The Extremist DAC

My first audiophile CD player was a Marantz CD63SE. I cherished this machine and thought it made great music.

I guess this is just like wine. First comes the easily accessible coca-cola sound, the "hi-fi" sound, impressive, in-your-face, seductive, like a lie. Ready to consume. Spectacular yet uninvolving like a Hollywood movie.

Time passed. I finally understood that I wanted music not sound. I thought my equipment delivered that, but it became more and more apparent that it did not.

Audio boutiques did not provide the answers I wanted. I started building stuff.

To date I have built an active crossover, two DACs including this one, several active speakers, headphone amps, a phono preamp, and lots of other projects which never quite reached a finished state.

About the Name

This DAC goes to the extreme limit of its design philosophy (after all, there are 7 shuntregs onboard, the output stage is scary, BCK is reclocked twice, there are insulation tranformers...), hence the name.

The path to a DAC

As this prototype DAC is now quite finished, I wanted to share the ideas, ramblings, rants, and experiences that I had during its design. The ideas expressed here are mine only (you know the story), and all linked documents are probably copyrighted and stolen.

Many steps separate the idea from a living-room friendly finished product, especially in a DAC. You can click on the links below to read my thoughts.