iFi Audio ZEN DAC V2 Desktop USB DAC / Headphone Amp
iFi Audio have taken the award-winning ZEN DAC and further improved it with a 16 core XMOS chip for greater processing power, enabling the ZEN DAC V2 to fully decode MQA and run DSD 256 natively. All of this is available while the ZEN DAC V2 remains 'bit-perfect' thanks to the True Native Burr-Brown chip design.
Designed for home use - on a desk, perhaps, or in the living room - the ZEN DAC connects to PCs and Macs, or smart devices such as tablets or phones, via USB. Its hi-res digital-to-analogue conversation technology processes all forms of digital audio to a super-high standard, while the integrated analogue headphone amplifier delivers superb sound with all headphone types, from in-ear monitors to larger on-and over-ear designs.
Compared to simply plugging headphones directly into a computer or smart device, the ZEN DAC transforms the listening experience - sound is clearer, more detailed, more expansive and engaging, making the most of whichever headphones are connected. As well as driving headphones, the ZEN DAC can be used as a USB DAC in a home audio system, with or without its volume control engaged. What’s more, whether you’re hooking up headphones, an external amp or active speakers, you have a choice of single-ended or balanced connection –a remarkable facility at the price.
XMOS 16-Core chip processing audio data received via USB and S/PDIF digital inputs
Low-latency XMOS microcontroller for greatly enhanced processing power
The Burr-Brown True Native® chipset means file formats remain unchanged or ‘bit-perfect’. This means you are listening to music as the artist intended in the format in which it was recorded
Hi-Res True Native® playback of all music formats from MP3 to DSD256, PCM384 and DXD384
MQA (Master Quality Authenticated) is supported through USB with full decoding of MQA files up to 384kHz thanks to the processing power of the new 16-core XMOS chip
Extensive jitter-eradication technologies are applied to the digital stage, including iFi's GMT (Global Master Timing) femto-precision clock and the intelligent memory buffer
TrueBass® system delivers genuine bass with realistic depth and definition. Everything from timpani to a bass guitar, to an electronic bassline, is conveyed with power and poise
True Balanced Audio Circuitry to reduce noise and crosstalk for less interference and clearer sound
This is a type of audio circuitry topology that uses separate left & right channels. It is a superior method to the traditional single-ended circuit approach. Balanced circuits reduce noise and crosstalk. Less Interference – clearer sound
16-Core MQA Processing
Thanks to the 16 core tech, the ZEN DAC V2 is now an MQA Decoder rather than a Renderer.
This enables you to playback MQA audio files and streams, delivering the sound of the original master recording. The LED glows green or blue to indicate that the unit is decoding and playing an MQA stream or file, and denotes provenance to ensure that the sound is identical to that of the source material. It glows blue to indicate it is playing an MQA Studio file, which has either been approved in the studio by the artist/producer or has been verified by the copyright owner.
Smooth & Balanced
A new and improved low jitter, crystal clock means >20dB better performance. The super-low noise performance means the ZEN DAC V2 will remain quiet even in noisy situations such as yachts or RVs.
The balanced design for the analogue stage – rare and not found at this price point – makes it pretty special and delivers the best sound quality, normally found in higher priced models.
The ZEN DAC V2 sports Pentaconn 4.4mm balanced outputs at both the front and back. On the front, there’s also the popular 6.3mm headphone socket.
Switch effortlessly between ‘variable’ and ‘fixed’. Set to ‘Variable,’ use the ZEN DAC V2 as a pre-amp to feed a power amp or active speakers. On ‘Fixed’ to bypass the volume control. Connect to an external pre-amp or integrated amp.
Power, Drive & Performance
Our headphone amp has PowerMatch – switchable gain to perfectly match your headphones. For IEMs, normally high-sensitivity, leave PowerMatch at its lower setting for hiss-free listening. On/over-ear headphones with relatively low impedance require more power – press PowerMatch to increase the level of drive.
Ace of Bass
The ZEN DAC V2 boasts TrueBass. This proprietary tech is a switchable ‘bass boost’ operating in the analogue domain. There’s no DSP with iFi gear. TrueBass enhances the bass but does not muddy the mid-range. Perfect for use with IEMs or open-back headphones which often lack bass. The ZEN DAC V2 is the ultimate chilling machine. Tune in and ZEN out.
Input: USB3.0 B Socket (USB2.0 compatible)
Formats: DSD256/128/64, Octa/Quad/Double/Single-Speed DSD DXD(384/352.8kHz), PCM(384/352.8/192/176.4/96/88.2/48/44.1kHz) MQA
DAC: Bit-Perfect DSD & DXD DAC by Burr Brown
Output: Audio RCA (UnBAL) - 2.1V fixed, 1V / 3.3V max. (variable) // 4.4mm Pentaconn (BAL) - 4.2V fixed, 2V / 6.2V max. (variable)
Zout: <= 100 Ohm (UnBAL), <= 200 Ohm (BAL)
SNR: < -116dB(A) @ 0dBFS (UnBAL/BAL)
DNR: > 116dB(A) @ -60dBFS (UnBAL/BAL)
THD+N: < 0.0015% @ 0dBFS (UnBAL/BAL)
Output: 6.3mm (UnBAL) - 1V / 3.3V max,12 Ohm - 300 Ohm Headphone // 4.4mm Pentaconn (BAL) - 2V / 6.2V max, 12 Ohm - 600 Ohm Headphone
Output Power: UnBAL > 280mW @ 32R, > 36mW @ 300R // BAL > 380mW @ 50R, > 70mW @ 600R
Output Impedance: < 1 Ω (UnBAL/BAL)
THD & N: < 0.005% (125mW @ 32R)
SNR: > 113dBA (3.3V UnBAL / 6.2V BAL)
Power consumption: < 1.5W via USB or 5v DC (power supply not included)
Dimensions: 160(l) x 117(w) x 35(h)mm
Weight: 800g (1.8 lbs)
Warranty period: 12 months