R2R Ladder DAC

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mikejr83

Member
2019-06-24 12:14 am
I've been reading about R2R ladder DACs recently. Looking around it seems like there are little on the market. I've been using this forum for valve amps and wondered if there was anything that the DIY community could provide for coming up with either a kit, BoM for a kit, or a commercial product for someone that wants to step out of the standard sigma-delta DACs that are common in the sub-$1000 range. Ideally I would like to have a nice R2R NOS DAC.

I have a nice EL34 valve amp that I have paired with 2 3-way bookshelf speakers. I use a JDS Labs Element as the DAC right now. I really want to place a nicer DAC in the chain so I can move the Element back to its duties as a DAC and headphone amp at my desktop. Ideally I want to go a bit beyond the current capabilities of the Element as I intend to replace the EL34 with a 300B SET amp in the near future.

Thoughts and suggestions for a post Christmas purchase!
 
merry Christmas!

My experience so far, I kept craving for a higher end dac... like a custom made TDA1541 or some special dac from the best out there. My current dac is a basic tube output with AKM, it doesn't have the detail of the best dacs but it is good....

Everything changed when I installed in my system a new output transformer premium type for my bigger amplifier kt120.

The dac weaknesses turned into refinement and pure pleasure. What sounded sterile turned into control and what sounded blunt turned to true to life sound,

Most important, what sounded congested turned into micro textures, the other output transformer was veiling the glorious sound of my dac, which is now providing more detail than I can handle.
 

mikejr83

Member
2019-06-24 12:14 am
DIY TDA1541A PCB "D3"

This is a tda1541a design.. you need to source your own tda1541a chip



Thanks turbo! I don't know why neither of these showed up when I was looking. Are they actually resistor ladders? Either way they look impressive as NOS setups. I especially like the DDAC. I'll have to save a while for something like that. The XL kit with the enclosure will probably be over 2000 Euro to get to the US. While the exchange rate is quite nice at the moment I've been trying to keep my max around 1000 USD.


That first link you posted, I didn't go through all 50+ pages, but I don't see anyone making out a BoM, PCBs, and/or kits.
 
Neither of those devices is R-2R. The TDA1541A datasheet says:
True 16-bit performance is achieved by each channel using three 2-bit active dividers, operating on the dynamic element matching principle, in combination with a 10-bit passive current divider, based on emitter scaling.
Section 7.3.8 of the PCM1794 datasheet shows the detailed architecture which is basically 3rd order sigma-delta modulation to 1 of 5 levels (plus some special processing of the top 6 bits) combined to a 67 level output routed into a current-steering DAC at fs x 64.


Thats 64 x oversampling, not "Non Oversampling DAC"
 
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