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Ifi iLink USB converter

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 

These seem to have finally hit the market. 

Good reviews on their other products, has anyone heard one yet?

 

http://ifi-audio.com/en/iLink.html

 

post #2 of 19

Like use audiophilleo vs hiface it's give crazy difference in SQ.

 

I don't know how good is this interface but I have in order the iFi IUSB btw.

post #3 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoo Animal View Post

These seem to have finally hit the market. 

Good reviews on their other products, has anyone heard one yet?

 

http://ifi-audio.com/en/iLink.html

 


Some hard to digest impressions here

http://www.computeraudiophile.com/f6-dac-digital-analog-conversion/15-usb-spdif-converters-shootout-15327/index10.html#post224188

 

One of the iFi dealers impressions/observations:

 

Quote:
Yes, we've had our first i-Links come and go. The results are in and people love them. I have a few folks
who also have the Audiophilleo. The results find the iFi-i-LINK more resolute, more leading edges, and soundscapes
more definitive while the Audiophilleo comes across more laid back. I imagine it's a system synergy decision. In those cases,
I have some wanting to keep both rigs, and others split down the middle.

I've not had much time with the AudioPhilleo so I'm the wrong Jake to ask.

 

I am still surprised that with all these advanced technologies they used they cheap out and didn't offer normal 75Ohm BNC output.

post #4 of 19

When something is able to give something behind my speakers, I am beginning to listen !

 

I like product that hide nothing on their design. Mysterious X doing THE THING humm ...

post #5 of 19

Some new "work in progress" review

Doesn't sound very inspiring though. frown.gif

http://www.computeraudiophile.com/f6-dac-digital-analog-conversion/15-usb-spdif-converters-shootout-15327/index10.html#post228146

The guy modded iLink with BNC connectors, why oh why they didn't put then on to begin with.

post #6 of 19
Thread Starter 

It is not looking very promising yet...except from the dealer who has "more leading edges" :D

 

post #7 of 19
I've had the ilink>iusb for 2 days now. Posted a few photos with a few words on its aesthetics on a different thread. Should have posted here but didnt realize a thread was already made. So I'm just reposting it with a slight impression.

The ilink>iusb is currently my favorite transport. I've tried a handful of converters coupled with the iusb but the ilink>iusb is something special. In my opinion, it's superior in many aspects with converters in the 500.00 cat. ive had with me, while competitively challenging units that can rack up over 1,000.00 with its accessories. In fact the ap2 with iusb had the slight upper hand with vocals-at times I favored the ilink more, it does everything the ap2 can but betters it with a godsend tonal balance, soundstage, and a life-like analog sound, all while curiously missing a BNC input! There might be a good reason behind it though smily_headphones1.gif. I will further input my impressions soon, but so far I am extremely impressed and this combo has my full attention.

I didn't like the looks in the beginning but it has really grown on me and I find the stack a pleasure to look at.



Edited by DarKen23 - 7/12/13 at 5:56pm
post #8 of 19
I must know moar.
post #9 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.Sneis View Post

I must know moar.
Ive received my oyaide dr-510 cable for the ilink>dac, match made in heaven. Ill give you my impressions soon.
post #10 of 19

Have been using iLink with iUSB Power for a couple of days already.

Feeding it into Chord DAC64 -> Headamp GS-1 (new modules) ->HD800.

Have been missing quite a chunk of sleep these days as the moment you put headphones on to listen just that one last song before the bed, then one more, and one more, you know how it works.

Quite mesmerizing experience. My best reference converter is M2Tech HiFace2 paired with iUSB Power, wonderful combo on its own, very detailed and clean sounding.

To be honest immediately after switching to iLink I wasn't that impressed, everything sounded even, flat and sort of too polite. Fast forward, 2 days later I am switching back to HiFace2 and realize how edgy and digitally it sound. With iLink everything sound "organic", very analogue like with zero digital glare but detailed at the same time. Taking photography analogy, HiFace2 is oversharpened low resolution picture, when with iLink you have high resolution with enough details that do not need much sharpening to get your attention, they are just there.

Some other random observations:

- Increased soundstage

- Pitch black, silent background

- Bass, it's godsend now, visceral and hard hitting

- I don't hear ringing, offensively bright treble out of HD800 or even T1, it's all just fluidly flows out like a honey.

- I catch myself bumping volume control higher than usual, similar to orthos as nothing sounds alarmingly bright or boomy to indicate that volume is high.

 

There were some problems though, 176.4 and 196 kHz material does not work well with JET engaged with my DAC (Chord DAC64), accordingly to iFi support the feature might not work with all DACs, so some experimenting to find out what works best for your DAC is required.

You can read more technical in depth explanation on some features here, btw, I ordered mine from this dealer.


Edited by Andrew_WOT - 7/20/13 at 8:59pm
post #11 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew_WOT View Post

Have been using iLink with iUSB Power for a couple of days already.
Feeding it into Chord DAC64 -> Headamp GS-1 (new modules) ->HD800.
Have been missing quite a chunk of sleep these days as the moment you put headphones on to listen just that one last song before the bed, then one more, and one more, you know how it works.
Quite mesmerizing experience. My best reference converter is M2Tech HiFace2 paired with iUSB Power, wonderful combo on its own, very detailed and clean sounding.
To be honest immediately after switching to iLink I wasn't that impressed, everything sounded even, flat and sort of too polite. Fast forward, 2 days later I am switching back to HiFace2 and realize how edgy and digitally it sound. With iLink everything sound "organic", very analogue like with zero digital glare but detailed at the same time. Taking photography analogy, HiFace2 is oversharpened low resolution picture, when with iLink you have high resolution with enough details that do not need much sharpening to get your attention, they are just there.
Some other random observations:
- Increased soundstage
- Pitch black, silent background
- Bass, it's godsend now, visceral and hard hitting
- I don't hear ringing, offensively bright treble out of HD800 or even T1, it's all just fluidly flows out like a honey.
- I catch myself bumping volume control higher than usual, similar to orthos as nothing sounds alarmingly bright or boomy to indicate that volume is high.

There were some problems though, 176.4 and 192 kHz material does not work well with JET engaged with my DAC (Chord DAC64), accordingly to iFi support the feature might not work with all DACs, so some experimenting to find out what works best for your DAC is required.
You can read more technical in depth explanation on some features here, btw, I ordered mine from this dealer.
Excellent review. I'm still lovin the ifi combo, it's quite addictive. Here's a pic of my current set up

Edited by DarKen23 - 7/20/13 at 8:28pm
post #12 of 19

Picture of iLink internals.

 

 

 

Design is modular, similar to iDac http://forums.hardwarezone.com.sg/75080465-post25.html, USB receiver module (left part) seems like exactly the same

 

iDac


Edited by Andrew_WOT - 9/7/13 at 5:57pm
post #13 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew_WOT View Post

Picture of iLink internals.





Design is modular, similar to iDac http://forums.hardwarezone.com.sg/75080465-post25.html, USB receiver module (left part) seems like exactly the same

iDac

Very nice, I was always curious as to how it looked inside. Is that a XMOS chip I see on the iLink as well?
post #14 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by DarKen23 View Post


Very nice, I was always curious as to how it looked inside. Is that a XMOS chip I see on the iLink as well?

 

Yep, same chip, lettering was partially rubbed off on mine.

post #15 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew_WOT View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by DarKen23 View Post

Very nice, I was always curious as to how it looked inside. Is that a XMOS chip I see on the iLink as well?

Yep, same chip, lettering was partially rubbed off on mine.
Interesting. When I had the D18, I could not use the JET function, I would have liked to use it.
Apparently the DA8--which is basically the D18 on roids, has addressed some of the rejection problems of the D18's jitter elimination process with converters. I assume the JET would now be possible. I'll come back with my findings in a few days.
Thank you kindly for the photos.
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