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Showing 1-10 of 432 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 493 reviews
on March 6, 2012
So many reviews here speak of using this for music etc but I actually bought this due to my nerve deafness. I can hear many sounds, but often with movies, the speaking parts are too low so that it is not enjoyable to watch movies or tv shows as I can hear them speaking but cannot make out the majority of the words.

I actually bought this for use with Amazon Prime since they do not have CC (Closed Captioning). This unit is the only amp I have ever bought for use with my headsets so I cannot make comparisons, but for amplifying volume so that I can actually hear the dialogue, this unit is FANTASTIC! In fact, for Prime shows, it is so loud, I have it on the lowest setting to hear comfortably! For movies elsewhere on the Net, I've had to crank it up a few notches for those that were ranked a low score due to low volume but I hear everything!

I do not hear any hissing, pops or anything that some other reviewers have complained about but then again, maybe their better hearing picks up these imperfections. I do not hear them however. The unit normally goes for $30 but w prime it is discounted about $10. I bought it before I had Prime back in June 2011 and it was worth all $30! One thing I do notice is that it works best with a headset with one jack and can be a little glitchy with headsets with mic/headphone dual jacks - sometimes it works with duals and sometimes it doesn't so be aware of this.

The unit is small- about the size of a paper matchbook, is very light in weight but made of high quality material. The surface is slippery and the clip is sturdy but slippery also so it may have trouble actually staying in place. My advice is to clip it on the inside of a pocket so that the clip is on the outside and the unit in. A small strip of velcro taped to a backpack pocket would make it more secure. It charges via USB within an hour if fully drained and lasts quite a few hours of constant use.

I highly recommend this unit if you have nerve deafness or are hard of hearing for whatever reason.

UPDATE: June 27, 2012
I bought a used 8GB iPod 4th gen and some of the music files already on the iPod were transferred in low volume. I added this amp in between the iPod and the headset and was able to hear even the faintest of songs in great volume so the only songs I took off the iPod were the ones not of my taste and not due to an inability of hearing thanks to this item! I also bought the latest FiiO E6 to have the FiiO E5 as a backup and the E6 is better than this one due to more sound selections (i.e. more bass etc) but both work great. :)

UPDATE: December 10, 2013
I still use both the E5 & E6 with my iPod 4th Gen. They work just as they did on day one. However, I do not use them for my Samsung G3 phone due to the quirkiness of its headphone jack based on so many reviews. I opted instead to use a Bluetooth headset with my phone. To help with my nerve deafness, I purchased the Equalizer app from the Playstore and it acts as if I was using this physical amp. This update doesn't exactly refer to this product but I wanted to add it for those that are hard of hearing and are finding it difficult to hear via Bluetooth headsets.
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on March 20, 2012
I bought this because I was tired of the volume mismatch between the radio and CD modes of my car stereo with the aux input. I had to crank up the volume for my music player and would often forget to turn it down when I was done. I'd get reminded when I started up the car, switched to the radio and got the icepick in the ear. As a booster this device works fine. I don't have to readjust the volume control on the car stereo when I plug my music player into the aux input. I set both the music player and the amp to max volume but I can live with that.

A lot of reviews have criticized this device for not improving the sound. This is an amplifier. It increases the gain. It does have buffered output. It will only improve the sound if there's a significant impedance mismatch between your player and the device (headphones, line input) it's plugged into. I've seen detailed audio tests of this device with screen shots of things like frequency response and distortion over the normal sound spectrum. It performs like you'd expect a low power amp to perform. Flat frequency response and negligible distortion. No boost above 500 Hz as one reviewer states.

It's not an audio panacea. It won't make your equipment sound better in any way unless there's the impedance match mentioned above. It does add some gain and doesn't alter the signal appreciably. I'd like a bit more gain than this unit provides since I use it at max volume, but other than that I'm perfectly satisfied. To tell the truth, I'd be perfectly happy with no volume control at all. The bass boost switch doesn't have much audible effect. I could do without that too. I do like having a power switch.
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on April 29, 2012
I've never used headphone amplifiers before and didn't want to break the bank to satisfy my curiosity. I use the FiiO E5 with a pair of Sennheiser HD201 and Shure SRH440 headphones. They make a huge difference on the cheaper HD201s but bring nothing to the table for the slightly pricier SRH440s. I'm sure there are better products out there, but overall I am satisfied with the E5 and would recommend it.

I primarily use the E5 and my Shure SRH440's with my iPod Nano, iPhone 4s and Gateway NV79 laptop

Pros
-Noticable volume difference/increase, great improvement on Bass boost
-Really adds depth to Hip-Hop, Metal and Electronica types of songs
-Small Compact, light weight
-Competitive Price
-Light notifies you when device is charged
-Excellent battery life

Cons
-Does not improve clarity for all signal levels, especially noticable on certain acoustic guitar songs, symphony scores and classical music
-Does not come with a wall charger
-Doesn't always play nice with device EQ
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on December 21, 2010
I have to be honest, I didn't actually buy this for myself. I wanted something for my dad with a USB interface and decoder for his computer system. After I placed the order, I realized that the USB on this does not function as a source decoder. Since I had already ordered it, I thought I would go ahead and order the Line Out Cable and keep it. I honestly can't believe that for $35 between the two that I would have turned the result that it did. I'm running it out of a G3 iPod Nano into my Shure SRH840 cans. If you know these headphones, you know that they are VERY inefficient. This dinky looking amp totally puts their dynamic level right on par with the likes of the Denon AHD5000's. I haven't had the fortune of playing it with my Monster TPC earbuds, but I can't wait to hear the result. I have listened to them on my Etymotic HF5 earbuds and sadly, it doesn't help, but they aren't meant to be a dynamic headphone to begin with. Spend the few bucks that these cost to DRASTICALLY improve your iPod listening. Be sure to get the iPod line out cable with this for best sound.

FiiO L3 Line Out Dock (LOD) Cable For iPod and iPhone
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on June 5, 2014
Although most people use this for portable listening, I actually picked this up to wire into a home setup, specifically to boost the volume sent from our main room to the other TVs in the house. I was a little worried it wouldn't be able to keep up or would have sub-par sound, but I'm happy to say that this unit manages admirably. We've noticed no loss in audio quality, and what comes through to the other TVs is loud enough without being too loud. It's really done a good job for us, especially since it was a quarter of the price of anything we could find marketed for home theater use. Plus, it takes up far less space.

One thing I really like about this little amplifier is that its powered via USB. With so many things that have USB ports it's nice to have something that can use them for power.

About the only negative thing I can say about this is that when its plugged in to power and to audio the cable mess can be a bit overwhelming, since three of the four corners will have cables coming out of them. Of course, most people will only have it plugged in to power when they aren't moving (or maybe just are charging it), so that rarely will come up. Other than that, it's a perfect product for what it does.
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on April 24, 2013
I have a Vizio TV that I wanted to attach headphones to, however the audio output through the RCA jacks was almost nonexistent. They were obviously put there to attached to an amplifier. After researching for a solution I found this Fiio E5, however in the product description and in all the comments everyone was using this small amp to hook up to an M-3 player, laptop, ipod, etc. So I figured I would at least order one and try it out knowing that I could return it if it just didn't work. Well my first impression when opening the package was "my God this small little thing couldn't possibly do the job that I wanted it to do". I had envisioned something the size of a pack of cigarettes, not half the size of a pack of matches. Well, to my surprise it works perfectly. Hooked it up and now I have gained as much audio output to my headphones from the TV as I will ever need. I great little product which solved my problem of having almost no output from the two RCA audio jacks on the back of my TV to speak of. Would highly recommend it for this purpose.
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on September 10, 2013
I bought this mini-amp to improve the sound levels coming out of my iPod Classic when used with a pair of (new) Sennheiser HD-280 headphones (64 ohms) . I noticed I had to play the volume very close to max on the iPod to get the sound I wanted, so for $25, I said what the heck. Let's see if the F5 can take some of the load off of my iPod.......

First setup was with the supplied cables - iPod (out) to E5 (in), headphones to E5 (out). I noticed very little difference in sound output; a little louder, no distortion, the bass boost worked. I was slightly disappointing and felt I *maybe* got my $25 worth. Read a few reviews which said to try the F5 with the (extra $) Line-out Docking cable (LOD) available here on Amazon. Ok...another $10.

Second setup: Ipod LOD cable to E5(in), headphones to E5(out). I *really* wish I had turned down the E5 volume BEFORE I did this, as it almost blew out my eardrums! Wow. What a difference. At not even half volume on the E5, I had the music level I wanted, and it was incredible. I really can't compare the overall sound quality with and without the amp, as I only had the headphones for a week, but doing a test back and forth, quality-wise, I can see no difference, except that with the F5, louder passages sound better through the midranges (no brassy-ness), and the low end, even without the booster, sounds better (more present, still clean). I especially enjoyed the bass riff in "Sympathy for the Devil" by the Stones.

I am overall pretty happy with this amp, and hope it lasts. I docked it one star because of the performance with the out-of-box cables, but looking at other reviews, that just might be my setup/components.
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on March 1, 2013
I bought this E5 amp because I was having a hard time hearing my mp3 player while interstate cruising on my motorcycle. I have a pretty basic (cheap) mp3 player, & even with my Apple iPod earbuds I was still having a hard time hearing the tunes clearly over the sound of my engine & road noise (not to mention the lack of bass that I get from my mp3 player). The second I plugged this baby in my jaw dropped! What was once flat, slightly "tinny" sound instantly became a well-rounded, full-textured music sound. Highs, mids, & lows all represented clearly. The difference is like night & day. I have since bought myself a Garmin GPS w/mp3 built in, & the E5 greatly improves the sound quality from it as well. I use this amp on my computer's headphones as well.... it's simply amazing, especially for the price.

As far as the VOLUME goes, this device absolutely increases the over-all volume output. Maybe not as much as I had expected, but all I needed was a slight boost to the volume, & this certainly does the trick. The battery life lasts me around 10 HOURS of continuous play while turned ALL THE WAY UP & with the "Bass-booster" ON. Charges completely in well under 2 hours. I LOVE THIS AMP & I rarely leave home without it. I have been a musician for over 25 years now & I know good audio when I hear it. Sounds great, boosts volume, charges quickly.... & all for around $25 bucks - this thing is a steal. I've used it daily now for over 3 months & it still works like it did the day I opened it.

I def plan to order a second one soon to keep in my saddlebag on my bike. A MUST OWN for music lovers that just need a little boost to the ears. My music has never sounded better than it does when filtered through my FiiO E5 Headphone Amplifier!

(notes: 1. I generally listen to Metal, Hip-Hop, & Alternative music at very LOUD levels. 2. A very faint "hum" or "buzz" can be heard when plugged in or between songs, but it is totally un-noticable while the music is playing & not bothersome in the least. That is the ONLY negative thing that I can say about this product, & it is not even an issue when using it.)
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on March 1, 2013
The FiiO E5 is a well-built, inexpensive headphone amp. Unlike the newer FiiO E6, the E5 is made of mostly of metal with some plastic. It has a power button, a volume button (if you opt to use the optional L9 line out dock cable to connect to your iPod),a power/charging light, a mini-USB port (and cable) for charging with a PC, a headphone jack, and input jack, a metal clip (to fasten it to something when you're on the go??) and a bass boost button (to switch between normal and bass boosted mode).

Pros - well built, easy to use, inexpensive (ok, cheap), bass boost button works
Cons - Effectiveness varies from headphone model to headphone model, normal setting makes headphones sound tinny

I tried the E5 with a variety of vintage headphones - Numark, HV115, Stanton Dynaphase Fifty, Sennheise HD420SL and HD422, Koss SST/5, and Audio Technica ATH-701. All of the headphones sounded louder at the same volume setting, some much more than others. Using bass boost, most of the headphones had a noticeable bass boost, though the Sennheisers and the Audio Technica did not, and they also had the least loudness boost.

Comparing the E5 to the comparable Firestone Fireye mini, some headphones sounded better with the E5 (like the Koss), while some sounded better with the Fireye (the Numark in particular), while some didn't sound any better with either (i.e. the Sennheisers). Overall though the E5 seemed crisper and clearer than the Fireye, which tended to muddy the sound a bit of many of the headphones.

Which to choose? Listen to the headphones you want to use them on before you buy, if you can - the effectiveness varies considerably depending on the headphone model. Otherwise, you can easily find the E5 for @$20, 1/2 the price of the Fireye Mini. At that price, with a sturdier build, made mostly of metal, with some nice features, I'd go for the E5.
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on January 19, 2013
First, I purchased these two units in 2011. I ran across this item searching today and thought I'd write this quick review.

I travel frequently for my job. I purchased some noise-cancelling headphones for travel - they were inexpensive Able Planet ones I bought from Costco. While the Bose sound great, I just couldn't justify the expense. While I liked these headphones, for many music tracks the sound resolution seemed thin. I purchased one of these headphone amps after searching some audio forums.

Let me say, the first FiiO was STELLAR! It worked fantastic - exactly what I wanted. More life and resolution in the music, plus it was light and unobtrusive. Easy to charge from my computer while on the road. Inexpensive but good fidelity. This is not audiophile quality, but excellent price/performance ratio.

Then...I left my headphones (and the FiiO, which was so easy to store in the carrying case)on the plane. Bummer. Gone forever.

So I decided to try again. I purchased some different headphones that turned out to be more comfortable. The price was similar to the ones from Costco, and they were more comfortable and had better sound - AUDIO TECHNICA ATH-ANC27 Noise-Canceling Headphones. I bought another FiiO.

At first, the FiiO was just as great. Then, all of a sudden without warning it stopped working. Light on. Tried different connector plugs to ensure it wasn't the wires that were the problem. NO SIGNAL. Ensured full charge by charging overnight, etc. NO SIGNAL. I take great care of my audio/hi-fi equipment. I think it was a defective unit.

I tried to find a website or address or something to get an exchanged item. NO DICE. No help there, even thought it says it has a warranty. There is little valuable information on the enclosed manual. Their website had not useful information.

Summary: when the item isn't defective, it works great. But if you purchase and it fails after the 30 day Amazon return window, you're out of luck.

The new FiiO site is more robust than it used to be. However, their support is still very limited and not convenient. If it is defective...at this low price...it won't be worth the effort to return. :(
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