Review: Luxury&Precision L6 – Swiping!

Synergy

 

When I first listened to the CustomArt Fibae 3 I wasn’t really convinced but the monitor has majorly improved with burn-in, especially the bass section. I really enjoy the synergy with the L6 as you little warmer than neutral sound, with great musicality. Don’t forget that the Fibae principle is that the sound signature will not change, no matter what source you use it with.  Bass in the F3 has really good body and a powerful impact but is tight at all times. The mids are rich and very engaging while the treble section is energetic and enjoyable. Where the Fibae 3 falls behind compared to the high end monitors in my collection is the sound stage, separation and spaciousness. A very enjoyable combo, especially if you like more than neutral present bass.

The Vison Ears VE8 is one of my favorite monitors but to me this combo delivers a little too much bass. VE is already somewhat heavier in that department and for me the combo is just a bit much. The mids are rich, full bodied and the treble section energetic. Extension, detail and sound stage-wise the VE8 of course still fully delivers. There has been some talk about the VE8’s sound stage and I have to agree that when you compare it to the Mason V3 in example, it isn’t as wide and deep as with 16 drivers, but in general the sound stage, spaciousness and separation in the VE8 is very good.

Jomo Audio’s Haka is an extremely good 1 driver that I have been enjoying a lot recently (review up very soon) and it’s as good as it gets with the L6 as source. Bass-wise the combo delivers the perfect bass in regards to tightness, presence, depth and impact. Yes there are limitation in what the one driver can do but boy this is excellent. The mids are clear, musical and rich and the voices are just a tad more upfront. The treble section is soft, yet electric but not the furthest extended or most energetic. It however works perfectly with how Joseph tuned the bass and mids and this really is a monitor to enjoy your music with (as Joseph intended), and as such it’s no surprise to me that the combo with the detailed and musical L6 is so good.

The Earsonics EM10 is a monitor that was only very recently added to my collection, and I haven’t gotten very familiar with its sound signature just yet. The EM10 has a very airy and dark presentation and it reminds me of the Rhines 5-driver. It takes quite a while for my ears and brain to adapt to their typical sound but once you get used to it you’ll first of all notice the excellent bass. Bass has good body and impact with great layering but it’s not the tightest. The mids are thicker and very rich but they take some getting used to as well as they’re not the fastest . They’re very musical however and the layering and depth is very impressive. Treble is energetic and clear with the right amount of air, but it’s not the most extended. The combo isn’t bad but I have to experiment a whole lot more with the EM10 before I review it.

The oBravo Ra C Cu go for $9999USD (I hope you were sitting down) and this 182Ohm universal inear is extremely hard to drive. I don’t really like the way they sound straight from the SP1000 and the WM1Z and so far I have enjoyed them most with the Hiby R3 (to be released) and the Audiovalve Solaris, a high end tube amp. The L6 positively surprises however and the sound quality of this combo is very high. You get speaker-like bass as if you’re listening to a high end 2-way system. I can’t see how it can possibly get any better. The mids are so rich and they have the perfect sense of space and dept. Layering and depth is exemplary as well as the voice rendering. The treble section is energetic, airy and extended. I really dig the little treble peak the Ra C Cu has and it’s just one big pleasure to listen to this combo. Awesomeness.

Yes, the new Sennheiser HD660s is easy to drive but the L6 really makes it sound awesome. I’ve mostly been using the HD660s in my office, hooked up to the Astell&Kern Acro L1000 but the synergy with the L6 is impressive. The HD660s, if you didn’t know already, puts itself perfectly between the harder to drive HD600 and HD650, and when powered by the L6 (even in low gain) you get a musical, fast sound with tight, punchy and deep bass. The mids are musical, rich and spacious but a bit grainy. Voices are soft and natural while treble is extended and energetic but also smooth. I really love this headphone and the L6 does a perfect job driving it.

The Sundara is Hifiman’s latest orthodynamic headphone that kind of replaces the awesome HE-400i. I was a bit surprised by that because the Sundara depending on the amplifier or source used, has a lighter tuning with not as much bass and mid thickness as the “old” HE-400i has. The L&P L6 however manages to give the Sundara bigger bass with apunchy delivery and more impressive impact. The mids are still more on the lighter side but the Sundara is spacious, well layered and rich sounding. The treble section is energetic, airy and extended. So far the L6 actually is my favorite source for the new Hifiman, but I still have lots of sources to test it with.

Conclusion

The L6 to me is the best sounding Luxury & Precision DAP and seeing all the previous DAPs already scored very high on sound quality, that means this L6 is exceptionally good sounding. At the same time it is supposed to sound really good as it is selling for $1399.

The L6 brings you a top quality sound with the perfect mix of detail, precision, richness and musicality. Compared to the previous L&P DAPS, the usability factor has greatly improved with the new swiping mechanism, but this still very much is a “music first” kind of portable player.

If you want streaming, Bluetooth, DLNA, Last.fm and all these kind of things, you’ll have to look elsewhere as the L6 still puts sound first. For me this is the perfect DAP if you just use it on the go when no streaming is needed, but don’t forget that you (for the moment) have to live with the 6000 file limit.

The fact that you can use it as USB DAC is a nice extra and I really love the coaxial output. All-in-all L&P has created another great DAP but especially sound-wise. I’m convinced that a lot of music lovers would switch to L&P if they would launch a DAP with the same features the Sony and AK have. So yes, I’m secretly hoping for their next DAP to completely blow away the competition. I’m probably expecting too much but I can dream, no? They’re definitely on the right path.

Long story short, the L6 is their best sounding DAP so far and it for the first time comes with improved usability. It’s a job well done, but there still is a progression margin in the UI-field. Exciting!

FULL SPECS can be found on the last page of this article, right HERE

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Lieven is living in Europe and he's the leader of the gang. He's running Headfonia as a side project next to his full time day job in Digital Marketing & Consultancy. He's a big fan of tube amps and custom inear monitors and has published hundreds of product reviews over the years.

7 Comments

  • Reply March 16, 2018

    Guy Lamaar

    This is crying out for a Questyle QP2R comparison.

  • Reply March 31, 2018

    Dean Whiteley

    My thoughts exactly! L&P L6 or QP2R?

  • Reply May 13, 2018

    OpoO

    How does the club199 version compare to the normal L6?

    • Reply May 13, 2018

      Lieven

      Good question but it’s so limited that we didn’t get one unfortunately

  • Reply May 15, 2018

    Adam

    Yeah a qp2r comparison would be ideal.

  • Reply September 14, 2018

    LuiC

    Thanks, fantastic review as always..

    Question, L6 vs SP1000M?

  • Reply September 14, 2018

    John Churn

    Any review on upcoming L&P L4 please?

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