Weiss Engineering DAC502 D/A processor Page 2

A decade or so ago, I was giving seminars on how the way recordings had been made influenced what audiophiles hear from their systems. As an example of how different stereo microphone techniques resulted in different soundstage presentations, I used "The Turning" by Maura Bosch from While You Are Alive (Cantus CTS-1208). I had recorded all the tracks on this album from Minnesotan male-voice choir Cantus with three pairs of microphones: a close, central ORTF pair of cardioids, a close, spaced pair of omnis, and a distant pair of omnis mounted on a Jecklin disc. (You can see a photo of the three pairs of mikes by scrolling down this page.) For the CD, I mixed the outputs of the three pairs, but for the seminars, I played the three outputs separately. I wish I had used the Weiss DAC502 at those seminars, because the differences in perspective, ambience, and tonal character from each of the microphone pairs were superbly audible: clean and clear, with precise stereo imaging but insufficient reverberation and no low bass from the cardioids; rich, but a stereo image that was pulled to the sides with the close-in spaced omnis; and richly reverberant but insufficient stereo spread from the distant omnis.

This soundstage clarity was a consistent feature of my time with the Weiss processor. The first track on Caverna Magica, the second album from Swiss New Age harpist Andreas Vollenweider (16/44.1k ALAC, ripped from Columbia MK 37827), opens with a man and woman having a conversation; the recorded acoustic, excited by their footsteps and the sound of dripping water, opens up as they step into a cave. I've never heard this so clearly delineated as with DAC502. The layering of the soundstage on this album, with various different instruments accompanied by different amounts of reverb, was also very audible.

720weiss.rem

The DAC502's low frequencies combined clarity with an excellent sense of what the late Art Dudley used to call "force"—even with both ports open on each of the Vimberg Mino loudspeakers, there was an excellent sense of forward momentum with the bass guitar and kickdrum on such rock classics as the intricate arrangement of Paul Simon's "America" from the 2002 reissue of the Yes album Fragile (24/96 ALAC, ripped from DVD-A, Elektra/Rhino R9 78249). Similarly, the double basses in Peter Gabriel's reimagining of "Don't Give Up" from New Blood (Special Edition) (16/44.1k ALC file, ripped from CD, Real World 00038) were superbly well-defined but with good weight. On both these albums, I was again struck by the well-differentiated layering of the soundstage.

Special effects
While the D-Esser and Dynamic Adaptation functions held little appeal, I did experiment with the Vinyl Emulator. Setting the Saturation control to "–3dB" gave a subjectively satisfactory effect. Even so, I ended up leaving the Emulator bypassed. A little of this effect goes a long way—an occasional splash of Sriracha sauce is nice, but the spicy effect is too much of a good thing when it is used with everything you eat.

Over the years, I have made several binaural/dummy-head recordings, but these need to be auditioned with headphones to project the soundstage outside my head. Played back on loudspeakers, binaural recordings tend to resemble "fat mono." Using the DAC502's local webpage for the XTC function, I entered the width of my head in centimeters, the distance of the speakers to my listening position in meters, and the distance between the loudspeakers. The maximum setting appears to be 2m; the manual says that the speakers need to be fairly close together, and if the geometry is suboptimal, the settings background turns yellow, which it did in my setup. I left the Mid Frequency and High Frequency attenuation at the factory settings of –5dB.

I resisted the temptation to play any tracks by Andy Partridge and cued up my binaural recording from the 1992 Formula One Grand Prix in Montreal, from Stereophile's Test CD 3 (16/441.k ALAC, STPH006-2). I had made the recording sitting in the grandstand at the hairpin, and on headphones the cars rush toward me on the right outside my head, slow down to take the turn, then accelerate away into the distance on the left. With XTC bypassed and this track played back on speakers, everything sat in a wodge between the speakers, with some sounds smeared toward the left and right but with very little depth. Enabling XTC opened up the stereo image, the cars moved from the right speaker position to the left, and now there was excellent depth apparent as they zoomed away on the straight. But the degree of the effect was very dependent on how far away I sat and the separation between the speakers—easier to arrange with the stand-mounted KEF LS50s than the massive Vimberg Minos. The closer together the speakers, the better XTC appears to work; it would be a great function to use with desktop speakers.

The DAC502's Room Equalizer comprises five filters that can be set to peak/cut or high shelf for left and right speakers individually or together. To make use of this function, you download a FLAC or WAV file from the Weiss website that sweeps down from 200Hz to 20Hz. While playing this file, you note the time when the loudness is at a maximum. The Weiss processor's manual includes a table that correlates the time with the frequency of the sinewave. You then manually create up to five correction filters, a complex process that would be more user-friendly if integrated with an app like Room Equalization Wizard.

720weiss.2

The DSP function I found most useful was the "Creative EQ." With the full-range Vimberg speakers, I left the frequency extremes alone but slightly suppressed the presence region. With the KEF LS50s, which have limited low-frequency extension, I added a 3dB-high low shelf with a Q of 1.4 and its corner frequency set to 92.5Hz. As long as I set the volume at a reasonable level, the EQ effectively fleshed out the speakers' midbass behavior, so that the organ pedals on my unreleased recording of Jonas Nordwall performing the Toccata from Widor's Organ Symphony No.5 (footnote 2) had enough body.

With this small amount of boost in the bass, the KEFs' top octave now sounded a little depressed, so I added another filter, shelving up the frequencies above 10kHz by 1.5dB. This added a little top-octave air and better balanced the lows.

Comparisons
The PS Audio DirectStream ($5999) has been my go-to D/A processor since I purchased our review sample in 2014. While not the last word in resolution, its smooth-sounding presentation allows the music to communicate and, since I added the original Network Bridge card ($899), allows me to use Roon to explore my music library. For the comparisons with the Weiss DAC502, the PS Audio was running the Snowmass firmware—I haven't yet installed the current Windom firmware, as I needed to keep the PS Audio's character, which I have become used to, unchanged.

With levels matched using the 1kHz warble tone from my Editor's Choice CD (STPH016-2) and the DAC502's EQ bypassed, the PS Audio's low frequencies sounded less well-defined than those of the Weiss DAC. With the big Vimberg speakers, I felt I needed to reinsert the plugs in their uppermost ports with the PS Audio—without the plugs, the Minos' lows were too loose-sounding—and with the little KEFs, I didn't feel the need to add midbass boost as I had with the Weiss. Nevertheless, listening to Martha Argerich's live performance with Nelson Goerner of Rachmaninoff's Symphonic Dances, arranged for two pianos (ALAC ripped from CD, Warner Classics 623594), the leading edges of the pianos' bass notes were still better defined with the Weiss.

The Rachmaninoff recording's midrange was warmer-sounding with the PS Audio but with less space around the pianos. Hugh Laurie's close-miked piano on "The Weed Smoker's Dream," from Didn't It Rain (16/44.1k ALAC ripped from CD, Warner Bros 535893), also sounded warmer on the PS Audio than it did on the Weiss, but Gaby Moreno's despairingly evocative vocal on this slow drag was equally engaging with both DACs, if a little more forward-sounding with the DAC502.

The PS Audio gets the nod for its warm, easy-on-the-ear balance, the more-incisive Weiss for its transparent window into the recording's soundstage.

Headphone listening
I was editing one of my recordings with Adobe Audition while I had the DAC502 in-house. I took advantage of that processor's balanced headphone output to audition it with my Audeze LCD-Xes using a balanced Nordost Heimdall 2 cable.

When you are creating a master file by splicing together musical selections from two different takes, it is critically important to be able to hear if there were differences in the reverberation and the noise floor between the outgoing and incoming takes. If there are differences, you get a "gear-change" effect at the splice point that gives the game away. Crossfades that I thought were okay with a pair of Sony MDR-7506 closed-back 'phones plugged into my MacBook Pro were revealed as needing more work when I listened to them with the Audezes driven by the DAC502.

Work done, I played a favorite Bill Frisell album, East/West (16/44.1k FLAC file ripped from CD, Nonesuch). I am enthralled by both Frisell's multifaceted electric guitar skills and his skillful arrangements. "Shenandoah," on East/West, starts off quietly with the guitar backed by a subtle loop then swells as the other three members of the quartet enter. Driving the Audeze headphones, the Weiss processor preserved the dynamics, the subtle ambience around the drums, the weight of the double bass, and the sheer force of Frisell's playing. Nice!

Conclusion
The Weiss DAC502 retrieves more information from the digits than any other DAC I have auditioned, with the possible exceptions of the Chord DAVE and dCS Vivaldi, both of which are long gone from my system and neither of which has either a headphone output or DSP functions. Both of those DACs are also more expensive than the DAC502. But the Weiss's resolution does come at a price: it is intolerant of problems with the rest of the system it is used with that would not be noticed with lesser DACs. During the six weeks I used the DAC502, I found I was continually fine-tuning my system before I could get the most enjoyment from my music.

But ultimately, musical enjoyment is what this product is all about. As I write this conclusion, I am listening to Stanford's hauntingly engaging song "The Blue Bird," performed by the Gabrieli Consort directed by Paul McCreesh (from Silence & Music, 16/44.1k FLAC, Signum Classics/Tidal). The interplay between the unaccompanied voices, the bell-like interjections of the high soprano, the setting of all the singers within a supportive chapel acoustic—the Weiss DAC502 made all these aspects clear, in service of the music. Which is what a great audio component should do.


Footnote 2: Readers are welcome to download this track here.
COMPANY INFO
Weiss Engineering Ltd.
Florastrasse 42, 8610 Uster
Switzerland
Weiss deals directly with North American dealers
ARTICLE CONTENTS

COMMENTS
Bogolu Haranath's picture

Chord DAVE has headphone output :-) ......

John Atkinson's picture
Bogolu Haranath wrote:
Chord DAVE has headphone output :-)

So it does :-) Must have been having a senior moment!

And to respond to your question in another post, JVS is writing a followup, comparing the Weiss with the dCS Rossini.

John Atkinson
Technical Editor, Stereophile

Bogolu Haranath's picture

Must have been too much wine the night before :-) .....

It would be interesting to see 'vinyl guys' do a follow-up, also :-) ......

Bogolu Haranath's picture

If you can repeat 'person, woman, man, camera, TV', you are ok :-) ......

supamark's picture

but are there any plans to make the archives from Audiostream and InnerFidelity available online? The timing, a few days after I asked about the sites on Jim's AWSI post and if y'all would be getting new content up there, makes me feel coincidently responsible. There's a lot of valuable content that was produced for those sites, and it would be a shame to see it go the way of the late/great Audio Magazine's content (gone forever it seems).

John Atkinson's picture
supamark wrote:
are there any plans to make the archives from Audiostream and InnerFidelity available online?

For now the sites' content can still be found at their URLs: https://www.innerfidelity.com/ and https://www.audiostream.com/.

John Atkinson
Technical Editor, Stereophile

John Atkinson's picture
John Atkinson wrote:
For now the sites' content can still be found at their URLs: https://www.innerfidelity.com/ and https://www.audiostream.com/.

Those URLs now redirect to www.stereophile.com.

John Atkinson
Technical Editor, Stereophile

Bogolu Haranath's picture

Are the measurements in the Inner Fidelity website gone? ........

Jim Austin's picture

>>Are the measurements in the Inner Fidelity website gone?

Over the next few weeks, we'll be porting over the best material from both sites.

Jim Austin, Editor
Stereophile

Bogolu Haranath's picture

Great ..... In my opinion, all the measurements of those various headphones, in-ear phones and headphone amps at the Inner Fidelity website are worth saving, at least for few more years :-) ........

Bogolu Haranath's picture

Flagship products like Sennheiser HD-800, Focal Utopia, Audeze LCD-4 and several other similar products are included in those Inner Fidelity measurements ...... Those headphones are well respected and are still in current production :-) .......

Bogolu Haranath's picture

DAC with built-in EQ ...... Vinyl fans rejoice, 'Vinyl Emulation' is built-in ...... How can it get any better than this? :-) ......

Bogolu Haranath's picture

JA2 or HR or MF could do follow-up review(s) :-) .......

MhtLion's picture

The best measurement I've ever seen. Unlike some DAC which has a good measurement but no musicality, I'm sure Weiss 502 has both. My next DAC identified. Very cleary identified.

MZKM's picture

Unlike most high end DACs, this one has measurements that shows it has respectable performance while also being audiophile jewelry. For sure one I would recommend to someone insisting on paying this much.

Jason Victor Serinus's picture

It's a box with a screen, a headphone jack, a knob that doesn't pretend to be anything other than a knob, a modestly sized company logo, and a basic model identifier. I have no issue with how it looks, but compared to some equipment designs, it's far more Timex than Rolex. (For the record, my last watch was a Timex.)

Some people pay $9850 for a DAC because (1) they can afford it and (2) they like how it sounds.

Bogolu Haranath's picture

..... and (3), it was also favorably reviewed and measured by Stereophile :-) .......

Bogolu Haranath's picture

Not only this Weiss DAC is less expensive than the Rossini DAC, it is also less expensive than the Bartok DAC with headphone output ...... None of those dCS DACs have all the DSP capabilities of this Weiss DAC :-) .......

Jim Austin's picture

Anyone who thinks a Weiss DAC is audiophile jewelry knows nothing about Daniel Weiss, one of the most respected designers in the pro-sound industry. Several of his tools--the DAC1, the EQ1, the DS1-mk3 De-esser, the AD-2--are use in studios worldwide.

Jim Austin, Editor
Stereophile

MZKM's picture

In comparison to say the Benchmark DAC3, it is for sure nicer looking.

Jason Victor Serinus's picture

There is surely something to be said for simplicity ;-)

Bogolu Haranath's picture

Yes .... Driving a 90's pre-owned, Toyota Corolla is simplicity :-) ......

Bogolu Haranath's picture

Wonder how JVS' favorite sopranos sound like, when the Weiss DAC's built-in 'de-esser' is used? :-) ......

Ortofan's picture

... gimmicky features, such as the vinyl emulator, does this unit perform significantly better than the $7,500 Esoteric N-05?

https://www.esoteric.jp/en/product/n-05/top

https://www.theabsolutesound.com/articles/esoteric-n-05-network-audio-player/

Or, at the sub-$1,000 price level, the Marantz NA6006 or Denon DNP-800NE?

https://www.us.marantz.com/en-US/shop/hificomponents/na6006

https://usa.denon.com/en-us/shop/networkaudioplayers/dnp800ne_d?varId=

Bogolu Haranath's picture

Esoteric N-01, reviewed by Stereophile, offers digital filters, which can almost 'emulate' the 'vinyl emulation' DSP offered by this Weiss DAC :-) .......

supamark below was responding to another person's comments ..... not mine :-) ......

Bogolu Haranath's picture

Mark Levinson 5101 CD/SACD player/DAC with Wi-Fi access and streaming capabilities ($5,500) could be a good competition for Esoteric N-05 :-) ........

supamark's picture

it does not but thanks for playing troll as usual.
.
This comment made a lot more sense when the post I was replying to was still up.

Long-time listener's picture

... the higher-end companies like Weiss offering basic, common-sense functions like tone-shaping circuits, as well as more whimsical ones too. I owned a Weiss Medea back in the day, so I'm sure this must be a good one.

Anton's picture

I was surprised to see people start fighting over a 985 dollar DAC.

Oops!

Inflation is getting the better of me. I used to think 'high end' gear would be reasonable at half the price. Now it's one tenth.

Damn, I really liked the review, too!

JA1's "vanishing point" is upon me, it seems!

I have been saving up for a turntable I read a report on in 2015 that sold for 5K. I recently contacted the company, as I was getting close to my goal...oops...Now, it 'starts' at over 14K.

Sucks to get old.

Bogolu Haranath's picture

You could try the 'vinyl emulation' DSP built in this DAC ....... Who knows, you may give up on that $14k turntable :-) ......

supamark's picture

I know buying something mechanical 2nd hand can be hit or miss but used with refurb/inspection is an excellent way to get the good stuff at a good price. This assumes of course that someone else is selling what you want.

georgehifi's picture

JA:"The Vinyl Emulator reduces channel separation to around 20dB.
Channel separation with the Vinyl Emulator bypassed was simply superb at 122db"

It's obvious someone was listening when I tried and posted about this many times over the years. A simple passive output L to R bleeding. network will get this "Vinyl Emulator" effect
That to get old recordings "ping pong L to R" sounding digital to sound like it's vinyl counterpart and to give it similar body. The digital has to have it's channel separation hobbled down from 120db to 30db.

One has to try to emulate the channel separation of a phono cartridge with the digital which is at best around 30db 1khz and deteriorates even more lower and higher. Here is the channel separation of an expensive Lyra cartridge https://ibb.co/BGmGp38

This gives bigger fuller center image and stops that horrible digital L to R ping pong effect on the old recordings.

Cheers George

tonykaz's picture

This Weiss DAC seems like the type of gear readily available to Bob Katz and his Pro-Audio peerage. ( Swiss but not terribly pricy )

I'm happy for Stereophile to step-up to this level of frill-less packaging in trade for Pro level performances.

I was reviewing DACs back when Schiit introduced their Big Supah Yggy Dac. ( 2015ish ) I couldn't then hear any significant differences between them. I had a careful hearing analysis from the University of Michigan's Audiologist Dept. in Ann Arbor. My hearing acuity was diminishing and needed careful correction.

I corrected my hearing and still struggle to differentiate between DACs. Jason Stoddard told me that DACs are boring. Hmm.

Tyll Hersten's Big Sound 2015 had numerous participants, none of which could pick any of the Best DACs as contributors to the test Systems high performance.

Steve Gutenberg, just this last week YouTube Audiophiliac, featured a Tape Specialist Audiophile that was & is collecting "original" Tapes back when they were cheap and affordable, reporting that the "original" tapes now being sold are actually digital copies, he says they are fake but have the original quality !

My wife's flip open cell phone died, she now runs her life with two iPads and a fresh Apple SE in Red. She pines for the good old days of the Wall Phone in the Kitchen ( with a 20 foot coiled cord ). I pine for the VPI turntable and Koetsu collection.

But...

I love my pocket rocket Stereophile system ( Astel & Kern ) like JA used at one of the Audio Shows.

Tony in Venice

ps. this outfit makes cables that would've been interesting but maybe too subjective for inclusion.

Kal Rubinson's picture

I'm happy for Stereophile to step-up to this level of frill-less packaging in trade for Pro level performances.

Nothing new. This is the 3rd Weiss DAC in Stereophile.

tonykaz's picture

Is this DAC designer special, in some way, that could develop into a Story for Print?, something like PS Audio's Paul McGowan or any of the designers that JA has coaxed onto the spotlight.

Tony in Venice

Bogolu Haranath's picture

Yes ..... Very good suggestion ...... Somebody like JA1 or JA2, who are technically oriented would be great to interview Mr. Weiss :-) .......

Bogolu Haranath's picture

Imagine, if those wall phones were still here today, Nordost would be making 20 foot coiled cord for audiophiles ...... Of course one of the Stereophile reviewers would be using it at home and reviewing it :-) ......

dcolak's picture

OKTO DAC8 is state of the art, not this WEIS DAC.

Check the measurements:

https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?threads/okto-dac8-ste...

And it costs only 1.000 EUR.

When is Stereophile going to start reviewing real state of the art DACs that are not including "hi-end" snake oil?

All these companies produce much better DACs:

SMSL, Matrix Audio, Topping, RME and many many more.

They do not try to pass for "hi-end" and yet, produce REAL STATE OF THE ART DACs.

https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?attachments/best-ster...

Bogolu Haranath's picture

Stereophile has reviewed the $400 Pro-Ject Pre-Box S2 DAC/headphone amp ..... Pro-Ject has nearly 20-21 Bit resolution and offers multiple digital reconstruction filters ....... Stereophile has also reviewed $300 AQ DragonFly Cobalt, which has nearly 20-21 bit resolution ....... Stereophile has also reviewed under $1k Schiit Bifrost DAC, which has 20-21 Bit resolution ........ Stereophile has also reviewed the under $2k Chord Qutest, which is in your ASR link ..... Qutest has 20-21 Bit resolution and offers few filters ..... 20-21 Bit resolution is quite common these days with the modern DACs/chips :-) ......

Archimago's picture

I think the Dragonfly Cobalt is a good example of why we need to look beyond the 20/21-bit dynamic range ;-). Very disappointing product IMO.

These days, with resolution, low distortion, overall "precision" being so good, it's hard to justify spending much money on DACs other than features that differentiate one product from another. I'm guessing the DSP built into this like the vinyl emulation and XTC is what they're aiming for among consumers.

Good that they've incorporated network streaming though. I think Bluetooth connectivity with better codecs like apt-X and LDAC would be a nice feature for convenience to see in future flagship products (like what Topping included with their DX3 Pro).

Bogolu Haranath's picture

AQ DragonFly Cobalt is a 'very disappointing product' because it incorporates, an un-changeable 'short minimum phase filter'? :-) ........

Bogolu Haranath's picture

If that short minimum phase filter is the problem, one could choose the Pro-Ject Pre-Box S2 ($400) ...... In addition to a choice of multiple filters, Pro-Ject also offers the standard linear phase filter ..... It also has headphone output :-) ......

Kal Rubinson's picture

I will be reporting on the Okto Dac8 and JA will be doing a follow-up with measurements.

Bogolu Haranath's picture

Hope you (KR) are using all the different filters and tell us which filter(s) you like :-) ......

Kal Rubinson's picture

Mebbe, mebbe not. ;-)

Bogolu Haranath's picture

Well ..... At least JA1's measurements can show all the different filter charectestics :-) .....

John Atkinson's picture
Bogolu Haranath wrote:
Well ..... At least JA1's measurements can show all the different filter charectestics :-)

I have asked for a review sample of the stereo version as well as measuring the 8-channel version that Kal has.

John Atkinson
Technical Editor, Stereophile

Bogolu Haranath's picture

Excellent ..... Waiting to read the reviews and measurements :-) .......

Bogolu Haranath's picture

Okto dac8 stereo could end up being the first Class-A+ DAC, under $2k, in the Stereophile list, even beating the mighty Benchmark DAC3, in price :-) .......

Bogolu Haranath's picture

After JA1 finishes his review, HR could do a follow-up review of Okto dac8 Stereo :-) .......

dcolak's picture

Looking forward to the review!

supamark's picture

you actually think throwing an off the shelf ESS Tech. or AKM DAC chip into a box, adding its' off the shelf software and a basic (probably generic op-amp based) analog section and power supply makes a DAC state of the art? Seriously? I'm sorry your hearing isn't good enough to tell the difference but that's about as far from state of the art as one can get.

Oh, and obvious troll is still pretty dang obvious (and still bad at it).

low2midhifi's picture

While I do not recall the specific models, I do vividly recall how Daniel Weiss made two of his products available for all comers in the large exhibition hall at Axpona 2019. His superb products could have been rolled into a larger system in one of the upstairs rooms. Yet, he manned his table and allowed the Axpona-goer to sample directly some of the highest end gear of the show that was available for touch and feel.

I had the privilege to meet Mr. Weiss and to sample his products on two days in Axpona 2019. One DAC was connected to Audeze LCD-3 or LCD-4 series headphones.

As in so many other industries, I am impressed by the extent to which the Swiss manage to punch so far above their weight in audio with such brands as Weiss, Nagra, CH Precision, Goldmund, and Steinheim.

The Weiss table was a fine memory among many of a fine 2019 Axpona. Here's to Axpona being more than a memory some time soon in our collective near future.

brams's picture

I was surprised there was no direct comparison to the dcs Bartok separately on the basis of a dac and a headphone amp.

Jim Austin's picture

>>I was surprised there was no direct comparison to the dcs Bartok separately on the basis of a dac and a headphone amp.

A reasonable expectation. However, the Bartok went back to dCS a long time ago, and JVS did not hear it before it was returned.

Jim Austin, Editor
Stereophile

Bogolu Haranath's picture

JA2 could also do a follow-up review of this Weiss DAC ..... JA2 could use his 'aural memory' of Bartok DAC and do that comparison ...... JA2 could also evaluate the built-in 'vinyl emulation' DSP of this Weiss DAC :-) ........

Anton's picture

Does this baby "unfold" MQA?

Jason Victor Serinus's picture

No.

Anton's picture

I am a bit dismayed that this revolutionary step up in audio quality is being so disrespected.

I love Tidal MQA and would be sad to lose it.

Bogolu Haranath's picture

Roon Nucleus+, reviewed by Stereophile can do MQA unfolding :-) ......

Roon does not dis-respect the "Revolutionary step-up in audio quality" :-) ........

krahbeknudsen's picture

Interesting review. I find it fascinating that two so different approaches eg, FPGA vs ESS chips (long vs short reconstruction filter) can both lead to the highest level of performance.
In the pro world, especially for classical music, many of us are impressed with the sound of the Merging platform. The Hapi with the top version DAC card can be had for around half the price of the Weiss reviewed here. It does not convert DSD to PCM before decoding and gives you Ravenna connectivity as well as 8 channels. The only downside is that you have to mess with a 25 pin D-Sub out for your XLR (fairly easy) and you of course cannot connect those über expensive cables. :-)

Jason Victor Serinus's picture

Follow-ups, including my forthcoming follow-up on this DAC, are not posted online. Nor are most of our recording reviews, the delicious letters to the editor, and more. Here's hoping that some of you actually subscribe at the exorbitant price of $12.95/year for print and even less for digital.

John Atkinson's picture
Jason Victor Serinus wrote:
Follow-ups, including my forthcoming follow-up on this DAC, are not posted online.

Hate to contradict you, Jason, but followups are always posted on-line, as a child page to the original review. However, this is not until after the relevant print magazine has been published.

Jason Victor Serinus wrote:
Here's hoping that some of you actually subscribe at the exorbitant price of $12.95/year for print and even less for digital.

Amazon has recently been offering a subscription to the digital version for $5/12 issues.

John Atkinson
Technical Editor, Stereophile

Jason Victor Serinus's picture

Well, all you children who still don't subscribe are just gonna have to check back in a few months. I actually don't know when at this time.

Bogolu Haranath's picture

Those letters to the editor are re(a)d delicious :-) ......

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