HIBY R4 Review

Today‘s review is about the HiBy R4 DAP. It is selling for $249 USD.


Disclaimer: I received the HiBy R4 directly from HiBy. We don’t have any commercial relations with them, and this review reflects my honest opinion.


HiBy is a business enterprise conducting research, developing and marketing high-quality portable audio products. The organization has a professional R&D workforce and has a commendable track record in the portable audio industry.

Additionally, HiBy is renowned for creating software that enables music playback on mobile phones and digital audio players (DAPs). It is an established manufacturer of portable music players and produces digital-to-analogue converters (DACs) and in-ear monitors (IEMs). Our publication has conducted numerous reviews of HiBy products, which can be accessed here.

Notably, the flagship-grade R8 II is featured below:

HiBy R4

The R4 is a new entry-level Digital Audio Player (DAP) from Hiby, which offers good features at a competitive price. The device has a UI and operating system similar to the R6 series, with streaming capabilities, similar size, and form factor. However, the design is quite different.

The DAC chips used in the R4 are quad ESS SABRE ES9018C, which supports 32-bit PCM and native DSD256 audio signals. The R4 has a unique feature that separates DSD and PCM conversions, with each signal type having independent pathways. The device automatically handles that process.

The amplifying section of the R4 has four OPA1652s and two OPA1612s, with Class-A amplification. The device has 3GB RAM, 32GB internal storage, and a 4500 mAh battery. It also has bit-perfect audio, Android 12, and a now-classic SD665 CPU. The R4 is reminiscent of the R6 III, with 1GB less RAM and 32GB less onboard storage. Considering all the features, the price of $249 is extremely competitive. However, the R6 series, excluding the R6 Pro II, may face viability issues due to the R4’s competitive pricing.

Packaging & Accessories

The R4 device comes in a compact box with black and orange colours, and the unboxing experience is great. When you remove the cover, you will face the new device turned backwards, and you can immediately notice the unique design of the back panel.

The R4 device is equipped with a front glass protector out of the factory, and it also comes with a clear TPU case, a spare screen protector, a USB type C cable, a user guide, and QC and warranty cards. Overall, the packaging and accessories are excellent.

Design & Build

The new R4 device has a completely different design compared to previous releases. It has angular sides and sharp angles across the body, incorporating a futuristic “cyberpunk” design that will appeal to PC gamers. While my sample is fully black, other colour options are unique and energetic. As the R6 Pro II, HiBy has again unveiled an exciting design language with a new device. 

Made of aluminium alloy, the R4 feels great with a certain weight and a monoblock impression that doesn’t feel hollow. The build quality is impressive and the design looks above its price range. There’s nothing to complain about.

HiBy has also added an LED strip over the screen, close to the right corner, which lets you know the sample rate of the track or charging status without having to open the screen. The strip looks very cool and it completes the design nicely. Also, the three stripes on the back light up in white when there’s playback,  which is very cool.

Page 2 – User Experience & Software

Page 3 – Sound Quality

Page 4 – Comparisons & Conclusion

4/5 - (165 votes)

A keen audiophile and hobby photographer, Berkhan is after absolute perfection. Whether it is a full-frame camera or a custom in-ear, his standpoint persists. He tries to keep his photography enthusiasm at the same level as audio. Sometimes photography wins, sometimes his love for music takes over and he puts that camera aside. Simplistic expressions of sound in his reviews are the way to go for him. He enjoys a fine single malt along with his favourite Jazz recordings.

1 Comment

  • Reply May 9, 2024


    How does it compare sonically with Hiby R5ii class A in balanced mode?

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.