ad claims is “shock resistant,” but it won’t protect from a significant drop. It is a great way to keep the brushed finish looking new at a very low cost. Searching for a “QCY pouch” on AliExpress or Banggood will turn up a few sellers with reasonable prices; but, shipping may take up to a month.
While the Fiio e17k review significantly increases over the Q1 when it comes to sound quality, adding in more features, the OLED UI and the higher quality finish make the e17k an even more appealing device. For this reason, I’d rather have the e17k than even the e18 in my collection. The Fiio e17k review significantly improves sound quality over any recent smartphone, even my HTC M8. Every device you use to listen to music can have the same sound.
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