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iFi audio xDSD- The Official Thread

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  1. gugman

    Oh boy this just arrived :astonished:
  2. Mimouille
  3. Mimouille
  4. Devodonaldson
    Details, comparisons?
  5. ExpatinJapan

    Unboxing time soon
    ngoshawk and alphanumerix1 like this.
  6. Hanesu
    Some impressions:

    Generally speaking, using this device via Bluetooth is perfect for my personal listening habits!

    - I stream a lot, so I can easily switch between devices like computer, phone etc. (depending on the situation, whether I am working, at home, commuting etc. I still believe streaming is the future of music listening, even if some „audiophiles“ still don’t like it...).

    - I can keep on using the mentioned above devices’ interfaces, because I still don’t know any DAP that streams/downloads/scrolls/searches as smooth and without any problems as my phone, Computer or tablet does.

    - I can use my phone without having any wires attached to it while listening to music. And I am not depended anymore on the existence or nonexistence of headphone jacks with my collection of earphones :wink: .

    - most importantly, the sound even via Bluetooth is more of my taste than the iphone‘s wired sound. Not that I think the iphone sounds bad (to be honest, I belong to those who think sources and codecs higher than 256 AAC are overrated), just I feel with BT there is not much missing on the XDSD and I prefer its softer and more velvety approach. Pairs especially well with analytical headphones I think. There is a slight difference if you use the cable (slightly more extended in the highs), but I honestly don’t see myself using it very often, because i feel the difference is so small it’s not worth loosing the convenience. I really try to get away from stacking or fiddling arround with many cables, because I only have bad experiences with it.

    - weight, seize and design are also perfect in my opinion! Almost only the seize of a Mojo and at least as beautiful. Mojo-Poly with case is way too big and heavy in my opinion, and I prefer the look and shorter body of the XDSD to the Fiio Q5 or Centrance Bluedac.

    - „XBass“ and „3D“ are wonderfully integrated with this device! Compared to similar effects on other devices, I actually think for the very first time that they do not have any negative influence on the sound at all. XBass is just a very gentle and subtle boost in the subass region. Just enough to give music a bit more expression without disturbing at all any other frequencies. Gives my Fidue Sirius exactly that very little more salt and pepper that was missing with electronic music ☺️!

    - Battery life is on par with current DAPs and a lot better than many other BT devices like XB10.

    Just I can confirm there ARE some slight connection issues with BT that only appear if you connect it to several devices. I have sometimes had similar issues with my XB10, so it seems like a general problem, but with XDSD it’s worse and happens more often for sure. You can easily solve it by repairing the device, but that obviously kind of disturbes the whole experience. Hope iFi keeps working on it.

    Otherwise it’s truly a fantastic device!! And I really don’t know why it’s only recently that these kind of devices come out...since they could have existed before.
    More and more audiophiles should realize BT can be done well and satisfying and is SO convenient!
    Last edited: May 2, 2018
  7. iFi audio
    Great, your feedback is a nice sight for our eyes!

    And yes, Bluetooth can be done RIGHT. It takes time and resources, but is possible. We recently wrote something in this topic exactly:

    iFi audio Stay updated on iFi audio at their sponsor page on Head-Fi.
    https://www.facebook.com/iFiAudio/ https://twitter.com/ifiaudio https://www.instagram.com/ifiaudio/ https://ifi-audio.com/ info@ifi-audio.com
    Hanesu likes this.
  8. Mimouille
    For when will you be needing a more complete report, boss?
  9. Devodonaldson
    Lol. Whenever you have time, and if you don't mind. Reviews aren't that numerous as of yet, so getting impressions from owners is certainly helpful. Trying to decide on a path for possible DAC/amp upgrade
  10. Mimouille
    So far, from 10mn impression : sounds very nice and clean, spacious and airy, maybe more so than the Mojo, that is more centered. Need to compare and check of course.

    I was a bit confused by the operation at first, had a hard time pairing, but afterwards easy.
  11. ngoshawk
    Coming up on a full week so far, using other amps as well such as the iBasso PB3, and Ray Samuels Intruder. Kind of running the gamut.

    The RS Intruder is a completely different level, so suffice to say it is a monster, even after several years in production. Just wow. I will hate to give it back. Best by far of the three.

    Regarding the PB3, I made a dedicated purchase as it was a balanced out amp. And affordable. It is a very good amp at
    +/-$230. So far, slightly behind the iFi.

    As for the xDSD? I have mainly run BT through my Opus#2 and Shanling M3s. What the iFi provides to the M3s is more definitive, “cleaning up” of the sound. It is a bit more crisp sounding with decent extension on both ends. The XBass+ provides much less oomph than my iFi BL, but that is OK. And the 3D is less pronounced than my other iFi items. Again, that is OK. Detail and sound stage are adequate, but not noticeably better than without (to me).

    Through the Opus, the benefits are much smaller if at all noticeable to my bad ears. The Opus is a stellar example as is, and hard to improve upon.

    Running the xDSD through my MBP, and the blue USB cable there is a DEFINITE improvement in the overall quality of sound. Fuller, deeper reaching bass, and very good sound stage highlight what I hear. Take that with a grain, and my review will posit more findings.

    I will state that to me, the overall sound is better overall with a more full, more detailed and wider of sound stage sound when using the USB cable instead of BT. I am not versed enough to tell why...yet.

    This is a very nice little critter with some possibilities I am still working out, and loath to mention until I try them.

    Hope this helps. Cheers.
    ExpatinJapan and arborglen1965 like this.
  12. iFi audio
    Yup, it helps us for sure. Our day is getting better and better. We look forward to your review!
    iFi audio Stay updated on iFi audio at their sponsor page on Head-Fi.
    https://www.facebook.com/iFiAudio/ https://twitter.com/ifiaudio https://www.instagram.com/ifiaudio/ https://ifi-audio.com/ info@ifi-audio.com
  13. Mimouille

    I am confused by all of this. What are you driving with these? Why is the Rsa intruder "one level above"? When you compare with the PB3, what DAC are you using? As I understand the PB3 is just an amp.

  14. gugman
    So, this is my first ifi product and I am very much impressed what this little thing can do :astonished:
    Thinking very seriously replacing my desktop setup with some ifi products !!!

    Now I have a few questions regarding xDSD , if I may

    1. never have been in need of this kind of adapter, so could you please advise exactly what kind of adapter do I need to use in order to connect 2.5mm balanced cable into the xDSD? providing link would be perfect
    2. I understand that provided voltage for charging should be 5V , but does amperage matter ? minimum / maximum ? and I'd think that to use fast charger with the unit can cause some damage in a long run?
    3. Can it be used while charging?
    4. I have zero experience with USB Audio Player PRO, since I am going to use Pioneer xdp 300r as transport via usb cable, will buying this program have benefit for me in terms of audio quality, or poweramp / hiby/ pioneer native player will do?

    Last edited: May 3, 2018
  15. ngoshawk
    All of this? I guess I didn’t do a very good job at explaining my impressions then. I do get wordy without saying much, sometimes. Apologies.

    As for the Intruder it is a $700 amp. And sound wise to me a level up in detail retrieval, sound stage, separation, reach of bass, and layering. I can more clearly hear each instrument with the Intruder (which really is a feat with my hearing). If I had to decide on one amp, and one amp only it would be the Intruder. It is fully-balanced and has aged well having features that many new amps come out with now. From what reading I did, the same design has been in use for several years.

    The PB3 is indeed only an amp, but when comparing it to the xDSD I feel that the iFi product gives a little more depth in sound. The iFi also has a bit better handle on bass presentation. I do still like the PB3, but the presentation of the xDSD is better.

    As for source, again apologies for not mentioning that when I compared all three I was using the Opus #2 or my MBP. Attached via Coax to the iBasso or Intruder for the #2, and with BT on the xDSD mainly (both sources), but I do use the provided USB cable for the iFi to my MBP more now.

    When hooking the Intruder up to my MBP that is where I got the “one level up.” But when comparing BT to Coax it is a less valid comparison, I know. That is why I said at the end I have more impressions coming but am still testing. And iFi has somewhat toughted the BT capabilities of the xDSD, so I hope to go more in depth with that.

    I hope this helps clarify what I said. And, I do await your impressions, too as they are always solid and informative.

    Mimouille likes this.
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