iFi ZEN DAC discussion + impression
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starence

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I recommend using the Zen with a USB 3.0 cable, like the one included. At first I was using a 2.0 cable (Schiit Pyst), and the Zen sounded quite dark and dull, even though I also have an external power supply. It sounds much better with the stock cable.
 
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iFi audio

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Great, so the tech data has to remain a secret which means I'll just wait to consider purchasing anything until further details surface. Any idea when Amazon will have the Zen buddies for sale? Thank you!
Shortly these products should be available at Amazon.

I suppose this product is the same grade of nano series products (typically nano iDSD BL) but without battery and some improvement of analogue section. Does my understanding correct? I think this approach is suitable for PC audio beginners or light users and still covering DSD256 and PCM384 (same as nano). Good job, iFi!
We don't see it like that. Due to different functionality and needs addressed, to us nano is nano, and ZEN is ZEN.

What should be said though is that ZEN is our latest, as a manufacturer we're doing our best to up our own game and we have John Curl with us. His touches are visible in ZEN (and several other products!).
 
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starence

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I just noticed, when you use the variable output, the gain button and bass boost affect the line out. I think I prefer fixed output though, sounds cleaner.
 
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lambdastorm

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I just noticed, when you use the variable output, the gain button and bass boost affect the line out. I think I prefer fixed output though, sounds cleaner.
Yeah, I noticed that too. Fixed fixes everything, hence the name 'fixed' lol.
 
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I first saw the Zen DAC on Instagram. On that animation it states an ESS Sabre DAC. But there's no mention of it in the specs. Only Burr Brown mentioned. Was the hardware spec changed?
Niall
 
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Finally got dem both just gotta buy Ifi iPowerX in next few months....
20191020_103104.jpg
 
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How does the volume knob feel? Is it clean and what do you power with it? I got myself the blue and it is very nice.
 
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How does the volume knob feel? Is it clean and what do you power with it? I got myself the blue and it is very nice.
It felt smooth, it is not like the ifi idsd black label's knob, this one is really smooth and leveled : no wobble as you turn the knob, even smoother than my tube amp knob IMO....
I powered it with basically with a high grade usb connected to my pc via USB-DAC-UP feature that come along with the gigabyte Mobo while waiting for the ifi iPowerx but i have not tried with the ifi zen blue power adapter.

So, for now, what I can say that the ifi zen dac is clean until further experiments because im using Presonus studio monitor for a brief testing and that speakers are really sensitive.

Actually im liking the Zen blue too tho, there isnt any latency issue or breaking up in the music....
 
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Looking closely at them they appear to be an entry level product as suggested by iFI in this thread.
They are indeed.
 
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