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WiiM Amp Streaming Amplifier Review

Rate this streaming amplifier:

  • 1. Poor (headless panther)

    Votes: 14 3.2%
  • 2. Not terrible (postman panther)

    Votes: 46 10.6%
  • 3. Fine (happy panther)

    Votes: 233 53.6%
  • 4. Great (golfing panther)

    Votes: 142 32.6%

  • Total voters
    435
Edit: As will audiot.co.uk
Reply from Audiot this morning: “According to our supplier, the estimated time for the Wiim Ultra's stock arrival is due in June/July. Sadly, they haven’t announced a firm date as yet.”

I guess that supplier is Henley Audio who are the main non-amazon distributor of WiiM devices in the UK.
 
Should be good. If the fosi doesn't work out but the wiim is great, there are a number of great amps out. Plus I'm sure more on the way. The fosi look great to me because I can hide them behind each speaker. Why are you looking to replace your c700?
Because im curious about other options for less money which will also deliver great SQ/performance (and maybe better then my C700). Sort of a budget challenge haha.
Which other (budget) but great amps could you suggest (secondhand is also good)?
 
Because im curious about other options for less money which will also deliver great SQ/performance (and maybe better then my C700). Sort of a budget challenge haha.
Which other (budget) but great amps could you suggest (secondhand is also good)?
None with the same fearure set I can think of.
 
Now I have just tested the Wiim Amp and was quite disappointed. Although I probably could have known, i still expected more. Partly because of all the positive reviews. I did compare it to my NAD C700 (which may not be entirely fair), but even compared to the Bluesound Powernode and Powernode Edge (which I also had), the difference is quite significant. I find the NAD C700 much grander, more dynamic, and simply sounds better.

The Wiim Amp is well put together (for the money) and has many settings. Streaming works well too. However, the subwoofer's amplification and processing are lacking. Overall sound quality and playback cannot be compared to the aforementioned amplifiers. The Wiim Amp sounded weak and not as refined, smooth, or immersive. At one point, I had the volume all the way up during a movie, and it still wasn't very loud. Is this really at its maximum or am I missing a setting or something?

If you're looking for a reasonably affordable all-in-one amplifier and considering the Wiim Amp or maybe a Bluesound Powernode (Edge), I recommend spending a bit more and going for a Bluesound Powernode (Edge) or perhaps a NAD C700 (if you have the extra money). Honestly, I don't think there's much difference in sound quality between a Bluesound Powernode (Edge) and a NAD C700. Just wanted to share my honest opinion, maybe it will be useful for some people.
 
However, the subwoofer's amplification and processing are lacking.
There's no subwoofer amplification in the WiiM Amp. Are you sure you set levels appropriately on the sub and in the WiiM Amp? If you feel like the bass is lacking, upping those values was the first thing I did.

Usually it's a good idea to set the volume on the sub to ~50% (or slightly higher) and than adjust in the WiiM Home app (up to + 15 dB).

The latest firmware (5.0.617255) together with the latest WiiM Home App also allows to adjust the delay between main speakers and sub. This can be especially important if the sub uses DSP processing, thus introducing a meaningful delay. Adjust for maximum volume, then reduce sub volume if necessary.

The Wimm Amp always high pass filters the main speakers and low pass filters the sub. Because of that:

1. Use the LFE input of your sub, not the filtered low level input. If there is no LFE input, set the crossover frequency on your sub to the max. value and keep the crossover frequency in the WiiM Home app one octave lower, if possible. It should also be one octave higher than your main speakers' lower frequency limit, ideally. If there is no way of fulfilling both conditions, go for a compromise in between.

2. Do not use any high level inputs on the sub connected to the WiiM Amp's speaker outputs, no matter what the sub maker might be telling you. This cannot work! The signal fed to the speakers is high pass filtered already, it doesn't contain any bass! Feeding a signal lacking the bass to the sub makes no sense at all.

The WiiM Amp is rather low on gain (not necessarily low on power), especially when it comes to the line input. I assume your TV is connected through the HDMI ARC input and that should be less likely to be too low on volume, but it's not impossible. Make sure to work out any subwoofer related issues, first. Depending on source the volume control might max out long before the amplifier's power limit. But it shouldn't sound thin.

Finally, you still have EQ and in particular PEQ available to further adjust the sound to your requirements. Up to 20 different custom EQ settings can be saved and applied to the available inputs individually.

Would you mind telling us what speakers and sub you are using and how large your listening area is?
 
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There's no subwoofer amplification in the WiiM Amp. Are you sure you set levels appropriately on the sub and in the WiiM Amp? If you feel like the bass is lacking, upping those values was the first thing I did.

Usually it's a good idea to set the volume on the sub to ~50% (or slightly higher) and than adjust in the WiiM Home app (up to + 15 dB).

The latest firmware (5.0.617255) together with the latest WiiM Home App also allows to adjust the delay between main speakers and sub. This can be especially important if the sub uses DSP processing, thus introducing a meaningful delay. Adjust for maximum volume, then reduce sub volume if necessary.

The Wimm Amp always high pass filters the main speakers and low pass filters the sub. Because of that:

1. Use the LFE input of your sub, not the filtered low level input. If there is no LFE input, set the crossover frequency on your sub to the max. value and keep the crossover frequency in the WiiM Home app one octave lower, if possible. It should also be one octave higher than your main speakers' lower frequency limit, ideally. If there is no way of fulfilling both conditions, go for a compromise in between.

2. Do not use any high level inputs on the sub connected to the WiiM Amp's speaker outputs, no matter what the sub maker might be telling you. This cannot work! The signal fed to the speakers is high pass filtered already, it doesn't contain any bass! Feeding a signal lacking the bass to the sub makes no sense at all.

The WiiM Amp is rather low on gain (not necessarily low on power), especially when it comes to the line input. I assume your TV is connected through the HDMI ARC input and that should be less likely to be too low on volume, but it's not impossible. Make sure to work out any subwoofer related issues, first. Depending on source the volume control might max out long before the amplifier's power limit. But it shouldn't sound thin.

Finally, you still have EQ and in particular PEQ available to further adjust the sound to your requirements. Up to 20 different custom EQ settings can be saved and applied to the available inputs individually.

Would you mind telling us what speakers and sub you are using and how large your listening area is?
Thx for your reply. It wasn't just lack of subwoofer level/presence which i could indeed adjust in the app but more how it was presented. The sound overall didn't sound as i expected and certainly not on par with my NAD C700 or a Bluesound Powernode (Edge). These amps simply sound much better right out of the box (without any adjustments).
Yes i connected the tv through the HDMI ARC input. Ofcourse i could use EQ to try to make the sound more to my liking but that would only be brighter or less bright, that wouldn't improve the definition/smoothness/soundstage of the sound.

I am using Dali Ikon 1 mk1 speakers, Jamo s808 subwoofer. My listening area is medium size i guess (not super small).
 
Trouble is, terms like definition, smoothness and yes, even soundstage are so subjective, it's hard to compare from one listener to the other and from one room to the other.

Matching of components can often be of higher importance than individual quality.
 
Trouble is, terms like definition, smoothness and yes, even soundstage are so subjective, it's hard to compare from one listener to the other and from one room to the other.

Matching of components can often be of higher importance than individual quality.
It's hard to explain indeed. But my ears hear the difference with the same equipment, room etc. only the amp (Wiim) was different. To me it was very clear that the Wiimp was dissapointing for me at least when compared to my NAD C700.
 
NAD C700: US$1999
Bluesound Powernode Edge: US$849
Wiim Amp: US$299

The devices you're comparing it to are not "a bit more". They are 6.7X and 2.8X more. You can easily assemble a nice working system for under $1000 with Wiim. More like $1500 with Bluesound, closer to $3000 with NAD.

Different market segments.

Does the C700 sound 6.7 times better? Does the Edge sound 2.8 times better? Do they maintain subjective superiority with all music & sources in all conditions?
 
It's hard to explain indeed. But my ears hear the difference with the same equipment, room etc. only the amp (Wiim) was different. To me it was very clear that the Wiimp was dissapointing for me at least when compared to my NAD C700.
Just in case you still have all these devices available and you are interested, at all, I would still ... let's say ... encourage you to check and compare the subwoofer settings (default or not) of them all.

That might sound a bit like I'm either anal about subwoofers or a WiiM fanboy (in reality I always was kind of a NAD fanboy) trying to defend his beloved product. But that's not all true. ;) I do like my WiiM Amp, but for me it's a bedroom system only where it does more than well enough. I am a declared convert (really pro now) when it comes to subwoofers for two channel audio (not in my bedroom system btw., at least not yet). On top of that I'm sure that small things can have a big influence when it comes to subjective perception.

Let me get straight to the point: Your test setup looks rather simple, indeed. Swap out one amp for the other, keep everything else unchanged. But if (and only if, of course) the crossover frequency, the filter slope, the relative level or even the phase (continuous phase aka. delay, or maybe even 180° polarity) are different between those amps, the comparison might just not be apples to apples. Even a relatively small difference in a certain frequency range might just lead to a very different listening expression. Or maybe not. You can check and validate, if you like.

In the end, what sounds better to you simply is better for you. Period. And the price difference from the WiiM Amp to the Edge to the C700 is such (thanks to @mikessi ) that better sound from the latter doesn't really make the WiiM any worse for its price point. Sometimes miracles happen, mostly not. But just really make sure you're maxing out each of the devices.


As a final note, I confess that I do strictly believe in the benefits of room correction, if done right (now). Unfortunately, the C700 (in contrast to other NAD BlueOS devices) and the Powersound both skip that. WiiM will come up with its prorpietary RC "real soon now". ;) I cannot say how it will turn out. I'm not on the beta programme, unlike some others. I'm not even sure it will convice me the same way that Lyngdorf's RoomPerfect has. But it's a potential future bonus for the WiiM Amp.
 
NAD C700: US $ 1999
Bluesound Powernode Edge: US $ 849
Wiim Amp: US $ 299

De apparaten waarmee je het vergelijkt zijn niet "een beetje meer". Ze zijn 6,7x en 2,8x meer. Met Wiim monteer je eenvoudig een mooi werksysteem voor onder $ 1000. Meer als $ 1500 met Bluesound, dichter bij $ 3000 met NAD.

Verschillende marktsegmenten.

Klinkt de C700 6,7 keer beter? Klinkt de Edge 2,8 keer beter? Behouden ze subjectieve superioriteit met alle muziek en bronnen onder alle omstandigheden?

NAD C700: US$1999
Bluesound Powernode Edge: US$849
Wiim Amp: US$299

The devices you're comparing it to are not "a bit more". They are 6.7X and 2.8X more. You can easily assemble a nice working system for under $1000 with Wiim. More like $1500 with Bluesound, closer to $3000 with NAD.

Different market segments.

Does the C700 sound 6.7 times better? Does the Edge sound 2.8 times better? Do they maintain subjective superiority with all music & sources in all conditions?
True. Thought i already said somewhere in the beginning that it may be a fair comparison but i just expected (much) more of this amp because of all the raving reviews.
For me it was clear. As a streamer and softwarewise i had no problems. It has many options/settings. It's just the soundquality it produces that's a let a down for me personally.
But i am looking into the possibilty of building a budget system that rivals or outperforms my NAD C700. Thinking of the upcoming Wiim Ultra as a streamer/preamp and 2 Fosi Audio V3 mono amplifiers.
 
Just in case you still have all these devices available and you are interested, at all, I would still ... let's say ... encourage you to check and compare the subwoofer settings (default or not) of them all.

That might sound a bit like I'm either anal about subwoofers or a WiiM fanboy (in reality I always was kind of a NAD fanboy) trying to defend his beloved product. But that's not all true. ;) I do like my WiiM Amp, but for me it's a bedroom system only where it does more than well enough. I am a declared convert (really pro now) when it comes to subwoofers for two channel audio (not in my bedroom system btw., at least not yet). On top of that I'm sure that small things can have a big influence when it comes to subjective perception.

Let me get straight to the point: Your test setup looks rather simple, indeed. Swap out one amp for the other, keep everything else unchanged. But if (and only if, of course) the crossover frequency, the filter slope, the relative level or even the phase (continuous phase aka. delay, or maybe even 180° polarity) are different between those amps, the comparison might just not be apples to apples. Even a relatively small difference in a certain frequency range might just lead to a very different listening expression. Or maybe not. You can check and validate, if you like.

In the end, what sounds better to you simply is better for you. Period. And the price difference from the WiiM Amp to the Edge to the C700 is such (thanks to @mikessi ) that better sound from the latter doesn't really make the WiiM any worse for its price point. Sometimes miracles happen, mostly not. But just really make sure you're maxing out each of the devices.


As a final note, I confess that I do strictly believe in the benefits of room correction, if done right (now). Unfortunately, the C700 (in contrast to other NAD BlueOS devices) and the Powersound both skip that. WiiM will come up with its prorpietary RC "real soon now". ;) I cannot say how it will turn out. I'm not on the beta programme, unlike some others. I'm not even sure it will convice me the same way that Lyngdorf's RoomPerfect has. But it's a potential future bonus for the WiiM Amp.
I understand what you are saying but i went through all the settings but the outcome was still not that great and/or satisfying. The soundquality/output in general was just a letdown for me. Maybe i was expected too much from the Wiim Amp. I suppose roomcorrection could add something/make it better but for me it's clear that the amp should sound good/great right out of the box. Tweaking or adding things is just to make it sound even better. As mentioned in my last reaction to Mikessi im looking into building a budget system that rivals or outperforms my NAD C700.
 
It's more like an amp with a TPA3251 or TPA3255 chip with an underpowered PSU


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The WiiM Amp and WiiM Amp Pro cannot/will not be able to drive every speaker. You can say that about most amps.

If it’s not powerful enough for you, can can buy a Pro Plus or Ultra and an amp of your choice.

But the Amp/Amp Pro will drive most people’s speakers.
 
i am looking into the possibilty of building a budget system that rivals or outperforms my NAD C700. Thinking of the upcoming Wiim Ultra as a streamer/preamp and 2 Fosi Audio V3 mono amplifiers.
That's perfectly reasonable. Wiim Ultra + Topping LA90 would do it a lot better than the Fosi -- tho not cheap, the combo would be ~US$1200 in the US. Still a lot cheaper than the C700.
 
NAD C700: US$1999
Bluesound Powernode Edge: US$849
Wiim Amp: US$299

The devices you're comparing it to are not "a bit more". They are 6.7X and 2.8X more. You can easily assemble a nice working system for under $1000 with Wiim. More like $1500 with Bluesound, closer to $3000 with NAD.

Different market segments.

Does the C700 sound 6.7 times better? Does the Edge sound 2.8 times better? Do they maintain subjective superiority with all music & sources in all conditions?
To your point, I have the Wiim Amp and Cyrus OneCast. To different performance levels and two different price points. Sonically the Cyrus is superior in every audible way.

I also purchased the SMSL AO300 at the same time to compare. It costs slightly less than the Wiim amp but it too sounds better. To @Marss72 point, the Wiim amp does sound lean. That’s the first thing I noticed. Even compared to the AO300 the sound was inferior. There’s a lack of fullness and weight. The highs on AO300 are smoother and the overall presentation was more immersive. Even when comparing at roughly the volume (within 1db) the AO300 sounded more confident/authoritative.

The 60/120 watts may hold in bench testing but in real world situations with actual musical content it seems to l fall short. It lacks in volume.

All that said, I kept the Wiim Amp and returned the SMSL because of all the other features the Wiim has. I use it as a desktop amp where I sit less than two feet from both speakers. For my use case it has ample volume. I would not use this in a main system. For smaller rooms, casual listening and desktop usage, I doing think you can find a more complete product for so little, though you can find better sounding.
 
That's perfectly reasonable. Wiim Ultra + Topping LA90 would do it a lot better than the Fosi -- tho not cheap, the combo would be ~US$1200 in the US. Still a lot cheaper than the C700.
Topping LA90 is too expensive for me try out.
 
To your point, I have the Wiim Amp and Cyrus OneCast. To different performance levels and two different price points. Sonically the Cyrus is superior in every audible way.

I also purchased the SMSL AO300 at the same time to compare. It costs slightly less than the Wiim amp but it too sounds better. To @Marss72 point, the Wiim amp does sound lean. That’s the first thing I noticed. Even compared to the AO300 the sound was inferior. There’s a lack of fullness and weight. The highs on AO300 are smoother and the overall presentation was more immersive. Even when comparing at roughly the volume (within 1db) the AO300 sounded more confident/authoritative.

The 60/120 watts may hold in bench testing but in real world situations with actual musical content it seems to l fall short. It lacks in volume.

All that said, I kept the Wiim Amp and returned the SMSL because of all the other features the Wiim has. I use it as a desktop amp where I sit less than two feet from both speakers. For my use case it has ample volume. I would not use this in a main system. For smaller rooms, casual listening and desktop usage, I doing think you can find a more complete product for so little, though you can find better sounding.
Sounds like Wiim is the bottleneck in the chain? If that's the case, is it due to the amplification section or the internal DAC/sound processing or both? Do you guys think i will experience the same with the Wiim Ultra/will i be dissapointed in the sound?
 
It may be that I have become accustomed to the sound of NAD family audio products. This is because I have had several amplifiers/products from other brands in my setup that I did not like as much as (for example) a Bluesound Powernode/NAD C700.

I like a bit of warmth/smoothness in the sound without losing clarity/details. Maybe that's why the sound of Arcam and to a lesser extent Marantz also appeals to me, but with those brands, you have to be (extra) careful with speaker choice so it doesn't sound too muffled (from my own experience). I think NAD is the golden middle ground for me so far although I'm open to being surprised by adding an (affordable) external DAC like the SMSL SU-1.

I will try/test at least 3 things:
1. Adding SMSL SU-1 DAC to the Fosi Audio ZA3 and Wiim Mini.
2. Replacing Wiim Mini with Bluesound Node (which also gives me HDMI Arc for testing that sound as well), so it would be: Fosi Audio ZA3 + Bluesound Node.
3. Fosi Audio ZA3 + Bluesound Node + SMSL SU-1 DAC.

Then I'll see which option I prefer. Maybe option 1 will be sufficient for me, and I'll know that I can switch to a Wiim Ultra + Fosi Audio ZA3 or 2x Fosi Audio V3 Mono + SMSL SU-1 DAC later with peace of mind. If option 1 still doesn't yield the desired result and options 2 and 3 appeal to me even more, and even surpass the sound quality of my NAD C700 (to my ears), then I'll have to let go of the idea of pairing the upcoming Wiim Ultra with Fosi Audio amplifiers. It's a matter of weighing the options. It's then the choice whether to keep the NAD C700 or go for the Fosi Audio ZA3/V3 Mono + Bluesound Node + possibly an SMSL SU-1 but then I won't have a display to see at least the volume level (which is kind of important to me/my girlfriend). We'll see, i've already ordered the SMSL SU-1 and Bluesound Node, so let's first see how the three options I mentioned earlier will work out for me.
 
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