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FiiO K11 R2R Desktop Headphone Amplifier with Four-channel Fully Differential 24 Bit R2R DAC

The new FiiO K11 R2R desktop headphone amplifier from FiiO Electronics Technology Co. Ltd. features a particularly sophisticated signal conversion system, namely a four-channel fully differential 24-bit R2R DAC, which is designed to ensure that this headphone amplifier with integrated D/A converter delivers an especially accurate performance.

Story Highlights
  • FiiO Electronics Technology Co. Ltd. is presenting the new FiiO K11 R2R Desktop Headphone Amplifier with Four-channel Fully Differential 24 Bit R2R DAC for the first time.

In September last year, the Chinese specialist in personal audio devices and desktop audio, FiiO Electronics Technology Co. Ltd., presented the FiiO K11 Desktop DAC and Headphone Amplifier, a solution from the FiiO K Series that was intended to be a versatile tool for optimising the control of headphones at an attractive price. Based on this solution, FiiO Electronics Technology Co. Ltd. is now presenting the new FiiO K11 R2R Desktop Headphone Amplifier, which relies on particularly sophisticated signal processing.

As the name suggests, a four-channel fully differential 24-bit R2R DAC is used here, a so-called resistor-to-resistor DAC that is said to provide a particularly smooth, natural sound.

Building on the success of the FiiO K11 Desktop DAC and Headphone Amplifier

As already mentioned, the new FiiO K11 R2R Desktop Headphone Amplifier is based on the FiiO K11 Desktop DAC and Headphone Amplifier, which was launched last autumn and has proven to be a great success for FiiO Electronics Technology Co. Ltd.

It will come as no surprise that this is due primarily to the excellent price-performance ratio, and it is equally unsurprising that the new FiiO K11 R2R Desktop Headphone Amplifier also offers such a good price-performance ratio.

Elegant and compact

The compact design of the FiiO K11 R2R Desktop Headphone Amplifier, with dimensions of 147 x 133 x 32.3 mm and a weight of 420 g, is sure to impress many users, as this solution can easily be placed anywhere. Since the company has once again relied on an elegant design, and in addition to the black and silver versions, a chic red variant is also being announced, there is no need to hide the FiiO K11 R2R Desktop Headphone Amplifier.

The front is adorned with a 1.1-inch LCD VA segment display and a rotary encoder, and in addition to a 6.3 mm stereo jack, a 4.4 mm Pentaconn is also available here.
All other connections are located on the back, in the form of a USB-C port for direct connection to a PC or Mac, as well as a coaxial and optical S/PDIF interface as additional digital inputs.

The new FiiO K11 R2R Desktop Headphone Amplifier can output signals via a coaxial S/PDIF interface, and a pair of RCA jacks is also available as an analogue output.

Four-channel fully differential 24-bit R2R DAC

In the K11 R2R, the audio signal is processed by a GD32F303RET6 32-bit ARM Cortex M4 processor from GigaDevice Semiconductor Inc. After decoding, it is passed on to the four-channel fully differential 24-bit R2R DAC. It then passes through two Texas Instruments OPA1642 operational amplifiers for low-pass filtering and single-ended analogue signal conversion before being passed on to the electronic four-channel electronic volume controller NJW1195A from Nisshinbo Micro Devices Inc. for precise volume control.

The output stage is built with two SGM8262 op-amps from SG Micro Corp. so that both an unbalanced and a balanced signal are available at the same time.

Non-oversampling or oversampling

The D/A converter offers two options: you can either use oversampling or not. The manufacturer speaks of NOS mode and OS mode, i.e. non-oversampling or oversampling, whereby in the latter case signals can be upscaled to 32 bits and 384 kHz.

For the sake of completeness, it should be explicitly stated that the new FiiO K11 R2R desktop headphone amplifier can process signals in Linear PCM with up to 32 bits and 384 kHz, as well as DSD up to DSD256, although this of course only applies to the USB-C port and thus directly from a PC or Mac. The coaxial S/PDIF is limited to Linear PCM and 24 bits and 192 kHz, and the optical S/PDIF is limited to just 24 bits and 96 kHz.

Power Out, Pre Out or Line Out

As already mentioned, the FiiO K11 R2R Desktop Headphone Amplifier has a pair of RCA sockets on the back that support three operating modes. In addition to the Power Out Mode (PO), there is a Pre Out Mode and a Line Out Mode, which can be easily switched between to enable use in a wide range of configurations.

Once selected, these PO/PRE/LO modes store the last volume setting in each mode independently, so that the volume does not have to be readjusted when switching between modes.

Smart control with just one rotary encoder

The control dial on the front, in combination with the display, is designed to make controlling all functions particularly easy. The control dial is used to switch the device on and off, to control the volume and also to control the menu.

It should also be mentioned that an RGB LED shines in different colours depending on the resolution of the input signal. The user can vary the intensity or deactivate the LED completely. However, a specific colour can also be activated as illumination, and light patterns are also available.

Prices and availability

The new FiiO K11 R2R desktop headphone amplifier is available now from specialist retailers in Obsidian Black and Midnight Silver. A red version is also due to be available later in the year. The manufacturer’s recommended retail price is € 169,-.

Getting to the point

Building on the success of the FiiO K11 Desktop DAC and Headphone Amplifier, FiiO Electronics Technology Co. Ltd. is now looking to score points with the new FiiO K11 R2R Desktop Headphone Amplifier, which is also a fine D/A converter and headphone amplifier that can also be used as a preamplifier in the field of desktop audio. A special feature here is the D/A conversion, which is based on a four-channel fully differential 24-bit R2R DAC and is designed to provide a particularly smooth, natural sound.

PRODUCTFiiO K11 R2R Desktop Headphone Amplifier
Price€ 169,-
BrandFiiO
ManufacturerFiiO Electronics Technology Co. Ltd.
DistributionNT Global Distribution GmbH
More about this manufacturer at HIFI BLOG
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Michael Holzinger

Michael Holzinger, founder and editor-in-chief of HiFi BLOG and sempre-audio.at, has been working for years as a journalist in the fields of IT, photography, telecommunications and consumer electronics.

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