The Well-Tempered Computer, an introduction to computer audio

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Halide DAC HD

Asynchronous USB audio class 1 DAC

  • Power – supplied from USB connection. LC filtered (two pole passive) and down regulated; separate power rails for digital circuitry and master clock. 
  • Drivers – Plug and Play, using Streamlength™.
  • Supported rates – 44.1, 48, 88.2, and 96 kHz (user selectable), at 24 bit resolution. 
  • DAC: Wolfson WM8716 
  • Length – 2 meters standard, other lengths available.

Website Halide
Price: US$ 550

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Soulution 590 USB converter

Asynchronous USB converter.
24/192 USB class audio 2.
Driver for Win

Digital outputs:
- 1 x SPDIF (RCA)
- 1 x AES/EBU (XLR)
- 1 x Optical (Toslink)

Price: CHF 3.000

FlacWavLoader with SoX SRC

For those who think WAV sounds better but like the convenience of a well tagged FLAC there is this little program by Mike Galusha.
It converts FLAC to WAV.
It writes the output to a folder but on systems with sufficient memory the file is cashed so memory playback too.
It calls your media player
The latest version also added SoX for resampling.
Price: freeware

Sonata media player

If you think that dbPoweramp is one of the best rippers and format converter available and JRiver the best media player, Sonata it a media player to look for as it is an integrated version of  both dbPoweramp and JRiver.
It caters for classical music by supplying tags like genre, style, composer, work, conductor, orchestra, soloists, singers, period, instrument, etc.
They build their own proprietary classical database called SonataDB that now counts +40,000 albums tagged by musicologists and that incorporates hi-res covers art.
Price: €99.00

Monday, December 19, 2011

Wyred4Sound Music Server

  • Wireless control 
  • Supports 24 bit 192 kHz files 
  • Coaxial, Toslink, I²S outputs 
  • Automatically copies CDs using built-in drive 
  • Network file uploading 
  • 1TB of on-board storage 
  • Internet Radio 
  • 3rd party apps such as Pandora®, MOG and more 
  • Interfaces with Sonos Zone Players 
  • Back-up the hard drive contents with one click 
  • Fan less 
  • Low power consumption 
  • Formats: AAC, APE, AIFF, Apple Lossless, Monkey's Audio, FLAC, QuickTime, MP3, MPEG-4, Musepack Ogg Vorbis, MPEG-4 SLS / HD-AAC, WAV, Windows Media, WMA Lossless, WMA Pro, Wavpack 

Price: US$ 1,999.00

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Elan JazzMaster 10CX

Coaxial active monitor

System 2 way active
Price $2499 CND (piece)
Drivers Coaxial
10 inch woofer
1,4 inch titanium dome tweeter
Frequency Response 35 Hz to 20 000Hz (extended LF),
45 Hz to 20 000Hz (normal),
55 Hz to 20 000Hz (restricted LF) ±2dB on-axis, anechoic
Cabinet Bass reflex, dual port
Digital input N/A
Analogue input XLR
Amp 2x 170 W Class D
Crossover DSP: 96 kHz, 24 bit AD / DA conversion, 28 x 28 bit multiplier with 56 bit accumulator, double precision processing.
Crossover at 2,5 kHz
Website: Elan

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Find HD Music

Find HD Music is a search engine for finding high resolution music downloads on the web.
The search engine lists high definition (24bit) downloads that are available from the major HD music vendors such as HDtracks, iTrax, Linn Records, Naim Label, eClassical, The Classical Shop, Channel Classics and HIGHRESAUDIO as well as smaller sites such as Melba Recordings.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

ExaSound E18

DAC with volume control and headphone out.

  • ES9018 SABRE32 Reference DAC
  • 8 channels at up to 32bit/384kHz (USB only)
  • Asynchronous USB interface 
  • Ultra low jitter 
  • Galvanic isolation 
  • Bit-perfect ASIO Driver Reference-class specifications
  • Automatic sampling rate switching 
  • Plays DXD 352.8 kHz 

Price: $2000

Friday, December 9, 2011

Ayon Skylla II

Manufacturers description:

Ayon Audio is pleased to introduce the superb Skylla II DAC featuring a fully balanced digital and analog design. In its digital section, four Burr-Brown PCM -1704K DACs are arrayed in a true differential dual mono configuration. The differential gain stage is composed of two 6H30 high-current tubes per channel. The Skylla II DAC features a vastly overrated, high capacity power supply for the 6H30 analog output stage with tube “bridge” rectification, choke coupling, three oversized power transformers, two for the analog and one for the digital section. The Skylla`s sound is rich and detailed, highly transparent and holographic, the resulting sound field representing an complete, realistic reproduction of the recording, a life-like mirror-image of the original performance. The Skylla II DAC provides audiophiles with a new, exalted level of digital playback experience, comparable only to the best available analog sources.

Ayon Audio
Price:  € 5500,-

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Wyred4Sound mINT

Mini-Integrated amplifier

2 analog
S/PDIF 24 bit 192kHz
Asynchronous USB 24 bit 96kHz


Pre-amp out
Headphone out
ICEpower amp 100 wpc in 8 Ohm

US$ 1,499.00