Bass Boost Sound Colouration [DAC vs AMP]
Nov 9, 2020 at 10:06 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 13

mas2pek

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Hi there, I have a rather simple question regarding sound colouration pertaining to the Bass Boost feature found on IFI Zen Dac and IFI Zen Can. Im currently running a Topping E30 Dac + L30 Amp combo and whilst I enjoyed the sound transparency, its does leave me craving for some extra deep bass every now and then, especially for EDM tracks. As such im looking to invest into a third unit to add some sweet bass.

My question is should I swap out the dac (lets say with an IFI Zen Dac) or should I be swapping the amp (IFI Zen Can) ?
Or it doesn't really matter?

I humbly seek your advise.
Thanxk!
 
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Nov 10, 2020 at 1:04 AM Post #2 of 13

flitcroft

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I just switched from an iFi iDSD Micro Black Label and I too really like their bass implementation. That said before you switch have you thought about trying an EQ? I'm on Windows and use Equalizer APO which is free, open source, and works very well. I'm using it primarily to get a flat sound signature but you can just as easily boost bass. I'm sure there are similar tools for Mac and Linux and mobile operating systems.

Edit: if you want to go the hardware route look at swapping the amp or adding an equalizer like the Schiit Loki.
 
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Nov 10, 2020 at 2:57 AM Post #3 of 13

mas2pek

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Yeah I totally agree! The bass boos on the iFi iDSD Micro BL is addictive ! Less clinical but equally pleasurably fun on its own right.
Budget doesnt allow me to own an iFi Micro BL, but maybe one of the Zens. Getting both iFi Zens Dac and Can would be an overkill.

O, the Schiit Loki sounds perfect, sadly Schiits are hard to come by in my country (Malaysia).

=(
 
Nov 11, 2020 at 7:46 AM Post #4 of 13
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Yeah I totally agree! The bass boos on the iFi iDSD Micro BL is addictive ! Less clinical but equally pleasurably fun on its own right.
Budget doesnt allow me to own an iFi Micro BL, but maybe one of the Zens. Getting both iFi Zens Dac and Can would be an overkill.

O, the Schiit Loki sounds perfect, sadly Schiits are hard to come by in my country (Malaysia).

=(

Our XBass feature works similarly regardless of a product. It was developed to boost the lowest range and at the same time leave everything above alone to avoid smear on mids. The question for you would be about your setup more in need of a DAC or amp.
 
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Nov 11, 2020 at 2:16 PM Post #5 of 13

mas2pek

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Thankx iFi for the reply. At the moment for me its hard to find faults or any fault with the E30 + L30 combo, well except the deep sub bass.
I guess in this case one should experiment and test, first substituting in the Zen Dac / Hip Dac, after which run another session with the Zen Can in place.

I did notice on the Zen Dac its feature is labled as 'TruBass' oppose to the 'XBass' on the Zen Can. Is there any difference on the bass implementation?
 
Nov 11, 2020 at 11:03 PM Post #6 of 13

twheshka

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I did notice on the Zen Dac its feature is labled as 'TruBass' oppose to the 'XBass' on the Zen Can. Is there any difference on the bass implementation?
Yes there is a difference. I find the 'TruBass' function has a stronger implementation when compared to 'XBass'. To me, some songs can be over powered by 'TruBass' function, while I can leave the 'XBass' on and almost forget its on for most of my music listening. The other interesting feature of the Zen Can is the '3D' function. You can combine '3D' and 'XBass' functions (ie both on) or have either function on individually. Hope that helps.
Tim
 
Nov 12, 2020 at 4:32 AM Post #7 of 13
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I did notice on the Zen Dac its feature is labled as 'TruBass' oppose to the 'XBass' on the Zen Can. Is there any difference on the bass implementation?

Both are two slightly different approaches based on the same in-house developed tech.

The other interesting feature of the Zen Can is the '3D' function. You can combine '3D' and 'XBass' functions (ie both on) or have either function on individually. Hope that helps.

Yup, they can work together!
 
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Nov 12, 2020 at 9:53 AM Post #8 of 13

mas2pek

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'TruBass' function has a stronger implementation when compared to 'XBass'
Thanks for the info! I've been looking around for someone to comment on such comparison. Most of brand manufacturers had their bass boost equivalent function at their stand alone amps as oppose to their dacs. Seeing the Zen Can has both Xbass and 3D, I might give this a go first. Should I find the bass to be still in adequate, then perhaps will then try the Zen Dac.
 
Nov 12, 2020 at 12:06 PM Post #9 of 13
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Should I find the bass to be still in adequate, then perhaps will then try the Zen Dac.

If anything, it shouldn't be excessive. Users not really fond of any sound enchancers often let us know how different ours are. 3D is a mixed bag related to headphones and what one likes, but feedback on XBass is solid to say the least.
 
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Oct 30, 2021 at 2:29 PM Post #10 of 13

Sma0815

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Back to life with this thread.
@iFi audio is there any option to use the xbass feature just on the analog level? My chain is already nice, but just missing the xbass /true bass.
Maybe an older ifi micro black label with analog input? Or will the signal be processed digital anyway?
Or ifi should produce an Loki equivalent :wink:
 
Oct 31, 2021 at 4:29 PM Post #11 of 13
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@iFi audio is there any option to use the xbass feature just on the analog level?

Unfortunately we don't have an analog product that would have these features. iTube2 would be the closest :)

Maybe an older ifi micro black label with analog input? Or will the signal be processed digital anyway?

It's possible to use micro iDSD BL's aux input and RCA outputs just to have just its analog part engaged.

Or ifi should produce an Loki equivalent :wink:

Well, we've been getting asked about our own standalone EQ a lot lately :wink:
 
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Oct 31, 2021 at 4:51 PM Post #13 of 13
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Go for it, xbass as an additional eq box would be awesome. Best would be 2-3 levels of xbass to select and just analog processing

Yes, it would be an interesting product indeed :wink:
 
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