Hiby R6 PRO II Review: Purple AKM AK4499EX Magic On the Go!

I recently called the Hiby R6 III the “future” of DAPs, complimenting a modern OS and a non potato SOC for device performance. The sound was great and the price was even better. So here we are with a post R6 III release using the same SOC and modern Android 12 OS called the R6 Pro II or R6 P2 as I’ll call it for the rest of the review. I was thrilled when I saw that this new R6 P2 was being released with the newest AKM AK4499EX that I found extremely impressive from the recent Topping E70V review I did. Since Hiby had a good SOC and OS setup from the R6 III, they decided to do a new design for the R6 P2 which not only looks good to my eyes, it also comes in a purple option with a matching purple leather case! As a huge fan of purple, I decided to bite and pick up a R6 P2 out of interest and hopes it might be a better fit for me over the R6 III. The R6 P2 uses a snapdragon 665 SOC, 4GB of RAM, 64GB internal storage and the AKM AK4191+ dual AK4499EX DAC. The R6 P2 comes in at $749.

Looks and Feel

The R6 P2 comes in a new design from Hiby which comes in a little shorter than my iPhone 14 Pro Max. It’s a much thicker device but the width and thickness is about the same as the R6 III. There is some heft to the P2 but it doesn’t feel as bad as some of the flagship DAPs I’ve held in the past. The screen is flat this time and the casing is very unique. They have these waves which an audio friend said looked like the lines in socks and I agree. I do like the way it looks overall though and at certain angles it looks as if the top half of the unit is super thin. The curved angles do make it seem smaller than it is and like the feel in my hand. The P2 is a little more slippery due to the angles however so I do recommend the leather case it comes with. I do wish the purple was a little darker on the unit itself but I like the darker purple leather case so I’m fine with it.

Android performance

This is just gonna be a copy paste from my R6 III review since both had the exact same SOC and hardware config.

“I’m happy to say that a mid range DAP finally has a modern OS with very snappy performance. The R6 III is running Android 12 and is using 4gb of RAM as well as a Snapdragon 665 SOC which really makes this feel like a speed demon compared to even some high end DAPs like the Shanling M6U but at a much cheaper price. I had no real issues with Android outside of some normal here and there OS quirks that show up on custom Android setups. Nothing immersion breaking at all though. This continues to be a very reliable and great experience for my daily use.”

Accessories and unboxing

The R6 P2 comes in a thin but wider box that looks pretty fancy in terms of box art. Inside is the DAP in some foam and under that is the USB-C cable which is a little thicker but feels like good quality. The little sleeve with user manuals, warranty cards and the extra screen protectors sit above the leather case. I always say I would prefer a charging block but it’s common practice for DAPs so I won’t ding the R6 P2 for not having one in the box. Overall a good chunk of goodies and I like that they give you a leather case instead of something like the stiff silicone case included in the cheaper R6 III.


These final impressions were done via Poweramp. This will be what the Hiby R6 P2 sounded like with all the headphones I used. These impressions are also all based on the standard Class AB mode unless otherwise stated. Things like headphone pairings will produce different results and impressions vs what my ears hear on my specific gear.

I found the R6 P2 sound signature to be more neutral sounding but more dynamic in a way and not the standard “boring” type of neutral. The R6 III had a bright-neutral sound signature and while I’ve been used to warmer sounding Hiby DAPs, the R6 P2 wasn’t what I would call tilted towards a warm or bright sound signature. The bass is strong but only when called for. It is extremely accurate so when something calls for impact, it produces a very deep impact and it lingers just long enough to give a sense of space down low. Mid bass is accurate and never sounds boomy. The mids are fast yet lack any added sharpness which makes instruments sound more natural and the details are very good here. The vocals are really nice and are a little more intimate and closer to the ear than I like but they do bring in better detail this way. I wouldn’t call vocals the highlight but it does the job well enough given the price. Upper mids are accurate and mostly flat. I don’t pick up any extra spice on some of my strong upper mid IEMs which I personally prefer. The treble is really sharp and fast. It pulls in really good detail but doesn’t sound artificial or metallic. Even with the fast decay, it still doesn’t sound bright or splashy which is why I’m calling the sound signature overall neutral. I really don’t like neutral sound signatures since most neutral DAPs sound flat and tend to be boring to my ears. The R6 P2 implements the AK4499EX really well here and I like this “dynamic” neutral sound quite a bit.

I did find on certain IEMs that the Class A mode did provide just a bit more presence to the overall sound and may have a hair more bass impact. The most noticeable difference was the bass impact when using class A mode on full size headphones which I'll mention a little more later on.

Filters and fun features

The standard AKM filters are all here and I couldn't tell the difference on any of them minus the “low dispersion short delay” which sounded a little more compressed to my ears whenever I switched to it. I left it on the stock “Sharp roll-off” for the whole review.


Staging is actually wider and deeper and that was the first thing I noticed after moving from my R6 III to the R6 P2. There is a better sense of space overall and while the closer vocals can sound a little strange with a lot of stuff happening in the distance, I do like the way this sounds. It’s darn close to my desktop setup in terms of staging. Imaging was fine but I don’t ever run into imaging issues on modern source gear. I believe that is more of an IEM/headphone thing.

Battery life and heat levels

Battery life on the R6 III was very impressive at 12 hours from the 4.4mm jack. The battery life isn’t wonderful here on the R6 P2 unfortunately. They give an overall rating of 8H from 3.5mm and 7H from 4.4mm on Class A/B mode. Running Class A will get you 6H/5H from the same 3.5/4.4 jacks. This is more than likely from low gain and that’s how I tested for battery life. I ran two of my daily driver IEMs and grabbed a rough estimate from most of my 9 hour workday using the DAP as much as possible throughout my shift. I got darn close to the battery ratings they mentioned and exceeded the ranges a little bit on some days. I think running on high gain will really drain the battery on this thing and I would call this a DAP for shorter trips if you can’t charge in between listening sessions. I do set the max charge to 90% since I hope it will help with long term battery life capacity. I will mention that while one can simply charge the device during playback, the charging does add unwanted heat to the DAP so it will be extra toasty should you fast charge the R6 P2 while using it on long sessions.

When it comes to the heat situation, the R6 P2 does get warm from normal use and it’s noticeable when in a front pocket for longer than 20-30 min. I would say it's on the cooler side of some of the ~$1K DAPs I’ve tried. When it’s in Class A mode, it does get very hot and on the edge for comfort in a mobile “in pocket” use for me personally. I don’t really use this or the R6 III in Class A mode often though. If you plan to run the R6 P2 as hard as possible and in Class A mode, be prepared for some heat.

Bluetooth/Wired connectivity

I noticed no difference in bluetooth performance from the R6 III so same copy paste here.

“I didn’t really run a bunch of bluetooth headphones off the R6 III as I don’t really use bluetooth on my DAPs and I tend to use Airpods Pro 2 with my iPhone only when I know I need to take a call and stay hands free. I don’t normally use bluetooth on my DAPs and use airpods pro 2 on my iPhone if I need wireless playback. I did check range on LDAC and I had no issues at arms length which is normally the max range most LDAC stuff works in my experience without connection issues.”

As for wired performance. Using the headphone jacks was the way to go for the best sound performance overall. Now onto maybe something a little different, I did use the R6 P2 as a portable DAC/amp for my Macbook Pro to see how it did as a DAP and dedicated portable DAC/amp for another source. I was very happy that the time to get the R6 P2 into DAC mode was very quick with little steps and they give you easy access to features like low and high gain. The R6 P2 easily hit 768 kHz sample rate but I couldn’t get it to produce the claimed 1536 kHz sample rate it can do. I wasn’t able to get Roon or Audirvana to play at the max sample rates but that might be app issues more than the device itself. There was some extra heat at 768kHz but I see no issue with that since the R6 III will probably be used in DAC/amp mode near the source device.

Personal grips with the R6 P2?

I do have a complaint about the R6 P2 but I was able to fix the issue by using the leather case and modding it a little. You can check the R6 P2 forum if you want to see how I solved that issue. Outside of the one design issue I’ll talk about in a moment, I don’t have any other complaints outside of the battery life issues once might run into driving power hungry full size cans.

I don’t like the button layout and they have the track changing/pause buttons on the left side and the volume and power button on the right side all at the same height on both sides. So initially I was pressing the track pause or next track buttons whenever I wanted to adjust volume while holding the R6 P2 in one hand. I then threw it in the case but the plastic buttons inside the case caused me to switch tracks whenever I picked the unit up off the table. It was fairly irritating since the R6 III keeps the buttons up high and out of the way. I think placement could have been better but with my lightly modded leather case, I have zero issues now. This isn’t an end of world issue but something to keep an eye out for depending on your use case.

Single ended and balanced power output

Power output is kinda mediocre when it comes to the on paper numbers. We get 125mW from the single ended 3.5mm jack and 383mW from the balanced 4.4mm jack. The R6 III funny enough has the same single ended performance but gets 405mW out of its balanced jack. Hiby does a great job at defending its lower power output due to the implementation of the AKM DAC design. Whether or not this is true or not, I can say it can power all my IEMs on low gain just fine and the sound quality provided by the R6 P2 is extremely close to desktop levels of sound quality for at least IEMs. It does struggle with full size headphones but its a lack of bass impact/slam and mid bass leanness that I mostly notice. The Class A mode does seem to help with the lack of slam though but I would say a bigger and hotter DAP is gonna be required to really get the best out of power hungry full size headphones.

IEM pairing opinions

Moondrop Variations

The Variations are normally my daily drivers at work when I know I’ll be able to use IEMs for a longer period of time. I was very happy at the result of this pairing. The bass is already strong overall on the Variations but when something called for bass impact, it delivered! I was quite surprised at first how clean yet strong the bass impact was when I went through my list of test tracks. The mids are pretty accurate and sound very detailed. The vocals do sound a little more neutral and maybe a little boring on this specific pairing. Good sense of presence and naturalness. Upper mids stay in good control here and I found the lack of added upper mids to make the Variations sound a little more V shaped with this pairing. The treble was sharp and accurate and the Variations were able to bring in good details without sounding splashy. Staging was wider with this pairing and overall I really liked this pairing.


The Monarch MKII isn’t my favorite IEM but I find it's a little more of a bright neutral IEM to my ears so I wanted to see how it performed here. Lows come through with a good warmth and it does well with impact and slam. The mids are on the leaner side and have a hint of artificial sound but still pretty good. The vocals are really nice here and there is a good sense of presence in the track. The upper mids are on the brighter side but the R6 P2 does well to control it here. It still sounds sharp but it lacks the brighter zing I hear on other setups. Same thing with the treble. Sharp, detailed and well controlled. Staging is about average with this set. I do feel it pairs a little better on a good desktop setup overall. 

Letshuoer Cadenza 12

My current all time favorite “all rounder” TOTL from Letshuoer pairs extremely well with the R6 P2 and it does benefit a little from the Class A mode. Bass comes in really strong when called for, the mid bass sounds a little cleaner and better controlled. The mids are laser accurate and present well. The vocals are wonderful and sound both accurate and give a sense of life to them with this pairing. The accurate and neutral upper mids means the C12 was able to bring good details without sounding too sibilant. The treble was fast and super enjoyable. This has been my favorite pairing for the Cadenza 12 next to my desktop setup. Class A did provide a slight wider sense of staging. Which in turn made imaging seem better to my ears.

Over ear pairing

Sennheiser HD560S

The HD560S is the only full size can in my personal inventory at the moment and I keep it around as a higher ohm test headphone. The HD560 does sound fairly good on this pairing. The lows are still the lacking part but I believe this to be a portable DAP issue across the board under $1k. It just doesn’t get enough power to the 560S to really give it the same low end thump and fullness I get from a decent desktop setup. Using Class A mode does actually help a little with this but it still sounds a little lean for my tastes. The mids are still very smooth and have very good detail. The upper mids and treble are still super sharp and pull in good detail retrieval as well with this pairing. Overall a good pairing and while not quite the same level as a desktop setup around the same price as the R6 P2, very serviceable for sure.

DAC/Amp comparison

Eversolo DAC-Z8/SMSL SP400 Stack

Does the R6 P2 compete with my trusty desktop stack? Yes! It actually gets decently close. The obvious trade-offs are that the higher heat and lower battery life are required to get the R6 P2 close to desktop levels of audio performance. The desktop stack I use does simply sound better overall when it comes to detail and resolution but it’s a heavy dedicated desktop setup and I honestly like having the portability on the go. Especially at work when I know I can listen to IEMs in my cube without sacrificing space and risking something getting stolen. Easy to bring the R6 P2 with me vs bringing a high end portable DAC/amp and busting out my MacBook Pro. 

Hiby R6 III

Both the R6 III and R6 P2 go for different sound signatures and both have their positives and negatives. I Find the R6 III sounds bright-neutral and the R6 P2 has a more neutral overall sound signature. The biggest things will be the DAC implementations on both DAPs. The R6 III has an older ESS flagship DAC and is a more power efficient DAP so it has better battery life and less heat issues when used in a pocket scenario. The R6 P2 goes for a newer AKM flagship and they focused on sound performance so it's a less efficient overall package and it has less battery life and produces more heat than the R6 III. So Which do I prefer? As a seasoned DAP user, I like the R6 P2 quite a bit. For new DAP owners, I would still recommend the R6 III though. Mostly due to its efficiency which results in a battery life and less heat produced. I believe it’s an awesome price and will make for a better first time experience. For the seasoned DAP owners or those who are ready for less battery and more heat, I would say the R6 P2 is a real winner and worth a look.

Shangling M6 Ultra

The M6 Ultra goes for a neutral tuning just like the R6 P2 but I complained it was a little too neutral and sounded pretty boring. Very accurate but not overly exciting. Both DAPs get toasty on longer sessions but the M6U does get an additional 2 hours of battery life and about double the balanced output power so it’s a little better for full size headphones. It however gets way hotter than the R6 P2 on longer sessions and the R6 P2 uses a newer OS so it is a little better future proofed. I do actually like both but I do prefer the newer R6 P2 just a bit more. Plus, I can get the R6 P2 in purple! We have the M6U in their dark green color and it's wonderful to look at as well. Both are awesome DAPs and you can’t go wrong either way.

Overall thoughts

I think Hiby really hit it out of the park with the R6 P2. While it does suffer from a shorter battery life and power output to intensive full size headphones. It still manages to do everything extremely well and punches above its price tag IMO! I still think the R6 III is another great mid range DAP and my continued recommendation for new DAP owners but I find the R6 P2 tries to reach up a price bracket in sound quality and performance. Which I think will vibe well with seasoned DAP users. A big win in my book and the R6 Pro II is an easy recommendation! I’m happy that modern OS/Faster SOC DAPs are hitting the market and I think the competition will really heat up in the coming months. The R6 P2 however is my new favorite DAP and I think it will stay in my rotation for a long time. Great job to the team at Hiby and I look forward to what they come up with next! Thanks for reading!!!