Light Harmonic Introduces Da Vinci DAC

Light Harmonic has introduced the Da Vinci 384K USB Digital-to-Analog Converter, a bit-perfect 384K asynchronous USB 2.0 DAC, at the New York Audio and AV Show at the Waldorf-Astoria New York.   Light Harmonic's Da Vinci DAC features a two-piece aluminum chassis that isolates the pow
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Light Harmonic has introduced the Da Vinci 384K USB Digital-to-Analog Converter, a bit-perfect 384K asynchronous USB 2.0 DAC, at the New York Audio and AV Show at the Waldorf-Astoria New York.

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Light Harmonic's Da Vinci DAC features a two-piece aluminum chassis that isolates the power circuitry and rotates 45 degrees. It can be used in either position, open or closed.


In achieving Bit-Perfect status, Da Vinci employs a non-upsampling, non-oversampling design free of negative feedback that scrupulously avoids the application of all digital signal processing to ensure the best possible music playback from users’ systems. Da Vinci offers a number of unique features, among them several patent-pending technologies, including:

-384K/32Bit Asynchronous USB Input, capable of accepting genuine 384K/32Bit pulse code modulation (PCM) digital audio without artificial upsampling.

-Automatic LSB Correction, which corrects digital signals in their least significant bits (LSB) to make 100-percent accurate bit-perfect audio, while extending 16-bit signals to 24 bits or more.

-3-L Buffering, in which Da Vinci employs a jitter-free, three-layer elastic buffer between the music source and digital sample conversion. The buffer can completely decouple speed fluctuations in the source, enabling Da Vinci to convert music samples using the most accurate core clocks.

-3X Clocks — Three highly precise, -166dB phase-error clocks, one clock for 44.1K, 88.2K, 176.4K and 352.8K music sampling frequencies; one for 48K, 96K, 192K and 384K frequencies; and a third for the USB interface. Da Vinci selects each clock on the fly according to the sample rate of an input file.

Additional features include a sample rate up to 384kHz, a resolution up to 32 bits, dedicated digital power, and a proprietary Duet Engine that uses analog interpolation to double a file’s original sampling rate without digital upsampling, over-sampling, or noise shaping. The result is smoother high frequencies, according to the company. A pure analog low-pass filter automatically selects the corner frequency for each sample rate.

Da Vinci’s power supply features three dedicated R-Core transformers (one for digital circuits, one for analog circuits, and one for conversions), six dedicated power circuits using the best capacitors available, and more than 40 super-shunt voltage regulators for digital interfaces, analog conversion, crystal clocks, (dual mono) analog output, and control circuits. Specially developed “nano noise” circuits power the digital clocks, and proprietary USB isolation circuits completely cut off any ground links between a music server source and Da Vinci.

An advanced two-piece chassis totally isolates the power circuitry. The upper module houses power for all AC-to-DC conversions, control functions, the display, and the clocks, while the base plate houses the digital and fully balanced analog circuits, and unique gear-shaped heat sinks that eliminate the need for a cooling fan. The top module can rotate independently of the base plate so the two can sit at 45-degree angles from each other.

Da Vinci’s modular design employs six printed circuit boards, each of which represents a key functional unit of the DAC. This results in separate communication paths for each of the circuit boards, which improves signal performance by eliminating possible interference. It also allows for ease of maintenance and gives Da Vinci owners the option to upgrade to future features.

Light Harmonic’s extraordinary Da Vinci 384K USB 2.0 DAC is available now at a suggested price of $20,000. It can be seen in Room 1508 of the Waldorf-Astoria during the show.


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