The Hifiman MegaMini is SuperMini’s little brother, and the second entry in Hifiman’s thin audiophile digital audio players. The MegaMini is a less expensive alternative to the SuperMini, although it wouldn’t show by looks, being equally elegant, slick and nicely built.
The MegaMini follows the same philosophy as the SuperMini, meaning, the capability to amp full size portable headphones with ease and offer volume in spades, and to produce a sound quality close to Hifiman’s bigger players, for a fraction of the size.
Compared to the SuperMini, which sounds very close to the HM-802S (full, darkish), the MegaMini has more similar to the tone of the HM-901S, having more linear bass, less thick sound in general compared to the SuperMini, although smoother highs and less resolution compared to the flagship HM-901S.
The MegaMini fulfills the goal of sounding powerful, lasting about 15 hours battery life, and staying tiny. In order to do so, just like with the SuperMini, HifiMan pursued the strategy of using a low power integrated chip instead of an external DAC chip (which would have consumed power much more quickly), with a built-in audio DAC tuned to no end in order to achieve a sound signature coherent with the HM-901S and the desired power specifications.
The Hifiman MegaMini can power to very high volume portable headphones like Meze 99 Classics and Sennheiser Momentum 1 and 2 (over-ear). It’s slightly less powerful than the SuperMini, but it can still drive the aforementioned cans at highly uncomfortable volumes.
The MegaMini supports the most common digital audio formats: wav, flac, ape, mp3, alac, aiff, dff, dsd.
The MegaMini uses the same user interface as the SuperMini, immediate to understand, although slower than the interface on the HM-802S and HM-901S because of the lack of a scroll wheel (there are buttons instead).
The MegaMini sound signature is slighly leaner and brighter than the SuperMini’s. Midrange is more linear, and there is slightly less bass power and the overall sound is somehow less coloured. Both players are smooth although the SuperMini is smoother. They differ in that the SuperMini is more musical, whereas the MegaMini is slightly less “fat” and more adaptable to darker headphones such as the Meze 99 Neo or the Sennheiser Momentum (first over-ear version), or Westone UM3X. The SuperMini with its lushier midrange can fit better headphones such as Meze 99 Classics, Sennheiser Momentum M2, Meze 12 Classics, Etymotic ER4.
As previously stated, the MegaMini is more akin to a minified HM901S, as far as sound signature goes. Obviously, it cannot compare the level of detail retrieval that its bigger brother has (the HM901S is Hifiman’s most detailed audiophile portable player), and it cannot compare the power levels of the internal amplification of the HM-series… but it doesn’t have to. The MegaMini can reach much higher volumes than smartphones and similar toys against which it has to compete, and it does so without distortion. It’s great for listening to portable headphones such as the aforementioned Meze or Sennheiser (and several others), which would strive with the volume achievable with a simple mp3 or smartphone.
Just like its twin (the SuperMini), the HifiMan MegaMini is combines its very small, thin size, its slick looks, and powerful sound for the thin package, and finally, very satisfying battery life. Such qualities make it as portable as the SuperMini, and much agile to carry around than bigger brothers like HM-901S (that were actually conceived as transportables) and similar, bigger offerings.
Such level of miniaturization wasn’t the norm some years ago in audiophile listening, and I clearly remember several audiophiles carrying around portable amplifiers out of their iPhone… something that luckily is not needed nowadays.