Cayin C9 - New Portable Headphone Amplifier

There is a pretty cool announcement regarding a portable headphone amp that should compete w/ the iFi portable headphone amps.

You can switch from tube to SS timbre on the fly.
You can also switch from Class A to A/B on the fly.
Contains both SE and balanced.

I think they are finishing their product release at the end of Oct and can be ordered at the end of the year.

I don’t see it on their website yet. The only information I have found was mentioned here:


I don’t get how they call these portable. portable is the iFi hip DAC…not their other one’s. these are desktop DAC / Amp with a focus to let them move between offices / homes / hotels…but they are far from portable!

Interesting looks to be using the Korg Nutubes, wonder if they’ve managed to minimize the microphonics.

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Yeah, it’s not like anyone is going to keep this in their pocket or anything, but at least you can fit it in a smaller bag or case. You can imagine it would be a pain in the butt to do that with a desktop stack.

a high end desktop stack, maybe…but most combo units aren’t all that big.

I get a good chuckle when I think about having to explain what this is to a TSA agent at airport security :laughing:

Curious to try this one out, but tbh I’m very skeptical considering the price, but hopefully I will be proven wrong lol. It’s just that the cayin n8 tube mode really imo isn’t all that impressive (and used already are selling around 1.5k) so idk about the 2k price tag, but again this is just speculation and I am very curious to try one


I know it’s a completely different product, but I am wayyyyy too deep in the Luxury Precision camp to even consider something like this.

I would hope it would compete with my woo wa8 or phatlab phantasy ii, but I’m not sure (since it’s def priced that way and would appeal to the same people). But it would be cool if it would lol. Also btw those two are really good pairings with the p6 depending on the headphone

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And comparing to the Lessfox/Romi?

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Hopefully it will at least have that quality level, but that being said the lessfox is more tilted towards pretty neutral clean sound, but from a technicality standpoint I think it’s prob on a similar level to the woo or phatlab, but I think the main appeal is the tube and the typically warmer thicker a bit more relaxed coloration from cayin, not the ss in the C9 (I assume)

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bloody hell this thing is expensive. <_<

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How are they always so fast with new products?

Don’t know but I would love to try one with a Chord Qutest :+1:

Just assuming no onehas had hands on with one yet? I would love to know just how resolving this amp is. Seems like a fairly awkward amount of power (4200mw @ 16 ohm and 2600mw @ 32 ohm) with not enough to be really up there with the diablo/micro BL (1500mw continuous @ 64 ohm) or BX-2Plus (5900mw @ 32 ohm peak) but they also admit in their thread it doesn’t exactlly like high ohm loads for stuff like HD800S. Im actually pretty currious what cans they were targeting with the design. When asked the rep on headfi pleads the 5th

Saving for one mate (maybe towards the end of the year?) lol…Power for me isn’t an issue as I’d be using it to drive my IEM’s :+1:

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Figured I should cross post some thoughts about the c9 from the p6 thread, also comes with some rambling, unnecessary text, and comparisons in a lazy format for other competing options imo