This is FiiO M3K, FiiO’s latest portable music player. Let’s have a look.
The FiiO M3K is clearly targeting those music lovers, who are willing to step into the world of DSD. Well, FiiO M3K has a very appealing price tag, with the ability to play DSD files, which is a huge deal. But before we dive into the details, let’s see what have we got in the box.
FiiO M3K Unboxed
Inside the box, we got the FiiO M3K itself, a micro USB cable for data transfer and charging, and the usual paperwork. The player comes, with a pre-applied rubber case, which has a really nice, smooth touch. This is a very welcome step by FiiO, thumbs up for that. The housing of the player is made fully out of aluminium. The navigation is fully touch-based, very responsive and almost a little bit too sensitive.
Now let’s talk about the ports. On the button, we have the micro USB, for charging and data transfer, the microSD card slot, and a standard 3.5mm headphone audio jack connector.
The device is capable to work not just as a music player, but also as a portable DAC, just like an external sound card. Just allow it in the settings and enable DAC mode, and you are good to go. By default, it is set as storage mode, so easy file transfer from your computer, or even from your phone. Yes, you can transfer music from your phone as well. Pretty neat feature! Thumbs up for that as well!
Before I went deep enough to the controls and setting, I did a full system update. The method of the update is quite simple. I had to download one file from the official support page, copy it to the MicroSD card, and power up the device while holding the power and volume up button. The device unzips the whole firmware package and updates itself. Pretty straightforward.
Menu and navigation
The menu is logically well built, and easy to navigate in it. The FiiO M3K is capable to play most of the standard audio formats, from WAV, MP3 and FLAC to DSD64. Sadly no DSD128 support, but keep in mind this is an entry level Hi-RES audio player. Besides playback, it is also capable to record audio, which can be really handy for students to record lessons, or take voice notes. The record is compressed with MP3, with a reasonably good quality.
Speaking of sound quality, let’s talk about that. For the best possible sound reproduction, I used the FiiO FH1, and I have to say the sound reproduction was clearly the next step from any mobile phone, or MP3 player I ever tested. I am nowhere near to any audio expert, but to try to compare between different audio types, I copied 3 different one to the player. Earlier I have experienced what a FLAC file can represent but never heard any DSD file. Until now. Between the 3 types, every step was a very nice leap, a huge from MP3 to FLAC, and a slightly big step from FLAC to DSD.
Playback is smooth, and reasonable fast, altho if you already playing a DSD file, you might find some slowdown if you try to navigate in the menu, so before you do so, make sure to pause the song. Other small issues, is I was not able to see the cover of the DSD song during playback, only when the screen lock was active. The dedicated play/pause button also works as a multifunctional “enter” key, and not a specific sound control button which is quite strange. If you are not in the dedicated music playback zone, the button simply enters or accept any menu setting, and not works as a specific music control button. If you lock down the screen it will work as a play/pause button. I am pretty sure these will be fixed in the next firmware updates for sure, yet I think it is worth to mention.
Anyway, I am really pleased and happy that FiiO made available such a great music playback device at this price range, so casual music lovers can also enjoy and enter the world of DSD files.ű
|CPU operating frequency||1GHz|
|Chips used||SoC: Ingenic X1000/E|
|Output power 1||≥42mW（16Ω / THD+N＜1%)|
|Output power 2||≥25mW（32Ω /THD+N＜1%)|
（Charging/Data transfer/OTG/USB DAC
|Volume control||60 steps digital potentiometer|
|Battery capacity||1100mAh Li-polymer battery|
APE(Fast): 192 kHz/24 bit
APE(Normal): 96 kHz/24 bit
APE (High): 96 kHz/24 bit
FLAC: 192 kHz/24 bit
WAV: 384 kHz/32 bit
Aiff：192 kHz/24 bit
Aif:192 kHz/24 bit
WMA Lossless: 48 kHz/24 bit
Apple Lossless: 192 kHz/24 bit