British audio specialist iFi appears to be on a miniaturization mission, with a brand new “super-affordable” GO Hyperlink transportable DAC measuring the scale of a daily USB stick.
Coming scorching on the heels of the palm-sized iFi Uno, this new dongle-style headphone amp connects to your Mac, PC or smartphone by way of USB-C with a 3.5mm headphone enter on the different finish.
In addition to permitting you to enhance your sonics and hearken to hi-res audio, the machine additionally doubles up as a 3.5mm adaptor, making it notably useful for these with units that aren’t blessed with a headphone output (we’re taking a look at you, tenth-generation iPad).
Maybe much more helpful is the GO Hyperlink’s decidedly diminutive price ticket, with the unit accessible from immediately, December 5, costing a mere £59 / $59 / AU$87.
Regardless of the low MSRP, it appears to be like a reasonably complete providing, with assist for hi-res music recordsdata as much as 32-bit/384kHz, DSD as much as 11.2MHz (DSD256) and MQA – the format utilized by Tidal’s HiFi Plus.
Contained in the GO Hyperlink’s light-weight magnesium alloy case there’s a DAC chip from ESS Know-how’s Sabre HiFi collection, Quad DAC+ and Time Area Jitter Eliminator tech, together with iFi’s devoted clock circuitry for lowered distortion and enhanced dynamic vary.
There’s a versatile, polymer insulated 6cm cable connecting the Go Hyperlink’s USB-C connector and the DAC for lowered stress on machine ports, whereas the unit comes with a number of adaptors together with USB-A and Apple’s Lightning connector.
Evaluation: iFi’s tiny DAC is an ideal stocking filler for on-the-move audiophiles
A travel-friendly DAC is the proper gateway product to hi-res audio – the way in which to go for upgrading your transportable listening expertise, however the choices too typically both stretch the boundaries of the phrase “transportable” or include some type of concession on the audio providing.
Regardless of its entry-level worth level and small measurement, there doesn’t seem like a lot in the way in which of compromise with the Go Hyperlink on both entrance, although. Nicely performed, iFi…
You see, the GO Hyperlink’s headphone amp feeds a gold-plated 3.5mm socket incorporating iFi’s noise-reducing S-Balanced configuration, which simply outclasses the headphone output constructed into even the greatest smartphone, pill or laptop. This boasts an influence output of 70mW/1.5V into 32 ohms, rising to 2V with larger impedance headphones – lots to drive the form of audiophile headphones (the Meze Audio Liric, maybe) and earphones (let me nudge you in the direction of Campfire Audio’s Trifecta) with which the GO Hyperlink may properly be partnered, while minimising drain in your linked machine’s battery. Win win, then!
And in addition to powering your wired headphones, the three.5mm analogue output can be utilized to attach a preamp or built-in amp, or powered audio system.
In fact, the proof is within the pudding and we’ll reserve full judgment till we get our fingers on the GO Hyperlink and listen to the way it sounds, but when it lives as much as its spec sheet, iFi seems to have launched the DAC to beat for on-the-go audiophiles.
Within the meantime, you could find out the right way to up your audio recreation with our present listing of the greatest transportable DACs.