DAC MARKAN is a functionally complete device that performs the function of digital-to-analog conversion in music reproduction.
DAC MARKAN is intended for use as part of a high-quality audio system in conjunction with any digital signal source that has a digital signal at its output that meets the requirements of the S/PDIF specifications (optionally AES/EBU) and/or TOSLINK: CD players/transports , DVD players, computers, satellite and IP television receivers, SDcard players and other devices that have appropriate digital outputs and require immediate radical improvement in the quality of sound reproduction.
The DAC MARKAN sound is formed based on the tasks of achieving the maximum ANALOG sound of a digital source, all other “champion” sound characteristics are certainly present, of course. Simply in the first place – the strongest emotions and “goose bumps on the body.”
DAC MARKAN has the following brief technical characteristics:
* Two digital inputs (coaxial S/PDIF and optical TOSLINK) that can be used to switch different digital sources to work together with DAC. DAC MARKAN does not use the USB interface to communicate with the computer. This is a purely COMPUTER interface, which has nothing to do with sound. DAC MARKAN uses SPECIALIZED SOUND interfaces S/PDIF and TOSLINK, allowing to realize the galvanic isolation of the source of the signal (computer) and DAC, it is for these tasks that these interfaces exist. The USB interface, etc. do not use galvanic isolation between the receiver and the transmitter and can not be considered effective interfaces for the transmission of audio data in REAL time – they are intended only for data copying tasks. If you plan to use DAC MARKAN with a computer, the motherboard of your computer or audio card must have one of the SPECIALIZED sound interfaces: S/PDIF or TOSLINK. For my part, I strongly recommend that all potential users of MARKAN technology be guided precisely by the TOSLINK optical interface when connected to a computer (a good optical cable class Audioquest Diamond), with it the sound is the most “analog”. To connect to all other sources of digital stream (classical CD players/transports, SDcard players, etc.), as well as in the absence of Audioquest Diamond class cable to the computer, the best digital interface is always the MARKAN digital cable.
* The range of the optimum mains supply voltage from 200V to 240V
* Overall dimensions of the case: 450mm (width) x 235mm (depth) x 110mm (height)
* Maximum effective value of the output signal: 3v
* The output impedance of the DAC MARKAN is about 50 ohms, which reduces the requirements for selecting an interconnect cable and is perfectly matched to any amplifiers. The MARKAN interconnect cable, optimally matched to the MARKAN DAC, makes the most of this DAC feature.
Some design features of DAC MARKAN:
* The TDA1541 DAC chip is used, which I consider as the most HUMAN-sounding DAC chip of all time. More on this in the section “Ideology“.
* Extensive use of mica (silver mica/silvered mica) capacitors of types that are not available in the range of commercial equipment. Mica capacitors (silver mica/silvered mica) with a denomination of 10000pf (10nF) in catalogs cost around $15/pcs – it’s very easy to check. The price speaks for itself – it’s the best choice for digital audio applications. In DAC MARKAN such capacitors are used more than 100pcs (mounting on the board is double-sided, the bottom of the board hosts the majority of mica capacitors). I repeat, the Russian military type of mica capacitors used has no analogues in the industrial versions of the configuration – no compound in the design of the capacitor, only the internal parts of the capacitor in a vacuum.
* Electrolytic capacitors ELNA SILMIC in rectifiers for analog parts.
* 8 power transformers are used. This need is due to the separation of the digital part of the device into galvanically isolated units that require isolated power supplies. This approach allows to minimize the effect of the device structural units influence on each other, to achieve the maximum efficiency of each structural units operation and, as a result, to achieve the ANALOGUE nature of the sound, i.e. with the complete elimination of the characteristic “digital sound” sonic coloring.
* A separate voltage regulator of PARALLEL type is used in the power circuits of each current consumer (each chip). The advantages of parallel type stabilizers can be found in the “Articles” section. The total number of voltage regulators in the design is 29 units, 15 autonomous rectifiers (10 pcs for the digital part, 5 pcs in the analog). In stabilized supply circuits, current consumers only use mica capacitors. Electrolytic capacitors, specialized for different engineering tasks series, are used only in rectifier circuits. Three specialized types of electrolytic capacitors are used.
* Built-in effective power line network filters, which can substantially eliminate the “dirt” of the power supply network. The power network filters are separate for the digital and analog parts of the device. The degree of contamination of the power network can be easily determined by ear: at night, the sound of the equipment is much “cleaner” than during the day, because in the daytime the power network is more polluted by the products of vital activity of all electronic devices of your neighbors. The issues of cleaning the power supply network for audio equipment are extremely urgent.
* The analog part is made entirely on discrete Field Effect Transistors (visible on the photos IC in each channel is a servo circuit not participating in the signal path). All links of the analog cascades are shifted to a deep class A, characteristic only for top-end audio equipment. The resulting sound is very plastic, having a “tube” character, unlike the “familiar” sound of transistor technology. This approach requires somewhat increased heat dissipation – DAC must be installed with the possibility of natural air circulation above the cover and from the rear panel side.
Many guys are asking about the possibility of installing a tube output stage in DAC MARKAN. This variation on the Field Effect Transistors is “better than tube” by sound, than with the use of tubes in similar constructions – for more details read about this in the section “Ideology“. In DAC MARKAN everything in the upper class and “more tube” sound simply does not happen – please read the reviews on the “Forum“.
* The master clock generator used in the design of the DAC has an extremely high accuracy of the work necessary to combat jitter, both external and internal. For him, a separate power transformer, two rectifiers and two stabilizers are allocated.
* A reclocking unit is used , together with a precision clock, greatly reduces the external jitter of the incoming digital signal, thereby reducing the requirements for the class level of the digital audio source. With DAC MARKAN, the requirements for the cost of a digital source are reduced – DAC MARKAN was originally developed based on domestic realities, when the vast majority of domestic audio enthusiasts can not afford an expensive digital source (say, JADIS JD1 or CEC TL-0 with which I demonstrated my technique at the exhibition HDI SHOW 2006 in Moscow). The class of the digital source, however, has a significant influence on the final sound result when it comes to an absolutely uncompromising struggle for sound.
The front panel is aluminum with a thickness of 10 mm with a high-quality print of inscriptions, is ordered in Italy. Appearance is very calm and easily fits into any setup. The design of the appearance is made in an ascetic style, everything is done extremely well and neatly. The case is made of natural wood (it is very important for sound), it is covered with automotive professional paints and varnishes, which provide good appearance and long-term operation.
The bottom of the body has rubber trotters. If a really serious struggle for sound is being conducted, it is necessary to use specialized vibration isolators under both DAC and other components of the audio setup (I use massive sharp steel spikes pointed upwards, in the bottom of each apparatus).
Analog RCA sockets of the highest possible sound potential are made of pure oxygen-free copper.
The price of DAC MARKAN RCA +XLR is $1499 USD.
The warranty period of operation on DAC MARKAN is 3 years. The manufacturer guarantees immediate assistance and support and after the specified period.
The estimated period of operation of the product is 7 years.
Owners of DAC MARKAN are given discounts when purchasing MARKAN cables:
A discount of $ 20 is provided for interconnect and acoustic cables.
A discount of $ 20 is provided on digital and power cables.
Slowly summarize: it is a really serious sound for absolutely “budget” price. The reserve at the price of DAC MARKAN in relation to similar commercial products is at least 5-7 times. You can easily check it yourself in the framework of the program for acquaintance with the sound of the MARKAN technique. If it was not so – you would never be “hooked” for information about the MARKAN technique.
So what are we talking about? The DAC MARKAN’s sound output is large, absolutely light and free. A fine study of the low-frequency register – the bass is very deep and, at the same time, mobile, like a mercury ball. The main advantages of the MARKAN approach are manifested in the reproduction of natural musical tools. The reproduction of vocals is generally beyond competition. Large compositions are reproduced with astonishing accuracy of transmission of the most complex phase-time relations between the sound of individual performers, the high-frequency register is crystal clear and silky in its stream. Absolutely analog sound. Extremely bright emotions and impressions. No doubt about the choice.
In all this, it is very easy to make sure, if you use the program of acquaintance with the sound of the MARKAN technique, stated in the section “Order“. The end result is pleasant and very surprising!
DAC MARKAN has a unique sound potential, which, combined with its sound characteristics, convincingly leaves no chance to digital commercial equipment.
Remember, I promised you guaranteed “goose bumps”? Many consumers are simply complaining about the frightening effect of musicians’ presence. They say that it’s not just “goose bumps”, but you need to keep valerian drops at your fingertips. Many complain that they began to sleep badly – in the head continue to sound listening to music. Some complain that they are always late – there is a minute and immediately turns on the music, the hand just does not go up to turn it off …
Please, think carefully – do you really need such strong emotions from communicating with Music? If this is exactly what you really need in life – then we speak the same language and understand each other.
Please, remember that DAC MARKAN is a precision device and is focused only on top quality levels of audio reproduction. You should be able to surround DAC MARKAN with more or less serious cables and other components of the sound path, otherwise it will be “clogging of nails with a microscope”.
You can ask any questions about the products MARKAN and find additional information in our forum: MARKANaudio forum.
DAC MARKAN is just an angel. With a special wing geometry.
Consumers of MARKAN audio products know more about happiness than others. Be happy!