ZEN Signature Set HFM

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A triple treat for HIFIMAN fans

The ZEN DAC Signature V2 and ZEN CAN Signature HFM with 4.4mm Balanced cable make a tasty treat for your desktop.

Packed with sonic goodness

The ‘ZEN Signature Set HFM’ comprises both the ZEN DAC Signature V2, the upgraded version of our original ZEN DAC Signature, and the new ZEN CAN Signature HFM.

The ZEN CAN Signature HFM has an unique EQ curve that brings out the best in the already outstanding HIFIMAN range of headphones.

This set includes a high-performance 4.4mm Balanced cable to connect them together.

ZEN DAC Signature V2 from iFi audio

ZEN DAC Signature V2

This ZEN DAC Signature V2 is the upgraded version of our original ZEN DAC Signature – a pure DAC that benefits from true-differential balanced circuit design. It has upgraded circuit components and short, direct signal paths for optimal signal purity.

It delivers bit-perfect PCM (up to 32-bit/384kHz), native DSD (up to DSD256) and DXD.

The use of the 16-core XMOS chip, rather than the original 8-core, means it is now a full MQA decoder rather than a renderer.

It offers a pair of RCA sockets for single-ended connection to an amp, plus a Balanced 4.4mm output.

The full benefit of the ZEN DAC Signature V2’s balanced circuit design comes to the fore when it is connected to an amp or active speakers equipped with a balanced input. This can either be a 4.4mm Balanced input or stereo XLR inputs via a 4.4mm-to-XLR cable.

It can switch between ‘variable’ and ‘fixed’ outputs.

ZEN CAN Signature HFM

The ZEN CAN Signature HFM has a specialised, finely tuned EQ curve. Its custom ActivEQ setting combines active and passive components to create a specific EQ curve to suit HIFIMAN planar headphones. Check out the HIFIMAN Curve & Compatibility chart here. ActivHQ can be switched off to make the most of all headphones and in-ear monitors.

The ZEN CAN Signature HFM also employs XSpace. This is an analogue processing mode which compensates for the ‘in-head localisation’ effect that can occur when listening to tracks mixed using a pair of speakers on headphones.

It features PowerMatch – four gain in six dB steps – 0dB, 6dB, 12dB and 18db.

The ZEN CAN Signature HFM boasts symmetrical, dual-mono balanced circuitry. It delivers 1600mW (7.2V) into 32 ohms from the single-ended output, with 15V+ available to loads of 600 ohms or more through the balanced output.

It houses stereo RCA and 3.5mm single-ended inputs, plus a 4.4mm Balanced input. It has a 6.3mm output for headphones that have a standard single-ended connector and a 4.4mm Balanced output for headphones offering a balanced connection.

iFi audio Balanced 4.4mm to 4.4mm cable

4.4mm to 4.4mm cable

The iFi 4.4mm to 4.4mm cable employs heavy OFHC continuous cast copper and silver matrix conductors with a total thickness of 14AWG for the best signal transfer.

It’s a perfect addition to our ZEN Signature Set HFM as this audiophile-grade cable will give you maximum quality balanced signal transfer and minimum interference.

The cable construction is a custom helix design, minimised both in capacitance and inductance. It has intrinsic shielding provided by minZ™ helix construction. This protects the cable from RFI and EMI noise and provides the cleanest transfer medium possible.

To insulate the cable even further, we used an RoHS compliant super-soft (60P) HD polymer with 1500V AC spark resistance and excellent dielectric properties.

Bit Perfect

If a file is ‘Bit Perfect’ it means it has stayed the same. For example, if a PCM file is played through a DAC to improve the sound quality and the DAC does not change the file format. The file is ‘Bit Perfect’.

File Formats

MP3 – this is the most popular file format, every device in the world can use it.

PCM – Pulse Code Modulation is the most common format for CDs and DVDs.

DSD – Direct Stream Digital is a very high-quality audio format, better than CD quality. The higher the number (sample rate), the better the recording – DSD64, 128, 256, 512 and 1024.

DXD – Digital eXtreme Definition is a very high-quality PCM format. It was developed to edit hi-res (high quality) recordings recorded in DSD.

MQA

MQA is the breakthrough audio technology that enables music fans to stream the original master recording into their home, car or on their mobile. Read more here.

Balanced audio (ZEN Range)

This is a type of audio circuitry topology that uses individual left & right channels. It is a superior method to the single-ended circuit approach. Balanced circuits reduce noise and crosstalk.

While single-ended is used by most at this price level, iFi is implementing balanced circuits across the ZEN range which is quite a step-up.

Gain

Gain is the amount of increase in audio signal strength. Gain is often expressed in decibels (dB).

EMI & RFI

EMI is a type of interference caused by errant and unwanted electromagnetic waves that are received and amplified by an audio system.

Radio-frequency interference (RFI) is very similar to EMI but is found in the radio frequency spectrum.

They are both sources of irritating, unwanted noise often talked about as ‘audio gremlins’. Top tip: just don’t add water.

Balanced v unbalanced headphone connections

An unbalanced headphone cable has a left + and right + wire, for each respective side. The other, the third – wire is shared by both left & right channels. As this is shared, this gives rise to undesired coupling noise which is commonly referred to as ‘crosstalk.’

A balanced cable has the same left + and right +. But it has a separate left – and right -. With totally separate wiring ‘crosstalk’ is negligible. Therefore, a balanced connection is the superior headphone wiring configuration.

ZEN Signature Set HFM

Read Reviews

£599.00

Retailer
Aurora Stockist

Analogue Seduction

Cambridgeshire
Retailer
Aurora Stockist

Future Shop

Hertfordshire
Retailer

Scan

Lancashire
Distributor

iFi audio

Merseyside
Retailer

Nottingham HiFi

Nottingham
Retailer

Audiologica

SUSSEX
Retailer

HiFonix

West Midlands
Distributor

KS Distribution

West Sussex

“The cleanest DAC Amp combo you can get.”

“…It really makes a really nice clean setup for someone’s desk and the best part about it is it sounds really really good! The amp puts out a lot of power! This stack is very clean sounding!”

Ryan Ho

(Click name to read original review)

“iFi Zen Signature Series DAC V2 & CAN HFM: Continuing what is loved from the series.”

“Beyond all of the great sound, which emanates from within the Zen duo, the looks promote a curvy sensuousness to your desktop as well.”

Lynn Miller

(Click name to read original review)

Thank you Mike for your review!

“The ZEN CAN Signature HFM has a very straight forward tonal balance and neutrality! I didn’t hear a bit of distortion”

You can watch the full review here..

Mike Perez

(Click name to read original review)

iFi audio ZEN Signature Set HFM Review

“The robust all-metal construction, visual appeal, a dark background with a high amount of dynamic range with an uncanny ability to extract subtle nuances from recordings along with the improvements over what was already good all together gives me more than one reason to recommend the HFM box set.”

Headfonics

(Click name to read original review)