With the shortages of AKM DAC chips in the market many HiFi brands are redesigning and relaunching their products with renewed audio motherboards. Shanling Audio just announced that they are going to revamp the Shanling M6, their highly acclaimed Android Hi-Res player. Instead of the dual AKM4495SEQ chipset, the latest M6 2021 will be featuring a dual ES9038Q2M DAC chipset. They not only brought a new DAC chipset but also many new changes such as new OPAMP, MQA support, improved sound quality, and more.
The New M6 2021 will be launched officially in April 2021 with a slight increase in price over the previous model. While the OG Shanling M6 was available for 499$ the new model will be available for 569$.
Key Changes With The New M6(21):-
New Color Change:-
Shanling has done a very small change to differentiate the OG M6 to the latest one. While the OG M6 had a complete black body the latest M6 2021 will have a black body with golden volume wheel.
Dual Sabre DAC Chips:-
Shanling M6 2021 is equipped with a dual DAC chipset featuring two ES9038Q2M DAC chips. They had to redesign the DAC chipset due to the worldwide shortage of the AKM DAC chips after the Fire accident at their Factory back in October 2020. The Sabre DACs provide ultimate performance with improved SNR, THD+N, and Channel imbalance ratings.
Upgraded Amp Chip:-
The OPAMP chip has been upgraded from OPA1612 to OPA2211 for the latest M6 2021. It provides an improved, cleaner, more powerful output with the latest model. The SE output has increased from 160mW to 190mW while the Bal output got a tremendous power boost from 350mW to 570mW for the latest model.
Better Decoding(MQA and DSD512):-
While the OG Shanling M6 supported up to DSD256 decoding, the latest model supports advanced DSD512 decoding. They have also added MQA support to the new M6 2021. They also made it clear MQA won’t be coming to the OG M6 in the near future. This is quite a bummer for OG M6 owners.
Three Gain Modes & Updated Digital Filters:-
Shanling has also provided a third gain mode apart from Low and High. The device also has Mid gain mode that provides a middle-ground for earbuds and IEMs. They also added two new digital filters, instead of five on the OG now the latest model will have seven digital filters.
With updated DAC and OPAMP chip, the player now achieves improved ratings for SNR, THD+N, Dynamic Range, Channel imbalance, and Output impedance providing a cleaner, noise and distortion-free sound output.
Full Technical Comparison Between the OG & New Shanling M6:-
Here’s a picture shared by Shanling depicting all the technical changes with the latest Shanling M6 2021.
Price & Availability:-
The Shanling M6 2021 has got a slight price increase and will be available for 569$. Shanling will officially release it internationally sometime in April this year.