Low cost USB DSD 64 DAC with bit-prefect volume control GB (XMOS+CS4398) - diyAudio
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Old 19th March 2014, 11:05 AM   #1
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Join Date: Sep 2012
Default Low cost USB "DSD" DAC with bit-perfect volume control GB

Low cost is not equal to low quality components
This USB DSD DAC contains two main PCBs, XMOS USB to I2S with three ultra low phase noise NDK2520SD oscillator PCB, CS4398 DSD DAC PCB and an optional LED sampling rate indicator PCB.
Apart from the DSD playback functionality, it uses low noise thin film resistor, C0G capactor in the LPF, WIMA decouple cap, panasonic low ESR aluminum electrolytic capacitor and optimized layout 2mm distance for all decouple capacitor, etc.

The most distinctive features of this USB DSD DAC is our customize firmware for bit-perfect volume control. Most people may not notice many so called "bit-perfect" device on the market is bit-perfect ONLY When You Play At FULL Volume. If the volume is not set to maximum in the computer, the audio data is scaled/altered before sending to the DAC chip and the result is signal to noise ratio seriously affected.
Related paper on this important feature:

Compare on the audio data flow path:
General device on the market: "Partial" Bit-perfect only at full volume
Computer -> USB -> XMOS/CMxxxx/AMxxxxx -> I2S(audio data scaled/altered if not at full volume) -> DAC Chip (es9018/cs4398/pcm1794 etc.)

This USB DSD DAC: Complete Bit-perfect at any volume
Computer -> USB -> XMOS -> I2S(audio data bit perfect at any volume)+IIC volume control -> DAC Chip (es9018/cs4398/pcm1794 etc.)

After many hours of work on customize the xmos firmware on this USB DSD DAC, audiophiles can move the volume control bar up and down freely in the computer volume mixer panel and still enjoy bit perfect audio. DSD audio as well as PCM audio can also be bit perfect volume control easily from the computer. Please notes there are many so called bit-perfect device can play DSD but you must set the computer master volume control to full volume.

This is the initial prototype, the cs4398 DAC PCB will be in yellow color, the final layout will have a little different from the photo
Click the image to open in full size.

1)Does the volume is controlable in WIN/MAC/LINUX when playing DSD using this combo? I find that I cannot control the DSD volume when using the other famous brand DSD USB output adapter
The DSD sound volume is controlable using our xmos DSD combo in all USB audio 2.0 compatible OS including WIN/MAC/LINUX system volume mixer.

2) Do I need to switch ASIO driver everytime when playing between PCM and DSD music file? I find it's annoying to do it when using the other famous brand DSD USB output adapter.
Our xmos combo can use the same output ASIO: foo_dsd_asio in foorbar2000 to play PCM and DSD music file. No need to switch output everytime to play.

3)Is the xmos i2s Bit-perfect volume control PCB in the combo can be used connect to other DAC chip?
Different DAC chip require different IIC volume control command and different DSD PCM switch command. The XMOS PCB in this combo is designed only for use in this combo.

4)Is circuit schemetic available?
The circuit mostly follows the official datasheet, it can be download from the related official DAC website.
CS4398 : 120 dB, 24-Bit, 192 kHz Stereo D/A Converter with DSD Support

5)Some people told uses IIC software control can interference the DAC performance, is it true?
The IIC volume control is only active when you moving the volume bar to change the volume, it is totally stopped when not in use.

6)What sampling rate are supported?
44.1-192khz and DSD64

7)Any annoying pop sound when playing between PCM and DSD format?
No pop sound. The cs4398 has automute feature when switch between pcm and dsd.

8) I already have CS4398 DAC, why still buy this one?
This DAC includes DSD playback feature, bit perfect volume control, WIMA 3.3uF film capacitor on the Quiescent Voltage pin, high quality and selected components, optimized layout 2mm distance for all decouple capacitor. It takes the cirrus logic flagship dac CS4398 to it's level.

*All SMD are soldered, thru-hole components are not soldered.
*The PCB required one 3.3V, one 5V and one +-12V regulated power supply and they are not included in this GB.

1)Please left your name here and qty, (not PM me, PM box always easily full)
2)after the pcb is done, a URL will be posted for user to order and pay.

***I just found some cheap source of CS4398!!!
The cost of two PCB together (XMOS+CS4398) is only Euro 69 up , the price is depends on the number of participants.
> 50pcs = EUR69 up

Last edited by diyinhk; 26th April 2014 at 10:03 PM.
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Old 21st March 2014, 07:50 PM   #2
gugi100 is offline gugi100  Netherlands
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Location: IJsselstein

Very nice offer and very nice price. But why no nice little regulators very near to the CS4398 onboard? Also nice regulation for the opamp onboard would be nice.

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Old 27th March 2014, 08:34 AM   #3
kp93300 is offline kp93300  Malaysia
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What is the postage to malaysia ?

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Old 27th March 2014, 10:09 PM   #4
Can you say Audio?
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1 for misterrogers
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Old 27th March 2014, 10:29 PM   #5
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Location: Italy
Send a message via Skype™ to giannettino
Originally Posted by MisterRogers View Post
1 for misterrogers
Sorry for my english...Be patient
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Old 28th March 2014, 04:13 PM   #6
gugi100 is offline gugi100  Netherlands
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Location: IJsselstein
Hi Diyinhk,

Even without onboard regulation (or even the traces on the board for mic5205 set up ?) i am also in for xmos+cs4398.

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Old 25th April 2014, 07:00 PM   #7
vulejov is offline vulejov  Serbia
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Is there any chance to use AK4396 or AK4399 for DSD playback .. do you have in the plan combination with XMOS..
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Old 26th April 2014, 10:00 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by vulejov View Post
Is there any chance to use AK4396 or AK4399 for DSD playback .. do you have in the plan combination with XMOS..
I have plan for the new chip AK4495
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Old 26th April 2014, 10:02 PM   #9
vulejov is offline vulejov  Serbia
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Nice, very nice..
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Old 29th April 2014, 07:01 PM   #10
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Location: Somerset, England
Could this be the basis of a nice desktop headphone amplifier? Would it work if the USB source was, say, a Samsung Galaxy S4 smartphone?

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