Shanling M3X Portable Music Player
M3X is built on the same platform as our previous three Android models. But this time Shanling are aiming at the more affordable part of the market, with a little bit less focus on the most demanding DAC chipsets and the most powerful amplifiers.
M3X was designed as a scaled down version of Shanling flagship M8, to be a more practical and smaller player, with only 4.2-inch touch screen. Making it 25% smaller and lighter than our older M6 and M6 Pro players.
M3X is a first Hi-Res player to use the new ESS Sabre ES9219C DAC/AMP, a new generation of a very popular chip that was previously used in M0, UP4 and other products. Using two of these chips, to offer a balanced 4.4mm output for better sound and more power. And also including full 16x MQA unfolding, for all fans of the Hi-Res music streaming.
M3X will stand out with its class leading battery life, offering up to 23 hours of playback on a single charge.
System: Open Android 7.1, with AGLO
Screen: 4.2 inch, 1280 x 768
CPU: 8-Core Qualcomm Snapdragon 430
Memory: 2GB RAM + 32 GB ROM
Expendable memory: MicroSD card slot
DAC/AMP: 2x ESS Sabre ES9219C
Hi-Res Audio: Up to PCM 32/384 & DSD256
MQA Support: Full unfolding, 16X
Outputs: 3.5mm jack Single Ended & 4.4mm Balanced
Wi-Fi: 2.4G & 5G
Bluetooth transmitter: LDAC, LHDC, aptX HD, aptX, SBC
Bluetooth receiver: LDAC & SBC
USB: USB-C, with USB DAC and USB transport function
Battery: 3200 mAh
Battery life: Up to 23 hours (SE, single DAC) / 20 hours (SE, dual DAC) / 19 hours (Bal)
Dimensions: 109 x 72 x 15.9 mm
Output power: Up to 240mW @ 32Ohm (Bal)
Output impedance: < 1Ohm
Service and the purchase went flawlessly so the 4 stars is only a reflection of the unit not MusicTeck they get the full 5, thanks!
This was my first run at swapping from my iPhone. The only reason I did not give it 5 stars is a few quirks where the volume dial doesn’t work and requires a restart. So far that’s my only issue. It sounds great and pushes the MESK MK II’S very well.
Good service, decent people, what more could you ask for
The unit is decent for the price point. It’s definitely not a desktop amp/dac killer. The sound is soft and sort of balanced. The bass is really shallow and needs an eq to balance out the sound. The shanling app is disappointing, but other apps are available on the Google play store.
Overall for $330 the unit is good, but just don’t expect it to be amazing. Personally the Lotoo paw s1 and an iPhone has better sound. Note you do have to set dual dac mode on as it is not a default setting. 512gb microsd card works perfectly, and flac playback is perfect.
The best bang-for-buck android DAP. Outstanding sound and performance.
This is an outstanding affordable DAP. I'm pretty impressed with the M3X and what Shanling has accomplished for $340 player is pretty remarkable. I'd actually say that the Shanling M5s was an upgrade from the far more expensive AK120 which was $1200 on release and this M3X is an Upgrade to the M5s even with slightly lower power output. Long story short - if you're only driving IEMs, this thing has plenty of clean power and a beautiful sound profile with an EQ that works extremely well. It actually goes head to head with my desktop rig (almost) for IEMs and I can hear very little difference between the two when I dial in the EQ the way I like it. Coming from Topping D50s into the the ATOM Amp, the notes have just a bit more weight and a slight amount of more depth but the airiness, clarity and resolution are all pretty similar. There's plenty of bass texture and lots of detail. I did extensive A/B testing for a full day with my very easy to drive Xelentos and my more demanding UM 3DT & IMR RAH Planar Hybrids and the M3X handled all three like a boss. That's better than well done for for a $340 DAP.