Benchmark for $300? Zeos Reviews the SMSL SU-6 DAC and SH-6 Amp

Note: This article is based upon the video "Sub-$300 Flagship Stack _(Z Reviews)_ SMSL SU6 // SH6" made by Z Reviews on his YouTube channel and is printed here in partnership with Z Reviews. The review was originally posted on January 17th, 2022. Edits have been made for clarity and length.

The amplifier 

The only way I can describe the SMSL SH-6 amplifier is extremely capable and remarkably clean. I pulled out my Dunu Zens. I pulled out my Moondrop Katos. If you don’t know why I have the Dunu Zens out for an amplifier, let me explain: they’re hyper sensitive. You plug them into an amp, and the way you test is you pause the music and then just turn the volume knob up and see if there’s noise. The GSX Mini was like rain. So I’ve been using the Dunu Zens to listen for a noise floor. Now, the numbers on the SH6 are very good, and you confirm that by plugging in the Dunu Zens, and on low gain there is literally no noise. On high gain, you get a bit of background static, like a shh. This unit claims 2.6 watts per channel at 16Ω. I put it on low gain at nine o’clock, and these are the loudest. I’d never need to go that high.

The DAC

The SU-6 DAC absolutely works perfectly fine as a DAC. If you just need a DAC to put in the living room to plug some powered monitors into: here. For the price point, these sound way better than previous generations of SMSL Stuff. This is better than anything you could have gotten five years ago, anywhere, at any price point. I don’t know where we’ll be in five years, but as of now, this is becoming benchmark stuff. So bravo, SMSL, you somehow made me give a s*** about a stack of sub-$300 gear. I have nothing negative to say about it.