iFi xCAN is a pocketable headphone amp with Bluetooth built-in

If you want to up your audio game on the move, then investing in a portable headphone amp and DAC is one way to do it.

And, iFi wants its new xCAN to be your new device. Weighing in at just 127g, the xCAN combines a portable 2000mW dual-mono headphone amp with an ESS Sabre DAC.

The xCAN features a 2.5mm balanced headphone output and a 3.5mm output. The latter uses iFi's S-Balanced circuitry, which claims to cut crosstalk and distortion in half when used with regular single-ended headphones.

The diminutive device includes aptX, aptX Low Latency and AAC Bluetooth support and can remember eight different connected devices, from smartphones to TVs.

Part of the xCAN's arsenal are its 3D+ and XBass II processing modes and iFi's jitter reduction tech and clock system. XBass II gives you the option of focusing its processing power on three different areas: 'Bass' (purely low frequencies), 'Presence' (low mids) and 'Bass + Presence' which combines the two together.

3D+ claims to promote a more expansive soundstage and give the listener more of an impression of a live performance.

You can charge the portable amp via USB-C and you should be able to squeeze around eight hours of use from a single charge.

The iFi xCAN goes on sale in mid-November for £299.


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Andy Madden

Andy is Deputy Editor of What Hi-Fi? and a consumer electronics journalist with nearly 20 years of experience writing news, reviews and features. Over the years he's also contributed to a number of other outlets, including The Sunday Times, the BBC, Stuff, and BA High Life Magazine. Premium wireless earbuds are his passion but he's also keen on car tech and in-car audio systems and can often be found cruising the countryside testing the latest set-ups. In his spare time Andy is a keen golfer and gamer.