iFi Audio’s S/PDIF iPurifier debuts at Fujiya Avic Spring 2016


fujiya_avic_spring_2016If you’ve a Google Chromecast Audio, Sonos Connect, Logitech Squeezebox, Apple TV, Apple Airport Express, Roku – essentially any S/PDIF-restricted streamer – and you can’t stretch to a Wyred4Sound Remedy or Empirical Audio Synchro-Mesh to lift the quality of its digital audio output then you’ll probably want to sit up and listen to this.

Thorsten Loesch has taken some of the S/PDIF input tech found in his high-end AMR DP-777 DAC/pre and applied it to his more affordable iFi Audio product range, specifically the iDSD DAC and Stereo 50 system.

For existing DAC owners, good news: Loesch has relocated that same power clean up and data re-clocking tech into a standalone device that connects directly to the coaxial input of one’s D/A converter.

Ladies/gentlemen, the S/PDIF iPurifier!

At the Fujiya Avic headphone festival in Nakano, our host had naked and sleeved pre-production versions to hand. Take it away, Thorsten:

“It’s a little like the old Genesis Digital Lens,” he says off camera. Only the iFi dongle is smaller and more affordable. The S/PDIF iPurifier is reportedly on the cusp of full production and will sell for around US$150ish.

Loesch is also at pains to point out that his new S/PDIF iPurifier dongle does not utilise asynchronous sample-rate conversion (ASRC). The inclusion of both Toslink and coaxial outputs keeps more users in the game.

On inputs, to the untrained eye it looks as though the iFi dongle only offers a single coaxial. However, that coaxial port also accepts optical signals. Loesch quips, “Finding the RCA + Optical was a major op, – the SAS would have been proud…”

I’m keen for one and I reckon I won’t be the only one.

To his credit, Loesch says this new unit isn’t for everyone. He still recommends end users go with USB should it remain available to them. However, the iPurifier has the potential to turn the Airport Express or Google Chromecast (et al) into a far more satisfying digital audio streaming solution.

Further information: iFi Audio




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Written by John H. Darko

John lives in the NOW + HERE = NOWHERE. He derives an income from the ad revenues of DAR. John is also an occasional staff writer for Stereophile, 6moons and TONEAudio.

Twitter: DarkoAudio
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  1. Hi John,

    Very nice.. It would be cool to compare it sith the W4S Remedy.. I wonder if there would be a BNC version, since my dac’s S/PDIF input is a lone 75 Ohm BNC socket.. Using socket/plug BNC/RCA adapters might degrade the benefits of the Ipurifier? BTW, does it include a wall wart with the purchase, an Ipower perhaps?

  2. Your article mentions the use of Chromecast audio with the ipurifier. I really don’t see how that is possible since the ipurifier input is coaxial and the Chromecast output is toslink. At the very least you need a toslink to coax adapter in between which might have more adverse effect than the benefits gained from the ipurifier.
    Also $150 for that little dongle with almost no components in it is completely ridiculous.

      • I’ve seen jack doubling up as toslink output but it’s the first time I hear of an RCA connector doubling up as a toslink input. I guess one learns something new every day.

        What kind of cable do you need to use for the connection? Do you go with a mini toslink adapter plugged into the middle of the RCA connector?

  3. I, too, would love to read a comparison with the W4S Remedy. I use one and am happy for the most part with the results, but am always wondering about the effects of digital artifacts introduced by the asynchronous up-sampling from CD (44 -> 96) and from PCM converted SACD (either 88->96 or 176->96). Also, placement right at/on the coaxial input should confer benefits from forgoing a second cable.