IΩN DAC & Pre-Amp

The new Ideon Audio IΩN DAC & optional Pre-Amp: the reference front end

Breakthrough technology from the Absolute Series: re discover your music

The Ideon Audio IΩN (ION) DAC, with optional analog preamplifier utilizing trickle-down technologies and R&D gained, from our extensive work with our flagship Absolute Epsilon DAC.

Most of the Epsilon DAC’s innovations and designs are found in the IΩN in its own scale. As with all Ideon offerings, the IΩN DAC is a fully proprietary design, with audio technologies developed in-house.

A bespoke handcrafted product housing an innovative combination of high-performance design features and best-of-breed quality components.

HyperStream, 8-channels architecture with proprietary, cutting-edge analog stage

  • High output impedance at -120 dB SNR, quad current output from DAC
  • Cutting edge analog stage, with symmetrical ultra-low noise power supply – in a unique topology
  • Ultra low-noise power through, more than 10 different separate power regulators in the circuit.
  • Direct coupled output with no capacitors in the output stage.
  • In-House fully balanced design throughout
  • The sonic result re defines digital audio playback potential, bringing you directly to the heart of music with a breath-taking sense of naturalness and presence.

Proprietary Triple Distillation USB input: Noise Elimination

Conceived and designed in-house, the Ideon Audio Triple Distillation USB input comprises a proprietary three-stage noise eradication circuit that eliminates digital noise from the input signal. Our experience from the making of the Absolute Espislon DAC has been now transfered to the IΩN as well. Figuratively speaking, we have declared war on linear & non-linear distortion and noise!

Clock Oscillators: Getting the Music in Phase

The IΩN, like the flagship Absolute epsilon DAC, uses three top-of-the-line femto ultra-low jitter and ultra-low phase noise clocks in a no-compromise architecture; precision and resulting phase fidelity of the signal is ensured.

Each clock has its own dedicated power line.

The Symmetrical Analog Output Principle

The in-house designed, IΩN DAC’s balanced output has symmetrical analogue output channels, with no capacitors in the signal path and dedicated power supplies, in a unique topology.

The output energy and strength can virtually drive any load!

Modular Construction for future upgrades

The IΩN DAC has been designed with future upgrades in mind, like most of Ideon’s products. 

Its modular construction allows for future upgrades of different parts of the device, if and when a new technology becomes available, or a new format takes over. 

The Analog Pre-Amp section

The IΩN is also offered with an optional analog pre-amplifier integrated with the DAC, under the name IΩN+. 

The Pre-Amp is also a proprietary in-house design with software-controlled analog potentiometers. This is a purist design ensuring transparent performance, practically a zero signal path, very low-noise, extremely low harmonic distortion levels and great dynamics.

Ideon’s ultra-low noise power supply

IΩN’s multistage power reservoir comprises of 10 ultra-low noise power supply units and individual regulation stages.

The importance of stable, abundant, and clean power is touted all over audio circles, but at Ideon Audio, we take things to another level: we as many separate stages as needed in order to achieve unparalleled clarity and linearity.

We choose top-level componentry: state-of-the-art regulators with extreme low-tolerance rating, and  audio-grade capacitors (ELNA Silmic II) with silk-fibre plate separators specifically designed for audio applications.

These components display higher propagation speed and low esr * resulting in smoother sound without loss of detail.

 

KEY FEATURES

N DAC

  • Cutting edge analog stage, with symmetrical ultra-low noise power supply – a unique topology not found in any other DACs.
  • High output impedance at -120 dB SNR, quad current output from DAC.
  • Two, zero-noise active bridges – an innovative design bringing noise from rectification to zero – another proprietary technology not available from other DAC brands.
  • Specially designed bespoke transformer with extreme core.
  • Upgradable DAC and USB input engine.
  • New in-house developed dedicated software for the ESS 9028PRO DAC chip (same as the Absolute E DAC). The upgradable chip firmware is developed by Ideon Audio in close cooperation with ESS.
  • Native support and playback for all DSD and PCM formats/frequency rates
  • Proprietary Triple Distillation USB input: Noise Elimination. Conceived and designed in-house, the Ideon Audio Triple Distillation USB input (same as the Absolute’s Ε DAC) is a proprietary three-stage noise eradication circuit eliminating digital noise from the input signal. We have declared war on linear & non-linear distortion and noise! 
  • New audio USB codec: ESS ES9080APRO (also in the Absolute ε DAC) used in our USB input module. A proprietary design deployed in our DAC. It’s the most current, state-of-the-art technology, with new codes reflecting today’s standards in comparison with similar 10-year-old chips/technologies, most often used. In close cooperation with ESS, a custom firmware was developed specifically for our USB input engine, to implement our design principles. The result; amazing, practically zero jitter, extremely low noise, super-fast processing, and extraordinary, natural sound quality.
  • A customized USB Audio 2.0 audio class driver developed for Windows. It’s optimized for low latency and low CPU load. Buffer depths can be adjusted to optimize settings for any given computer. The driver implements a transparent (bit-perfect) playback.

N+ Pre-Amp section

  • In-house fully balanced design throughout.
  • In-house, ultra-low noise linear power supply.
  • Two balanced inputs
  • Gain range from -111.5dB to +15.5dB
  • Dynamic range 121 dB configuration
  • 0.0002% THD in balanced mono configuratio
TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS

IΩN DAC

SUPPORTED FORMATS (INPUT DEPENDENT) 44.1kHz to 384kHz PCM up to 32 bits , Native DSD (up to 8X DSD)
DIGITAL INPUTS 3x Advanced isolated input module slots (USB, BNC, RCA)
XLR BALANCED OUTPUTS 8.4Vrms at 0dB
RCA OUTPUTS RCA OUTPUTS 4.2Vrms at 0dB
THD (A WEIGHTED 20HZ-20KHZ) < – 110dB on all outputs
CHANNEL SEPARATION >130dB on all outputs
SNR (A WEIGHTED 20HZ-20KHZ) >122dB on all outputs
DYNAMIC RANGE 20HZ TO 20KHZ 135 dB (FS) . 132 dB (AFS)
DISPLAY Custom discrete LED audio clock synchronous display
DIMENSIONS (W X H X D) 460 x 300 x 90 mm (18.1 x 11.8 x 3.5 in)
WEIGHT 13kg (~28 lbs)

IΩN+ Pre-Amp section

TOPOLOGY Full Balanced Design
ANALOG INPUTS 2x Balanced (XLR & RCA)
OUTPUT IMPEDANCE 40 ohms
GAIN RANGE -111.5dB to +15.5dB
DYNAMIC RANGE 121 dB configuration
CHANNEL SEPARATION >130dB on all outputs
ULTRA-LOW NOISE 1.1 nV/√Hz at 1 kHz
ULTRA-LOW DISTORTION 0.000015% at 1 kHz
DIMENSIONS (W X H X D) 460 x 300 x 90 mm (18.1 x 11.8 x 3.5 in)
WEIGHT 13kg (~28 lbs)