updated 10:20 am EDT, Thu September 8, 2011
NuForce Icon iDo brings DAC and amp to iOS users
NuForce took the unusual approach Thursday of making a headphone amp tailored just to iOS users. The Icon iDo links to the Dock Connector on an iPad, iPhone, or iPod and takes over the DAC process itself, extracting sound as though it were a USB device. The amp effect also helps boost high-end headphones that often need need much more power to be driven properly, with support ranging to as low as 12mW at 300Ohm to 130mW at 18Ohm.
The small breakout box is intended for use at home and doesn't have a battery, instead relying on wall power to both address the sound as well as charge iOS devices while attached. Listeners can attach directly with a 3.5mm headphone jack as well as RCA stereo or co-ax. An infrared remote can talk directly to an iOS device for basic music controls.
Four colors are available for the Icon iDo, which is already available online for $249. Best Buy's Magnolia locations will have it in stores by November.