Shanling M0 Pro Review

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Sound Quality

The original M0 had a satisfying sound quality, especially from its size. Let’s see how the M0 performs regarding the sound.

First of all, this is technically a strong device for its size. The power output is pretty good for most portable gear and some headphones out there. Additionally, the DAC is upgraded from ESS 9218p to 9219C (double DACs this time), with a fully balanced circuit. As a result, the noise floor is superb for its competition level, and the amplifier stage is surprisingly powerful. 

The M0 Pro is a clean, warm and smooth-sounding DAP with an easy-to-like sound presentation. It has good-quality bass and mids, and a slightly laid-back, easy-going treble. The overall presentation is on the warmer side, which gives the DAP good musicality. It surprisingly performs very well for the money. Shanling house sound is present with the tiniest member of the family, so this is a consistent performance when compared with the whole portfolio.


The Shanling M0 Pro doesn’t have a very deep, rumbling bass. It instead is on the leaner side, sounding moderate with a small presence. It’s not very impactful but it’s there and it’s not hard to track. On the upper parts of the bass, it’s not very thick as well, but the midbass is still good enough to give the DAP a nice body, although not present too much.

Lows don’t go very deep but it’s not bad either. I think more bass quantity and harder hits could make this player sound very busy and congested, and that type of bass could blend into the lower mid-range. So I think Shanling did a nice job to give this DAP a pretty nice bass but not too much to control. Lows are mostly flat, lacking some texture and depth, but the good side is that the control of the bass is pretty good. 

The layering and texture are not like what you would expect from DAPs which cost over 500$, but I don’t have complaints for the price. The overall quantity I think is ideal for this kind of a player, not a fun type of bass, yet realistic. The control on the mid-bass part is very nice and that way the separation from the mids is good. The whole resolution of the bass is lacking compared to the more advanced DAPs, but it wasn’t a surprise to me in the first place.


The M0 Pro has very good mids, particularly for musicality. This is the most impressive side of this player in my opinion. The tonality is very nice and it has a good timbre, recreating very nice notes and the note size is pretty good. The mids overall sound natural and realistic, not very clear but not bloated or muddy either. The mid-range misses some resolution and transparency, as this area sounds a bit dark and veiled. 

The overall warmth of the M0 Pro is felt quite substantially here, with good note thickness and full approach. So I wouldn’t say it’s neutral in mids, I would say quite warm instead but that’s perfectly fine for me. It can also give you some fine details on instruments. Quantity wise they are not forward or elevated, but they don’t feel recessed to me either. Mids have good positioning and definition, and they have a realistic distance on the stage, which makes this DAP easy to listen to.


I found the highs of the M0 quite smooth and highly forgiving. I think this is not the most neutral treble presentation, but it surely is the most relaxing. The sparkle and fine detail is not on the same level as mid-fi DAPs. However, it’s quite better than the original version in that regard, with noticeably better micro detail performance.  The positive side is that there’s no harshness or peaks, just like the rest of the spectrum. But if you love your highs open, airy and bright, this device won’t give you that.

Of course,  it’s not fair to expect a high-end presentation here, but still, the M0 Pro improved the thing I mentioned in the M0. It has more detail and extension in the treble, which makes this concept even better for its size. This DAP already has good qualities for its very small price, and hearing about the improved response in this region is very nice. The highs sound clean thanks to the good background blackness, and they sound separated from the mids. The articulation though is not great, but again, better than the original M0.

Page 1: Intro, Design, Build
Page 2: Software, Experience, Settings, Battery, Connectivity
Page 4: Technical Performance, Comparison, Conclusion
4/5 - (85 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.


  • Reply March 29, 2023

    Yannick Khong

    Great review!

    How’s the 3.5mm output if we’re comparing this against similarly priced dongles and the Shanling Q1?

  • Reply April 8, 2023

    Howard Olsen

    Just a short note, your post on the best DAP page says M0 Pro but points to the original M0

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