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New DAC based on AK4497EQ
New DAC based on AK4497EQ
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Old 22nd September 2016, 07:24 AM   #1
ttan98 is offline ttan98  Australia
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Default New DAC based on AK4497EQ

There already DIY DAC based on this chipset starts appearing on Ebay and Aliexpress. Does anyone has an opinion or idea how this chipset will perform against its older models AK4490/4495? It appears that this chipset is much more expensive than its the older models.
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Old 25th September 2016, 10:25 PM   #2
clay-speakers is offline clay-speakers  Australia
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I built up a prototype DAC using a AK4497 sample chip & compared it to my AK4490 based Klein DAC which I manufacture. It is very similar sonically to the AK4490 version but I probably need to do some more critical comparisons to be certain if there is much difference.
Hey by any chance are you Tean Tan who designed the tube preamp & power amp that appeared in Electronics Australia many years ago?
Regards Clayton
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Old 25th September 2016, 11:39 PM   #3
ttan98 is offline ttan98  Australia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clay-speakers View Post
I built up a prototype DAC using a AK4497 sample chip & compared it to my AK4490 based Klein DAC which I manufacture. It is very similar sonically to the AK4490 version but I probably need to do some more critical comparisons to be certain if there is much difference.
I suppose this chipset has more features than AK4490 but costs more, I built a Chinese DIY kit set based on Dual AK4490, it sounded quite good compared to the much older AK4396/9

Hey by any chance are you Tean Tan who designed the tube preamp & power amp that appeared in Electronics Australia many years ago?
Yes. I am still alive and well.
Regards Clayton
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Old 25th September 2016, 11:46 PM   #4
chris719 is offline chris719  United States
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New DAC based on AK4497EQ
Does anyone know when this chip will be actually available from official distributors?
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Old 26th September 2016, 05:13 AM   #5
clay-speakers is offline clay-speakers  Australia
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Re; AK4497EQ production release
The press release from AKM stated "summer 2016" so it looks like there may be a delay. I have asked AKM Asia several times but have had no response.

Tean; good to hear it is indeed you. I used to have a shop called "Clays Hi-Fi" & brought several lovely timbre valve amp chassis & pcb's from you in the mid 90's.
The AK4497EQ does not appear to have many more features than the AK4490EQ.
One extra filter setting & DSD512. I think pricing will be similar too. (Under $10)
I'm building a new modular DAC/Pre so when the AK4497EQ is actually available I will able just swap the digital board over for an easy upgrade.
Link with some photos - scroll down
DAC Preamp wish list - Page 4 - Gieseler Audio - StereoNET
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Old 27th September 2016, 06:51 AM   #6
ChuckT is offline ChuckT
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chris719 View Post
Does anyone know when this chip will be actually available from official distributors?
Boards with AK4497 are starting to pop at various online store like ebay and aliexpress. I have seems a single chip going for 200 CNY or around 30USD.

The Gustard A20H is out using AK4497
Gustard A20H DAC with dual AK4497EQ

Some hi end player using AK4497
Premium Audio News | AK4497 | LINN | KATALYST | AKM - Asahi Kasei Microdevices
Premium Audio News | AK4497 | ESOTERIC | Grandioso K1 | AKM - Asahi Kasei Microdevices
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Old 27th September 2016, 06:55 AM   #7
ChuckT is offline ChuckT
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clay-speakers View Post
I built up a prototype DAC using a AK4497 sample chip & compared it to my AK4490 based Klein DAC which I manufacture. It is very similar sonically to the AK4490 version but I probably need to do some more critical comparisons to be certain if there is much difference.
Hey by any chance are you Tean Tan who designed the tube preamp & power amp that appeared in Electronics Australia many years ago?
Regards Clayton
Please update us on the sound quality difference. I would imagine both would have similar sound signature.

I am using a AK4495 board using Lipo4 batteries and using only 2 supplies 3.2v and 6.4V . But I was a bit disappointed that AK4497 remove the ability to use higher voltage (5V max) for analogue section and added one more 1.8V.
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Old 28th September 2016, 08:05 AM   #8
occamsrazor is offline occamsrazor  Kenya
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It's not DIY but just FYI the new Gustard A20H DAC/Pre is using dual AK4497...

Gustard A20H DAC (Dual AK4497EQ, analog preamp, headphone amp, all in one)

Gustard A20H DAC with dual AK4497EQ
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Old 29th September 2016, 12:51 AM   #9
zenelectro is offline zenelectro  Australia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clay-speakers View Post
Re; AK4497EQ production release
The press release from AKM stated "summer 2016" so it looks like there may be a delay. I have asked AKM Asia several times but have had no response.

Tean; good to hear it is indeed you. I used to have a shop called "Clays Hi-Fi" & brought several lovely timbre valve amp chassis & pcb's from you in the mid 90's.
The AK4497EQ does not appear to have many more features than the AK4490EQ.
One extra filter setting & DSD512. I think pricing will be similar too. (Under $10)
I'm building a new modular DAC/Pre so when the AK4497EQ is actually available I will able just swap the digital board over for an easy upgrade.
Link with some photos - scroll down
DAC Preamp wish list - Page 4 - Gieseler Audio - StereoNET
Clay, I think 4497 is quite different internally from 4490 to allow the
superior DR and THD performance. Note that the data sheet quoted figures
and what is actually achievable from the chip are two separate results. I
believe these chips now, with careful design are at limit of what can be
reliably measured with AP test sets.

I'm also working on AK4497 DAC but early days - these new gen AKM chips
are very good.

I notice on your latest DAC / Pre you have some nice (Jensen?) OP
transformers - good move, I have also used these for many years on various
projects but not cheap though.

cheers

Terry
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Old 29th September 2016, 01:15 AM   #10
clay-speakers is offline clay-speakers  Australia
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Hi Terry,
great to hear from you.
That is interesting info regarding the AK4497EQ. I notice the total current draw is a lot higher that the AK4490EQ too but no option to bump up the analogue supply to 7.2v
Doing that certainly improved the sound on my 4490 DAC.
Yes love the Jensen OP transformer but you are right - expensive.
Photo of my AK4497EQ prototype - sounding good - just need a good DSD 512 test track
regards
Clay
IMG_2736 (Medium).JPG
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