Marantz HD-DAC1
Marantz HD-DAC1
Marantz HD-DAC1

Marantz HD-DAC1: Modern DAC in a classic suit

Few companies in the world of Hi-Fi Audio can boast such a rich history as Marantz. In 2013, the company celebrated its 60th anniversary. In order to understand how this brand managed to gain and maintain such a unique position in the market – the adoration of connoisseurs – audiophiles and the recognition of ordinary people “on the street” for high quality – it is necessary to trace the history of the company right back to its very origins – to the era of the birth of the music industry sound recording as we know it today.

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The HD-DAC1 Digital to Analog Converter (DAC) features the same Advanced AL32 signal processing algorithm and ultra-precise (32-bit, 192 kHz) digital-to-analog conversion technologies as top-of-the-line Marantz CD/SACD players that truly reproduce sound, outstanding quality.

In its design, the Marantz HD-DAC1 headphone amplifier corresponds to the company’s top models, which is also emphasized by its external design. The metal case with a thick aluminum front panel has decorative side walls made of natural wood and is mounted on anti-resonance supports. The amplifier is equipped with a recognizable round display, which displays information about the main operating modes and two rotary knobs, one of which switches signal sources, and the other adjusts the volume.

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The Marantz HD-DAC1 is a more modern version of the DAC in a more impressive design. The small round display is located in the center of the front panel and is made of polished aluminum. The DAC converter itself is based on the Cirrus Logic CS4398 chip and therefore includes two separate clock generators, one for processing frequencies of 44.1 kHz, 88.2 and 176.4 kHz, the other for frequencies of 48 kHz, 96 kHz and 192 kHz. The use of two clock frequencies effectively affects the quality of analog-to-digital conversion. The new product uses a power source with a toroidal transformer.

The Marantz HD-DAC1 has a primary USB input connection with DSD 128 processing (i.e. up to 5.6 MHz), there are two optical and one coaxial audio inputs, as well as USB 2.0 for connecting an iPad/iPhone, etc. The downside is that there is only an unbalanced RCA output. There is no XLR or AES/EBU, but there is an RCA input that converts the signal to digital and back to analog. The push-button control sets the volume level for headphones, which can have an impedance of up to 600 Ohms. The input source is selected using a manual switch.

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Simply by connecting a DAC via USB-B, you get incredible quality computer audio: music files stored on your PC or streaming music from the Internet, whether you listen to music on headphones or through powerful speakers. The Marantz HD-DAC1 can be considered a major hi-fi upgrade that will allow audiophiles to play computer music from existing libraries or streaming audio (from any PC or Mac) through your hi-fi system, thus significantly improving the sound quality of existing digital audio devices. such as media players, CD or DVD players, TVs and game consoles, Apple TV, connected via additional coaxial and digital optical inputs.

Specifications Marantz HD-DAC1 

DAC CS4398
Frequency response 2 Hz – 20 kHz
Signal-to-noise ratio more than 106 dB
Stereo separation more than 100 dB
Harmonic distortion less than 0.0012%
Output power 800 mW (32 ohms)
Inputs USB, 2 optical, coaxial, linear
Outputs linear, adjustable, 6.3 mm headphones
Input signal PCM up to 24 bit / 192 kHz, DSD 2.8 MHz, 5.6 MHz
Master oscillator 2
Jitter reduction circuits available
Additionally USB for iPod/iPhone, control system input/output
Amplifier modules HDAM / HDAM S2
Auto power off yes
Dimensions (WxHxD) 250 x 90 x 270 mm
Weight 5 kg