Hey, guys! I’ve got another review for you guys. Sorry I haven’t been posting as much, I’ve been busy with the new job and all. I am truly blessed that I’ve got this opportunity to earn and save up, and buy some stuff of my own, with my own money. And of course, you can definitely expect a review with some of them!
Sometime July, I bought a pair of headphones. I was used to my Audio Technica CKS-55 In-ear Monitors, but I wanted a different experience. So I looked up this seller on Facebook, Power Up Audio, and decided to get the Superlux HD 681 EVO. It’s a very affordable pair of headphones with good sonic qualities. You can read up the review on the headphones here.
Now, the headphones were really good, but playing it straight from my cellphone’s music player was kind of lacking in the volume department. That’s why I decided to get myself a portable headphone amplifier, the FiiO E6 Fujiyama!
Now this little guy is just about the same size as the iPod Shuffle, so that’s your reference with regards to size. This was manufactured by a Chinese company named FiiO, who produces headphone amplifiers and accessories which are affordable, and bang for your buck!
In the past, headphone amplifiers were super expensive, costing upwards of USD 200-300 depending on the brand, but then FiiO came out and challenged all the other brands with their inexpensive offerings which were just as good, if not better.
The FiiO line has several headphone amplifiers, ranging from the E6, E7, E10, E11, E17 and so on and so forth. You can check out the company website here. I got the E6 Fujiyama from PowerUp Audio with the SRP of PHP 1,400.00, which is about USD 35-40. Now, you may think that it just makes your headphones louder. While to some extent, yes, it does make your headphones louder, it also brings out the sound quality that isn’t just all volume, but also with regards to the depth and breadth of the song you’re listening to. More on that later.
It comes in a plastic casing, with the FiiO branding. You can also see a mountain, which I assume to be Mt. Fujiyama. Don’t expect too much from the casing.
I do want to touch up that they offer 1 year warranty from FiiO Philippines, which is pretty cool. You can check out their Facebook page for more information.
The back has the specifications of the amplifier. I wasn’t able to take a picture, but at the sides, there’s this label which you scratch off, and there’s a code, which you input into FiiO’s website to guarantee its authenticity. Coming from a Chinese brand, it just gave a little extra sense of security that the pair I got was definitely legit.
It comes with the amplifier itself and 2 clips to be placed at the back of the amp so you can clip it to your shirt or clothes so it won’t dangle as much.
It also has an instruction manual and these 3 important cords. The one on top is the short male to male jack, then the one in the middle is the longer male to male jack, and the one on the bottom is a USB to mini-USB port, which you use for charging. Just your standard build on these, made out of plastic and rubber wiring.
So, it’s made with all plastic. It doesn’t feel premium, but it is compact and solid. It’s an all black finish, with the FiiO branding in white. That little triangle in the upper right corner is the display of light and where you’ll attach the clip, which I’ll show later.
Sorry if I got all my fingerprints on it. It just has Fujiyama along with other information. There’s also an Out and Input indicator, which is where you will link the amp to your headphones and your media player.
Remember the 2 clips earlier? I placed it inside of the translucent triangle and now it serves as a shirt clip. It looks flimsy, but it’s actually pretty sturdy and it won’t fall loose. The connecting port that says Out (3.5 mm) is where you place the cord of your headphones/earphones, as this is where the music is going out to.
The bottom part has 2 ports, on the left is where you connect the mini-USB to, and the USB port goes in to the PC/laptop or your charger. Charging time is about 2 hours-2 hours and 30 minutes, and that triangle will glow red when it’s charging. When the red indicator light turns off, you know it’s fully charged. On the right is the input port, where you use one of the 2 male to male jacks and attach it to your iPod or Cellphone.
On the left side is the volume adjustment, one press on the + to increase volume, one press on the – to decrease volume. Long press to increase amounts steadily. Very basic.
On the right side is the button to actually turn on the device and make adjustments to the sound mode. You have to press up on the button and hold it for 2-3 seconds to turn it on.
The triangle will turn blue like so if you turn it on. When you press up again for 2-3 seconds, it’ll turn off. It’s very simple. But one thing to note is that when you take off your headphones and player, it won’t automatically turn off, so you have to manually turn it off.
When you press down on the button, it kind of clicks and locks, so you can’t adjust the settings until you press up again.
Now that we’re done with turning it on and off, and locking it, there are 4 sound modes you can get from this little guy. When you press up without holding it, it changes SQ mode, which is seen on this small LED light hole at the back.
By default, when you turn on, it goes back to the setting you last left it. This is the first mode, the flat EQ setting. It tones up the sound evenly, so you can get more juice and volume out of it. Basically, it just brings out the sound more out of the song that’s playing without changing the bass, mid or treble too much. This is my favorite setting, as I really just want to tone up the volume which my cellphone lacks voltage to do so. It’s really good for when you just want higher volume without changing anything.
When you press up again, the LED will turn red. This is the bass booster EQ setting. It adds up a TON of bass on the low end. I thought this would be good for your bass/dubstep music, but it just sounds really muddy. Yes, your bass is boosted a ton, but it really makes the mid and treble hardly audible, and all you hear is the boom of that bass. It’s too much for my taste. Didn’t like it too much, but if all you care about is the bass, maybe you’ll like this option.
When you press up again, you get this shining blue LED option. I call this the Bringout EQ, because it brings out the sound in a colored and fun kind of way. Now, this used to be my favorite setting, as it evenly ups the low end and the top end, so the sound you get is very bright but also defined. It’s a very fun setting, since everything sounds louder and crisper. But it also does kind of get tiring after a while. Your ears get fatigued much quicker with this setting, but it’s good to put it on the songs that need to be brought out more if the default blue option still doesn’t cut it.
When you press up again, you go into the 4th and last mode, the purple EQ. I don’t really know what to say about this setting, I never really used it. All I notice is that it considerably lessens the volume. It’s pretty weird, but that’s what it does. It still sounds good, but at a much lower volume than you’d like. I don’t really know what it’s for, but maybe you can use it when you want good amping but at lower volumes for when you have something to do or you just want to listen at lower volumes.
Now, this is my set-up. As you can see, the input in the bottom jack is connected to my LG Optimus LTE 2 cellphone, with the default media player. This is the input, or where the sound is coming from. The music is then changed up with the amplifier, and then goes out to my headphones, the Superlux HD681 EVO.
All in all, I like the versatility of the FiiO E6 Amp. It won’t cost you an arm and a leg, and you can hear a considerable difference in the volume and quality. You just have to play around with the settings and volume for your range of music. Personally, I like to keep my player at 70-75% volume, and use the amp on the flat setting, and adjust the volume from there. I usually switch up to the blue EQ when I want a more fun sounding sound, and I switch up on back to the flat setting when I just want to get a bit more volume and keep the song sounding flat. I hardly ever use the red EQ, and I don’t ever use the purple EQ.
You get about 9-10 hours of listening before having to charge it up again, which is more than reasonable.
For about PHP 1400-1500, this is a very worthy purchase! It is light, portable, and really packs a punch with a lot of EQ options too. The design build is what you expect, just made out of plastic, and doesn’t feel premium, but it is compact and sturdy. However, there are certain headphones that need more voltage for you to get the most out of it, so other recommendations would be the big brother of this guy, the FiiO E11. It comes out at about PHP 2600 or so. It’s actually much larger, but you get more options and higher voltage out of it. So it’s really up to you. I honestly prefer this guy since it’s much more handy to bring around. But the sound difference is also there, so that’s something to consider.
The quest of finding the ultimate sonic experience is something that has been sort of a joy. There are some people with ears who can’t really tell the difference. I know I’m no audiophile by any means, but I do know good sound when I hear it. I’m real glad that there are affordable products for us to enjoy and help us enjoy our music to the fullest.
Please let me know if you have any questions, and I’ll try to answer it in the comments section.
Until next time,