DENAFRIPS 'ARES' R2R discrete ladder DAC - close up view

Discussion in 'Dedicated Source Components' started by pitbul34, Jan 28, 2017.
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  1. PitBul34
    Hi. I've got this gorgeous sounded Denafrips 'Ares' R2R Ladder DAC! IMO, it sounds better then double priced Holo Audio 'Spring' R2R DAC. Just take a look inside this beautiful device:
    Some videos taked by my mobile phone - LOOK!


    Light - Man likes this.
  2. Tekk83
    Any impressions of this vs other dacs like gumby or yggy or something from audio gd? Really tempting to pick one up to try at this price.
  3. T Bone
    As a Holo Spring DAC owner, I am subscribing to this thread and see where this DAC goes.  This should be interesting.  [​IMG] 
    Where can I find more information?  I Googled the product name and just got a few hits on a Russian site.  I don't see anything that looks like a manufacturers page.
    jonahsfo likes this.
  4. rudra
  5. b0bb
    Manufacturer page:
    Someone is selling this on audiogon
    Does not say if the R2R is compensated like the HOLO, second shorter row of resistors next to the main resistor chain suggests that it is a compensated implementation.
    Translated specs.
    1. Taiwan R2R Special Edition, 0.01% precision discrete chip resistors sold worldwide . (And X Bao see the DAC 68 is different ESS9016 chip Oh)
    2. With XMOS's new XU208 series receiver, it supports 18-bit / 384kHz digital audio decoding, support for master-level music playback, non-synchronous USB input, full asynchronous data communication, and exclusive driver with USB connection. Program , to achieve the most advanced digital transmission decoding capabilities, support for Mac, Linux, Windows operating system
    3. Transformer using the highest specifications O-type oxygen-free copper transformer , no edges and corners, uniform magnetic field distribution, low leakage magnetic flux, low DC impedance, to mention sound quality alcohol thickness
    4. Automatically adjust the DAC chip according to the input signal the most appropriate sampling rate, the use of ultra-low JITTER digital receiver chip AK4118, providing excellent stability and jitter control
    5. Self- developed 18bit DAC conversion module , R2RLadder design architecture, the true full-balanced design. The new design and development of the 32Bit digital filter to 16 X Over Sampling mode of work, each filter with 32bit input resolution, can greatly increase the dynamic contrast, analysis and more natural and delicate sound
    6. Full digital audio input interface, support the top high-definition audio decoding playback output
    7. Supports 32-bit audio of 44.1, 48, 88.2, 96, 176.4, 192, 352.8 and 384 kHz and DSD decoding of 2.822, 3.072, 5.644 and 6.144 MHz
    8. Digital input with a group of Toslink optical fiber, a coaxial coaxial, and a group of USB digital interface input
    9. The analog output has a set of RCAs and a set of balanced XLRs
    Technical indicators
    Voltage: 115 / 230v 50/60 Hz
    Frequency response: 0-70KHz (-3dB)
    Distortion: <0.0015% (measured, the actual performance is higher than the measured indicators)
    Signal to noise ratio: 115dB (RCA), 114dB (XLR)
    Dynamic range:> 119dB (RCA),> 120dB (XLR)
    Crosstalk parameters:   ≤-124dB (RCA), ≤130dB (XLR)
    Power consumption: <30W
    Balanced XLR Output Level: 4.4V (+/- 10%) V RMS (1KHz)
    Unbalanced RCA Output Level: 2.2V (+/- 10%) V RMS (1KHz)
    USB input
    PCM format support: 16-32bit 44.1,48,88.2,96,176.4,192,352.8,384Khz
    DSD Format: NATIVE DSD64, DSD128, DSD256
    Coaxial, optical input
    PCM format: 16-24Bit 44.1,48,88.2,96,176.4,192,352.8,384Khz
    DSD format: DSD64
    Machine size:
    215 * 230 * 45mm
    Machine weight: 3.5kg
  6. PitBul34
    Some other tests. DSD test:

    USB test :)
  7. PitBul34
    Denafrips 'Ares' on Ebay:
  8. T Bone
    @PitBul34 - are you affiliated with the manufacturer in any way?  
  9. PitBul34
    No. My name is Mikhail and I'm old audiophile from Russia. I'm big vinyl fan (here is my profile on Ebay: and also i like hi-res digital audio. I'm former Holo Spring R2R DAC owner:
    I've got Denafrips 'Ares' at my own risk from Ebay (coz there are no reviews on internet) and it's amazing DAC! I've sold my Holo Spring immediatelly. I put some photos and videos on Internet and share my opinion and information with people.
    Darbosa, PATB and T Bone like this.
  10. T Bone
    Thanks for sharing Mikhail!  
    That's a nice setup you have there.  I see the Spring buried in there.  
    I love tube gear too.  I have a dedicated vinyl rig with a tube preamp and a tube amplifier.
    Which "level" Spring did you buy?  I have a level one.  So I am assuming that you bought the Denafrips while you still owned the Spring.  Is that right?  If so, were you able to compare the two "head-to-head"?   I am curious to hear your opinions of what the Denafrips did better than the Holo.  
    It certainly is priced attractively.  
  11. PitBul34
    Thank you, T Bone.
    > I love tube gear too
    Me too. All my tube gear are handcrafted. Amp based on US RCA Radiotron Type 245 triodes in globe shape, british 4 volt triode Cossor 41-MTL as drivers and german Telefunken RGN1064 as rectifiers. Preamp use british 2 volt triodes G.E.C. P2. Headphone amp for my Sennheiser HD800 use the same type of 2v british triodes. Phono stage amp made of british EF86 as drivers and russian gold 6Э6П-ДР tubes in output stage. I use Thorens TD160 Super turntable armed by Audiocraft AC-3000 unipivot tonearm and Transfiguration Temper Supreme & Ortofon Rohmann MC cartridges. MC-transformer is Technics Amorphous SH-305MC. Teac VRDS 10 as a digital CD-source. My digital gear right now: Soundaware D100PRO Deluxe 'digital turntable' and Denafrips Ares R2R Ladder DAC. AC from russian OXB-team:
    > Which "level" Spring did you buy?
    Lev 1
    > So I am assuming that you bought the Denafrips while you still owned the Spring.
    No, it was sold one week before i've received Denafrips, but i remember Holo sound.
    > I am curious to hear your opinions of what the Denafrips did better than the Holo.
    It's just my opinion. If you like  Holo - it's good!
  12. rudra
    @PitBul34 can you advise if the usb input can play native DSD or DoP. When I asked the good folks at Denafrips they said that DAC68 is using Dop standard for DSD
    I don't want to convert my existing DSD material to DoP.
  13. Energy
    Kevin Gilmore believes their power section is really goofy. Too many capacitors. Imagine if one shorts. Seems like they op to using many smaller ones to reduce chassis size.
    Nonetheless, I wonder how the higher line Denafrips DAC-1PRO DSD or Denafrips DAC 8PRO2 DSD performs.
  14. PitBul34

    Yes, it can play native DSD over USB, but first you must download and install DSD-ASIO driver from manufacturer website (for Windows PC). Next step - select DSD-ASIO output in your software player. Denafrips 'Ares' supported PCM 24-192 and DSD64 (in DoP mode) over coaxial and optical interfaces. Ares similar to DAC68 R2R, but Ares has additional coaxial and optical inputs.
  15. PitBul34
    I bought DAC-8PRO2 R2R too, it's already shipped from Taiwan:
    Bye Bye Holo 'Spring' - you've lost this battle :wink:
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