I’ve become curious regarding the audio capabilities of iPhones and iPads as Roon endpoints, and Release 1.5 has increased my curiosity. I’m mostly interested in using them for headphone listening, and have various question about how they work in that capacity.
First, if I drive my headphones directly from the headphone jack of my iPad Pro, for example, what sort of signal is sent to the iPad. Is it lossless PCM? What is the maximum bit depth and sampling rate that can be sent to the iPad for conversion by its internal DAC? Does Roon’s new ability to uncompress/unfold an MQA files affect the answers to these question. Is any sort of upsampling possible?
Second, if I connect a DAC to the device using something like the Apple camera connector, what sort of signal is sent through the iPad to the DAC? What is the maximum bit depth and sampling rate? When playing an MQA file, will Roon unfold the file and send 88.2 kHz or 96 kHz to the DAC? Will it send a DAC renderer the information necessary to perform further MQA upsampling?
I’ll likely soon buy a DAC to use with my phone and iPads, and i’d Like to make an informed choice. I don’t think I care about having an MQA capable DAC, but I wouldn’t disqualify an MQA DAC.