Alain Dijk
Foshan ShuangMuSanLin Electronics, also known as SMSL, was founded in 2009 in Shenzhen, China. The company specializes in audio DAC, stereo headphone amplifiers and power amplifiers. Consider the SMSL SA-98E to drive your speakers if you need a ton of power in a small space. The SMSL SA-98E is designed around the TDA7498E amplifier chip from STMicroelectronics and is built with high-quality electronic components from Panasonic, ALPS, WIMA and Siemens. Although this amplifier is small in size, it produces no less than 160 watts per channel. The SMSL SA-36A Pro is the perfect amplifier to drive small to medium-sized loudspeakers in a near-field listening environment. Centered on the STMicroelectronics TDA7492, this Class-D amplifier is highly efficient while providing the listener with deep bass and an expansive soundstage. The SMSL A8 and SMSL A6 are multifunction amplifiers and built around the ICEpower 125ASX2 and the 50ASX2 respectively. They have a built-in DAC, phono preamp and headphone amplifier. The SMSL Q5 Pro has the same great sound and features of the original Q5, but adds a micro USB input and a subwoofer output. A 192 kHz/24-bit sample rate, a multitude of input methods and the isolated speaker binding posts make the Q5 Pro a high-quality amplifier/DAC combination.
The SMSL AD18 uses a DAC that features zero phase shift, a strong anti-inference capability thanks to the digital CS8422 receiving chip. The signal then goes into the TAS5508C chip for digital sound processing and pre-amplification. This then sends it to the highly efficient (90%) TAS5342A chip, boosting the output to 80 Watts per channel. It features NFC and Bluetooth 4.2 wireless connectivity and also supports your favorite wired inputs: AUX, 3.5mm coaxial, optical and USB. The SMSL M8A is the upgraded version of the M8 with higher quality components to dramatically improve the sound quality. Part of the upgrade was the addition of a special OPAMP to replace the standard NE5532 chip. This gives SMSL M8A a more tubular sound with warmer mids to combat listening fatigue. As a flat portable DAC/amp, the SMSL IQ is best combined with laptops or smartphones and high-end IEMs. It uses well-regarded components to deliver accurate, reference-quality sound. The SMLS IQ has a small OLED display on the left. For users with balanced IEMs, it has a 2.5-millimeter balanced output in addition to the 3.5-millimeter unbalanced output.