iFi Nano iDSD Black Headphone Amp. Amazing sound on a budget.
Now at True Audiophile
We heard so much about this line from respected dealers and audiophiles we had to hear them to believe it. Yup, the buzz is right. This is incredible Audiophile grade gear on a tight budget. Secret is they've been designed by a group of engineers who normally work on gear well over $5,000.00 and wanted to give back to music lovers who have more ears than money. Loaded with brilliant tech and careful parts selection. Can't go wrong.
Once our testers were done listening they proclaimed the iFi Nano iDSD the best for the money. Black, rich background. Proper timber, speed and pitch. Excellent midrange and tight bass. They were so astonished after hearing dozens of competitors at the same price we decided to give it our Best in Class Award.-- TA
“This little bad boy can drive these headphones without issue.” Lizard King can only be talking about the new nano BL!
“The SQ is clean, powerful and musical. I have been to shows and have heard expensive headphone setups with amps and cans that can not touch the SQ I am getting….Kudos to iFi for bringing this to the market and such a bargain price.” -- Amazon Review
“iFi nano iDSD BL: Great genes in this DAC family. Wallet happy price!” “Pros: Excellent transparent sound, small size, outstanding price…!” “You’d be hard-pressed to find a DAC?Amp combo at £199 with more features and better sound.” HiFi Review
What’s new with the nano iDSD Black Label? Easier to ask what isn't new.
Power your headphones. Big style.
With maximum output power (32R) around 10 times that of iPhone 6 (285mW vs. 27mW), the nano iDSD Black Label can drive most headphones on the market.
From In-Ear-Monitors to mid-size headphones, the nano iDSD BL is able to drive them with ease. Below is more background information on the S-Balanced circuit and iEMatch/Normal outputs. We just dont do standard. Take your headphones to the max.
It’s small, lightweight and battery powered. You can take the nano iDSD Black Label everywhere you go and it won’t drain your phone’s battery.Just switch on the BL first and then plug in your device. The Lithium Polymer battery gives the nano iDSD Black Label up to 10 hours of non-stop musical enjoyment. It also has a special USB male ‘A’ connector for a direct connection. Use a USB-to-Lightning (Apple) or OTG connector (Android). Or if at home, just use the enclosed USB3.0 cable to connect to a PC. Stream Apple Music/Google Play/Spotify/Tidal/Youtube content from your phone to a whole other level of quality. Add kick-a** sound to your gaming by connecting your console or computer.
Master Quality Authenticated
iFi always strives to bring you choice. We’ve added yet another file format to our portfolio in the form of MQA in the new BL. Take TIDAL or your MQA file to a whole new level.MQA is an audio technology developed by Bob Stuart. This technology makes hi-res audio streaming a reality and delivers studio master quality audio to your headphones.
|An original Master file of up to 384kHz/24Bit which has been encoded in MQA, is transmitted as a 48 kHz/24Bit file. At the end of the chain, whether the decoding and rendering takes place in the same device, or whether the process is split between a software application and a separate DAC, the result will still yield the full, original 384kHz/24BIt file.|
For mobile DACs with both portability and power considerations, MQA Rendering is the ideal solution as the workload is shared between the host (computer) and the client (DAC). In this case, for a DAC such as the nano iDSD BL, less CPU processing and lower electrical power are needed. This approach for the iFi portable range remains a full end-to-end MQA solution and the listener still enjoys the full benefits of MQA without compromise.
See MQA’s website for illustrations: www.mqa.co.uk/customer/how-it-works
We are committed to working with MQA to bring MQA support (be it as Renderer or joint Decoder and Renderer where appropriate) to as many iFi products, including existing products, as possible to our customers.
High-Res Audio Certified
The nano iDSD Black Label is one of the best native highest-resolution DACs you can find, supporting PCM up to 32/384 kHz and DSD up to 256 times the sample rate of a CD, even on Mac OSX* and mobile phones*. It is also certified ‘High-Res Audio’ according to the stringent criteria set down by JEITA and JAS (Japan Electronics and Information Technology Industries Association and Japan Audio Society). Don’t accept low-resolution music!(*firmware upgrade needs to be applied to enable DSD256 on all devices)
Perfect your listening pleasure
The nano iDSD Black Label lets you choose between the ‘Listen’ (Minimum Phase Bezier Filter) and ‘Measure’ (Linear Phase Transient Aligned Filter) options. It’s the only portable DAC to give you so much control.
Compatible. Like no other.
The new headphone amplifier delivers more than double the power of the original nano iDSD into 16 Ohm and over four times the power into high-impedance headphones. Meanwhile, the built-in IEMatch circuit ensures that even extremely sensitive headphones and IEMs are ‘hiss free’ throughout the volume range.The nano iDSD Black Label also includes the S-Balanced wiring system for the headphone outputs, giving the full benefit of balanced outputs when used with headphones and IEMs (fitted with balanced wiring) with low-noise and lower distortion. Even single-ended headphones benefit, as S-Balanced cuts crosstalk in half (without the need to re-wire headphones to benefit).
And as always, iFi use the ultimate components…
As is the AMR/iFi DNA, we love to audition and vet new parts as they come onto the market and where possible, use the ultimate components. Whereas some shun internals pictures, we always strive to show ‘what’s under the hood’ as customers like to make informed purchasing decisions based upon sonics and outright ‘sound for the pound’.The nano iDSD Black Label, while very affordable, is packed to the rafters with boutique components. Here are just a few:
1. Thin Film Resistors for audio section lower noise & distortion than standard metal film or carbon film types.
2. Tantalum Polymer Capacitors for Power Supplies.
3. TDK C0G capacitors for the analogue filter.
4. Panasonic ECPU Film Capacitor for critical DAC reference voltage.
5. Analogue volume control potentiometer for best sound quality.
6. Dual-Mono Headphone amplifier with 3.5mm TRRS balanced wiring all the way to the amplifier, despite the amplifier being single-ended this delivers all the benefits of balanced wiring.
7. Built-in iEMatch using MELF resistors for transparent matching of very sensitive headphones and/or IEMs.
The parts, the circuitry, the implementation is something else and makes the nano iDSD Black Label a worthy successor to the original nano iDSD. It just goes up against the best out there and kicks butt.
The nano iDSD one of the few portable, truly audiophile DACamps out there and the fact that it is priced appealing to the real-world means many are going to enjoy their music a whole lot more without being excluded by the price.
All adds up to a giant killer.
Input(rear): USB2.0 type A “OTG” Socket (with iPurifier® technology built-in)
Output(rear)； 1 x Audio fixed line out L+R 3.5mm
Digital Filter: 2 positions, 2 filters
Outputs(front): 2 x Headphone Audio 3.5mm one direct and one with iFi iEMatch® integrated
DAC: DSD, DXD, PCM DAC by Burr Brown Bit-Perfect DSD processing, Bit-Perfect DXD processing
Clock: Low-jitter crystal clock
Audio Formats: DSD 256/128/64/12.4/11.2/6.2/5.6/3.1/2.8
MQA 88.2/96/176.4/192kHz filters
Filter–PCM: Listen(transient optimised minimum phase)
Measure(frequency response optmised)
–DSD: Listen(extended bandwidth transient optimised)
Measure (narrow bandwidth, low output band noise optimised)
–DXD: Fixed Bit-Perfect Processing
–MQA: Fixed MQA Filter
Amplifier: Dual Mono 2 x 285mW Direct Drive, coupling capacitor free circuit for highest fidelity
Volume Control: 3.5mm TRRS with Balanced compatible wiring
Dynamic Range(including DAC): > 109dB(A) @ 3v (Direct)
> 107dB(A) @ 0.5V (iEMatch®)
THD &N (@ 125mW/30R): < 0.005%
Max. Output (<10% THD): > 3.5V @ 600Ω Load (Direct) (20mW/600Ω)
> 2.9V @ 30Ω Load (Direct) (285mW/30Ω)
> 1.7V @ 15Ω Load (Direct) (200mW/15Ω)
Output Impedance : < = 1Ω (Direct)
< = 4Ω (iEMatchsup>®)
Channel Separation: > 79dB @ 600Ω Load (Direct)
> 79dB @ 15Ω Load (Direct) (1kHz, TRRS plug Balanced wiring)
Dynamic Range(Line): > 109dB(A)
THD & N(0dBFS Line): < 0.004%
Output Voltage(Line): : 2.15V (+/-0.05V)
Output Impedance: < 240Ω
Channel Separation: > 99dB (@ 1kHz)
Jitter(correlated): Below test set limit
Dimensions: 96(l) x 64(w) x 25.5(h)mm
Weight: 139g (0.31 Ibs)
Warranty period: 12months