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  • Writer's pictureKinki

HFA Review: DAC1 + EX-M1

The amplifier’s internal build reminds me of Proceed, Mark Levinson and CH Precision while the DAC’s internal build looks every bit as beautiful as the most exclusive Accuphase designs. The rear panels proudly state “We come from China” but it might as well have said Germany or USA. Not only their looks are all the way up there, the sound quality, as it turns out, is too!


For me, the amp is the star of the show, with a sound that in part is on par with amplifiers carrying stratospheric price tags. But the DAC should also not be underestimated for it only starts to be outperformed by other DACs costing at least double its price tag. Together, the two Kinki components make for highly involved and enthusiastic listening. They consistently make my foot tap to their supremely confident, rhythmic and dynamic presentation. Very important for me, too, is that there is not a trace of artifice to their delivery: they are entirely lifelike in timbre. This is arguably the most difficult aspect to get right and many components don’t, even quite pricey ones. Clearly, Chinese engineering has come of age and should be taken very seriously.

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