Taken from PortaFi Facebook post:
In an unexpected reveal, the FiiO M17 made its appearance to the world when the iF Design Award 2021 disclosed the finalists that qualified for the second round of judging, the Final Jury, which will take place in March 2021, and have the chance to win the iF Design Award 2021 or the iF Gold Award.
Amongst the nearly 10,000 submissions from 52 nations, three submissions from FiiO qualified for the second round of judging, namely:
- FiiO FD5
- FiiO K9
- FiiO M17
The unofficial unveiling by iF Design has caused some excitement within the Porta-Fi chat group and other Internet forums.
Following further disclosure from James, we can provide a bit of insight into the FiiO M17.
1. The M17 project began in 2019, originally scheduled to be announced at the end of 2020. The plan was adjusted owning to the COVID-19 pandemic. The current plan is to release it before August 2021.
2. The M17 is not a replacement model for the M15. However, it is a new model that brings to offering from FiiO to another level. M17, M15, M11 PRO and M11 will form the four pillars of FiiO Portable Player offerings in the future. Due to the unfortunate AKM fire, the lifetime of M11, M11 PRO and M15 has been cut short, they will be replaced by new models that will be introduced in due time.
3. The product concept of the M17 is that of a portable computer. Featuring dual ESS9038Pro flagship DAC chips, an amplifier circuit comprising THX788PRO module which is expected to output at least 1200 mW + 1200 mW @ 32 ohms.
4. FiiO was the first manufacturer to equip the 2.5 mm, 3.5 mm and 4.4 mm headphone jacks with the M11, With the M17, FiiO intends to up its games in terms of Input and output interfaces with 2.5 mm, 3.5 mm, 4.4 mm, 6.3 mm headphone jacks, 3.5 mm / 4.4 LO output, standard RCA coaxial output, DC power input interface, dual TC interface and DC/BATT switch allowing one to use AC power for a long time while still gaining relatively better control of weight and volume of the device; alternatively one could still place the player in the pocket for portable usage with a single-hand control.
5. At the point of this reveal, M17 is probably the first digital audio player to feature RGB lighting, giving it a bit of LED flair. Located at the ventilation vents on both sides of the player, the M17 is designed with two sets of RGV blacklight panels.
6. The M17 will feature a 1080P 18:9 high-definition display.
7. Expected release will be after July 2021 with the SRP to be confirmed and is expected to exceed RMB 10,000.
It is perhaps important to note that the product design submission to the iF Design Award Award is not the final design as adjustments might be made to the design as the project moves through the development phase.
Hope this will provide some answers to the questions you guys have about the FiiO M17. We will provide more insights when we have more to share.