The new Impacto universal ultra-compact D/A converter and headphone amplifier turns the smartphone itself into the hi-res player. It docks onto the USB or Lightning connector and supplies three of the best beyerdynamic headphones with improved sound: the Amiron home, the present reference T 1 (2nd generation) and its portable variant, the T 5 p (2nd generation). When on the move with their notebooks, mobile users can also connect their Impacto universal to a computer. The required cable with large USB plug (Type A and Type C) comes included.
The low weight of the converter is a mini sensation in itself. At just twelve grams, it’s barely noticeable to the wearer – also because the DAC is directly built into the headphone cable. To reduce the weight, beyerdynamic uses no screws and, instead, the housing is welded by means of ultrasound. The illuminated keys are coated with a soft material that’s also pleasant to the touch. This creates a seamless surface, which prevents dirt from entering the housing.
A special cable material makes the leads especially flexible and supple. This has been developed specially by beyerdynamic for use on the Impacto. The cables otherwise used on USB devices are too rigid and not resilient enough for permanent mobile use.
The Impacto universal differs from the previously available Impacto essential - launched in June 2017 - due to its Apple certification. iPhone or iPad users can connect it directly to their iOS device and enjoy music in unprecedented quality. beyerdynamic includes the power supply battery in the delivery too. Elegant and well thought out like the Impacto universal itself, it adheres magnetically to the rear of the 7 millimetre thin DAC housing.
The battery is not required for operation on Android smartphones. For those, power is supplied via the micro USB or USB C cable (USB On-The-Go), which come included. Owners of an Impacto essential can however also purchase the battery pack as an accessory. The energy storage unburdens the smartphone battery and thus extends the playing time.
When compared with stationary high-end systems, the inner technology effortlessly stands up. The built-in ESS SABRE9018Q2C Sabre32 Mobile Reference DAC decrypts high-resolution audio signals up to a resolution of 32 bits and 384 kilohertz. This device class typically achieves values of 24 bit/192 kHz. The mobile digital-analogue converter even supports DSD signals (Direct Stream Digital) of 2.8 and 5.6 megahertz. The DAC uses a hi-res LED as a control function. When it lights up, the player is indeed sending high-resolution audio information to the converter. Users can select their preferred hi-res player app as a playback program.
This means that the sound quality no longer depends on the components of the playback device. Instead, the DAC converts the high-resolution music data back to analogue format and amplifies it – with a precision that takes full advantage of the acoustic potential of the headphones used. The high-performance headphone amplifier can supply even 600 ohm converters as in the T 1 without restriction.
The beyerdynamic hi-res DAC Impacto universal is now available.