The NEO iDSD is iFi's new 3-in-one DAC/amp. Since release iFi made some upgrades to the original version to create the NEO iDSD Performance Edition. With balanced ‘PureWave’ circuitry, unbeatable hi-res Bluetooth5.1 and MQA, the NEO is the ultimate in hi-res playback. Team it with Qobuz to get access to an eclectic catalogue of more than 70 million hi-res quality tracks. Place it horizontally or vertically to suit its surroundings. The OLED display flips to match orientation and the latest firmware provides a highly requested ‘Display Dim’ function. One rotary knob controls functionality. Sleek, sophisticated and versatile.
Enjoy the NEO iDSD as a pure DAC. Connect it to a separate integrated amp or preamp using the fixed-level analogue output. Or treat it as a DAC/preamp with a variable output. The ideal companion to a power amp or active speakers. And headphone users will love using the excellent amp stage to create a fabulous ‘head-fi’ system.
Love your music but also love movies and gaming? The NEO iDSD Performance Edition will enhance your movie and gameplay experience even further. Add the included S/PDIF iPurifier2 to make movie or game audio match the amazing picture quality of your 4K TV. Feel more immersed than ever before as sound finally matches picture in spectacular fashion. Pair the NEO with the PS4 or Xbox One X for the ultimate gaming experience.
The Burr-Brown DAC chipset still fuels the NEO‘s ‘digital engine’. But iFi upgraded it up with a new 16-core, XMOS microcontroller that processes the data via USB and S/PDIF digital inputs. Double the clock-speed. Four times the memory. Since it’s original release iFi added more digital filters for your listening pleasure. The NEO iDSD now comes with the GTO, Minimum Phase, Bit-Perfect and Standard filters. Add in jitter eradication including iFi's GMT femto-precision clock, intelligent memory buffer and the newly included iPurifier3 and super smooth listening is yours.
The NEO iDSD supports PCM up to 32-bit/768kHz, DSD up to 512 and DXDx2. All remain ‘bit-perfect’. The NEO provides full MQA decoding to ensure the best possible sound quality. Check out iFi's MQA set-up tutorial for Tidal, Roon and Audirvana here. Plus with MQA over S/PDIF, take advantage of any MQA CDs in your collection.
iFi uses Qualcomm’s new QCC5100 Bluetooth processing IC. All current high-definition Bluetooth audio formats are supported – aptx, aptX HD, aptX Adaptive, aptX LL, LDAC, HWA/LHDC, AAC and SBC. The NEO iDSD ‘remembers’ up to 7 devices and has impressive range on Bluetooth5.0.
Not only is the NEO iDSD a purist design – no DSP, no digital filter selection and no change in analogue playback – it is also all designed around a balanced circuit design named ‘PureWave‘. Read more below. It uses audiophile-grade components and delivers sonic ‘purity’ thanks to the extraordinarily low levels of noise and distortion.
The headphone amp stage maintains an engaging balance between sonic power and poise – no matter what it is tasked to drive. From high-sensitivity in-ear monitors to current-hungry planar headphones, it drives them with aplomb. It has a continuous power output of over 1000mW into 32ohms available through the balanced headphone socket. Plenty of oomph for the headphone user.
iFi uses Qualcomm’s new QCC5100 Bluetooth processing IC in combination with proprietary circuits to create an audibly superior ‘Bluetooth engine’. All the current high-definition Bluetooth audio formats are supported – Qualcomm’s aptX Adaptive and aptX HD, Sony’s LDAC and HWA’s LHDC, regular aptX and aptX Low Latency, AAC (Apple iOS devices) and SBC (the ‘plain vanilla’ Bluetooth codec). Of the 24-bit-capable codecs, aptX Adaptive and aptX HD support up to 48kHz, while LDAC and LHDC reach 96kHz. iFi’s ‘Bluetooth engine’ can also be updated over-the-air, so future codecs may be added.
Balanced, differential analogue circuit design has long been championed for its ability to reduce noise and cross-talk within the signal path by fully separating the left and right channels. PureWave is a new, balanced, symmetrical dual-mono topology with short, direct signal paths. The name refers to the sonic purity it achieves thanks to exceptional linearity and infinitesimally low levels of noise and distortion.
MQA (Master Quality Authenticated) MQA is an award-winning British technology that delivers the sound of the original master recording. The master MQA file is fully authenticated and is small enough to stream or download. The xDSD Gryphon adopts MQA technology to receive and decode MQA audio and provide master-level sound. Visit mqa.co.uk for more information.
The Burr-Brown True Native® chipset means file formats remain unchanged or ‘bit-perfect’. This means you are listening to music as the artist intended in the format in which it was recorded. iFi uses Burr Brown extensively in their products having selected it for its natural-sounding ‘musicality’ and True Native architecture. iFi's experience with this IC means they know how to make the most of it.
The XMOS 16-Core chip processes the audio data received via the USB* digital input. This new low-latency XMOS microcontroller has greatly enhanced processing power. Compared to the current generation of eight-core chips, this new 16-core IC delivers double the clock speed (2000MIPS) and four times the memory (512KB), as well as the latest SuperSpeed USB standard. iFi’s in-house digital development team has programmed the XMOS firmware to optimise sound quality and ensure a perfect partnership with the Burr-Brown DAC.
(* Also on S/PDIF on the NEO iDSD/Diablo)
Hi-res audio support is state-of-the-art with True Native® playback. It handles PCM data to 32-bit/768kHz, DSD up to DSD512 and single and double speed DXD. Thanks to the Burr-Brown DAC chip’s four-channel True Native design, PCM and DSD take separate pathways – this enables DSD, as well as PCM, to remain ‘bit-perfect’ in its native form right through to analogue conversion. This is not the case with all DAC devices from other brands – even if DSD compatibility is stated, many such DACs convert DSD signals to PCM.
Extensive jitter-eradication technologies are applied to the digital stage, including iFi's GMT (Global Master Timing) femto-precision clock and intelligent memory buffer. This represents a total ‘out-of-the-box’ systematic digital solution that solves jitter once and for all.
As with many other iFi audio products, iFi incorporated a custom OV Series operational-amplifier. This top-notch component contributes to the extremely low noise, low distortion (0.0001%) and wide bandwidth.
Texas Instruments low-noise ICs offer great unity-gain bandwidth, very low noise and distortion, high output drive capability, Common-mode and Power Supply Rejection Ratios of over 100 dB, wide maximum-output-swing bandwidths and high slew rates.
TDK C0G (Class 1 ceramic) capacitors offer high stability and low losses for resonant circuit applications. Getting ever closer to the theoretical ideal of pure, frequency-constant capacitance, these capacitors reduce capacitor-induced distortion to vanishingly low levels. They are pricey but are a perfect addition to iFi products.
muRata control-type, low-ESR high-Q multi-layer capacitors. The ‘ESR control’ aspect of the Murata is something special. Their noise suppression abilities are impressive.
Switching between settings has been engineered to ensure sonic transparency with advanced trench technology MOSFET is used as a muting switch. This FET-based switching is handled by a micro-controller, which only ‘wakes up’ when the user changes a setting, thus eradicating any sonically deleterious interference.
|USB3.0 B (USB2.0 compatible)/S-PDIF (coaxial/optical)
|Bluetooth 5.1™ ( AAC, SBC, aptX, aptX HD, aptX Adaptive, aptX LL, LDAC, LHDC/HWA Codec)
|DSD512/256/128/64, Octa/Quad/Double/Single-Speed DSD
|DXD (768/705.6/384/352.8kHz), Double/Single-Speed DXD
|6.3V / 7.7V max. (variable) - 4.4V fixed
|3.2V / 3.9V max. (variable) - 2.2V fixed
|-112dB(A) @ 0dBFS (UnBAL/BAL)
|>116dB(A) @ -60dBFS (UnBAL/BAL)
|THD + N
|<0.0015% @ 0dBFS (UnBAL/BAL)
|Balanced >6.4V/68.6 mW (@ 600Ω) /
|>5.77V/1040 mW (@ 32Ω)
|UnBAL >3.25V/17.6 mW (@ 600Ω) /
|>3V/295 mW (@ 32Ω)
|-112dBA (3.3V UnBAL/6.2V BAL)
|THD + N
|>0.0015% (125mW @ 32Ω)
|No Signal ~0.5W
|Max Signal ~2.5W
|DC 5V/2.5A, AC 100 -240V, 50/60Hz (with iPower)
|214 x146 x 41 mm
|8.4" x 5.7" x 1.6"
|970 g (2.14 Ibs)