Posted 20 hours ago

Cayin RU6 USB DAC Headphone Amplifier

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Joined in 2023

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The RU6 is not just a USB-C OTG device for smartphones, it is also compatible as a DAC/AMP for Windows 7/8/8. One that preserves a tube-like musical quality but with much finer volume control and packed within a favorable form factor. The Oversampling mode made the sound closer to a Delta Sigma DAC with less treble roll-off, and more precise edges and a slightly quicker transient response.

High Precision Resistor Array Volume Control is implemented and I can attest this being one of the most refined volume steps adjustment that I have ever tested so far with Dongles. PROS: R-2R discrete resistor DAC design (the first R-2R portable usb dac dongle), natural analog tonality with a resolving sound, NOS implementation, Resistor Array volume control, 3. I was so satisfied by the RU6 that I immediately started choosing a big R2R dac and got the Ares II. And finally, if anything, in NOS mode, the treble is slight rolled-off, and also the presentation can come across as overly smooth and perhaps too rounded for some who like more precision details and edges, and fast transients.On the high sensitivity speakers I far prefer the Cayin RU6 + Jitterbug combination to other DACs I have such as a Bifrost Multibit, Modi Multibit, Topping E30, and Dragonfly Red. I have found my preferred tips to be the darker pack-in tips, which resemble (or actually ARE) Symbio Peels. In the portable music world, Cayin is well known brand that offers product range from the budget N3 Pro up to the flagship N8 with the N6ii sitting in the middle. I’m sure most are aware of the R-2R DAC movement but for those that aren’t, these DACs differ entirely to those widely adopted on the market such as AKM and ESS, commonly dubbed Sigma-Delta DACs.

USB-C connection offers compatibility with a wide range of phones, consumer electronics and computers. The only regret for me is that RU6 is a bit power hungry, like 1 hour with it from my Note 10+ is equal to -10%.Another thing to note, RU6 doesn’t have a fully balanced design since there is no room for all the components. I felt like an audio buffer setting would have fixed this but the Roon Remote app on ChromeOS did not have a feature for this. On the screen, displays the current volume number, gain level, sampling type, and the bitrate of the current audio playback. When off-the-shelf volume options didn't meet the high precision, low noise, and low power consumption requirements of the RU6, Cayin developed their own discrete resistor array volume control.

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