Going up that laddeR!
PROS: discrete R-2R resistor array DAC, natural resolving tonality, optimized for sensitive and hard to drive earphones/headphones, high power BAL output, LDAC Bluetooth Rx, Balanced Line Out, solid build.
CONS: price, no touch screen, no custom EQ.
The product was provided to me free of charge for the review purpose in exchange for my honest opinion.
Manufacturer website: Luxury & Precision. Available for sale from Musicteck.
I’m sure many of you have noticed that some high-end DAPs start to feel dated even 6 months after the release. The reason is because manufacturers rely on the latest DACs, fastest processors, and different versions of Android OS and apps. And just like with your regular smartphone, these don’t last for too long until the next update. In many cases we don’t even need DAPs with the fastest Android OS performance or the latest AKM or ESS chips. But consumers with the “upgraditis” syndrome are always on a mission to get the latest and the greatest.
Though I received L&P P6 4 months ago, I have already featured it in many of my reviews and made a lot of posts in P6 thread on Head-fi, and now ready to share my full write up. 4 months later and P6 still feels like a fresh brand-new release to me, still relevant, and still innovative. Why? Because L&P took out variables which make this DAP age, there is no traditional DAC chip or Android OS. They even went as far as minimizing the design by eliminating a touch screen interface, focusing more on audio performance with less external interference.
I have tested and written in the past about L&P L3, L3 Pro, LP5, L5 Pro, and L6, and quite familiar with their design philosophy. But, will P6 be the right DAP for you? And, can it replace or complement your other DAPs? Let’s find out more in this review of Luxury & Precision P6 digital audio player with a fully discrete R-2R resistor ladder design.
Unboxing and Accessories.
The unboxing experience of P6 is similar to other L&P DAPs I reviewed in the past. P6 arrived in a medium size narrow black thin paper box with just a glossy black “Luxury & Precision” text on top. Out of the paper box, inside you’ll find a wooden box with a sliding cover and L&P carved logo, the same box as L6 arrived in which I reviewed a few years ago. L&P uses a real wooden box which reminds me of cigar boxes, not some cheap fake wood. It has a similar red wood finish L&P uses as a back panel in some of their DAPs. One little detail which always stands out here, when cover is closed two little magnets hold it from sliding down if tilted.
Inside was a foam insert with a cutout for P6, to hold it securely during shipping, and accessory boxes with a quality USB-C data/charging cable, user manual, and L&P branded blue cleaning cloth. Seems like the screen protector was already applied to P6 glass display and back panel. While this is a rather minimalistic set of stock accessories, looks like Musicteck in their listing of P6 includes a free L&P leather case.
It is actually a very nice quality textured leather case, fitting P6 like a glove. The DAP slides in from the top, exposing the top of the DAP fully open to access headphone jacks and power button. A generous cutout on the left and the right gives direct access to all the buttons, the opening for volume wheel is also perfect to use from the front or the back, and the bottom of the DAP is open with full access to micro SD card and USB-C port. Don’t know if yellow color will suite everybody, but I personally like it because it stands out from other DAPs.
When I first heard about P6 at CanJam NYC in Feb, L&P rep at MusicTeck table had fliers with pictures of the DAP which had a basic rectangular shape and over half a dozen of buttons on the front. It was a rather plain looking design and front buttons made it look old-school. But apparently, that was a picture of the early prototype, not the finished product. When I received P6, it looked totally different with a new unique modern design.
The overall dimensions of the device are 67.7 mm x 124mm (H) x 20mm (D), and the weight of 248g. It’s an average size DAP with a little bit of heft, but still very comfortable to hold in your hand. The top panel is all glass with a section allocated for 3.5” IPS display, NOT a touch screen. The chassis body are made of aerospace aluminum, the sides have angled facet edges, and the back of P6 is a glass panel. But what makes it stand out is an asymmetric design with a slotted panel on the right side which kind of reminds me of credit-card machine with a gap where you slide the card.
The design looks really cool, to the point where I didn’t want to place P6 in its leather case, though having the grip enhancement when inside the case would be highly advisable. On the right side you have a thin volume wheel with a diamond cut edge which is easy to access from the front and the back, and the panel on the right side serves as a guard. Below it you have small labeled Enter and Return navigation buttons with a nice tactile response, and you can see them going through the opening slit to the body of the DAP.
Left side has the same ALPS playback buttons (Play/Pause and Skip) with a nice tactile response as well. Everything is solid, nothing is rattling. At the bottom there is a spring-loaded micro SD card slot and USB-C port for charging, data transfer, and USB DAC input. At the top in the right corner, you have a power button with a typical short press to turn screen on/off and long press (3-4 seconds) to turn the power on/off. Also, at the top, you will find 4.4mm BAL output which you can select as Headphone Out or Line Out and 3.5mm SE output which you can select as Headphone Out, Line Out, or SPDIF in/out.
Page 2 – Under the hood and OS/GUI.
Page 3 – Sound Analysis and Comparison.
Page 4 – Pair up, Wired/wireless connections, and Conclusion.
23 thoughts on “Luxury & Precision L&P P6”
Excellent review. I have the P6 and find it to be an amazing sounding DAP with both the Odin IEMS and Meze Empyrean headphones.
I have only used the micro SD card which I loaded directly from my Mac. I have never added music to the card or internal storage directly. To add music to the internal storage do you just drag and drop the music into the P6 when connected to the laptop?
Thanks for your detailed and spot on review. I thoroughly enjoyed it.
Yes, when you connect it to your computer, it becomes visible like external storage drive where you can drag and drop the songs.
Thank you. I was curious as to what small/desktop amp is a good pairing with the P6 and Empyrean headphones in your opinion?
sorry, don’t have too many desktop amps, I’m more into portable setup. Romi Audio BX2 I mentioned in the review is a great little portable amp,.
Thanks for the suggestion for a portable amp to pair with the P6 and Empyrean. I’ll look into it.
Another amp connection question. I got the iFi Zen Can amp and I am clearly doing something wrong. I am connection the P6 3.5mm with RCA cables to the input on the Zen Can. What setting should I change in the P6 for it to send music through the amp?
System setting, audio output setting, SPDIF out -> On. And make sure you are using coax cable with 3.5mm plug that has 4 rings
I have Audioquest Evergreen 3.5mm and RCA interconnect cables. The 3.5mm has 2 rings on it. How does this differ from one with 4 rings on the plug? Sorry for a stupid question. Will this cable not work with the P6 to amp?
Needs 4 rings 3.5mm plug, that’s how the jack is designed because it is combined between audio and digital outputs.
https://extreme-audio-usa.myshopify.com/products/extreme-audio-3-5mm-stereo-4-pole-to-rca-digital-coaxial-audio-connection-cable-for-fiio-x3-2nd-generation-fiio-x5-2nd-generation-and-fiio-x7-6ft this is the cable I’m using, but you can probably find a cheaper one, though this one is good quality.
Thank you for the information and the link for the correct cable I need. Will get one ordered so I can try out my amp.
I appreciate all of your help with this!
Sorry for another question. The Zen Can needs 2 RCA input connectors and the P6 needs one 3.5mm. The link you sent has only one connector for the amp. Are there 2 RCA cable connectors that have the 3.5mm with 4 rings?
Here is an example of the type of cable I need to connect the P6 to the Zen Can amp. Would this work?
Sorry, I totally misread your question. I saw iFi and assumed you were talking about their DAC/amp where you need a digital SPDIF input, but this is amplifier where you need a dual RCA audio input. Dual RCA connection is for amplifier input, the output of P6 internal R-2R DAC will go to 3.5mm Line Out (selected from System settings, Audio output setting, Headphone interface mode, Line output. And if you have headphone already plugged in when selecting Line Out, unplug and plug it again, it will pop up with a message to confirm Line Out) and instead of internal amplifier you will connect to external amplifier. That is audio output, not digital SPDIF output, thus you should be able to use the cable above. I’m using this cable https://www.audioquest.com/cables/analog-interconnects/bridges-falls-series/evergreen with external XI Audio Broadway amplifier and P6 and it works perfectly. But AQ Evergreen is the same as the Extreme audio cable above, just that AQ will be higher quality copper and better shielding.
Perfect. Thank you for that help. I was looking at the Audio Broadway as it is a nice small size. What headphone jack is needed to connect with the output of that amp? Does it take a 4.4mm balanced or something different?
There are 2 versions, Broadway S (single ended, 6.3mm, so you can use with 3.5mm adapter) and Broadway with balanced 4.4mm, but it has too much power for iems. Great thing about this DAP is that it runs on batteries. But Romi Audio Bx2+ is even better, the one I mentioned in my P6 review.
The Romi Audio BX2+ looks great however I don’t think it is available in the States.
“Equalizer where you can ONLY select presets (normal, rock, pop, classic, bass, jazz)”
That is a shame. I’ve been on a kick with AutoEQ measurements and tweaking my IEMs. For some, it’s made a huge difference. Have the PAW 6000 and thinking about upgrading, but feel like the LPGT is too similar (and I wish their PEQ had more range for Q). I really don’t want to buy a high end Android player, but using something like UAPP would certainly give one a lot of EQ power.
Maybe the P6 Pro will get the option for custom EQ? Looking forward to your post on that one, you do great work!
It doesn’t, P6 Pro has identical GUI/OS just wit a touch screen. I should have the review very soon, just too overload with personal stuff now. Many manufacturers believe that a true audiophile source doesn’t need to be tweaked since EQ introduces distortion and other artifacts. Others, like Lotoo have a very high quality Parametric EQ or if you want sound shaping, Hiby app and small hiby OS daps have MSEB or another option is Cowon with their JetEffects. Keep in mind, P6 and P6 Pro have Bluetooth Rx mode, you can pair it up with your phone to use as a high-res LDAC wireless R-2R DAC/amp and do all your sound tweaking on the phone. With L&P, LP6 has a custom EQ, but not P6 or P6 Pro.
I have been in the ‘no EQ’ camp for a long time. Finding professionally (or pseudo-professionally) derived PEQ settings for specific IEMs has changed my mind though. My Rai Penta were okay before EQ, but wow what a difference after EQ. My VE8 on the other hand, I like with no EQ.
That said, I’m still interested in the P6 Pro. Maybe the ideal setup is a cheaper Android DAP for streaming and tweaking, and something like the P6 or LPGT for my owned music collection.
Great point about Bluetooth Rx, although as an iPhone user I think I may be capped with codecs.
Hope you’re doing well Twister, love all your content!
Any information and Ra c cu IEM 182 ohms by oBravo, I heard bad and good reports about it, and that confuses me, don’t know what to believe, However, I own one pair of oBravo iem, eamt 1c and I love it, and it makes me believe that it’s Ra c cu iem it could be better than what I have and I am attempting to get it, please let me know what you know. Thank you
Just replied to your other question after DX300 review. Just search on my site, I have reviewed RA C Cu years ago. They just released RA 21 updated 2021 version. Will try to get a sample from Phil as soon as I’m done with other reviews. And usually reports vary because people look at RA C Cu price and expect a lot more. oBravo doesn’t buy off-the-shelf parts, they design and manufacturer their own drivers, and sell these high end RA C Cu models in low quantities. Thus, cost is high because R&D and Manufacturing is very expensive.