Hiby R2 Digital Audio Player Impressions



The Hiby R2 is the latest entry into the company's lineup of Digital Audio Players (DAP). This also comes in as their lowest cost option at $109 and comes in a tiny form factor. Despite this compact size, it still has a full color touchscreen, internet radio, two-way bluetooth, two-way USB DAC, and Wifi Streaming capabilities with included Tidal and Qobuz apps (as of Dec 10, 2020 with the version 1.1 update).

Hiby Unboxing




Impressions

In general, I find this Hiby R2 to be a great value at this price point for all the features it packs into such a small unit and on the budget price it sells for. There are some areas which I am not totally fond of, mainly:


+ The interface can be snappy at times and not responsive occasionally, though this seems to be improved a lot with the latest software update.

+ Navigating through the menus to do anything requires a lot of clicking through some very small buttons which don't always respond quite as quickly as I'd like.

+ Not a fan of it automatically defaulting to song-by-song list. I prefer to sort by Albums or Artists, as I listen to whole albums at a time.

+ I wish the default playback interface had larger album art work.

+ Qobuz was added this week, however it's quite buggy.



That said, I do think the overall sound is pretty solid for the price. I've used a few other cheaper DAPs in this price range I feel like this one is one of the better sounding from memory. It's not on par with my Lotoo PAW 6K or Cowon P2 Mk2, but better than how I remember the AP80 and AP60s.

The general sound signature is pretty neutral, though I don't think it extends as well as higher tier products, but mostly not noticeable. The main thing that I find that does separate the the higher tier gear and this one is subtle resolution improvements and staging qualities, but that said, I do think the R2 is quite usable and again, and improvement over similarly priced DAPs.




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