DC iPurifier 2 – the limits of hearing
The same can’t be said for the DC iPurifier 2, at least not in any meaningful way in my own audio system. This larger device, roughly the size of the iPurifier 3 and about the same weight too, tackles noise of a different kind altogether: power noise.
A fair number of audio devices are powered by so-called switch mode power supplies (SMPS) – those small black boxes that sit between your wall outlet and the device, converting high voltage AC to lower voltage DC current.
Commonly called wall-warts, the problem with SMPSs is that they literally switch the current, generating noise by way of electromagnetic interference, and were never really designed to power audio devices in the first place, where low noise is a must.
This is where the DC iPurifier fits in. Instead of plugging your SMPS cable directly into your audio device, you plug it first into the DC iPurifier, and plug the DC iPurifier into your device. Since DC connectors vary slightly in size, iFi includes a number of different adapters in the box to make sure all your devices and SMSPs play nicely with the DC iPurifier.
Using the same active noise cancellation technology in the iPurifier 3 and iSilencer 3, the DC iPurifier supposedly stops electrical noise before it gets a chance to spoil the perfectly clean USB signal coursing through your DAC, having just been polished by the iSilencer, iPurifier or both. Except I can’t be sure it does any of that because I didn’t hear a jot of difference with the DC iPurifier inline and not.
That’s not to say it doesn’t work; given my experience with other iFi devices, and the technology pedigree of the company itself, I have no doubt whatever noise might be coming in to the DC iPurifier is no longer there on the other side.
Very possibly I was testing it with the wrong device – a Matrix DDC that supposedly benefits from a clean external power supply – but try as I may my music sounded exactly the same with and without the DC iPurifier straddling the Matrix.
Would a lesser SMPS-powered amp or DAC be more likely to benefit? Possibly, but I’m not in the business of speculating. $100 is not particularly expensive but not particularly cheap either for something that may or may not make any difference at all to your system.
Jump to conclusions on the next page…