The Story of FiiO M17-From FiiO JamesFiiO Community| FiiO forum| FiiO product official communication platform

Section info

Overall posts:24


Reply:9 Read:4552   2021-11-10 15:16:25

Chapter 1 Why does FiiO make a portable desktop-class player like M17?

Three years ago, many users felt very satisfied after they tried the THX (AM3D) on X7/X7II. In Japan, due to the limited quantity of the THX module for Q5/X7/X7II, the second-hand price even ramped up to 3 times the original price. We can see the popularity of the THX.

Therefore, after the FiiO M11 went on the market, many users hoped that we could also make a M11 with THX amplifier. Since the M11 did not adopt a modular design, we thus launched an M11 Pro equipped with THX amp.

Not surprisingly, it was also a success after its launch, and was loved and praised by numerous audiophiles. The combination of the normal version and the Pro version did meet various needs of users. Of course, this is also the same strategy of many digital products manufactures used. For example, almost all mobile phones now have different versions such as pro/ max.

Therefore, after the release of M15, many users hoped that we could launch the M15 Pro version equipped with THX amp on the basis of M15 too.

However, due to the high output power of the M15, it has far exceeded the THX78 used by the M11 Pro. To stand out, it is necessary to choose a THX module with a higher output. Otherwise, it becomes a M15 downgraded version.

In light of these, we’d best to break all the restrictions and just use the THX788, the desktop-class one in THX series. Then the output is high enough to widen the gap with M11 pro. However, the small package of the M15 would fail to meet our need in this case. Since the high output calls for demanding requirements on heat dissipation and the battery capacity. Under this circumstance, we have no other choice but to increase the size and weight. So we redesign the ID, and we finally choose the tough style that more people love because we don’t need to consider the hand feel.

However, the model has become M17 instead of M15 Pro. This is because we generally keep the original name and add a suffix only when the appearance of two devices are similar.

Besides, with the emergence of some large volume players, it can be said that a market segment has been created out of nothing, which I name "mobile players". This type of products, on the plus side, the sound quality is better than the portable players and is more convenient than the desktop one. On the downside, its sound quality is worse than that of a desktop player, and it is too heavy to be portable.

Therefore, considering the commercial value of our medium- and low-end music players and the large amount of money we invested in the Qualcomm Snapdragon 660, it is meaningful to make a high-end music player although there are many uncertainties. Of course, we still hope to keep the size and weight of this player within the limit of a portable player. Therefore, in terms of volume and weight, M17 is estimated to be the ceiling of our M series.

Finally, M17 is actually part of FiiO’s strategy of brand building. In the past few years, the most successful brand in China should be Huawei. It has grown from unknown to a high-end brand that keeps pace with Samsung and Apple, and is widely recognized by consumers all over the world. It is not easy at all. Though Xiaomi/OPPO/VIVO are trying hard to copy the success of Huawei, they failed. I think one thing is obvious, that is, through the continuous evolution of Huawei's Mate series with the price risen slightly for each model, and after the few years, it has become a high-end serious of Huawei.

For FiiO, we have been following this strategy too. X7 can be seen as considered a success, breaking the ceiling of 600USD. M15 is another breakthrough, which we succeeded in entering the level of 1300USD. However, as a pioneer among the Chinese HIFI brands, FiiO does need a 1500USD-class device to further enhance the brand.

Therefore, we can say that it is user needs, market competition, and company's development that have prompted us to invest lots of manpower and resources to develop the M17.

9Replies Positive Reverse  GO!