The brand new iFi xDSD Gryphon DAC headphone amplifier should be available by about now, designed portable use.
Those looking for quality sound on the go can choose from several options these days. One more will be added very soon (or actually just is). We’re talking about the new iFi xDSD Gryphon DAC headphone amplifier. In fact, this device replaces the xDSD and xCan (a separate DAC and headphone amplifier respectively), both introduced a few years ago. Lightweight, a metal casing and compact dimensions make it a great travel companion. The xDSD Gryphon features quite a few input connections: USB, S/PDIF (optical and electrical), balanced and unbalanced analog in plus Bluetooth. USB-C is the connector iFi chose; practical and universal. You’ll even find two of those on the device: one for charging and one for data in.
PCM, DSD, DXD, MQA
You can connect both balanced and unbalanced headphones to the iFi xDSD Gryphon. A regular 3.5 mm as well as a 4.4 mm Pentaconn connector are present. The 3.5 mm output is preceded by iFi’s own S-Balanced circuit. The DAC is based on one from Burr-Brown, coupled to a low latency 16-core microcontroller. Also present: a GMT or Global Master Timer. This femto-accurate clock designed in-house should minimize jitter. The maximum quality the Gryphon can play is 32 bit / 768 kHz and DSD up to DSD 512, plus single and double speed DXD. PCM and DSD are internally processed separately, which should lead to bit-perfect conversion. Finally, MQA is also supported, with full decoding up to 384 kHz. Bluetooth supports all common hi-res codecs as well as AAC. The headphone amplifier has an output power of up to 1 watt, using the best quality components in the amplifier circuit. As extras, XBASS II and XSpace are still available for enthusiasts, in other words: more low and more spatial. An OLED display shows all the necessary information. The price for this little powerhouse is £599.