The new HiBy RS2 has arrived at MusicTeck!
Sep 7, 2022 at 12:54 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 7
Oct 26, 2015
New Jersey

Are you as stoked as we are? :D


HiBy RS2

>> Shop now <<

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Sep 7, 2022 at 7:31 PM Post #2 of 7


500+ Head-Fier
Jul 22, 2017
PNW and the Great Lake Empire, Stateside
Looks like that old AK...not a bad move.
Sep 8, 2022 at 9:34 AM Post #3 of 7


Jun 3, 2017
R2R: awesome!
2 card slots: awesome!
Up to 4TB storage: awesome!
4.4mm balanced: awesome!
50,000 song limit: deal breaker.
Sep 8, 2022 at 7:20 PM Post #5 of 7


Jun 3, 2017
Planning on running a radio station from this?
Ha! Good one! I do own a radio station. But, no, I'm just frustrated that Hiby advertises 4TB of space when you can fit 50,000 lossless songs in 1TB.
Sep 29, 2022 at 9:41 PM Post #7 of 7


New Head-Fier
Aug 21, 2021

Hiby RS2 $479.00 usd.
Entry Level R2R DAP
Output power: 3.5 SE 125mW @ 32 ohm
Output power: 4.4 Bal 320mW @ 32 ohm

The RS2 is Hiby’s second DAP featuring R2R DAC technology. RS2 is the trimmed down “budget” version of its older sibling RS6.

** note: I try to be objective, but obviously I am biased somewhat by my personal preference for sound signature. I lean toward a more balanced sound, good bass, good mids, good treble.
I am somewhat treble sensitive in the 8-9K range.
I am NOT a professional/career reviewer.
* i.e. the thoughts presented here are strictly personal opinion based on my hearing, your mileage may vary.
** My hearing taps out at around 12.5 kHz, I can hear 12.5 but it’s more a background sound. I think it is fair to note this.

So rather than a Pros/Cons list, I’ll provide an truncated list of key features that it has, and doesn’t have. Individual preference will determine what’s pro and con.
** Full details are available on Hiby website.

- Hiby OS. Pure audio (bit perfect) version.
- R2R Ladder DAC with linear compensation.
- DARWIN Audio Architecture.
- 2.45 in (62mm) Touch Screen. 480x360.
- PCM 384/DSD 256 decoding. DSD is PCM, DoP, Native selectable.
- 8x MQA unfolding.
- 4.4mm balanced PO, 3.5mm SE PO and LO, COAX digital out.
- USB DAC mode.
- Uncharge mode selectable to eliminate extra battery draw on phone when used as USB DAC.
- 3500 mAh battery rated for 10 hrs play time and 3 hour charge time.
- 2 x SD card slots for up to 4TB external storage. Simultaneous access.
- MageSound 8 Ball (MSEB) parametric EQ
- 10 band equalizer

Doesn’t Have:
- Android OS (no play store or .apk support)
- WIFi
- Bluetooth
- Obviously, no ability to stream music services, or, stream stored music from NAS. Wired only ear gear. And no OTA updates.

What’s in the box:
- RS2 player; mine came with screen and rear protectors installed.
- Green leather case
- 2 High quality cables; USB type C and a
type C-RCA digital coax.
- DARWIN Brooch.

The RS2 is a compact and easily pocketable music player approx. 90x65x19 mm (similar in width and thickness to a standard deck of cards, but shorter) and weighing in at 158 grams without case. The screen is rotatable 180 degrees which allows you to orient the audio outputs either Top or Bottom relative to the screen orientation. This throws the orientation of the volume dial and function buttons out of whack, but, the screen orientation can be flipped, if you would find that useful.

Utilizing Hiby’s proprietary Pure Audio OS has the advantage of bit perfect playback, however without Android open OS there is no way to add additional apps or functions.
The OS user interface took a short while for me to figure out where to find certain functions and features, but overall it is fairly intuitive and easy to use.

For those who may not be familiar with R2R Ladder Resistor DACs they use a series of resistors with sequentially different resistance values in a “ladder” like orientation on the motherboard to perform the digital to analog signal conversion. (Very simplified, Google it for more descriptive explanation)
To achieve accurate conversion, resistors of the same value used for left and right channel need to be resistance “matched” to close tolerances.
This matching, and developing the control system to manage the conversion process are challenges the manufactures engineers must address.

- DARWIN is the name Hiby has assigned to there R2R management firmware.
Their literature states it is very adaptive and they can continue to “evolve” it’s development for present and future projects.
In addition to managing the “background” conversion functions, DARWIN includes user selectable options to tailor the sound to individual preference.
** I’m a listener, not a fiddler, so I don’t spend much time or energy on these features or EQ.
But here is a brief listing of the user features available under the DARWIN tab.
- Digital Filters. 10 qty DARWIN preset digital filters, not certain on the exact function of these but believe they work with the oversampling and that the result is similar to “roll off” filters for delta sigma DACs.
I tried all 10, and did not pick up on discernible differences in sound. But, I didn’t spend much time trying.
- NOS/OS. Non Oversampling/Oversampling on/off switch. This one I can hear a difference. Depending on track, it can be very subtle or quite noticeable. More or less smooths out the rough edges.
I have mine set to NOS.
- 256 Tap FIR filter Harmonic Control. This one I can hear very subtle changes to sound characteristics. Literally 256 increments for fine control over this adjustment.
I have mine set at 0, or off.

- MSEB and EQ are separate from Darwin.
MSEB is referred to as a Parametric Equalizer and near as I can tell each slider controls a range of frequencies rather than an individual 
frequency. (See photo)
10 Band Equalizer is a standard EQ.
I don’t equalize, but I can confirm both work.
Plenty to play with if you choose to. 👍🏽

- How does it sound??
I’m familiar with R2R DAC DAPs having previously owned Cayin N6ii with R01 module so I know I like R2R sound in general.

The RS2 has approx. 100ish hours on it, both from listening sessions and aging it unattended between sessions.

I’m using 64Audio U18T with PW Audio Monile ft. 50s cable with 4.4 balanced termination for my initial evaluation.
I want to use a “reference” IEM that I’m very familiar with.

The RS2 is fairly balanced with a bit of a mids boost that presents the vocals nicely forward.
Bass is smooth and natural with good sub bass extension.
Lower mids are warm, upper mids and vocals are clear and natural with a slight boost.
Highs are clear bright and airy with no hint of sibilance or harshness.
Overall a touch of warmth and smoothness but the details shine through effortlessly.
The background is dark with little or no noise present. This provides a nice open soundstage without congestion and accurate imaging.

Kinera Celest on 3.5 SE
No real change in overall sound signature
Still overall balanced with a bit of mids/vocals boost.
Celest is a bright mids forward iem. RS2 adds a touch of warmth, but Celest remains quite bright in upper mids and lower highs.
That touch of warmth is however welcome, the RS2 is a nice pairing with Celest imo.

Out of the box the mids forward tendency of the RS2 was very noticeable and borderline “peaky”.
With 100 hours on it, it retains that mid range boost but no longer peaky or shouty.
Personally I like upper mids and vocals presented slightly forward, but not “in your face” and the RS2 suits me very well in that regard.
The R2R DAC has that “less clinical” “analog” timbre that works well for my mainstay listening preferences of Blues, classic rock, Jazz, Country, some Symphonic.
With no streaming available I can’t access Apple lossless for a good sampling of Electronic, Rap, R&B etc.

I really like the RS2. To me it sounds excellent, it’s small and easily portable, I don’t stream often and have a good collection of stored music to call upon.
I do miss WIFI to some degree because I do like to stream from my NAS when at home.

The absence of connectivity and wireless ear gear support will make this DAP a no go for many, however, the plus to this absence is fewer internal devices creating EMF and drawing on the battery resources.

The power output on this DAP drives any the IEM’s I have tried without issue on both balanced and SE connection. Trying to drive harder to drive full size headphones is likely going to be challenging.
It is targeted toward portability and fits that niche nicely.

Two SD slots supports up to 4TB external storage, in theory at least. The UI is simple and quick reacting. But very large storage may bog it down 🤷🏻‍♂️. I have a 256gb card installed with approx. 1100 Flac and DSD songs installed. It scanned and catalogued in about 10 seconds.

For those that can utilize a basic, very portable, stored music, wired ear gear connection solution that sounds great (imo)
The RS2 might be worth a serious look.


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