Stereophile Review-John Atkinson
"The V90-DAC sounded clean and smooth, with, as ST noted, a fatigue-free sound. Its midrange was smooth and detailed, Graham Nash's distinct voice in "I Used to Be a King," from his Songs for Beginners (24-bit/48kHz ALAC file ripped from DVD-A, Atlantic/Rhino R2 35257-2), sounding natural and free from strain. In a 2003 recording of Mozart's Clarinet Concerto engineered by Tony Faulkner and produced by me (ALAC files ripped from CD), the image of the clarinet of Musical Fidelity's Antony Michaelson (footnote 1) was unambiguously placed just to the left of center in the warm, supportive acoustic of London's Henry Wood Hall, the instrument sounding deliciously real."
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V90-DAC - Overview
Our aim with the V90-DAC was, on balance, to make the best DAC in the world without breaking the bank.
Examine any high-end DAC, and the first thing you see is massive casework. As far as we are aware, this contributes nothing to its technical or sonic performance. Take the top off, and in most cases, you will find a complex layout that suggests performance. However, further analysis will show that the real work of signal handling and data conversion is done by a dozen or so components. The rest is decoration, designed to suggest competence. These observations formed the basis for the V90-DAC concept.
We wanted to build the best DAC in the world, but to sell it at a fair price. Using state-of-the-art design techniques and components, we set out to design a DAC to produce top-notch technical performance – housed in a modest, reasonably priced package.
The V90-DAC has a balance of measurements: distortion, noise, linearity, bandwidth, and phase, which in their totality are not significantly bettered by any product at any price.
If you hunt around, you may find the occasional DAC that claims to have slightly better performance than the V90-DAC in one area or another, but in totality will not exceed it. There are plenty of competitors shouting about their new, wonderful version of the emperor’s new clothes, but they offer little or nothing in real performance to back up their claims. Just lots of talk about subjective this or that, but all of it is just a matter of opinion.
The V90-DAC is a matter of fact. Its technical and sonic performance is superlative. There are better DACs but they may cost twenty or thirty times more.
Buying the V90-DAC is your personal statement of independence from overhyped claims.
V90-DAC D/A converter in brief
Exceptional technical performance combined with value for money Multiple digital inputs – coax, 2 x optical and asynchronous USB Low output impedance 32bit DAC 24bit 192kHz re-clocking and up-sampling on all inputs Extended linearity Outstanding channel separation Beautiful, considered build quality