The Hidizs S9 Pro Plus Martha is one of the least clinical and sterile sounding portable DACs featuring the ES9038Q2M chip. The frequency response is neutral and linear but the S9 Pro Plus Martha doesn’t have the usual tendency to push technicalities to their limits and as a result it doesn’t sound artificial nor bright or analytical.
It has a hint of warmness and a sound signature that is quite musical and engaging. This is still an ESS DAC chip so it does sound transparent, crystal clear and sparkling with a touch of sharpness and plenty of luminosity in the treble while it offers very satisfying detail retrieval for the category.
The bass is weighty but tight and controlled, it is fast, layered and well defined, dynamic and impactful. The mid-range is effortless in its presentation, natural sounding with plenty of colorful harmonies and excellent refinement for the category. The texture is rather full and only gets a bit thinner while rising in the upper mids and treble.
The DAC offers a good deal of timbre realism without much artificiality and digital glare. This is a neutral – natural sounding DAC that pairs well with different types of earphones and is equally enjoyable with a great variety of music selections. The soundstage is open and spacious with good positioning accuracy but it is mostly flat without much depth or holography.
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