The overall sound performance of the FiiO Q7 is beyond its own price. Although it is a product derived from the FiiO M17, a very good listening experience can also be obtained by combining it. With excellent sound quality, strong sound driving force and rich combination solutions, FiiO Q7 will become the absolute flagship product in the FiiO Q series.
FiiO Q7 specs and features:
- Qualcomm QCC5124 with LDAC/AAC/aptX adaptive
- ES9038Pro DAC chip
- 3000mW output power
- 1.3-inch 240*240 display
- 9200mAh capacity battery
- $750 – Check latest price on AliExpress (Official Store)
01/ Appearance & Interface
The size of FiiO Q7 is similar to that of FiiO M17, the official data is 158.4×88.5×28.3mm, and the weight is about 620g. In terms of workmanship and materials, the whole body of FiiO Q7 is made of metal. The tough body lines and the RGB ambient lights (cooling holes) on both sides can indicate the current audio source format when playing music.
Since there is no smart system, the front of the FiiO Q7 does not have a large touch screen like the FiiO M17. Instead, the CNC process is used for linear processing, and a whole glass cover is placed in the middle as a symbolic decoration. The above is a 1.3-inch color display, which is convenient for users to understand the current working status of the headphone amp more intuitively. This small display design has also appeared on the FiiO BTR7, and it is very helpful for daily use. Below is the Hi-Res Audio dual certification mark that HiFi enthusiasts believe in.
In terms of buttons and interfaces, FiiO Q7 and FiiO M17 are basically the same. The top is equipped with a 3.5mm single-ended port, a 2.5mm balanced port, a 4.4mm balanced port and a 6.35mm single-ended port. The 4.4mm and 3.5mm specification interfaces support line output. Compared with the FiiO M17, the volume knob has been replaced with gold, which looks more visually focused. In addition, the volume knob of FiiO Q7 is also given the function of pressing, which also enables the volume knob not only to rotate to adjust the volume, but also to change the function settings by pressing. For example, long press the volume knob to open the settings main menu. However, it should be noted that the volume knob of FiiO M17 is a potentiometer, while the volume knob of FiiO Q7 is an encoder. The former is an ADC and the latter is a pure digital volume.
The ports at the bottom of FiiO Q7 are: USB charging port, optical input port, coaxial input port, and DC power port. There is also a BAT/DC toggle switch and a USB charging switch. The former allows the user to select the power supply state of the decoding amp to avoid shortening the battery life caused by charging the battery for a long time in the DC power supply. The latter is for charging FiiO Q7 when the playback device is disconnected when the USB is input. Please be sure to turn off this function when the phone is connected to FiiO Q7, in case the phone runs out of power and the FiiO Q7 is still fully charged.
So you can see that FiiO Q7 is a product based on FiiO M17. This idea is officially recognized as their real plan. FiiO officially said that the FiiO M17 itself is a design idea of digital-analog separation, so replacing the digital part with the configuration of the decoding amp can directly iterate into a high-performance decoding amp product. However, from the perspective of product positioning, FiiO Q7 also provides more comprehensive input ports than FiiO M17, and can cope with more usage scenarios of users in terms of matching solutions.
In addition, FiiO Q7 also comes with a cooling base for use as a console. It is also made of metal, and uses a separate Type-C interface for power supply, providing two-speed fan cooling adjustment. The advantage is that it can quickly cool down the device, but the disadvantage is that there will be noise when the fan is turned on.
There is also a linear power supply for use with the FiiO Q7. The battery is isolated and protected in the bench discharge mode, which can greatly extend the battery life. At the same time, when high power output is required, it can ensure longer listening needs.
02/ Hardware Configuration & Input Method
In terms of hardware configuration, FiiO Q7 is equipped with an ES9038Pro DAC chip, two THX AAA-788+ upgraded amp chips, a new XMOS XU316 and a Qualcomm QCC5124 bluetooth chip. Compared with the FiiO M17, the DAC chip has been downgraded from a dual architecture to a single one, and the XMOS chip has been upgraded from the XUF208 to the latest XUF316, which can fully decode MQA. Besides, there is no big difference. In terms of overall performance indicators, the performance of FiiO Q7 is very close to that of FiiO M17. However, the official price of the FiiO Q7 is only $750, which is about $750 cheaper than the FiiO M17.
FiiO Q7 supports four input methods, namely USB, optical fiber, coaxial and bluetooth. In terms of my personal daily usage habits, USB input and bluetooth input are my most frequently used scenarios. Short press the volume knob to directly call up the input mode menu, and select by rotating the volume knob.
FiiO Q7 is equipped with QCC5124 bluetooth decoder chip, which supports AAC, SBC, aptX, aptX LL, aptX adaptive, aptX HD and LDAC encoding formats. Users can select the corresponding encoding format on the FiiO Control APP. For example, I force the bluetooth codec of FiiO Q7 to only support AAC and LDAC, so when connecting to my Android phone, it will default to LDAC status, otherwise it will default to aptX adaptive codec.
Through comparative listening, I personally think that LDAC codec is better than aptX adaptive, the overall sound is cleaner, there is no dry feeling, and the dry listening feeling under the bluetooth connection will be much improved. So if your phone supports LDAC, it is a good way to force FiiO Q7 to connect in LDAC state in the APP.
As for the USB input, FiiO Q7 has a lot of combinations. In the package, the FiiO Q7 comes standard with a lot of cables. Such as USB-C to USB-C cable and USB-C to Lightning cable, which are convenient for users to connect Android phones or iPhones respectively.
03/ Sound Quality: 3000mW Output Power
In terms of headsets, I have FiiO FH7S and Beyerdynamic DT 700 Pro X over-ear headset.
The former is a five-unit earbuds of 1*dynamic+4*armature, with delicate sound, especially when listening to light music such as vocals, pop, and jazz. Needless to say the latter, if you want the Beyerdynamic DT 700 Pro X to output good sound, the front-end selection is still rather picky. In terms of listening sense, let’s chat with these two headphones (the sound quality is too subjective, and the description of the sense of hearing is for reference only. It is more intuitive for enthusiasts who have the conditions to try it out in person).
The impedance of the FiiO FH7S is not high, only 18Ω, which is not a pair of earbuds that are difficult to drive. However, its hybrid five-unit acoustic structure is not something that can be driven well by any one device. Driven by the FiiO Q7, the FiiO FH7S shows a wide sound field and rich details, and the sound quality has been fully released.
In terms of specific sound performance, take “渡口” as an example. The vertical sound field of FiiO FH7S is obviously stretched, and the positioning of instruments and vocals is also very clear. Especially in the tambourine part, the elasticity of vibration and different percussion strengths can be restored delicately. In addition, the full low frequency and more close-to-ear vocals make the overall atmosphere of FiiO FH7S better, and the sound is more durable.
Using the FiiO Q7 to drive the Beyerdynamic DT 700 Pro X uses a linear power supply to provide the driving force for this headset. The excellent sound quality of the headphone itself has also been well released, and the sound bottom is cleaner. At the same time, thanks to the high thrust drive, FiiO Q7 can also handle some large-scale classical music with ease, bringing a better sense of presence and atmosphere to the sound of the DT 700 Pro X.
Check the FiiO Q7 price:
- Check latest price on AliExpress