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The new PS Gain Cell DAC is a fully balanced analog preamp with exceptional DSD DAC in once chassis all at a killer price.
It features Pure DSD playback thru its asynchronous USB input. All
digital signals run thru the PS unique Digital Lens technology for total
re-clocking of the signal. It also features and I²S input to connect
to the PS transport for native digital SACD playback. The unit is
balanced throughout with an analog volume control. It has 3 RCA and one set of XLR inputs, 5 digital ins including I2S as well as a remote trigger turn on control. Replace
your preamplifier, your DAC—or both—and make a major step up in system performance.
From the PS site:
The Stellar Gain Cell DAC combines the benefits of both—a full-featured
DAC with an exceptional analog preamplifier controlling its output
level. Fully balanced circuitry from input to output, the Stellar Gain
Cell DAC builds upon years of research and innovation in the art of
digital audio and Class A analog amplification. Together, or separately,
they create an extraordinarily rich, full-bodied musical experience few
standalone products can match. Stellar Gain Cell DAC is the perfect
foundation for those unwilling to compromise sound quality. Rich
. A music lover’s answer to spiraling cost-no-object equipment without sacrifice.
on an improved version of our NuWave DSD, the performance of the
Gain Cell DAC is unparalleled in this price category, or anywhere near.
Used with music server software like JRiver, Bit Perfect, Amarra or Pure
Music and an iPhone or Android app, the Gain Cell DAC becomes your
entry into the world of high-end digital audio music, both PCM and DSD
All input signals are taken into the Gain Cell DAC in Native Mode,
without Sample Rate Conversion (SRC) and fed directly into a simplified
FPGA known as a CPLD (Complex Programmable Logic Device), which
discovers sample rate and format, reclocks all incoming data, reduces
jitter, wave shapes data output to the DAC chip, and utilizes high
speed/low gate count logic to reduce propagation delay for faster
throughput. This proprietary technology is called the Digital Lens.
The DAC chip itself is the acclaimed 32-bit ESS Sabre Hyperstream
architecture, the output of which is passively filtered to reduce
transient distortion. the Gain Cell DAC’s power supply includes a large
analog transformer, 7 regulators, properly-bypassed high-speed switching
diodes, and a massive 15,000 mFd of storage capacitance.
The output stage is a unique Class-A configuration, fully balanced
and direct coupled hybrid array (utilizing both discrete semiconductors
and ICs), with an extended bandwidth of -3dB at 60 kHz feeding directly
into Stellar’s Gain Cell.
The Gain Cell DAC features a high-resolution USB path based on the same
XMOS technology found in our DirectStream DAC. Asynchronous and capable
of 24-bit 192kHz performance for PCM and single or double rate DSD, the
Gain Cell DAC USB input sounds every bit as good as the best digital
audio is capable of.
I²S is the native format of all CD transports and many servers. I²S
features a separate clock and data signal from the source. Typically,
this clock and data signal are multiplexed together to be transmitted
over a single cable in a format known as S/PDIF (Sony Philips Digital
Interface), or AES/EBU (Audio Engineering Society/European Broadcast
Union). Once received in multiplexed form, the DAC input must untangle
the clock and data and once again separate them. I²S solves the problems
associated with unraveling data of S/PDIF and AES/EBU formats. I²S
outputs are sent via an HDMI cable and sources with I²S outputs can be
purchased from PS Audio as well as other manufacturers.
The Gain Cell DAC's I²S inputs are also compatible with our
DirectStream Transport. What this means is important. The DirectStream
Transport is one of only a very few players to output pure DSD from the
locked SACD layer of SACD discs. Only PS Audio DAC's, such as
DirectStream and DirectStream Junior—and now Stellar—are authorized to
play the pure DSD layer in all of its glory.
The Stellar Gain Cell DAC offers the choice of three digital filters
for users to select from. Each digital filter has a different sonic
character and the choice of filters offers an excellent means of
improving system synergy. No filter choice is wrong or right. Instead,
each filter can be selected and auditioned by the user to more perfectly
match their chosen collection of the amplifier, source, and
loudspeaker, as well as personal tastes and biases.
Users can relax and use the supplied remote control to audition each
of the three filter choices for best audio quality matching the system
it is played on. Should users upgrade their amplifier, speaker or
sources at some point, Stellar is there to help maximize performance.
Active vs. passive filtering
Once the digital audio data have been processed through the Gain Cell
DAC’s ESS Hyperstream 32 bit DAC, it’s time to turn them into music and
this is the job of the analog filter and output stage. Most DACs use an
active filtering system to clean up the output of the internal DAC but
this can add a harsh, bright sound to the music. In the Gain Cell DAC,
we use all passive analog filtering giving our output a sweet, open
sound unencumbered with harsh digital artifacts.
Available in black or silver. In stock now.
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Call 770-667-5633 with questions or to place your order.
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