The FiiO Q3 is the company’s latest portable DAC / Amp model and a mid-range model between Q1 Mark 2 and Q5S. The highlight of this THX Balanced Portable digital to analog audio converter is that the amplifier circuit uses THX’s amp module, THX AAA-28. The use of the THX AAA’s amp module is aimed at reducing the amplifier’s linearity and distortion.
On FiiO Q3 there are also 3 headphone output ports, including 1 single-ended 3.5mm port and 2 balanced 2.5mm and 4.4mm ports. The power rating of the 3.5mm port is 160 mW at 32 Ohm and 325 mW at 32 Ohm.
In terms of decoding the Q3 uses an AKM decoder chip AK4462 (upgraded version of AKM4452 inside Q1 Mk2) which comes with an XMOS XUF208 receiver chip to be able to decode formats like DSD 512 and PCM 32bit / 768kHz.
A new feature of FiiO Q3 is the use of a USB-C connection, and in the FiiO product set also gives users a USB-C to USB-C cable to connect to Android phones and a Lightning to USB C cable to connect to iPhone.
The design of the Q3 USB DAC is also quite similar to FiiO Q1 mk2 with a CNC aluminum cover, but the upper surface has three headphone output ports compared to only 2 ports on Q1 mk2. On the bottom side, there will be a Gain adjustment, Bass Boost, and a charging switch so you can only use the battery without using the power from your phone or computer.
The battery capacity of FiiO Q3 is 1800mAh, you can use Q3 continuously for more than 8 hours.
FiiO Q3 price and availability
Earlier this year, FiiO has announced the BTR3K (REVIEW) Bluetooth stereo receiver at a significantly cheaper price and a comprehensive upgrade with the DUAL Bluetooth DAC design, which upgrades the USB DAC chip to the latest generation of AKM with the 3.5mm and 2.5mm balanced outputs.