Passionate audiophiles understand the importance of quality audio, and IEMs (in-ear monitors) are the preferred choice over any other commercially available earbuds for a good reason. Taking things a notch higher, investing in portable amps and DACs is customary for someone who appreciates pure sound.
All this is good when it comes to high-res audio but there is a downside. The freedom of cables that TWS earbuds tout is sacrificed in the case of IEMs connected to DAC or amp. Now, UK-based audio specialist iFi wants to give audiophiles hands-free comfort without ever sacrificing audio quality.
The Go pod is a wearable Bluetooth DAC/headphone amp that turns any wired IEM into lossless true wireless earbuds without deteriorating the sound quality. The company even goes on to claim the accessory is better than any true wireless earbuds or Bluetooth headphones. Going from corded in-ear monitors to a pair of TWS earbuds is as easy as detaching the cable from each of the earpieces and connecting them to the iFi Go pod. Each of the Go pod connectors weighs 12g, so it won’t add much to the total weight that’ll be sitting on your ear.
Compared to any Bluetooth DAC that connects to the IEM wirelessly, this one sits right behind the ear connected to the IEM, hence, lossless audio is given with the dual Cirrus Logic MasterHIFI 32-bit DACs on board. It produces 32-bit/96kHz audio and supports high-quality audio codecs including LDAC, aptX, 24-bit aptX HD, AAC, SBC. Audiophiles having Android devices with Snapdragon Sound can enjoy the LDAC 990kbps bitrate which is a huge plus.
No matter how high the sensitivity IEM you’ll use with the Go pod, the supported output of 120mW at 32 ohms and output voltage of 4V at 300-ohm. This ensures the accessory’s internal battery won’t drain if connected to a high-power IEM. The auto-detect feature adjusts the power delivery for the impedance of 16 ohms, 32 ohms, 64 ohms or 300 ohms in any IEM. Talking of the in-built battery, Go pod promises around seven hours of playtime.
I hope the passive noise canceling on the earbuds will be good since ANC is not going to be a luxury here. The Hi-Fi accessory will be available for £399 (approximately $497) and the brand is also offering it as a bundled package with in-house IEMs priced from $799 – $1,399 depending on the in-ear monitor chosen.