Universal SACD/DVD-Audio/DVD-Video/CD Players for the Masses?

The dawning of the age of inexpensive universal DVD-Audio/SACD/CD players may finally be upon us. Cirrus Logic recently announced the introduction of their CS4392 integrated circuit chip, which the company describes as a high-performance Crystal digital/analog converter that "delivers unrivaled sound quality while providing manufacturers a cost-effective solution for next-generation DVD-based audio products including DVD-Audio and Super Audio CD (SACD) players."

Cirrus says that the CS4392 will cost manufacturers only $2.80 each in OEM quantities, and will be shipping before the end of the year. The company adds that "the unprecedented price/performance of the CS4392 facilitates the mainstream-market adoption of DVD-Audio and SACD players, which is driven by consumer demand for high-quality audio performance at an affordable price."

Cirrus Logic's Jason Carlso explains that the new chip "provides optimal analog solutions for rapidly emerging audio products such as Universal DVD and SACD players. By providing a pin-compatible family of high-performance D/A converter products, we enable manufacturers to maximize audio performance, reduce development cost, and accelerate their time to market with affordable next-generation DVD-based audio products."

According to Cirrus, the CS4392 chip is based on several patents the company holds in support of SACD conversion, and will offer compatibility with DVD-Audio's 24-bit/192kHz sample rates. Cirrus claims that other patented mixed-signal technologies employed in the processor include a proprietary delta-sigma modulator architecture and analog switched-capacitor filter. The CS4392's claimed dynamic range is 114dB, and its THD+N (total harmonic distortion plus noise) is said to be –100dB.