Fiio X5 3rd Gen Review: Luxury Hi-res Player with WiFi

The Fiio X5 3rd Gen Hi-Res Lossless Music Player sits at the top of the range, offering expansive, reference-grade performance and a sense of drive like no other. With the price in US is about $399.99 and £389.00 in UK, we have a “Hires + Android phone” easy to handle, easy to operate and use, many new features, good hardware quality with DAC system.

Fiio X5 3rd Gen

Finally, key improvements over the old X5 include a complete redesign all-metal body, quite similar to AK380, and new and improved internal components. We take a look at the new Fiio X5 3rd Gen review below.

Design

The previous-generation Fiio X5 rocked a click-wheel and an old-school look, while the Fiio X5 3rd Gen is no where close to that. Taking design cues from the older sibling, the X7, it features a 3.97-inch IPS TFT touchscreen display with 480 x 800 resolution and 233ppi pixel density. The screen has good display quality, a relatively wide viewing angle, and a comparable color.

Fiio X5 3rd Gen Review

A wheel still makes its way on here in the form of the volume knob. The body is an all aluminum chassis that feels robust and needless to say, gives the player a more premium feel. The build here is tank-like and the beautiful finish, Fiio tells us, is achieved because the body is made of specially selected No.180 zirconium sand.

Specifications

The innards get updates too. With two top-of-the-line AKM AK4490EN DACs taking up duty for each channel. These are 32bit / 768kHz units that support PCM and DSD formats. There are two separate crystal oscillators thrown in as well for different sampling rates, which should help reduce jitter and improve clock accuracy by quite a bit while sampling rate conversions.

Fiio x5 3rd generation

The Fiio x5 3rd generation is powered by Rockship RK3188 quad-core processor with 1GB of RAM and 32GB of internal storage, paired with dual microSD slots which each support cards of up to 256GB. This makes it possible to have a substantial 512GB of storage space on the device. It sports USB 2.0 connectivity for data transfer and charging; 3.5mm headphones out, 2.5mm balanced output, coaxial out and line out sockets.

It offers a host of connectivity options. You can use it in your car (it has an ‘In-Vehicle’ mode) or connect it to your computer and use it as a DAC as well. There is WiFi and Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity for online music for those who streaming music online.

Interface and Software

New is the interface and software, the Fiio X5 3rd Gen comes with the refreshed Android 5.1 Lollipop-based interface, should be very easy to operate. It has two customizable modes, one that lets you directly access the music player and the other allows you to use it like an Android device.

Fiio x5 3rd generation review

Each option has certain strengths in terms of user experience and listening experience. Of course, in pure music player mode, all wireless connections are disabled and minimizing interference effects. We have quite a variety of music playback interfaces, including pretty VU clocks. The management functions, scan music library, relatively works good and fast feedback.

In Android mode, users can use online music services by installing third-party applications. Of course, quality is no longer “pure” anymore. However, This is a worth mention point for you to love this hi-res music player, like the device has so many functions.

Sound

In terms of sound quality, we load it up with different lossless quality, from 16, 24, 32 bit to DSD and have a listen. It is clear from the start that this is a more matured player compared with the previous model.

The bass is well controlled and you don’t get that extra dollop of it that you used to with the previous generation Fiio X5. The vocals are full of detail and the singer’s voice pierced through with utmost emotion.

Fiio x5 3rd gen UK

You can also try few built-in effects, but decided to keep it off for the most natural sound. The Fiio X5 3rd Gen does a great job of even in fast pace music and every note is presented well and can be clearly distinguished.

Fiio claims that the device will run for over 10 hours on a full charge. We got an average of about 10 hours of run time on a full charge, but this involved constant use of the display with full brightness, but you should get more juice at lower screen brightness, resolution, turn off WiFi, and Bluetooth.

Final line

If budget is no bar, then the Fiio X5 3rd Gen music player nails the performance and is probably one of the better players Fiio has to offer in terms of value for money. A big step up from the previous generation players, not only in terms of aesthetics, but also musicality and overall definition and body.

Actually, we have a pure Hi-res music player + Android OS which works quite well. However, it will give you an all-round musical experience that cannot be matched. And as Fiio says, this one’s made for music and happy. Whatever that means.

About Ankeet Solanki

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