Cayin N8ii

$4,799 $4,999

Cayin Audio, you keep outdoing yourself. When every release from these innovators is expected to be a revolution, N8II had to break significant new ground.

This tube or solid-state flagship music player achieves exactly that, with upgrades on every front. N8II plays with a deftness of touch to dynamics, realistic distances and imaging, plus a soundstage bathed in a gentle light that is at the same time detailed but never fatiguing.

Headfonics heard N8ii up Cayin's tube DAP game. It went right onto Headfonia's Recommended Buys list. Twister6 heard "Cayin take their original N8 DAP to a whole new level ... beyond of 'everything but the kitchen sink'". Ear Fidelity declares it a "masterclass of a DAP", with "tube and Class A a game changer".

Dual ROHM BD34301EKV DAC chips make their debut in N8II and portable audio, fronted by a full Google Play Android 9 operating system. That all feeds Cayin's new timbre selector that applies to both balanced and single-ended discrete amplifier outputs. [See Product Desc. For More]

$4,999

Our Price | $4,799

Product Description

Four years in the making since Cayin's original N8 made history as the first portable tube music player ever, N8II achieves what its predecessor couldn't even have begun to dream of.

It doubles up on its 6P1 tube complement in its small signal gain stage, packing two of Nutube's direct-heated dual triodes for true balanced, differential, operation from either its 4.4mm or 3.5mm outputs. 

N8II's Nutubes can be turned on or off on both outputs to match your listening preferences. If you choose to bypass tubes, signal direct from the DACs runs to the power stage, benefitting your gear that loves the precise, clean detail associated with transistors.

READ ALSO DAPs have gone down the tube

Taking inspiration from Cayin's tube/solid-state C9 portable amplifier, N8II's differential analog design relies heavily on common-mode rejection to serve as a clean, transparent – but never sterile – flagship reference with 125dB of signal-to-noise ratio.

A marvel of miniaturisation, N8II packs C9's discrete power stage, operating in switchable Class A or Class AB to put out up to 1,200 milliwatts. This bias system ensures the output of watts that are supreme in quality – a result of individual transistors being turned on and operated where their open-loop linearity is optimal to further push distortion down.

Cayin leave you the ability to boost N8II's operating voltage beyond seven volts, further ensuring transistor linearity while guaranteeing headroom for large dynamic swings on bigger cans that need it. However, it's not only about the quantity of power, but more importantly the quality.

Signal integrity is key. N8II's volume control remains fully analog, eschewing a lossy digital control thanks to JRC's NJW1195A resistor ladder part, implemented only after the gain stage. Any attenuation is kept far away from the delicate output signal from new ROHM DACs – of which Cayin's implementation has been key.

READ ALSO C9 – nothing is too extreme for Cayin

BD34301EKV decodes DSD as a native 1-bit stream without PCM processing, owing to N8II's external analog volume control. ROHM's flagship chip's ability to output analog in current, pushing distortion figures down and upping tuning potential via N8II's extensive current-to-voltage I/V converter, also cannot be overlooked.

This small-signal segment beginning from the ROHM DACs has been overbuilt for a music player. But what might be considered extreme elsewhere, is only expected from Cayin. Currawong says "N8II is for people who must have the best DAP of its kind, regardless of the cost". 

ROHM's input signal processing via dither and advanced clock handling, plus a chip layout that's been streamlined for silent operation, are also talked up. N8II's FPGA feeds a pristine I2S signal to the dual DACs, after which they are upsampled by up to 32 times before being converted according to ROHM's linear-phase digital filters.

Cayin have deployed the perfect Google Play-based Android 9 UI to feed every imaginable kind of content to its shiny new digital sub-system hardware. Direct Transport Audio bypasses otherwise mandatory sample rate conversion of stock Android.

So play Tidal 16X MQA, Qobuz and Hi-Res Lossless Apple Music as the file was originally encoded with full confidence, with no undue digital tampering. The flexibility yielded by Cayin's Snapdragon 660 CPU and 6GB of RAM running optimised Android 9 is phenomenal, and fully at the service of N8II – Head-Fi's most advanced and complete music player in 2022.

Those wanting more horsepower yet from Cayin can look at C9 as a potential stacking option from N8II's balanced line-outs here, browse Cayin's other revolutionary products here, or view all our other music players here.

Product Specifications

DAC 2 X ROHM DB34301EKV
Amp Class A/AB discrete
SNR <125dB
THD <0.001%

Reviews

Customer Reviews

No reviews yet
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)

Customer Reviews

No reviews yet
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)