iFi Audio GO blu

Pocket Bluetooth DAC

Item #IFI:GOBLU

iFi Audio GO blu

Pocket Bluetooth DAC

$199.00
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Overview
With its lightweight, soft-touch polymer enclosure (great for Bluetooth reception, unlike signal-blocking metal), copper-colored trim, and ChronoDial watch crown-style control, the GO blu is a pleasure to use wherever you go.

iFi has even incorporated a high-quality chip-based (CMOS-MEMS) microphone, enabling hands-free calls, voice chat for gaming, and access to voice assistants such as Apple Siri and Google Assistant.

Further flexibility is provided by the USB-C charging port, which doubles as an audio input enabling USB connection from source devices that don’t offer Bluetooth connectivity. Hi-res PCM audio data up to24-bit/96kHz is supported when the GO blu is connected in this way.

The way iFi implements Bluetooth is anything but ‘run of the mill’ and despite its diminutive size the GO blu is no exception.

The use of Qualcomm’s latest four-core QCC5100 Bluetooth processing chip ensures that every current high-definition Bluetooth audio format is supported:

  • aptX Adaptive and aptX HD
  • LDAC and HWA/LHDC
  • regular aptX and aptX Low Latency
  • AAC
  • SBC (plain vanilla Bluetooth)

This means that every possible source device is handled at the highest audio resolution its Bluetooth specification allows – no other pocket-size DAC/amp delivers such comprehensive codec support, or such high-quality sound over Bluetooth.

The GO blu is Bluetooth v5.1-compliant, ensuring the best possible range, stability and performance, and its ‘Bluetooth engine’ can be updated over the air.

Most pocket-size Bluetooth DAC/headphone amps incorporate all-in-one ‘system on a chip’ solutions to deliver input processing, digital-to-analog signal conversion, and amplification. These are simple and cost-effective, but they cannot compare with expertly designed, individually optimized circuit stages when it comes to sound quality.

Uniquely for a device of this type and size, the GO blu’s clever design packs in separate Bluetooth + DAC + Amp stages, each engineered in distinct blocks to deliver the ideal combination of cutting-edge specification and superb sound. Others just don’t have this level of execution.

The Bluetooth stage makes full use of Qualcomm’s latest four-core QCC5100 Bluetooth chip and supports every current high definition format.

This then feeds the DAC stage with a Cirrus Logic 32-bit DAC chip at its heart. This is coupled with a customized digital filter to minimize pre-echoes and ringing artifacts, and a precision clock system to ensure ultra-low jitter, thus reducing errors and distortion in the digital audio signal.

The amp circuitry benefits from symmetrical twin-mono signal paths and utilizes iFi’s Direct Drive design concept – direct-coupled to ensure a clean signal path without distortion-inducing output coupling capacitors. The amp stage delivers up to 5.6V (twice the voltage of others) – considerably more power than other similarly sized devices – handling even relatively tough headphone loads with ease. To ensure signal strength suits the sensitivity of the connected headphones or earphones, auto-gain adjusts output up or down by 6dB.

Details & Specs
  • Chipset:
    • DAC: Cirrus Logic CS43131
    • Bluetooth: Qualcomm QCC 5100
  • Inputs:
    • Wireless: Bluetooth 5.1 (AAC, SBC, aptX, aptX HD, aptX Adaptive, aptX LL, LDAC, LHDC/HWA Codec)
    • Wired: USB-C (24/96)
  • Headphone Outputs:
    • Balanced: 4.4mm
    • SE: 3.5mm
  • Power Output:
    • Balanced: 245mW @ 32Ω; 5.6v @ 600Ω
    • SE: 165mW @ 32Ω; 2.8v @ 600Ω
  • Output Impedance:
    • Balanced: <1Ω
    • SE: <1Ω
  • SNR:
    • Balanced: 111dB(A) @ 0dBFS
    • SE: 116.5dB(A) @ 0dBFS
  • DNR (Balanced/SE): >120dB(A)
  • THD + N:
    • Balanced: <0.009% @ (6.5mW/2.0v@600Ω)
    • SE: <0.03% @ (100mW/1.27v@16Ω)
  • Frequency Response: 20Hz - 45kHz (-3dB)
  • Battery: Lithium-polymer 450mAh approx. ~8 hours (depending upon volume and headphones)
  • Power System: Charging via USB-C, BC V1.2 compliant up to 1000mA charging current and 6.3 volts
  • Dimensions: 2.1 x 1.3 x 0.5" (54 x 34 x 13 mm)
  • Weight: 27g (0.95 oz)
  • Warranty period: 12 months
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