iFi ZEN CAN headphone amplifier & ZEN DAC Signature V2 D/A processor Specifications

Sidebar 1: Specifications

ZEN DAC SIGNATURE V2: Description: Digital-to-analog converter with XMOS 16-core processor and fully balanced dual-mono circuitry; DAC: Burr-Brown Bit-Perfect DSD & DXD DAC. Input: USB 3.0 (USB 2.0 compatible); Input voltage: DC 5V/2.5A (external power supply included); Outputs: Balanced 4.4mm, 2V/6.2V max. variable, 4.2V fixed; Unbalanced RCA, 1V/3.3V max. variable, 2.1V fixed. Formats: PCM 44.1/48/88.2/96/176.4/192/352.8/384kHz; DSD 2.8/3.1/5.6/6.2/11.2/12.4MHz; 353/384kHz DXD; MQA decoding and rendering. Analog volume potentiometer, volume fixed or variable. S/N ratio: <116dB(A) @ 0dBFS (Balanced/Unbalanced). THD: <0.00015% @ 0dBFS (Balanced/Unbalanced).
Dimensions: 6.2" (157mm) W × 1.4" (36mm) H × 4.6" (117mm) D. Weight: 1.11lb (505gm).

ZEN CAN SIGNATURE (HFM OR 6XX): Description: Headphone amplifier with fully balanced circuitry, analog volume control (9mm potentiometer), and EQ cor-rection optimized for HiFiMan 4XX or Sennheiser HD 6XX and HD 650 headphones. Analog inputs: 4.4mm Pentaconn balanced, 3.5mm single-ended RCA; Analog line outputs: 4.4mm Pentaconn balanced; Headphone outputs: 4.4mm balanced, 6.3mm single-ended. Frequency response: 10Hz–200kHz (–3dB). Gain: 0dB, 6dB, 12dB, 18dB. S/N ratio: Balanced >121dB (A-weighted @15.2V); Single-ended >120dB (A-weighted @ 7.6V). THD: Balanced <0.006% (@ 360mW/2.4V 16 ohms); Single-ended <0.005% (@ 100mW/1.27V 16 ohms). Input voltage: 5V/2.5A (power supply included). Max. output: Balanced >15.1V/385mW (@ 600 ohms), >11.0V/1890mW (@ 64 ohms), >6.2V/1200mW (@ 32 ohms); Single-ended >7.6V/98mW (@ 600 ohms), >7.4V/870mW (@ 64 ohms), >7.2V/1600mW (@ 32 ohms).
Dimensions: 6.2" (157mm) W × 1.4" (36mm) H × 4.6" (117mm) D. Weight: 1.21lb (550gm).

Serial numbers of units reviewed: ZEN CAN Signature HFM/6XX, 5312001087/5501000735; ZEN DAC Signature V2, 5320000008. Designed in the UK and assembled in China.
Price: ZEN CAN Signature Set (HFM or 6XX) $599; iEMatch $49. Approximate number of US dealers: 43 B&M plus several online. Warranty: 12 months.
Manufacturer: AMR/iFi Audio, Guildford, 79 Scarisbrick New Road Southport, England, PR8 6LJ Tel: +44 (0) 1704 543 858 US office: 105 Professional Pkwy. Suite 1506. Yorktown, VA 23693. Tel: (800) 799-IFIA. (4342) Web:ifi-audio.com

AMR/iFi Audio
US office:
105 Professional Pkwy. Suite 1506
Yorktown, VA 23693
(800) 799-IFIA

georgehifi's picture

For those that want a good cheap dac with volume, I think they shot themselves in the foot with the lack of digital input types.

Just a single usb3 input!
spdif, toslink, aes/ebu would have been nice to have, as the measurements show it's not a bad stand-alone dac with level control (simple two button up/down volume remote would have been great also).

Cheers George

Julie Mullins's picture

Just a single usb3 input!
spdif, toslink, aes/ebu would have been nice to have

I agree it would have been nice to have one more option anyway. But obviously they wanted to keep the unit compact, which means limited space.

MauriceRon's picture

another stereophile article where goerge hifi is in first with a grumpy man complaint

is it good form for one manufacturter to criticize the work of another?i guess any pub licicity is good pub licicicty.

did u know that this DAC and headphone output from iFI is intended for office desktops. no need for a remote when you can reach to turn.no need for spdif inputs when a computer's USB output is availble.

your little lightspeed sells for almost the same price as this ifi doublepack.does IT have a DAC with optical/coaxial?does IT have a remote?

Currawong's picture

...as far as I'm aware. They use a USB 3 socket so that they can include a better-shielded USB 3 cable in the box.

Jack L's picture


Agreed. How can a properly designed DAC come without any optical & digital coaxial inputs? Incredible for a DAC tagged for $599.99 & even made cheaply in China !!!

What a lame duck! Who wants it? I don't given some many better choices in the marketplace for muchh lower pricing !

Jack L

Julie Mullins's picture

Incredible for a DAC tagged for $599.99...

It's intended as a desktop duo—and it's $599 for the pair, the Set with DAC and headphone amp/preamp.

ok's picture

..and I don't mean usb 3 compatible, which is the case here and elsewhere, is not intended for audio. All other connections are mostly useless nowadays for better or worse.

windansea's picture

At this point in time, I don't see the need for any cable other than USB. I think USB is superior than toslink in terms of max data transfer. I've heard of other little differences like jitter issues with toslink, or toslink's advantage with electrical isolation, and toslink can handle a much longer run, but at this price level it makes sense for the company to focus on one input and go with the most popular one.

georgehifi's picture

Sorry not for me, depends on what source you have.
It may be fine to just have a usb input for those that are happy listening to the later compressed/louder, re-issues of streamed and download stuff.

EG of compression, the later re-issue of the same thing the more compressed it got, and usually the ones the streaming/download companies use.

Cheers George

GRBH's picture

As far as audio file support goes, USB is more advanced than either spdif or toslink, both limited to 24-192.
USB is the only interface of the three mentioned, that can accomodate PCM rates above 24-192 or DSD.

Jack L's picture


Really ????

I am pretty gratified sonically with my 24-192 DAC with spdif+toslink i/ps withOUT any USB considering I am a vinyl addict. This USA NY brandanme DAC cost me muuuch less than the $599 Zen DAC.

Question to you re a realistic situation: e.g at my home: A 4K UHD TV with only toslink O/P & a WiFi DVD player gets only spdif O/P. That ZEN DAC would be useless there !!!

It ALL depends what you need to hook a DAC to, pal.

Listening is believing

Jack L

GRBH's picture

I'd hazard a guess, that without USB, computer based audio would have never gotten off the ground. A large part of the audiophile community, to this day, is still listening to high resolution music including DSD via a PC. Because of the interest in PC based music, enhancements to USB have taken place, such as the development of DOP,(DSD over PCM)

As you say "It ALL depends what you need to hook a DAC to"

Jack L's picture


Sure as long as you love PC based music ! Why not?

But digital music, even HD PC music, is not my favourite cup of tea considering I am a vinyl addict.

For conveniency & updating myself with the music world, streaming is the way to go for me. But for closest-to-live music enjoyment, vinyl analogue is my only way.

No offense intended.

Jack L

rwwear's picture

I've heard a lot of things I didn't believe pal.

buckaroo's picture

Right off the bat, the reviewer has no credibility. Why pick a reviewer who doesn't regularly listen to headphones?

Julie Mullins's picture

I'd like to clarify that I own a couple pairs of headphones and do listen to them regularly—when I host a weekly radio show (FM and streaming) for instance. But it had been a little while since I'd done critical listening through them was what I meant.

MatthewT's picture

The first sentence was perfectly clear as to what you meant.