Audio Note DAC 2.1x

The Audio Note (UK) DAC2.1x Digital to Analogue converter has been specifically engineered for sonic performance rather than technical specification, and fulfils all Audio Note (UK) Level 2 criteria: -​

Valve rectification

Materials and component quality

Extensive research into the fundamental properties of the data stream itself have shown beyond doubt that, regardless of the theoretical advantages of the signal manipulation employed in our competitors products, such as higher over sampling, noise shaping, re-clocking or jitter reduction, these corrective measures greatly interfere with the critical time domain requirements of the signal.

Music is a time continuum from start to end which when broken is irreparably damaged, and no amount of clever manipulation can restore it to its original time / frequency / amplitude duration or relationship, regardless of what the theorists may tell you.

As a result, we have developed a way of excluding or bypassing all these corrective measures, to allow the conversion from digital to analogue to be done without any manipulation whatsoever. All we do is to reformat the data stream to allow the converter chip to be able to interpolate the incoming information correctly.

In other words, the Audio Note (UK) DAC2.1x has no over sampling, no jitter reduction, no noise shaping and no re-clocking. Having removed all of the digital filtering that is required for over sampling, all filtering is done in the analogue domain where it is easier to retain good, wide band phase-frequency and dynamically coherent behaviour. It uses the highest grade Analogue Devices AD1865, 18Bit stereo converter chip solely because we found it to be the best sounding available (yes, even better than the 20Bit versions!).

The filter-interface coils / transformers are of extremely high quality, and are custom designed and manufactured in house by us.​

The DAC2.1x Signature also features an abundance of upgraded components in comparison with the standard edition, including our own Audio Note (UK) Tantalum resistors and Copper coil capacitors used in key areas.​

The DAC2.1x/II Balanced features an upgraded version of the classic Audio Note (UK) Line preamplifier output stage, using a pair of ECC82 / 5814a double triode valves. Unlike the preceding models in the Audio Note (UK) DAC range, the DAC2.1x/II Balanced features a pair of custom designed and manufactured output transformers. These devices not only have exceptionally wide frequency response, but also just about the absolutely best dynamic transfer function possible. The analogue output has provisions for both single ended and balanced operation, using the best available quality RCA and XLR connectors. To power this spectacularly revealing arrangement, we have incorporated a power supply with vacuum tube rectification. This technique not only provides excellent isolation between the digital circuitry and power supply, but also provides wellisolated short and clean analogue signal paths. Internal components are of extremely high quality, as is expected from an Audio Note (UK) product.

Technical Specifications


                 RCA  75 Ohms SPDif

                 XLR   110 Ohms AES/EBU​

OUTPUT IMPEDANCE 600 Ohms, RCA/Balanced or Single Ended




                 Standard / Signature:-

                  2 x 6DJ8

                  1 x 6X5


                 2 x ECC82 / 5814a

                  1 x ECL82

                 1 x 6X5​


UNIT DIMENSIONS 145mm (h) x 300mm (w) x 415mm (d)


18Bit Ananloue Devices AD1865N

44.1 / 48 / 96KHz input capability.



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