THE DAC FOR MUSIC LOVERS - MADE IN SWITZERLAND
Merason’s vision when designing the DAC 1 was not to build a unit to enable the adoption of multiple new formats using new to market technologies. Rather, the goal has been to take proven concepts and components, that are assembled with care and attention. Merason believes that this is the best possible way to build a DAC; one that allows the music to shine brighter than overinflated spec sheets.
At the heart of the DAC 1 are two Burr-Brown PCM1794-A converter chips. Configured as a dual mono devices, the DAC 1 uses one chip for each channel. The PCM1794-A has a current output, and the current signal must be converted to a voltage signal. Not content in using operational amplifiers (OP Amps), Merason opted for a complex, discrete structure. The voltage signal obtained in this way is buffered in the output stage using Class A technology. The DAC 1 utilizes a fully symmetrical output signal path. The analog signal processing is consistently symmetrical from the D/A converter module to the output stage. Lowpass filters with high-quality, silver mica capacitors are located between the converter module and the output. Output DC-protection is done via foil capacitors. Great attention has also been paid to the layout of the motherboard so that an extraordinarily high signal-to-noise ratio could be achieved.
Power is key to any component and the DAC-1 uses separate, multiple power supply rails. The digital circuit is serviced by an independent transformer to that employed for the analog circuit. In using two transformers there is an insurance that the delicate signals in the respective sections are preserved, and never interfere with the other. The USB input is capably handled with a high quality board from Amanero: the Combo 384, a board known for its musicality. Of course, the whole is greater than the sum of parts, so when each element is taken and applied to the whole unit, the result is, well, stunning.
- Output: max. 3 V RMS (symmetrical), max. 1.5 V RMS (asymmetrical).
- Frequency: 20 Hz to 20 kHz +/- 0.2 dB.
- THD + N: <0.012%.
- SNR: > 120 dB.
- DAC: 2 x BurrBrown 1794A, discrete I / V stage.
- Output: discrete structure.
- Power Supply: 120V AC 60 Hz, 30 W.
- Audio Formats
- 44.1 kHz @ 16 bit, 44.1 kHz @ 24 bit.
- 48 kHz @ 16 bit, 48 kHz @ 24 bit.
- 88.2 kHz @ 24 bit.
- 96 kHz @ 24 bit.
- 176.4 kHz @ 24 bit (USB).
- 192 kHz @ 24 bit.
- Dimensions: Width: 45 cm / Height: 10 cm / Depth: 29 cm
- Weight: 8 kg
Can be upgraded to MK2 version at an additional cost of $2,500.00, plus shipping.