Data Conversion Systems (dCS) has partnered Absolute Sound to announce Bartók, the British Hi-Fi brand’s latest digital-to-analogue converter (DAC) offering in Singapore, hosted by Zeppelin & Co, located at Sim Lim Square.
The dCS Bartók is first and foremost a state of the art network streaming DAC that uses technology developed for the Rossini range, featuring the legendary dCS Ring DAC™ and signal processing platform, plus a custom high-performance UPnP music streamer.
Bartók plays music through an array of industry-standard USB, AES or S/PDIF digital inputs. It can stream over Ethernet from a NAS drive or online music services such as TIDAL or Spotify, and from Apple devices via Airplay. The network interface can perform full MQA decoding and rendering.
Available in two variants, a Network Streaming DAC; the other, a Network Streaming DAC with a built-in, discrete Class-A Headphone Amplifier. The DAC section is equipped with independent balanced and unbalanced line outputs that can drive power amplifiers directly, avoiding the need for a separate preamplifier. The Headphone DAC features a custom designed headphone amplifier that works extremely well with both high and low impedance headphones in balanced or unbalanced formats. All of the outputs can be set to one of 4 maximum levels to enhance system compatibility.
Bartók DAC has a powerful new user interface, plus a custom control app that lets listeners manage their music playback from any source in an elegantly simple way – accessing iRadio channels, digital and UPnP sources all from one control point. The Bartók app provides easy access to the DAC settings.
Bartók supports all major codecs including high-resolution PCM and DSD, with user selectable upsampling. There is a suite of DSP filters to tailor the sound to suit individual taste and great care has been taken to minimise jitter at all stages with the dCS ‘auto clocking’ architecture. The network streaming section currently runs at up to 24-bit, 384kS/s and DSD128, supporting all major lossless codecs, plus DSD in DoP format and native DSD.
Designed and made in Great Britain to the highest standards, Bartók takes its design cues from the award-winning Rossini range, using aerospace-grade machined aluminium with internal acoustic damping panels to reduce sound-degrading mechanical vibration and magnetic effects. Multi-stage power regulation is employed, with twin mains transformers to isolate the DAC circuitry from the headphone amplifier.
As with all dCS products, Bartók’s firmware can be easily updated via CD, USB or the new automated download and update facility. This lets dCS add new features and improve the performance of Bartok over its lifetime.
Bartók is expected to begin shipping in November 2018, both versions are available in standard anodised silver and black aluminium finish.