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DAC501 / DAC502 philosophy
With the DAC50x unit we introduce a new paradigm for D/A converters. The trend for high-end HiFi systems goes toward simpler setups. As simple as e.g. a D/A Converter plus a pair of active speakers.
Audio is streamed from a NAS and/or Internet to the D/A Converter and then conveyed to the speaker. A very short and simple signal path.
In addition the audiophile community starts to recognize that a transparent audio chain is not what we would like to have (yes, really!). We would like to have good sound on any speaker in any room.
A bold requirement which often calls for signal processing like room equalization, tone control, loudness control etc. Thus it makes sense to have various signal processing tasks done in the D/A Converter. This is where the DAC50x comes in handy. The DSP chip in the DAC50x takes care of tasks like:
- volume control
- room equalization
- creative equalization (tone control)
- vinyl sound emulation
- crosstalk cancellation for a live-like playback
- de-essing (remove sharp sibilances)
- constant volume keeping
- loudness control
Plus more in the pipeline, downloadable to the DAC50x unit. This makes the DAC50x the ideal unit for current and future audio setups.
Currently we are evaluating a new method for loudness control. Back in the old days of HiFi, the amplifiers usually had a switch or knob to control the "loudness". This means at low listening levels the low and high audio frequencies have been boosted to compensate for the human ear's level dependent frequency response.
We plan to implement a new approach to solve this problem, but would like to know what users think of our take on it beforehand.
If you would like to participate we invite you to download the tracks from here:
Each track contains short snippets of A/B/A/B etc. versions. For each track write down whether you prefer A (with loudness compensation applied) or B (no loudness compensation) and let me know your findings. The differences are fairly obvious, i.e. not a "golden ears only" test.
Important to the test is to listen at a moderate level, recommended listening level is around 75dB, i.e. where loudness control makes sense. E.g. a level you may use when listening at night.
Contact for your comments: email@example.com
Fidata streaming app
The IODATA company, manufacturer of the Fidata NAS units, just published their free iOS app which allows to stream files from a NAS (any NAS, not only Fidata) to a renderer unit, like e.g. our DAC501 / DAC502 units or our other D/A Converter units which can be equipped with an Ethernet interface.
Have a look in the app store for fidata music app.
If you got any feedback on the Fidata app let us know, we are in contact with the Fidata people and can suggest enhancements.
Interfaces for our D/A Converters
All our D/A Converters, namely DAC1, DAC2, Minerva, DAC202, Medea, Medus, can be equipped with USB/DSD or Ethernet or Firewire interfaces. Such an upgrade can make sense in these cases:
- Interfacing via Firewire becomes difficult because of the need for adapters for Thunderbolt. Although it is still possible, even with Thunderbolt 3, which requires two adapaters from Apple (TB3 to TB2 to Firewire).
- The wish to be able to play back DSD64 or DSD128 files and PCM files at 352.8 kHz or 384 kHz. This can be done via the USB/DSD interface.
- The wish to stream audio directly from NAS or Internet to the D/A Converter. This is possible via the Ethernet interface under control of apps like fidata or mconnectHD or Creation 5 etc.
Get in contact with us if you would like to upgrade your D/A Converter.
New website dedicated to our upcoming product, the Livebox
Many know, some have even heard the prototype - we are designing a large sound bar with built-in crosstalk cancellation.
A new way to listen to music, with an impression of "being there".
For more information keep visiting the www.livebox.audio website.
Our room at the highend exhibition in regensdorf
Our one of a kind room with no visible speakers - but with a great sound due to the crosstalk cancellation based reproduction of live performances. Thank you, Moods Jazz Club, for your binaural streams at www.moods.digital
Weiss exhibiting at the High-End HiFi show, Regensdorf, Switzerland
Come and see and hear our new DAC501 / DAC502 D/A Converter in action. We will play live music videos on a large screen and have a crosstalk cancellation (XTC) based speaker system. This will generate a "being there" feeling never experienced before (unless being there, yes).
The XTC is generated via the DSP in the DAC501 unit. Other DSP features are a room equalizer, a creative equalizer and a vinyl simulator.
Don't miss room 343 at the Movenpick Hotel in Regensdorf. Saturday / Sunday November 4. / 5.
More information can be found here: www.highendswiss.de
Weiss at the AES Convention in New York
Already history - but a very nice one: We demonstrated our LiveBox Crosstalk Cancellation speaker at the AES Convention. Even the super critical pro audio ears appreciated what they heard. To many the sonic sensation was a big surprise. Something one never hears from a standard stereo setup. The Livebox will be soon released in our Highend HiFi product range.
At the AES Convention there were many exhibits, workshops and papers dealing with 3D audio, binaural audio, ambisonics etc. A clear sign that the audio industry is moving towards immersive audio. Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality are just around the corner...
MAN app with iOS 11.0
The current version of the MAN app (MAN301 remote control) does not work with the latest iOS version (11.0).
In the next few days we will release a new, compatible app.
DAC501 / DAC502
The DAC501 / DAC502 units are coming - finally
Towards end of next month (April) we will be able to start shipping the long awaited DAC501 and DA502 units.
We have been through a long process of hardware design work and software writing and refinement. In addition the actual manufacturing of the units was delayed due to various circumstances.
I am very grateful to all our customers who showed great patience. You will not be disappointed - the DAC501 / DAC502 is probably one of the most advanced D/A Converters currently on the market. The digital signal processor in the unit allows for audio treatments which give "highend audio playback" a new meaning.
Thank you - yours sincerely
New INT204 Version
The INT204 USB/DSD interface has gotten two revisions:
Rev A: This can be applied to all INT204 units which still use the USB driver version 1.56. After applying the revision the unit supports DSD128 as well as PCM at 352.8 and 384 kHz sampling frequencies. The INT204 unit can be revised at our office.
Units using a higher version USB driver are already revised.
Rev B: This is the latest INT204 version which also offers an IR remote controlled audio volume control. Earlier INT204 units cannot be upgraded to this version.
Audio Over Ethernet
I am happy to announce another interface for upgrading our D/A Converter models: An audio over Ethernet card which supports all standard rates up to 192kHz and all the popular audio file formats.
This interface makes your D/A Converter an UPnP / DLNA Renderer unit, which is connected to your LAN via an Ethernet cable. A typical use case looks like this:
- To your network you have connected a NAS (Network Attached Storage) or a computer with audio files shared on the network.
- On the same network there is the D/A Converter with the Ethernet interface.
- An application on your phone or tablet controls the playback of files to the D/A Converter.
The nice thing of such a setup is that it can be controlled from any device and the audio files can reside on any other (or the same) device.
It is also possible to stream the files on the phone or tablet directly to the D/A Converter. This makes it simple to share the D/A Converter amongst several users with their individual playback devices.
The technical details of the Ethernet interface:
- UPnP AV 2.0 / DLNA
- plays and decodes common audio formats from HTTP streams
- resolution up to 32-bit, sampling rate up to 192kHz (DSD in preparation)
- support for gapless playback
- bit-perfect data transmission
- 2-channel asynchronous endpoint with external clocking for jitter-free playback
- Supports these formats: WAV, AIFF, FLAC, ALAC, MP3, AAC
The Ethernet interface can be built into the Weiss D/A Converters, namely:
DAC202, Medea, Medus, DAC1, DAC2, Minerva.
Streaming from the Internet with the MAN301
Occasionally I get inquiries from MAN301 users about how to play those streaming websites (like Tidal, Spotify, QoBuz etc.) via the MAN301.
This can be easily done via the Airplay feature of the MAN301. With the icon in the lower right corner on the iPad the menu for selecting the Airplay mode is shown.
After selecting the Airplay mode, tell the iPad to play audio to the MAN301. This is done by swiping from the lower edge of the iPad upwards, which opens a menu where the MAN301 device can be selected for Airplay.
Now open the application of the streaming service you like to play and start playing tracks. The tracks now play via the MAN301. The volume can be controlled via the buttons at the iPad.
The Airplay streams in 44.1 kHz /16 Bit format, which is perfect for the streaming sites. The user interfaces of the various streaming sites are maintained with this scheme, which is a very nice feature, considered that the streaming sites keep updating their user interfaces. In addition all streaming sites are supported automatically.
In that manner all audio played on the iPad can be redirected to the MAN301. E.g. you can also play from Youtube or from your local music collection on the iPad.
Of course all Airplay capable devices can use the MAN301 for playback in that manner.
High End Show Munich 2015
Visit us at the upcoming High End Show in Munich! May 14 through May 17.
We will be present in Hall 4 booth E15 together with the Venture speaker company and with our distributor in Germany, WOD Audio, A4 / 1st floor / E109
We will show our entire range of equipment.
See details on the show here:
At this years Klangschloss exhibition we had a very successful presentation of our MAN301 network player in conjunction with QUAD ESL63QA speakers including the dynamic subwoofer option. The sonic performance of this setup is incredible.
MEDUS D/A Converter is Product Of The Year
The MEDUS D/A Converter has been given a Product Of the Year award by the HiFi Review Magazine in HongKong. Read about it here:
Yosemite (OSX 10.10) Compatible Firewire Driver
The new Apple OSX, version 10.10 (Yosemite), requires a new Firewire driver for our Firewire based devices. Get the latest driver from here:
This driver works for OSX 10.8 or higher.
30th Anniversary Limited Edition MAN301 In Gold
With our 30th year anniversary, which we celebrate this year, we launched a limited edition MAN301DAC Network Player in gold! The model name is MAN301DAC-A and it sports our soon to be released new analog output section with a discrete line driver stage. The ultimate in sonic performance and versatiliy. Read more about the MAN301 here: http://www.weiss.ch/products/man301
Our SARACON Sampling Rate Converter software got reviewed in TapeOp magazine. SARACON is used by studio people as well as audiophiles alike. It can do PCM and DSD conversion and is viewed as one of the leading sampling rate conversion softwares.
Read the review here:
HIGH END SHOW IN NEWPORT
Between May 30th and June 1st the Newport Beach show (Los Angeles) is once again a magnet for audiophiles.
See Weiss at the Hilton Hotel / Irvine Ballroom I with Precision Audio Video or at the Atrium Hotel / Room 301 with SimpliFi Audio.
Details can be found here:
High End Show Munich
From May 15 through 18 the Munich show is on again. We are present in two rooms, at WOD Audio (our German distributor) in Atrium 4, 1st floor, room E109 and with the Klangwerk speaker company from Switzerland in Atrium 4, 2nd floor, room F231b.
We celebrate our 30 year anniversary with a surprising "anniversary edition" of one of our products. Don't miss it!
Details can be found here:
AES CONVENTION IN BERLIN
Visit us at the 136th AES Convention in Berlin, booth number 25. The exhibition and convention take place between April 26th and 29th. We have a small exhibtion space which we will share with the Pinguin company from Hamburg. Both companies celebrate - Weiss its 30 year anniversary and Pinguin 25 years! So our main theme for the booth is to show some of our companies' histories. Join us for a talk about the past and the future....!
Klangschloss Ausstellung Greifensee
Besuchen Sie uns vom 12.–13. April an der Klangschloss Ausstellung in Greifensee! Es erwartet Sie eine vielfältige Palette an Musikanlagen, Vorträgen und Präsentationen neuer Technologien. Wir führen Ihnen im Raum Nr. 6 unseren MAN301 Netzwerkspieler zusammen mit dem MEDUS D/A Wandler vor. Als Lautsprecher verwenden wir die PSI Audio A25. In die Wiedergabekette werden wir zudem einen Algorithmus einschleifen, der dafür sorgt, dass die Musikwiedergabe ein grosses Stück näher an ein Live-Erlebnis herankommt. Lassen Sie sich überraschen was heute mit einer 2-kanaligen Wiedergabe möglich ist!
International CES in Las Vegas, January 7–10 2014
Visit us at the upcoming CES in Las Vegas, suite 34–204 at the Venetian. We will exhibit with the Venture Speakers company, manufacturer of top notch speakers. The new MEDUS D/A Converter, the MAN301 network player, the INT204 USB/DSD Interface and more will be demonstrated.