Cayin N6ii Digital Audio Player
Cayin N6ii Digital Audio Player

Cayin N6ii Digital Audio Player with MQA Support

Especially users of the music streaming service TIDAL shall benefit from the fact that the Cayin N6ii Digital Audio Player is now able to play back content encoded in MQA via firmware update.

The Cayin N6ii Digital Audio Player is a particularly exciting portable Hi-res audio player. The outstanding feature of this solution is that the Cayin N6ii Digital Audio Player has an exchangeable audio board, so the user can choose from a quite remarkable range. Depending on the audio board, not only are different output stages and different connection options available, but also different D/A converters are used.

The Cayin T01, for example, has two Texas Instruments PCM1792A DACs and allows signal processing in Linear PCM with up to 24 bits and 192 kHz, but also DSD with up to DSD256. In addition to an unbalanced 3.5 mm stereo mini jack socket, a balanced 4.4 mm 4-pin is available as a further option for headphones, and a 3.5 mm stereo mini jack is also available as a line out.

The Cayin E01 is equipped with a 32 Bit ESS ES9038PRO DAC for a particularly high dynamic range as well as a discrete output stage working in Class A or Class AB, with a 3.5 mm stereo mini jack socket as connection.

The Cayin E02 audio board is similarly designed, but here two ESS Sabre ES9038Q2M DACs in dual-mono operation are used, as well as a discretely balanced Class AB output stage. To fully exploit its potential, this solution has a balanced 4.4 mm 4-pin connector.

In the standard version, the Cayin A01 Audio Motherboard is used, which provides signal processing in Linear PCM with up to 32 Bit and 384 kHz as well as DSD up to DSD256 on a 32 Bit AKM AK4497EQ. An output stage based around Texas Instruments OPA1622XA serves a 4.4 mm 4-pin connector for balanced connection of headphones as well as a 3.5 mm stereo mini-jack connector for headphones.

The player itself uses Google Android 8.1 as operating system and a Qualcomm Snapdragon ARM CPU with 4 GByte RAM. Another special feature is Direct Transport Audio, DTA for short, which completely bypasses the operating system during audio signal processing and thus guarantees bit-perfect playback based on three precise clocks.

The Cayin N6ii Digital Audio Player has an internal memory for audio data of 64 GByte and can be extended by microSD cards.

The player makes contact with the outside world via WiFi, has Bluetooth 4.2 which can be used as receiver and transmitter and supports SBC, AAC, aptX, aptX HD and LDAC. A so-called HiByLink Remote Control is also supported.

In addition to the already mentioned analog audio interfaces, several digital options are available, namely I2S in the form of HDMI Type-C, also known as Mini HDMI, and a USB-C port, with which the player can be used both as DAC and for digital transport. This also allows data transfer to the player and of course the integrated battery is charged via this interface. In addition, a coaxial S/PDIF is hidden here.

Control is of course primarily via the generous 4.2-inch IPS touchscreen display with 768 x 1,280 pixels, and separate buttons on the side are also available to all for playback control. There is also a rotary encoder on the side of the Cayin N6ii Digital Audio Player for the digitally controlled volume control, which takes place on a purely analog level.

The integrated lithium-polymer battery with 5,900 mAh 3.7 V has a playing time of up to 14 hours when using unbalanced headphones and thirteen hours when using balanced headphones. Using Quick Charge 3.0, the battery should be fully charged after only about two hours.

With dimensions of 121 mm in height, 70 mm in width, and 21 mm in depth, the portable Hi-res Audio Player weighs 290 g.

This is an extremely fine portable Hi-res player, which has now been given a further essential feature by a firmware update.

As already mentioned, Google Android 8.1 is used, so that the user can install various streaming services and access them directly, either via WiFi or via a smartphone connected via Bluetooth. This includes TIDAL, of course, although the service also offers content encoded in MQA.

And exactly the decoding of this content in MQA shall now be made possible by means of a firmware update, according to the promise of the company Zhuhai Spark Electronic Equipment Co. Ltd. which is behind the Cayin Audio brand.

We are very excited to bring MQA into our N6ii family because we can install and run TIDAL application on this DAP. Being able to use MQA technology to unfold the full potential of TIDAL Master is a very significant improvement to our users. They can now access to massive choice of studio recording music through our N6ii anytime, anywhere.

Bin Liang, CEO of Zhuhai Spark Electronic Equipment Co. Ltd

The new firmware update is of course offered as an OTA update, but can also be downloaded directly from the manufacturer’s website and then transferred to the player.

The update is of course free of charge for existing customers. The Cayin N6ii Digital Audio Player starts at € 1.460,- equipped with the Cayin A01 board. The price including the Cayin T01 is stated at € 1,498, the Cayin E01 at € 1,558, and the Cayin E02 also at € 1,558.

Getting to the point

Above all, all those who rely on music streaming via the TIDAL service will benefit from the new firmware update for the portable Hi-res audio player from Zhuhai Spark Electronic Equipment Co. Ltd, the Cayin N6ii Digital Audio Player. The new firmware update will allow the decoding of content in MQA, so that recordings made in this way can be presented in full quality.

Manufacturer:Zhuhai Spark Electronic Equipment Co. Ltd.
Distribution:Cayin Audio Distribution GmbH
Price:Cayin N6ii Digital Player with A01 Board € 1.460,-
Cayin N6ii Digital Player with T01 Board € 1.498,-
Cayin N6ii Digital Player with E01 Board € 1.558,-
Cayin N6ii Digital Player with E02 Board € 1.558,-
Cayin E01 Board € 442,-
Cayin E02 Board € 442,-
Cayin T01 Board € 372,-


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