PCM Perfected

Posted on 27th February, 2014

PCM Perfected

US audio video specialist PS Audio believes it has a new DAC that can bypass glitches in the PCM recording technology, and is so transparent it can retrieve all the subliminal information it says is 'within PCM-based digital recordings.”

PS Audio believes PCM decoding itself imposes a layer of coloration on subtle musical information, but that information is still retained in our recordings waiting to be reproduced by a DAC logically as good as the brand’s forthcoming model.

The new DAC will be unveiled in the US where it will sell for under $6000 (USD). Using PSB’s DirectStream DAC, “billions of CDs and high-resolution downloads worldwide will gain new life and be saved from obsolescence,” the company said.

DirectStream technology uses an elegant but simple circuit to convert PCM and all digital inputs, to pure 1-bit DSD making a PCM feed “more linear” and “less edgy,” with the added bonus of  “never-before-heard musical details are released from all digital audio recordings,” PS Audio Says.

PS Audio also says converting DSD to PCM is a piece of cake. But it has a world’s first in its new PCM to DSD DAC.

According to the company, High End PCM processes with multiple clocks, power supplies and less than perfect ICs.

“Converting PCM to DSD can be an easy exercise using any number of computer software programs or IC solutions,” PS Audio said, but “converting PCM to DSD properly, and in such a way as to reveal missing details in the music, is a serious technical challenge.”

DirectStream design collates all inputs (PCM or DSD) at 10x DSD. It also employs a single-bit double-rate DSD core engine, which is simple, linear has overload features similar to analog.

The new DAC is equipped with FPGA (Field-Programmable Gate Array) instead of garden variety chips because it “is capable of dissipating large amounts of heat, enabling intensive levels of signal-processing that are impossible to achieve with an off-the-shelf chip,” the company said.

While some high-end DACS can cost $130,00 PS Audio says its model is affordable because of its simple design.

Details of the DirectStream’s design and features are available in a PS Audio white paper.


PS Audio is distributed by Magenta Audio in Australia. StereoNET spoke to Mike Kirkham, CEO of Magenta, who said “pricing and availability of the new DAC is not known at this stage, but StereoNET will be the first to know once information becomes available.”

Peter Familari's avatar

Peter Familari

One of the veterans of the Australian HiFi industry, Peter was formerly the Audio-Video Editor of the Herald Sun for over two decades. One of the most-respected audio journalists in Australia, Peter brings his unparalleled experience and a unique story-telling ability to StereoNET.

Posted in: Hi-Fi
Tags: ps audio  perfectwave  dac 

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