Home Amp/DAC Comparisons iFi Zen DAC V2 Review – BETTER than the original?!

iFi Zen DAC V2 Review – BETTER than the original?!

by Stuart Charles Black
>AFFILIATE DISCLOSURE: As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.<

Don't forget to share if you found it helpful!

Part of the iFi Zen Mini-Series!

Shout out to Lawrance and the folks over at iFi for their continued support in sending this demo unit!

Greetings mate and Welcome aboard. Stuart Charles here, HomeStudioBasics.com helping YOU make sound decisions leading to a beautiful audio experience that will make you fall in love with music (NOT gear), all over again, so…

As the iFi Zen DAC V2 emerges into the audiophile arena, it raises pertinent inquiries about its status as an advancement over its predecessor, the original Zen DAC.

Positioned as an evolution in the line, the crucial debate centers on whether this newer iteration justifies the additional investment and if it brings substantive enhancements beyond the original’s feature set.

In our upcoming review, we’ll meticulously dissect the Zen DAC V2, comparing it against its predecessor to discern if the improvements, if any, substantiate the increased cost.

Our aim is clear: to guide you through an insightful evaluation that dissects every aspect, aiding in your decision-making process by pinpointing whether the Zen DAC V2 truly warrants an upgrade or if there are alternative options that deliver superior value.

Our exploration will navigate through performance differences, added features, and overall user experience, ultimately providing a comprehensive perspective to assist you in determining if investing in the Zen DAC V2 aligns with your audio aspirations and budget.

With that, let’s take a look at what’s in the box:

Specs at the very end!

In The Box

iFi Zen Amp/DAC Original

iFi Zen DAC/Amp + Zen CAN Amp (Stack) vs. iFi Zen CAN Signature 6XX Stack

iFi AUDIO Zen DAC Desktop USB DAC and Headphone Amp

Blue USB Type-B Cable

RCA to RCA cable (not pictured)

Spec Sheet

Limited 1-Year Warranty

ifi Zen Amp/DAC V2 (Upgraded)

iFi AUDIO Zen DAC Desktop USB DAC and Headphone Amp

Blue USB Type-B Cable

RCA to RCA Cable

Spec Sheet

Limited 1-Year Warranty

Just act like I included the RCA to RCA cable in the first picture. πŸ˜›

So right off the bat, the packaging and accessories are the same.

Let’s take a gander at the backside.

A couple of things have changed:

  1. The Zen V2 now uses the 16-core XMOS Chip which allows the product to fully decode MQA and run DSD256 on the same firmware due to the extra processing power of the chip.
  2. There’s a new and improved low jitter clock with > 20dB better performance.

Can I tell a difference?

We’ll get into that in a bit.

iFi Zen Amp/DAC

Price: Check Amazon! | Check B&H!

iFi Zen DAC V2 ReviewBuild

First, we’ll get into the build if you’re not familiar with this product.

I said it in 2019 and I’ll say it again, The Zen is one of (if not the best) built products I’ve ever tested and what’s astonishing is how well it’s built for the price.

A lot of cheaper products have build qualities to match, but the Zen is rather hefty and durable coming in at just a shade over a pound (1.08 lbs.)

The polygonal-inspired volume pot is still a dream to turn, and all connections feel solid and robust.

Front Panel

On the front, we’ve got a power match, TrueBass, a 4.4mm balanced input as well as your standard 1/4″ jack.

iFi Zen DAC V2 Review

Back Panel

iFi Zen DAC/Amp Review

The back reveals the same RCA outputs, USB 3.0 socket, and DC 5V power jack.

Keep in mind you don’t technically need a power supply to run the Zen.

I’ve always used bus power from my laptop. Just plug it in and it’s ready to go immediately.

With that, how does it sound?

Sound

iFi Zen DAC V2 Review

The sound of the original Zen was smooth and detailed with a touch of warmth – utilizing iFi’s favorite Burr Brown chip.

The Zen V2 sounds exactly the same.

Lawrance, the rep @ iFi told me through email,

“I’ll get one sent your way. It’s mostly just some component upgrades and upgrading it to an MQA decoder rather than just a renderer.”

There were a few instances where I felt like the V2 version was a tad more refined/clear, but it could have just been my imagination and/or a placebo in thinking the roughly $30 increase in price makes the V2 sound better.

It doesn’t. And that’s completely fine.

If you do run MQA through Tidal, then yeah, it may be worth it to get the V2.

The subject of MQA has been a hotly debated topic, and let’s just say it’s kind of complicated.

Power Output

Another hotly debated topic that just will not die is the Zen’s power output.

With power match on, you’ll be around 12-2 o’clock with most headphones.

I’ve never had to push it past that for any reason, so the underpowered claims tend to be exaggerated.

I’m not going to go off on a rant because I’ll just get upset and you probably won’t read it, so here are the numbers:

Out of the unbalanced port:

  • 280mW @ 32 Ohm, and 36mW @ 300 Ohm

For the balanced port:

  • 380mW @ 50 Ohm, and 70mW @ 600 Ohm

iFi rates the Zen as being compatible with anything 12-300 Ohms which is about right.

With the HD600, there’s plenty of headroom here as it only requires about 20mW from an amp.

No, you’re not going to want to use the Zen to drive 600 Ohm headphones, so definitely bear that in mind.

Gaming

What’s cool is that iFi released a firmware update allowing you to use the Zen V2 with your Playstation via USB slot.

Just go here, use the dropdown, find Zen DAC V2, and follow the prompts!

I’ve been gaming with it since I received the comment below from “Ale” and having a blast! If you game and watch a lot of film, the Zen V2 is perfect.

What you’ll love most is that it’s plug-and-play and also sounds crisp and clean.

In writing the 560S review, I decided to compare it to some other headphones I have here using the Zen as the Amp/DAC, so if you’re looking for a comprehensive guide on how a bunch of headphones sound for gaming, check out that review!

Headphones used include the 560S, K702, K612, HD600, and HD58X.

Video Discussion

Don’t forget to leave me some love and subscribe <3

Closing Thoughts and Update For Current Times

FiiO K5 Pro ReviewThe Zen is still something I was recommending quite often to people, and I still love it now though the situation has gotten quite complicated.

The original iteration reviewed back then was around $130 and an absolute steal.

If you consider that a JDS Labs ATOM amp + DAC costs around $200, iFi was basically giving the Zen away when it first came out.

2021 saw the updated Zen DAC V2 (this review) which added plug-and-play (no optical cable needed) console compatibility for an extra $30 ($160).

I still thought that was more than fair considering I do a lot of gaming on my PS4 and felt it remained an excellent value.

Now?

There is no more original Zen.

It’s been replaced by the Zen V2 which costs around $199 – now overpriced in my opinion.

I will update this article as new information comes to light and/or things change, but for now, I’m not recommending the Zen.

So what do I recommend?

I think the FiiO K5 Pro (ESS or AKM versions) or K11 are much better values than the Zen at this point.

No, you don’t get the balanced 4.4mm output on the back, or the 4.4mm headphone output on the front, but for the same price as the Zen V2, you can just get a K7 if you want to use balanced headphones and the astonishingly cheap K11 has a balanced output as well.

The K7, like the Zen, is around $200.

FiiO K7 ReviewFiiO K7 ReviewWith the K7, in addition to the RCA outputs, you’re getting the optical input, a coaxial input, as well as a set of RCA inputs.

The Zen only has the RCA outputs.

The only thing the Zen has that the K7 doesn’t is the 4.4mm output on the back. If that’s what you’re looking for, I don’t think the Zen is a bad purchase at all since it’s still capable of quite a bit. And yes, I used the Zen fully balanced with the MT-604 utilizing that 4.4mm output.

I’m also still running the same original Zen that was sent to me in 2019 – a testament to iFi’s excellent quality control and great build quality.

The Zen V2 is also plug-and-play with a console which pretty much cancels out the need for an optical input, but you may still use optical for other things.

Overall, I still like the K5 Pro/K7 more than a Zen and use them both every day for different things.

I think what you go with ultimately depends on your situation, but as a do-all Amp/DAC, the K11 is likely the best overall value since it’s only around $130 (Subject to Change) and has everything that the K5/K7 has except for RCA inputs.

Learn More:

 

If you need the RCA inputs, the K7 is the best value at $200 since it has a balanced headphone output.

 

There’s no real reason to recommend the K5 Pro anymore (ESS or AKM) since the K11 provides the balanced headphone output for $20 cheaper. 

As far as those differences, the ESS version simply uses an ESS Sabre chip which is known for its ultra-neutral, clean, crisp profile.

AKM chips have a slightly higher output impedance and sound a tad warmer. Not a huge difference, but the ESS profile, to me, definitely represents just about the biggest “sound” difference you’ll experience in DACS.

Outside of that, they are all very similar sounding per my experience.

Happy listening! And if you have questions, leave them in the comments! I’d be happy to help.

Specifications

Features

  • Formats: PCM/Bit Perfect DSD & DXD
  • Digital Inputs: USB 3.0B (USB2.0 Compatible)
  • Analogue Outputs: 6.3mm Unbalanced / 4.4mm Balanced / RCA
  • PowerMatch Adjustment for iEMs/ On & Over Ears
  • TrueBass to add bass to IEMS
  • Precision analogue volume control

Specifications

  • Input: USB3.0 B Socket (USB 2.0 Compatible)
  • Formats: 44.1/48/88.2/96/176.4/192kHz PCM, 2.8/3.1/5.6/6.2/11.2/12.4MHz DSD, 353/384kHz DXD
  • DAC: Bit-Perfect DSD & DXD DAC By Burr Brown

Line Section

  • Output: Audio RCA (UNBAL), 2.1V fixed, 1V/3.3V max. (variable)
  • 4.4mm Pentacon (BAL): 4.2V fixed, 2V/6.2V max. (variable)
  • Zout: <=100 Ohm (UNBAL), <=200 Ohm (BAL)
  • SNR: <-116dB (A) @ 0dBFS (UNBAL/BAL)
  • DNR: >116dB(A) @ -60dBFS (UNBAL/BAL)
  • THD+N: <0.0015% @ 0dBFS (UNBAL/BAL)

Headpone Section

  • Output: 6.3mm (UNBAL), 1V/3.3V max., 12 – 300 Ohm Headphone
  • 4.4mm Pentaconn (BAL), 2V/6.2V max., 12 – 600 Ohm Headphone
  • Output Power: UNBAL>280mW @ 32R, >36mW @ 300R, BAL >380mW @ 50R, >70mW @ 600R
  • Output Impedance: <1 Ohm (UNBAL/BAL)
  • THD & N: <0.005% (125mW @ 32R)
  • SNR: >113dBA (3.3V UNBAL/6.2V BAL)
  • Power Consumption: No Signal – 0.5W, Max Signal – 2.5W
  • Dimensions: 117(l) x 100(w) x 30(h)mm
  • Weight: 491g (1.08 lbs.)
  • Warranty Period: (12 months)

Well, that’s about it for today my friend! I hope you’ve enjoyed this iFi Zen DAC V2 Review and comparison to the original Zen DAC and gained some valuable insight.

Questions? Comments? Requests? Did I miss the mark on something? Please let me know down below or Contact me!!

If you love what I do here and want to support the blog and channel in a more personal way, check me out on Patreon and discover all the value I have to offer you.

Which of these are you going to purchase? Do you believe the Zen V2 is worth $200? I would love to hear from you. Until next time…

All the best and God bless,

 

 

-Stu

[Xtr@Ba$eHitZ]

Can’t decide which headphones to purchase? Interested in a complete buyers guide outlining over 40 of the best options on the market? Click on over to the best audiophile headphones to learn more!!

Be sure to also check out my Reviews and Resources page for more helpful and informative articles!

Don't forget to share if you found it helpful!

You may also like

35 comments

Ale July 14, 2021 - 12:43 pm

V2 and “newer V1s” should also support playstation now (via USB): https://ifi-audio.com/download-hub/ β†’ Firmware-update β†’ “Added PlayStation USB compatibility.”

Reply
Stuart Charles Black July 14, 2021 - 2:29 pm

Wow, that’s awesome news! Thank you for sharing, Ale! That is seriously so cool. I had tried it out like a month or so ago via someone asking on the channel or blog.

Reply
Ale July 14, 2021 - 6:56 pm

don’t get me wrong, i’m not sure about this because i don’t own a zen dac to test it, but i had read about it in some forums and on the official IFI firmware update website it says it is now compatible (“Release date: June 01, 2021 / This download is for: macOS, Windows / Full MQA major code optimisation. Added PlayStation USB compatibility.”)…. maybe you can test and confirm this if you still have the zen dac v2 with you.

Reply
Stuart Charles Black July 14, 2021 - 7:05 pm

Yes! I’m definitely going to download it and see. I will keep you posted!

Reply
Stuart Charles Black July 14, 2021 - 7:12 pm

I decided to do it right away. Confirmed working! IT’S ALLLLLIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIVE!!!!!! Lmao. So cool. Bout to play some VIDYA GAMES! xD Def stay tuned for some gaming impressions and an article update within the next few days. Big thanks for the heads up again. πŸ™‚

Reply
Ale July 14, 2021 - 9:11 pm

was a pleasure πŸ˜‰

Stuart Charles Black July 15, 2021 - 12:49 pm

??

kevin July 20, 2021 - 4:29 pm

Hi thank you for very great reviews.
I’m undecided between this and Fiio K5 Pro.
It’s for a pair of HD599SE and ATH M50X
I listen all kind of music and i’m using Tidal and FLAC CDs

Thank you!!

Reply
Stuart Charles Black July 20, 2021 - 7:44 pm

Hey man! If Tidal, def Zen! The firmware update for Zen V2 also makes it compatible with PS4! Let me know if you have any questions.

Reply
Charliezadon July 25, 2021 - 5:04 am

Hey Stu, I was bugging about your thoughts on dac/amps a while back. I ended up getting the Zen DAC v2 and CAN. There was a major sale out here and I figured it was the best price I was going to get. As for the power of the DAC, I can confirm that it is strong enough. I tested my ATH-M50x and HarmonicDyne Zeus on it, and I barely ever turned the knob up past 10~11 o’clock. Anything over that, and I would be scared I’d start causing damage to my ears. My only question is, which firmware are you using? I noticed that they had 2 versions on the website: 7.2 and 7.2c. Did you try both? Could you hear a difference? Was there one you preferred? I couldn’t hear much of a difference and what I did hear, I thought was placebo.

Reply
Stuart Charles Black July 25, 2021 - 6:59 pm

Gosh I don’t even know lol but I actually just updated the firmware and drivers on the V2 and now I can play on PS4!! I wouldn’t worry too much about differences. It’s the same sound across the board. Don’t make yourself crazy over that type of stuff. πŸ™‚

Reply
some dude July 30, 2021 - 12:24 pm

So there’s virtually no major difference between the original Zen DAC and the V2?
Anyways.. my main concern with the Zen DAC (either version) is it’s power delivery.
I’m not that knowledgeable and rather new to this world so I wonder if this sweet little thing is enough to drive headphones like the 1990 Pro, HD 660 S or Sundara vs. things like D7X Pro, SMSL SU/SH-9 or Schiit stacks? Am I about to fall for the audiofoolery?

Reply
Stuart Charles Black July 30, 2021 - 2:35 pm

Hey man! Nah, even the rep said as much. The kicker is that they just released a firmware update so I can now use it with my PS4!!! Pretty nifty actually and something that I personally derive much value from. In fact, I can kind of tolerate the asking price now because of that.

As far as power goes, that’s always been an interesting debate. You’ll find differing schools of thought, but for me, it’s fine. With power match on, I’m never past 1 or 2 ‘o clock.

I have yet to find a headphone with it that didn’t get completely and utterly loud enough. If someone says it’s not loud enough or doesn’t have enough power, I’m inclined to believe their hearing is damaged.

As far as driving a headphone, that’s more of a snobby term that audiophiles like to use to try and differentiate between “enough power” vs. how the amp actually integrates with the headphone of choice, and I’m not the one to ask that because to me, and after demoing 50 of these things, the differences between Amps & DACS are there, sure, but not nearly as gargantuan as some would have you believe. It’s just not worth stressing out about, trust me.

The Zen is a great product and sounds fantastic with all headphones I’ve tried. 1990 is 250 and 102dB Sensitivity. Perfectly fine on paper though I haven’t used one so don’t @ me on that lol. Sundara is 30 something ohm and has low sensitivity. You’ll be on power match but it will be fine. 660S I haven’t heard yet but my HD600 (300 Ohm) and 58X are fine (though the 58x is a bit easier to drive at 150 Ohm).

I have the SH-9 on my desk now and yes, it’s got more power for sure and will be easier to reach a desirable volume with said headphones.

Reply
Aleksander March 22, 2023 - 11:44 pm

Hi,
I have Sundara (2020 edition) and I must say that if you plan to run these headphones single-ended, you will be at the maximum capabilities of ZEN DAC V2 (even at high gain, you are going to be on the border of distorted sound). However, if you run them balanced, ZEN DAC V2 will easily do that even at low gain (knob at noon) with plenty of headroom.

Reply
Stuart Charles Black March 23, 2023 - 3:18 pm

Hey Aleksander!

What’s the border there? Because on high gain with every headphone I’ve tried including Sundara, I’m still only at 1 or 2 o’clock on the dial and never feel like I’m having to push the volume. In other words, I’ve never had any issues with the Zen and always have a ton of headroom single-ended.

Reply
Aleksander March 24, 2023 - 10:32 pm

Hi,
This also came as a surprise as all other headphones from my collection are completely fine even in single-ended mode. Maybe I should highlight in the beginning that this opinion is very subjective.
Sundara in single-ended mode, with my listening levels and to my ears, started sounding slightly distorted once I reached 2-3 o’clock. This was especially obvious with busy tracks. I think you can reproduce this effect and hear what I mean by enabling TRUEBASS, high gain mode and max the volume level for the fraction of a second (just don’t damage your ears :D). Running Sundara balanced gives you much more power and a lot of headroom which does not result in distorted sound (again, subjectively). Now(balanced) I’m on 1 o’clock on low gain enjoing my music. Maybe I’m just more sensitive to distortion, but I still wouldn’t recommend the ZEN DAC V2 paired with the Sundara if you’re going to use them in single-ended mode.

Reply
Stuart Charles Black March 25, 2023 - 9:49 pm

No worries! And that’s interesting. I will have to do some further testing. It’s weird because many people have said this to me and I’ve never heard any distortion in my unit. It is one of the earliest ones. I wonder if something happened down the road that was never rectified. I have no idea.

I will mess with it more and get back to you.

Mpamphs April 26, 2023 - 2:47 am

I also Had Sundara for 2 years and agree it wasnt enough , i bought K5pro and on High gain Sundara waked up .

Stuart Charles Black April 27, 2023 - 1:04 pm

gilmour_fan July 30, 2021 - 7:56 pm

Hey Stu.
I just discovered your website and youtube channel and would like to thank you first for saving my money. I had almost bought the Zen Signature set and you were like god sent. On top of that, I am located in a country where I have to pay extra for shipping, taxes and customs as none of these products are locally available.
I have few questions before making the purchase. I have HD6xx and Aune X1S DAC/AMP. Aune for me has lot of treble and a little brighter. What do you suggest, should I buy the Zen DAC first or the Zen CAN and use it with same Aune DAC?
If I buy Zen DAC, do you really suggest buying Zen CAN later for HD6xx? After reading your review, I understood that just the Zen DAC is enough for driving HD6xx. What would be the real advantage of adding Zen CAN?

Reply
Stuart Charles Black August 1, 2021 - 4:55 pm

Hey man! Try Zen DAC first. It’s a nice mix of neutral/warm-ish, so right in the middle. Sounds great with the 600 series!! If you want to add Zen CAN, you can later on. The advantage is simply extra power for more demanding headphones that you may encounter later on in your journey. Keep me posted and thank you so much for hte kind words! It really helps this blog out a lot πŸ™‚ Talk soon, -Stu

Reply
keith watkinson August 22, 2021 - 7:44 pm

I have a pair of HD579 Sennheiser with the V1 Zen Dac and i do really like the sound i only use Flac and WMA Lossless and some Mp3 Files but no MQA audio so would i notice any improvement if i changed to the V2 Zen Dac thanks Keith.

Reply
Stuart Charles Black August 23, 2021 - 1:27 pm

Hey man! Nah. Still the same sound pretty much. I would get a Zen if you do console gaming with PS4 though as they just released a firmware update πŸ™‚

Reply
Jeuris Arnaud August 31, 2021 - 4:32 pm

Hello from belgium ! πŸ˜€

i really don’t know if i’m going to fiio k5 pro which have significantly more power on zen dac v2, really same price at 5€ differences in the 2, at this time is for an HD599SE + SHP9600

but i would go on HD600 and sundara soon, and as i’ve experienced it sundara takes a lot, i really listen at high volumes and the k5 pro + sundara from a friend takes the full volume on mid gain to be comfortable for me, so i’m a little bit afraid of the lower power of the zen v2, i know i can add a zen can to have more power but this makes double the price and i prefer one solid piece than 2 separates, i hope you can suggest me πŸ™‚

Reply
Stuart Charles Black September 1, 2021 - 3:31 pm

Hey man! K5 pro def more power! I would do that as the Can + Zen is more expensive. I’ve had people tell me they absolutely love the Zen + Sundara and it drives them no problem so maybe try it out? For just the 599 and 9600 Zen is more than enough. Sundara could go either way.

Reply
Leng February 2, 2022 - 6:57 am

your review help me very lot. thank you.

2022
ZEN V2 and G6
which one better? i play fps game but i dont want to use G6 EQ

Reply
Stuart Charles Black February 2, 2022 - 7:07 pm

Hey man, thank you and you’re welcome!

G6 is my full-time gaming dac with a console, but V2 is also very good. It just doesn’t have Scout Mode or mic input like G6 which is why G6 for me is better for FPS gaming. So if you don’t do any FPS gaming and only single-player, get the Zen. If you do multi-player gaming, I’d get a G6.

Hope that helps! Let me know.

Reply
Anti-ASR February 28, 2022 - 4:31 am

I have no idea why Amir from ASR says this DAC has poor amplification, I gave this DAC a shot with my Sennheiser HD800S, as this was the closest thing I have that matches the Ohm Resistance and sensitivity of his HD 650. Volume level, this can definitely get uncomfortably loud at depending on how you use it. Using the unbalanced jack does make it painfully loud , while the balanced connections pumps it up to “You are definitely going damage your ears loud.”

That being said, I think all headphone enthusiast should keep at least two amplifiers for low and high sensitivity.
I am primarily using the my HD 800S with the Fiio K9 Pro but I managed to snag a Final Audio Sonorous 3 at a great price. To the great displeasure of my ears, the K9 Pro had too much power and for a 16 ohm and 102 db sensitivity headphones; even at lowest gain settings. The Zen DAC V2 is great fit, and it gives me enough headroom for watching videos that have lower than usual volume.

This whole amplification pairing thing is making me hesitant on buying anymore headphones now, seems like any single change of components can break the entire listening foundation.

Reply
Stuart Charles Black March 6, 2022 - 2:53 pm

Yeah, I’ve never understood that gripe from him and unfortunately, it’s caused countless parroting of what is essentially a non-issue. Unless your hearing is damaged, the Zen is perfectly capable of driving 99% of headphones. I’ve never been past 2 with power match on anything I’ve listened to, and most of the time I don’t even have to turn it up that much anyways.

Reply
Ray Horvath January 13, 2023 - 3:02 pm

To me, the Zen DAC works better, because I can use a balanced cable to connect it with the ZEN amplifier. Not only do I get better dynamics by the amp’s more power, I can also use balanced and regular headphones and I can get a signal through the balanced cable and another through the line ports. Sorry, the optical output from my Blu Ray player goes to the amplifier, and I have to resort to the line input on the ZEN headphone amp, unless I want to keep switching cables.

On the other hand, my ZEN DAC just croaked after a short time, and I cannot even put it down to anything.

Reply
Stuart Charles Black January 14, 2023 - 2:03 am

Oh no! Sorry to hear that Ray. So you plug it in via USB and nothing?

Reply
lazy_termite April 6, 2023 - 10:21 am

Hello, I’d like to mention that Zen DAC v2 volume cannot be controlled by Windows volume mixer or Windows system volume. I’m yet to to find it mentioned in any review, and that was a bummer for me to find out. My DAC sits pretty far from me to reach the knob (and I cannot put it any closer, sadly) and I’m more used to changing system volume, rather than doing it on an output device. It looks like I’m not the only one, based on google search results.
The DAC sounds great compared to built-in soundcard, but the above-mentioned downside…

Reply
Stuart Charles Black April 10, 2023 - 4:03 pm

Hey Lazy Termite!

Sorry to hear that. I will add it to the review for sure. You may be better off with something like a DragonFly Red or S9 Pro.

Reply
TimOn April 27, 2023 - 6:50 am

Hello. Please tell me. I choose DAC. I tried from inexpensive Topping DX1, Topping D10S, xDuoo XD-05 Basik with an update, home-made on AK4490, home-made on PKM1794 and none of this sings, the sound is clear but dead. I took iFi Zen Dac V2 to try at Burr Brown 1793 and it obviously sounds better than all of them. Please tell me, does it make sense to try iFi Zen Dac Signature V2 or maybe there are options that are clearly better for about the same money or a little more? Thank you.

Reply
Stuart Charles Black April 29, 2023 - 12:16 pm

Hey there! I wouldn’t get too caught up with it. If you enjoy the Zen V2, keep it! My top 2 recommendations for those starting out are the K5 Pro or ATOM.

Reply

Leave a Comment