iFi audio iDSD Signature - The saga continues!
Dec 3, 2021 at 3:33 AM Post #1,696 of 1,740

BenSherman

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Could I just clarify that the RCA outputs are purely line-level out?

Does this mean the signature will act exactly the same as a stand-alone DAC when connected to a desktop amp?

I have ordered a tube amp, and need to order a DAC (was looking at Denafrips Ares II). However, I'd also like to get a portable DAC/amp - and wondered if the ifi Signature would 'kill two birds with one stone'?
 
Dec 3, 2021 at 3:51 AM Post #1,697 of 1,740

Gww1

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Could I just clarify that the RCA outputs are purely line-level out?

Does this mean the signature will act exactly the same as a stand-alone DAC when connected to a desktop amp?

I have ordered a tube amp, and need to order a DAC (was looking at Denafrips Ares II). However, I'd also like to get a portable DAC/amp - and wondered if the ifi Signature would 'kill two birds with one stone'?
Yes they are purely line out with no variability and are active all the time when the unit is switched on.
 
Dec 3, 2021 at 4:52 PM Post #1,698 of 1,740
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Could I just clarify that the RCA outputs are purely line-level out?

Does this mean the signature will act exactly the same as a stand-alone DAC when connected to a desktop amp?

I have ordered a tube amp, and need to order a DAC (was looking at Denafrips Ares II). However, I'd also like to get a portable DAC/amp - and wondered if the ifi Signature would 'kill two birds with one stone'?

These RCA outputs can be either fixed or variable and a small knob just next to them (...and under Pro iDSD Signature's RJ45 socket) determines their mode. Thanks!
 
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Dec 8, 2021 at 11:36 AM Post #1,700 of 1,740

slsmaster

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Just a quick question: is the „Xmos“ firmware in any way different/better then 7.0, 7.2b or 7.2c (except 7.2c using GTO and 7.2b not supporting MQA)?

I am asking because I find it odd that the newer firmware (Xmos FW is from October 21) has a lower version number (1.5) after flashing then the old ones (7.0/7.2b/7.2c). Is this intended or a mistake?

Or should this indicate anything?

One thing I have noticed is, that the XMOS Firmware binary is way smaller then 7.0/7.2b/7.2c. This must mean the firmware must have less complexity, is the XMOS Firmware (1.5) a reduced firmware for lower lag e.g. for gaming? Or has it just been optimized to be smaller?
 
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Dec 8, 2021 at 7:46 PM Post #1,701 of 1,740

whitedragem

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The only time I have seen a version 1.5 firmware was on a launch unit (first batch) - that benefitted instantly from going to ‘any other firmware’.

My guess is that somehow a firmware labelling issue (internal to FiiO ‘backoffice’/engineering and software) has had the old ‘first XMOS‘ firmware get out again.. (or it could easily be a file handling error on your PC- which to be fair is MOST LIKELY, as I know that I went to effort to create a directory structure for the unpacked firmwares so I WOULDN’T have a file mishap happen).

I’d encourage you to ‘go back’ to another firmware, and/or download a fresh one (and triple check your process and what folder you are supposed to put the firmware into etc...; even if it means wiping the firmware flash executable directory and installing IT again...(to ensure no older files ‘hanging around’)!).

1.5 is to my awareness OLDER FIRMWARE, and MQA handling capability was one of the first things that got a big bump up in quality by going to ‘newer firmwares’.
and please give feedback (or edit) the post with an update so we know if iFi need to swap a file on their servers that may be accidentally mislabelled.

Good catch btw.
 
Dec 9, 2021 at 3:17 AM Post #1,702 of 1,740

slsmaster

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The only time I have seen a version 1.5 firmware was on a launch unit (first batch) - that benefitted instantly from going to ‘any other firmware’.

My guess is that somehow a firmware labelling issue (internal to FiiO ‘backoffice’/engineering and software) has had the old ‘first XMOS‘ firmware get out again.. (or it could easily be a file handling error on your PC- which to be fair is MOST LIKELY, as I know that I went to effort to create a directory structure for the unpacked firmwares so I WOULDN’T have a file mishap happen).

I’d encourage you to ‘go back’ to another firmware, and/or download a fresh one (and triple check your process and what folder you are supposed to put the firmware into etc...; even if it means wiping the firmware flash executable directory and installing IT again...(to ensure no older files ‘hanging around’)!).

1.5 is to my awareness OLDER FIRMWARE, and MQA handling capability was one of the first things that got a big bump up in quality by going to ‘newer firmwares’.
and please give feedback (or edit) the post with an update so we know if iFi need to swap a file on their servers that may be accidentally mislabelled.

Good catch btw.
I have rechecked and its definetly not a wrong file I have picked or downloaded. The "XMOS" FW Download (which after flashing comes out as Version 1.5 on my unit with XU216) is interestingly both available to the older units with the older XMOS chip and to units with the newer XU216. However this is also the case for 7.2c (which doesn't make sense in my opinion, as the filename for both downloads cleary states "XU216").

Could it be that iFi has created a "cross plattform" FW (XMOS FW flashing to 1.5), that runs both on the older and newer XMOS? That would explain why it is available to the XU216 variant and the older one as well. It clearly has the newest creation date (October 21).
This would also explain the freshly starting version numbers.

However I dont understand why both the older and newer XU216 units have 7.2c available as a download as well?
 
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Dec 9, 2021 at 5:35 AM Post #1,703 of 1,740

Johnfg465vd

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Hey guys, I'm curious about the different firmwares. From the description I can understand that you'd need "Limoncello" for DSD512, "Cookies & Cream" for PCM768kHz & "Sub-Version' for GTO, but do these firmwares effect sound quality in any other way or for lesser sample rate files?

I've been listening to my Signature flashing different firmwares and toggling different filters and so far I can tell that there is a difference between GTO vs other firmwares but I'm not sure between Limoncello & Cookies & Cream. Same with filters, I notice a difference between bit-perfect & standard but cannot reliably say the same between standard & minimum phase.

I'm using Sundara for testing purposes but I'd appreciate it if someone else can shed some light on this, maybe I need better Headphones to hear the difference?
 
Dec 9, 2021 at 7:49 AM Post #1,704 of 1,740

slsmaster

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Hey guys, I'm curious about the different firmwares. From the description I can understand that you'd need "Limoncello" for DSD512, "Cookies & Cream" for PCM768kHz & "Sub-Version' for GTO, but do these firmwares effect sound quality in any other way or for lesser sample rate files?

I've been listening to my Signature flashing different firmwares and toggling different filters and so far I can tell that there is a difference between GTO vs other firmwares but I'm not sure between Limoncello & Cookies & Cream. Same with filters, I notice a difference between bit-perfect & standard but cannot reliably say the same between standard & minimum phase.

I'm using Sundara for testing purposes but I'd appreciate it if someone else can shed some light on this, maybe I need better Headphones to hear the difference?
I have tested all Firmwares yesterday, including the new "XMOS" (1.5) FW. I could not tell a diffence between the filter selection on all non GTO FW's (Bit Perfect, Minimum Phase, Standard), inluding the 1.5/XMOS FW.
There seems to be a slight difference when using the GTO FW (seems a little more velvety, if that makes sense), but it could be that this is imaginary because reliabe A/B Testing is impossible without having 2 units.

Edit: Also I have noticed a bug in ALL FW's: when using Apple Music on Android with "High-Res Lossless" enabled and the device switches to >96 KHz if a accorinding track is played, the track is totally muffled. When setting Apple Music to only use "Lossless", e.g. a sample Rate Limit to max 48 KHz, the same track sounds totally correct. This can only be observed on Android, as iOS or MacOS does not switch sample rate automatically according to the track. I have used a Pixel 2 XL running Android 11. Also the LED indicating sample rate does not always switch back to green from yellow on non GTO FW's, even though sample rate has definetly changed back to <=96 KHz.

Please refer to this track for the issue with muffeld tracks when playing High-Res Lossless vs Lossless, Lossless not beeing muffled: https://music.apple.com/en/album/%E3%83%86%E3%82%A4%E3%82%AF-%E3%83%95%E3%82%A1%E3%82%A4%E3%83%B4/993155167?i=993155180

For all users facing the same bug on Android: set the max Quality to "Lossless" in Apple Music.





Edit 2: I have rechecked the features of v1.5 (the one reffered to as "XMOS" in the download section). It indeed seems to be the launch firmware, as it is NOT working with my PS5. The only FW that is are 7.2B (which does not support MQA) or 7.2C (which is the GTO Variant). Also, I cannot see 7.2 as an download option, which would be 7.0 but with PS5 support. I think I will just stick with 7.2C.


Edit 3: The problem with "High Res Lossless" is caused by the Android ROM not implementing USB OTG correctly. Lineage OS fixed the issue for me.
 
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Dec 9, 2021 at 11:03 AM Post #1,705 of 1,740
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Hey guys, I'm curious about the different firmwares. From the description I can understand that you'd need "Limoncello" for DSD512, "Cookies & Cream" for PCM768kHz & "Sub-Version' for GTO, but do these firmwares effect sound quality in any other way or for lesser sample rate files?

I've been listening to my Signature flashing different firmwares and toggling different filters and so far I can tell that there is a difference between GTO vs other firmwares but I'm not sure between Limoncello & Cookies & Cream. Same with filters, I notice a difference between bit-perfect & standard but cannot reliably say the same between standard & minimum phase.

I'm using Sundara for testing purposes but I'd appreciate it if someone else can shed some light on this, maybe I need better Headphones to hear the difference?

It's not necessarily about better headphones. Some filters have a more distinct difference, while others are more subtle.
 
Dec 9, 2021 at 12:02 PM Post #1,706 of 1,740

Johnfg465vd

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It's not necessarily about better headphones. Some filters have a more distinct difference, while others are more subtle.
What about firmwares, do they change sound too? I hear a difference with "c" varient firmware, probably because of the gto filter. What about Limoncello vs Cookies & Cream? Is there a difference in sound between them cause I can't hear any difference between them, atleast not reliably.

I'm actually surprised I could hear a difference with filters. Previously,with xDuoo XD-05, Topping E30... I couldn't hear any difference when switching filters.
 
Dec 10, 2021 at 4:32 AM Post #1,708 of 1,740

nhk2508

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What about firmwares, do they change sound too? I hear a difference with "c" varient firmware, probably because of the gto filter. What about Limoncello vs Cookies & Cream? Is there a difference in sound between them cause I can't hear any difference between them, atleast not reliably.

I'm actually surprised I could hear a difference with filters. Previously,with xDuoo XD-05, Topping E30... I couldn't hear any difference when switching filters.
From my listening, 5.2 (no MQA, PCM 768 kHz/DSD512) is the most subtle, smoothest. Latest firmware (PS4, PCM768kHz support) is clearer but a bit metallic. And fw 5.3 (MQA, PCM384 kHz/DSD256) is the most balanced.
 
Dec 10, 2021 at 2:59 PM Post #1,709 of 1,740
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I hear a difference with "c" varient firmware, probably because of the gto filter.

Yes, the effect of our GTO filter on PCM files is noticeable.

How do I download the filters, I follow download instruction but (C:\Program Files\iFi\usb_hd) does not exist in my program file

Do you have an executable file ("iFi (by AMR) HD USB Audio Control Panel") in your system?
 
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Dec 10, 2021 at 4:09 PM Post #1,710 of 1,740

RayMets1

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Yes, the effect of our GTO filter on PCM files is noticeable.



Do you have an executable file ("iFi (by AMR) HD USB Audio Control Panel") in your system?
I go to my program file then open IFI folder, then only folder available folder is the, USB Audio Device Driver folder, and this is what i have in attached pic
 

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