Pros: Does improve the sound by providing a clean USB signal. Improves soundstage and instrument separation. Great match for ifi iDAC2
Cons: does not fit straight into micro iDSD when RCA is used
I am a member of the ifi iClub and a couple of months ago ifi Audio offered some of there newly released products for review. I already own the ifi micro iDSD so I decided to see if the new iPurifier2 could further enhance the sound of the iDSD. I also asked ifi to supply a Mercury USB cable. The items where shipped very quickly by Select Audio.
Equipment used for testing:
- ifi micro iDSD
- ifi micro iDAC 2
- Mercury USB cable
- Beyerdynamic T1 Headphone
- Beyerdynamic A20 headphone amp
- Sennheiser IE80 Headphone
- Geek Out IEM 100 Dac/headphone amp
The iPurifier is shipped in a sturdy box with an additional USB-A adapter. The review sample i received had the Type B USB connector, which should be a good fit for most DACs out there. The build quality of the device is excellent and in all settings the device was always recognized by the computer and did work without any dropouts or disruptions.
I primarily tested the iPurifier2 with the headphones mentioned above but also on my main system. In whatever setting I used the iPurifer 2 there was a sense of music starting the flow more natural and it sounded more “analog” to me. The digital strain sometimes associated with digital music was less so. Complex musical details like at the beginning of the first track of the Miles Davis album “Sketches of Spain”, “Concerto de Aranjuez: Adagio” (PCM, 24bit, 88.2khz), were easy to listen to. With every track I tried from Kraftwerk to classical music there was a veil lifted. My overall listening experience became more relaxed and enjoyable. The soundstage has improved and instrument separation is clearer.
I started the test using my micro iDSD. The iDSD already has the previous iPurifier built in but still benefited from the extra features of the new iPurifier. The only caveat with the iDSD is that the iPurifier wont fit straight into the iDSD USB port (when RCA cables are used). My iPurifier2 came with a USB-B female connector but even with the USB-A Male plug the device wont be a straight fit due to its size.
During the review I purchased the new ifi iDAC2. The combination of the iDAC2 with the iPurifier2 is a match made in heaven. The iPurifier plugs straight in and the sound is even warmer and more analog than with the iDSD. The combination of the new iDAC with iPurifier2 has now replaced my iDSD in my main system. The iPurifier2 is one of these products that you put into your system and then forget about them until you take it away and then realize you cant live without it anymore.
It does what it says on the tin, the USB signal is improved by providing a cleaner USB signal with much less digital artifacts and noise. If you enjoy the musical flow and naturalness of analog sound you will enjoy the iPurifier2. Highly recommended.
I have purchased the review sample.