Have you gone wireless with your in-ears yet? I’m not talking about TWS earphones. I’m talking about Bluetooth receivers that you can use with your wired IEMs. In this review, I’m looking at possibly the cutest I’ve seen so far: the Hidizs H2 lossless Bluetooth receiver. Why lossless? Because the Qualcomm CSR8675 can support up to 24-bit aptX HD wireless audio.
Not only is the H2 tiny: it has a lot more to offer too, including 7-hour battery life, NFC one-touch pairing and support for all the latest Hi-Res wireless audio formats, including the new UAT (Ultra Audio Transmission) developed by HiBy. Those are some big claims for such a small device. But can it deliver?
Disclaimer: This sample was provided for the purpose of an honest review. All observations and opinions here are my own based on my experience with the product.
Ease of use
All the latest Hi-Res Bluetooth codecs supported
Also works as a USB DAC
Clear, transparent sound
Fairly low power output
No balanced output
Packaging & Accessories
Hidizs H2 comes in a nice compact black box with a specifications list on the back. Inside the box is the H2 Bluetooth receiver, a USB Type-C charging cable, a Type-C to Type C cable, a plastic clip case and documentation/warranty.
The case is a nice addition and makes it easy to clip H2 to your shirt or pants etc. while also adding a level of protection to the device itself.
Starting with the physical design, the Hidizs H2 is a tiny, lightweight device, weighing in at just 12g. In terms of size, the H2 is only 32x32x10mm. To put that in perspective, It’s smaller than an average teabag (except for its height).
The front and back of the unit have a glass cover with only a small NFC logo at the bottom on the front plus some branding and model number on the back. On the top side of the H2 is the 3.5mm headphone jack and built-in microphone. The left side has a multi-function rocker switch that can adjust the volume and change tracks.
On the right side is a multi-function play/pause button for music and calls plus a dual-colour LED indicator that flashes green or blue depending on the current sample rate. Lastly, on the bottom side is a Type-C USB port for charging and data transfer.
Internally, the Hidizs H2 has a Qualcomm CSR8675 Bluetooth chip that supports 24-bit audio, aptX HD and Hiby’s new UAT (Ultra Audio Transmission) wireless audio format. The AMP chip is the high-performance MAX97220 which was chosen for its low distortion and noise.
When it comes to functionality, the H2 is super easy to use. The buttons are tactile and responsive and the layout works well. There’s an additional little bump on the volume rocker that lets you differentiate between the volume up and down by touch.
For added functionality, Hidizs H2 works with the HiBy Blue app. The app lets you view the current battery status, bit-rate and Bluetooth format, change EQ settings and even update the firmware. Note that it currently only works on Android but hopefully it will be compatible with iOS in the future.
H2 has a 160mAh battery that lasts up to 7 hours. It takes around 1.5 hours to fully charge and during testing I found those numbers to be accurate.
H2 Also Works As An External USB DAC
Yes, the Hidizs H2 can be used as an external DAC with your PC, laptop or tablet. Setup on Windows 10 is automatic and does not require any manual driver installation. It also works natively with iOS and Linux.
When I plugged H2 into my Windows 10 laptop it was detected and ready to go in a matter of seconds. Like most current Bluetooth receivers, H2 is limited to 16-bit 48,000Hz when used as an external DAC but it is still a big upgrade in audio quality compared to the laptop’s built-in audio solution. In addition, the H2’s button controls also work when connected to a computer, giving it onboard volume and playback controls.
Bluetooth and Call Quality
Hidizs H2 is equipped with Bluetooth 5.0, giving it a stable and reliable connection. Pairing is simple, consistent and very fast. I found the signal range to be on par with other similar devices which gives me a solid connection up to over 10 meters. I haven’t experienced any stuttering or signal loss whatsoever, regardless of whether the H2 is in my front or back pants pocket or sitting on a table at home.
I haven’t noticed any lag or sync issues when gaming or watching video but that may be due to the fact I’ve been testing predominantly with AAC which has a lower sample-rate than aptX-HD or LDAC.
H2’s built-in microphone works really well and the voice quality is considerably better than the average TWS earphone. The mic sounds clear even when the H2 is clipped to my belt and while it does pick up some external noise, the noise-cancelling feature does a good job of keeping the sound clean.
My testing was done primarily with my iPhone but I also tried the H2 on my PC and laptop. To check for any disparity between AAC (iOS) and aptX HD/LDAC I also paired the H2 with my FiiO M6. Thankfully, the H2 performs well across all formats and it goes to show how good Bluetooth audio is nowadays.
Hidizs H2 is designed primarily for IEMs ranging from 8-60Ω. I wouldn’t recommend it for harder to drive monitors like the Tin Hifi P1/P2 but it’s perfectly adequate for the majority of current popular earphones.
To my ears, the Hidizs H2 has a clean, transparent sound signature. Sub-bass extension is just shy of what you get with a neutral desktop or portable source but in a blind test, it would be hard to tell the difference. There’s still ample and well-controlled bass present and more than enough to rattle your brain if you’re earphones are that way inclined.
H2’s midrange is very tidy with fast transients and an open presentation. There might be a tiny amount less body in the mids due to the tighter bass response but that actually makes the H2 sound more spacious. It’s especially good for warmer earphones and I noticed an improvement in instrument separation on some budget IEMs.
The upper midrange is slightly attenuated, adding a slightly relaxed feeling but again, it’s modest enough to make the difference hard to notice with the naked ear. As you might expect, the overall resolution is not comparable to a high-end source but it’s very much in line with other Bluetooth receivers around the same price.
H2’s lower treble is a tad more relaxed which actually works to its advantage, considering that there’s slightly less body in the core midrange. However, as a result, there’s a hint less energy in the lower treble but it works because of the slight cut in the mids so it essentially balances itself out. Again, this is something that you’re likely not going to notice unless doing some very intense critical listening.
Overall, the Hidizs H2 Bluetooth receiver is an excellent device that frankly performs much better than I expected for something so tiny. With Bluetooth 5.0, all the latest Hi-Res wireless codecs support, OTA firmware updates, ease of use and solid battery life, H2 is a small device that has made a big impact on me.
If you’re on a budget and looking for a way to make your earphones wireless this is a super cool way to do it, especially if you’re looking for the smallest possible form factor.