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New Arcam irDAC for Christmas?

Back in 1989, Arcam was the first company in the world to produce a standalone DAC and over the last 25 years they have learnt a thing or two about building stunning DACs.

Nowadays there are countless digital music sources and most entertainment arrives digitally, from smartphones, computers, game consoles, set top boxes, TVs, CD players, etc. Owning a high quality DAC with the right inputs, outputs and control options, is now vital for your entire digital entertainment life.

The irDAC is just that, with 6 digital inputs, remote input switching and even a volume control on the remote handset for Arcam and many other amps.

The irDAC has received multiple awards and 5 star reviews globally.

    Arcam irDAC


Compact High-Performance 24/192 DAC – £400

The Arcam irDAC replaces Arcam’s best-selling rDAC and is a brand-new design, effectively a stripped down version of the £2000+ D33 SuperDac, offering a substantial jump in performance over its’ predecessor and exceptionally usage flexibility.

– remarkable performance for the price
– six inputs & IR remote control for complete system upgrades
– Class 1 and Class II asynchronous 24/192 USB inputs for computers
– direct iDevice USB input for iPhones/Pad etc
– control PCs, MACs and iPod®/iPhone®/iPad® with the remote hansdset

With expensive audiophile grade components thoughout and more than 40 years of analogue and 25 years of digital audio design experience, Arcam have engineered the irDAC to be a simple, “plug and play” device, but one that delivers astonishingly high audio quality
– TI/Burr Brown PCM1796 DAC
– high-end audiophile-grade analogue and digital audio circuitry
– 8 separately regulated power supplies
– vanishingly low jitter
– heavy anti-vibration cast aluminium/rubber case

The irDAC, so called because it now has infra-red remote control, owes much to the work that was done on the £2000 reference D33 SuperDAC and comes packed with cutting edge technology and features that will benefit the most demanding user.

High-end features like isolation of the digital and analogue stages, ultra-low noise power supplies and a direct coupled signal path make a big difference.

The outstanding Burr Brown 1796 DAC as well as 8 separately regulated power supplies, ensure class leading performance that is unmatched in this price category.

Jitter reduction is an obsession within the engineering team. They have learnt a huge amount about this technology and have applied this experience in the irDAC to produce a signal that is almost jitter free.

The irDAC is designed to be the heart of a digital system and can be connected to a host of different types of digital sources. This includes asynchronous USB and a direct iPhone input that that takes the digital signal direct from an Apple device to optimise the sound quality.


Control of attached devices

All of the inputs can be controlled through an IR remote that will also control PCs, MACs and iPod®/iPhone®/iPad® via the HID (Human interface device) control.

ARCAM builds everything as serious Hi-Fi

The irDAC benefits from more than forty years of audio expertise and uses the finest quality parts in a layout that is optimised for low noise and distortion.

A dejittering design that Arcam have used in many of the reference class FMJ products is applied to all inputs. The four-layer PCB allows our designers to maximise the quality of the ground plane in order to further reduce interference between components.

The irDAC anti-jitter system is based around the Wolfson WM8805, it is active on all inputs including the iPod direct digital input and responsible for reducing the internal jitter to Sub 50ps regardless of the data integrity received at the irDAC inputs.

The use of multiple low noise separately regulated power supplies ensures that we get the cleanest signal to the audiophile quality output stage.

The elegant cast-alloy case, reduces microphonic effects and has a non-slip rubber base.

Tech Notes

– advanced post filter topology, delivers better group delay characteristics.
– high-power output stage provides higher current and lower noise.
– expensive WIMA capacitors
– through-hole components in critical parts of the circuit deliver lower distortion than the more commonly used surface mounted equivalents
– lower noise and improved dynamic range
– high voltage power-supply with superior regulation
– large board surface area, with optimised layout on a 4 layer PCB
– 24/ 192kHz playback on the class II USB input
– USB ‘iDevice’ port charges iPods, iPhones & iPads with 2.1 amps via the USB connector
– firmware can be updated in the field

– The irDAC anti-jitter system is based around the Wolfson WM8805, it is active on all inputs including the iPod direct digital input and responsible for reducing the internal jitter to Sub 50ps regardless of the data integrity received at the irDAC inputs.

irDAC Tech Specs
DAC – TI PCM1796
Inputs – USB, SPDIF, Optical, iPod
Frequency response 10Hz — 20kHz, ±0.1dB
Total Harmonic Distortion + Noise 0.002%
Signal-to-noise (A Weighted) 112dB (24-bit)
Line output level 2.2Vrms
Supported sample rates  44.1kHz, 48kHz, 88.2kHz, 96kHz, 192kHz
Bit depth 16-bit, 24-bit
Power requirements 7W max
Dimensions (wxdxh, mm) 160 x 100 x 40
Weight 700g

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