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Meet the iFi hip-dac2, a portable hi-res DAC/headphone amp in vibrant Sunset Orange. Not only does the hip-dac2 sport an updated super sleek aluminum case, but, its insides have also been enhanced with full MQA decoding on board!
The hip-dac2 replaces the inferior DAC (digital-to-analog converter) and amp circuitry in smartphones, tablets, PCs, and Macs to vastly improve headphone sound. Connect your playback device via USB, plug in your favorite corded headphones or in-ear monitors, and the hip-dac2 delivers a sound that’s brimming with bold dynamism and fluid refinement.
The Burr-Brown DAC chip, selected for its fluid and highly “musical” sound quality and True Native architecture, together with iFi custom circuitry, enables the hip-dac2 to deliver excellent sound quality across digital audio formats, including: bit-perfect PCM, native DSD, and MQA. The upgraded crystal clock eradicates jitter (digital distortion) by using iFi’s GMT(Global Master Timing) femto-precision clocking system. This maintains the integrity of the digital signal until its conversion to analog and enhances sound quality. Plus the all new 16-core XMOS chip, which processes data over USB, delivers double the clock speed and four times the memory. This improves overall performance and adds full MQA decoding to the hip-dac2‘s skill set.
The hip-dac2’s amp circuitry, like the original, is of balanced (differential) design. The circuitry incorporates a range of high-quality components, which were carefully selected for their performance in an audio context, including: a custom iFi OV op-amp, TDK C0G class 1 ceramic capacitors, a precision low-noise power supply IC from Texas Instruments, and a high-quality analog volume pot. The amp stage can deliver 400mW into a 32-ohm headphone load, ensuring compatibility with a wide range of headphone and earphones, with power to spare. Even high-impedance headphones are handled with ease thanks to output voltage of 6.3V into 600 ohms (from the balanced output).
The amp stage features switchable gain, which is called PowerMatch. This matches the level of drive to the load presented by the headphones. It adjusts input sensitivity and thereby signal strength. Use the lower setting with high-sensitivity headphones. If your headphones require more drive, use PowerMatch to increase gain. XBass is another user-selectable feature – a sophisticated form of “bass boost” that enhances low frequencies without muddying the midrange. This feature is particularly useful with earphones and open-back headphones that may lack deep bass. It operates entirely in the analog domain rather than messing with the digital signal via DSP.
There are two USB ports – Type A for audio data and USB-C for charging. The Type A port features a male connector to provide greater mechanical integrity than the USB/micro USB ports commonly found on other DAC/headphone amps. Two outputs are provided – a 3.5mm socket for headphones with a single-ended cable/connector and a Pentaconn 4.4mm output enabling headphones equipped with balanced connectivity to take full advantage of the hip-dac2’s differential amp design.
In addition, the 3.5mm output benefits from iFi’s proprietary S-Balanced circuitry, which cuts crosstalk and related distortion in half when used with regular, single-ended headphone connections – this is especially beneficial with high-sensitivity in-ear monitors.
• iFi hip-dac2
• USB-A male to USB-A micro male
• Female USB-A to USB-C male
• USB 3.0 Type-A female to USB-A male
• iFi Audio hip-dac2 manual and 12-month warrantyInput / Output
• USB 3.0 Type-A input
• High speed asynchronous USB 2.0, (32bit/384kHz)
• Balanced Pentaconn 4.4mm & S-Bal (SE) 3.5mmCompatible Operating Systems
• Android via USB OTG cable with iOS & Mac via Apple Lightning to USB camera adapter
• Windows via USB
• Burr-Brown True Native® with MQA support
• DSD256/128/64, Octa/Quad/Double/Single-Speed DSD
• Power Output into 32ohms @1% THD: BAL: 400mW / 280mW@32Ω
• Power Output into 600ohms @1% THD: BAL: 6.3V / S-BAL (SE): 3.2V
• Battery: Lithium-polymer 2200mAh with up to ~8 hours battery life
• Power System: Charging via USB-C, BC V1.2 compliant up to 1000mA charging current
• Dimensions: 4"(L) x 2.8"(W) x .6"(H)
• Weight: 125 g