Fiio X1 DAP review - Setting a new bar

First Look

The unit I received came in a white sample-box. As such, I cannot comment on the retail package. Still, inside there was the black silicone case, a screen protector, some reading material, a micro-USB transfer / recharge cable and the player itself. 

Build

X1 looks damn gorgeous, and you can tell that a lot of work has been put in its presentation. Its made entirely out of aluminum, with a clean, silvery finish that sits at the edge of glossy and matte.

Fiio X1 - Bottom Fiio X1 - Top

The central element is a 2-inch TFT color LCD display (320x240 px). Alas, the screen is what I'd call mediocre, even though it has a decent-ish resolution for its size. It's hard to read what's happening under direct light (particularly sunlight), and the colors representation isn't exactly stellar either. Still, you don't buy a dedicated music-player for display quality, right?

Fiio X1 - TFT Screen 

The buttons feature decent feedback and seem relatively easy to reach. They're also labeled, which unfortunately, is kinda mandatory if you want to get used to the bloody thing quickly. The "mechanical" wheel is very easy to turn, seems slightly shaky, and is relatively sensitive. Sadly, you need to use it a while to get used to, but after a bit of practice and exercise you'll be able to use it for more than just advancing or reversing through menu choices.

 Fiio X1 - SideFiio X1 - Right Side

If you're using the nav' wheel the main-menu is circular, while if you're using the buttons it appears linear. This small addition shows Fiio is looking to improve the user experience.

It's also worth noting that X1 doesn't have internal memory and requires a TF card / microSD (up to 128GB).

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