State-of-the-Art Performance, Technology, and Sound: iFi Pro iDSD DAC Supports up to Bit-Perfect DSD1024, Decodes MQA, Features Wireless Network Playback and User-Selectable Analog Stages
It's nearly impossible to overstate the appeal and state-of-the-art significance of the iFi Pro iDSD DAC. This blue-ocean audiophile component accomplishes everything you'd expect a high-end, high-resolution DAC to do-and so much more. Equipped with a Quad stack of bit-perfect Burr-Brown DACs in interleaved configuration as well as zero-jitter memory buffer for all inputs, Pro iDSD plays up to bit-perfect DSD1024, 768kHz PCM, and 2x DXD. It fully decodes MQA files. Its built-in high-res wi-fi playback system includes TIDAL, Amazon, and Spotify and supports Apple AirPlay for incredible streaming potential. Listening to music via DLNA, NAS, hard-disk drive, USB memory, and SDHC card options are all possible, too. Hook Pro iDSD up to a main system or computer-audio setup. Use it as a wireless network player that supports up to DSD64 or an escapist-worthy headphone amplifier. It's your choice.
No small feats – a user-selectable tube or solid-state analog stage, full galvanic isolation, on-the-fly-selectable digital filters, and a DSD1024 FPGA Crysopeia digital engine – further account for breathtaking performance that places Pro iDSD on a pedestal. You seriously need to experience what this machine can do. For starters, no other DAC allows you to switch between a pure, discrete, Class A, solid-state J-Fet circuit; a tube circuit with two GE5670s that provides a 100% Class A section; and a Tube+ circuit that reduces available negative feedback to a minimum and supplies natural even-order harmonics. Pro iDSD's DAC section is equally breathtaking. It touts a total of 256 Element DAC per channel with every signal re-clocked with a Global Master Timing-derived master clock using technology from the AMR DP-777.
Pro iDSD also comes ready to connect – and how. Its cutting-edge SPDIF inputs share much in common with those on DP-777 and feature HD-VDi and memory buffer, rendering jitter essentially obsolete. Coax/optical, AES/EBU, Type A and B USBs, and LAN/Ethernet capabilities round out the digital inputs while XLR balanced outputs, single-ended outputs, and an output selector complement an analog volume control. iFi also overbuilt the power supplies to the extremes (read more below).
Most importantly, iPro iDSD reproduces digital in a fashion that will keep you listening for hours and hours. We could try to describe the sonic enhancements and flood of emotion you'll experience, but we rather you find out for yourself with a risk-free in-home audition. This is high-end as you've always imagined. 100% Music Direct Guaranteed.
“iFi Audio’s Pro iDSD lived up to the hyperbole of its owner’s manual. It did actually play music like ‘a “state of the art” reference digital to analog converter.’ It did indeed sound like ‘an all-out assault’ on what is possible in DACs today…and it did both of those good things at a ridiculously low price.”
—Herb Reichart, Stereophile
“It’s hard to really nail down what such a device sounds like when its multitude of possible configurations gives way to multiple personalities.That marks the iFi DAC as offering value in the extreme. I just wish we had a better term for it than ‘DAC.’”
—John Grandberg, Darko.Audio
“The Pro iDSD is a terrific performer, both as a DAC and as a headphone amplifier. The combination of the Pro iDSD and Pro iCAN represents an absolutely masterful personal studio playback platform that has few peers at this (or really any) price point.”
—Chris Martens, The Absolute Sound
Passive Filtering and Discrete Analog Stage
The DACs operate in voltage output mode, giving >119dB dynamic range. All filtering is passive, using a fully balanced third-order capacitor/inductor/capacitor filter to remove ultrasonic noise directly after the DAC rather than active feedback-based circuits. Active filters struggle with the amount of ultrasonic noise and RFI they have to handle, and at a few 100kHz, often lose the ability to filter noise at all. Using passive CLC filtering in Pro iDSD provides the correct filtering well into the megahertz region, so the following analog stage is not required to handle ultrasonic noise and RFI originating with the DAC processes. Directly after the DAC and filter stage is the analog domain volume control, which can be bypassed for the line outs. A six-track Alps Japan potentiometer is also used. The actual analog stage is more precisely a line/headphone driver stage: fully balanced, fully discrete, direct-coupled, and tube/solid-state user-selectable as first seen in Pro iCAN.
Advanced Power Supplies
All incoming DC is converted to a high-frequency waveform and then rectified and filtered by a choke input capacitor filter straight out of classic tube design and brought to 21st-century technology. This produces a first-level DC bus from which all further voltages are derived. This circuit also generates a galvanically isolated power-supply voltage for the USB input circuitry. The digital section is powered by a bank of Super Capacitors totaling 6.6 Farad (6,600,000uF). Elna Dynacap DZ Super Capacitors have around 400 times lower internal impedance (compared to common grades of super capacitors) and are employed to avoid typical drawbacks. The Super Capacitor bank is charged through a large value inductor from the main DC bus. Individual low-noise TI LDO Regulators with local LC filtering provide the final low-noise power for all individual digital sections. A total of six individual regulators cover the clock, SPDIF input, and the DAC's digital section. The USB input section has its own separate power management system with multiple regulators and filtering operating from the galvanically isolated voltage generated to power this section. For the analog stage, higher voltages (especially for the tubes) are required. The complete analog stage operates on 60V rail, giving massive potential dynamic range.
Five Available Digital Filters
Bit-Perfect: No digital filtering applied, one Tap
Bit-Perfect+: No digital filtering applied, one Tap
Minimum Phase: Minimum filtering, no pre-ringing, min. post-ringing, 32 Taps
Apodising: Modest filtering, no pre-ringing, modest post-ringing, 128 Taps
Transient Aligned: Max filtering, max pre-ringing, max post-ringing, 16,384 Taps