APEX is a new, enhanced version of the dCS Ring DAC™: the Digital to Analogue conversion system found inside all dCS DACs. First developed for our professional audio products, this unique system has been subject to continuous development and refinement over the past three decades, and remains renowned for its technical and sonic performance.
With APEX, we’ve reconfigured the Ring DAC’s™ circuit board and developed a new analogue output stage. This has allowed us to further reduce distortion, and increase linearity, resulting in a range of measured and sonic improvements – including an even greater sense of dynamic drive, detail, finesse and vitality.
Compatible with all high-resolution music formats, the Vivaldi is a system that can flex to serve whatever mood or music you ask it to. Whether you’re streaming or spinning discs, it offers superlative sound and an effortless listening experience. And with its wide range of settings and filters, its performance can be tailored to suit your music collection and audio setup.
The Vivaldi DAC features AES3, Dual AES, SDIF-2 and S/PDIF inputs, along with an asynchronous USB 2.0 interface. Its enhanced digital volume control allows direct connection to a power amplifier, removing the need for a separate preamp, and its maximum output can be set to one of four levels to suit a range of amplifier and speaker combinations.
Thanks to its high-performance UPnP streamer, the Vivaldi upsampler provides instant access to audio from a wide range of streaming services, including Roon, TIDAL, Spotify, Qobuz, Deezer and Internet Radio, as well as external devices and storage drives. Add a CD/SACD Transport and you have a system that delivers extraordinary sound from any digital source.
Playback is easily managed via our Mosaic platform, which allows you to browse music from multiple libraries and adjust the settings on your dCS system through a single mobile app. Available on all Android and iOS devices, it provides endless choice and complete control over your listening experience through a simple, intuitive interface.
APEX DAC Key Features
- dCS Ring DAC APEX™ hardware further reduces distortion and improves linearity for enhanced musical performance
- Utilises the latest generation dCS Digital Processing Platform for state-of-the-art measured performance and unrivalled fidelity
- Designed for maximum flexibility by accepting audio data from a variety of digital sources
- Flexible output configuration can be optimised in systems with or without preamplifiers
- Comprehensive clocking architecture plus an auto-clocking mode used in the Vivaldi range improves ease-of-use and minimises jitter
- USB interface allows easy connection to a computer, accepting PCM data at up to 24/384 and DoP (DSD/64 or DSD/128 over PCM)
- The interface runs in asynchronous USB mode, making the DAC immune to jitter from noisy computer master clocks
- Improved power supplies give lower running temperature and superior tolerance to AC supply variations
- Multi-stage regulation ensures sensitive analogue circuitry is unaffected by digital interference
- Separate power circuits for the digital and analogue sections further enhance the purity of the power supply
- Aerospace-grade machined aluminium chassis fitted with tuned acoustic damping panels reduces magnetic effects and vibration
- Features a full MQA™ decoder. This MQA™ implementation is unique, as it is the first opportunity to enable a DAC which, by providing exact rendering to beyond 16x (768 kHz), matches the desired temporal response with very low modulation noise
- Type: Digital-to-Analogue Converter
- Colour: Silver or Black
- Dimensions: 444mm/17.5” x 435mm/17.2” x 151mm/6.0” high. Allow extra depth for cable connectors. Allow space for air flow around the unit
- Weight: 16.2kg/35.65lbs
- Converter Type: dCS proprietary Ring DAC™ topology, with a choice of 3MHz or 6MHz operation
- Analogue Outputs: 1 x pair balanced outputs on 2x XLR connectors. Output levels: 0.2V, 0.6V, 2V, 6V rms for a full-scale input, set in the menu. Output impedance: 3Ω. Maximum load: 600Ω (10k-100kΩ is recommended); 1x pair unbalanced outputs on 2x RCA connectors. Output levels: 0.2V, 0.6V, 2V, 6V rms for a full-scale input, set in the menu. Output impedance: 52Ω. Maximum load: 600Ω (10k-100kΩ is recommended)
- Digital Inputs: USB 2.0 interface on B-type connector, accepts 24-bit 44.1 – 384kS/s PCM, DSD/64 & DSD128 in DoP format; 4x AES/EBU inputs on 3-pin female XLR connectors, accepts 24-bit 32 – 192kS/s PCM & DSD/64 in DoP format; 2 x Dual AES pairs, accepts 24-bit 88.2 – 384kS/s PCM, DSD/64 & DSD/128 in DoP format; 2 x SPDIF on RCA Phono connectors, accepts 24-bit 32-192kS/s PCM & DSD/64 in DoP format; 1 x SPDIF on BNC connector, accepts 24-bit 32-192kS/s PCM & DSD/64 in DoP format; 1 x SPDIF on TOSLINK connector, accepts 24-bit 32 – 96kS/s PCM; 1 x SDIF-2 interface on 2x BNC connectors, accepts 24-bit 32 – 96kS/s PCM or SDIF-2 DSD (auto selected). This interface requires a compatible Word Clock input, locked to the correct data rate
- Wordclock I/O: 3 x Word Clock Inputs on BNC connectors, accept standard Word Clock at 32, 44.1, 48, 88.2, 96, 176.4 or 192kHz. The data rate can be the same as the clock rate or an exact multiple of the clock rate. Sensitive to TTL levels; 1 x Word Clock Output on 1x BNC connector. With Sync Mode set to Master, a TTL-compatible 44.1kHz Word Clock is output. In Universal Master Mode, a 38.4kHz Word Clock is output for use with the Vivaldi Upsampler
- Residual Noise: Better than -113dB0 @ 20Hz-20kHz unweighted (6V setting)
- L R Crosstalk: Better than -115dB0, 20-20kHz
- Spurious Responses: Better than -105dB0 @ 20-20kHz
- Filters: PCM mode: 4 filters give different trade-offs between the Nyquist image rejection and the phase response. 2 extra filters are available at 44.1, 176.4, 192, 352.8 and 384kS/s. DSD mode: 4 filters progressively reduce out-of-audio band noise level (inherent in the 1 bit nature of DSD), plus Filter 5 which has an improved transient response
- Software Updates: Loaded from CD-R via PCM inputs or PC via USB interface
- Local Control: dCS Universal Remote is supplied as standard. RS232 (controlled by the Vivaldi Upsampler / app or a third party device)
- Power Supply: Factory set for 100, 115, 220 or 230V AC, 50-60Hz
- Power Consumption: 23 Watts typical/50 Watts maximum