Weiss DAC501 and DAC502
Weiss products are precision-built in Switzerland to the most rigorous professional standards, designed to deliver flawless performance over years of constant use. In addition to their expertise in digital conversion, Weiss is a leader in DSP, featured in many of their products.
The Weiss DAC 501/502 share the same circuitry and componentry, and differ primarily in form-factor: the DAC501 is a compact, half-width unit, allowing placement flexibility in desktop and studio applications, as well as in home systems of any size. The DAC502 features a standard, full-width chassis; it also differs from the DAC501 by including a four-pin balanced headphone connector on the back of the enclosure.
Both units incorporate a stainless steel chassis with a robust 10mm aluminum faceplate. Digital processing is performed by a pair of 32-bit ESS Sabre DAC chips per channel, providing superb channel separation and noise-rejection. An internal high-precision clock generator clocks the DACs at a frequency of about 195kHz; PCM signals up to 384 kHz and DSD x64 and x128 are reclocked to 195kHz.Power supplies are linear, incorporating dual toroidal transformers and separate regulators for each channel, minimizing noise and crosstalk.
There are five digital inputs: AES/EBU or S/PDIF via XLR, Toslink, or RCA; UPnP/DLNA via Ethernet; and USB. Outputs are by balanced XLR and unbalanced RCA; both units have front panel ¼” headphone jacks, and the DAC502 has an additional 4-pin XLR output on its back panel. Line and headphone outputs are separate, and discrete.
With their touch screen display both units are extremely intuitive and easy to set up and easy to use. Both Weiss DAC 501/502 can also be controlled by the provided full-function remote control, or by a web interface. Both units are networkable and Roon Ready and available in black or silver finish.
DAC501-Mk2 and DAC502-Mk2
In their ongoing journey to achieve live-like music reproduction Weiss introduces, new for 2023, the DAC501-Mk2 and DAC502-Mk2. The Mk2 versions are capable of four channel playback while also delivering a higher level of sonic performance in two channel applications.
The Mk2 versions use the latest DAC chips with stellar technical specifications, making for an enhanced two channel DAC with improved transparency and openness. Both line output stages and headphone output stages are built with discrete electronics similar to the standard DAC50x.
Bluebird Music stocks both the DAC50x and DAC50x-Mk2 models. Older DAC50x models can be upgraded to the newer Mk2 versions.
It is uncannily open and detailed. The device's translucence has to be heard to be believed. Even compared to many more expensive designs, it is incisive and revealing of what is in play. It's clear that this is a special sounding digital converter.
Jason Victor Serinus, Stereophile Class A+ Recommended Component, October 2020
Astonishing resolution coupled with sound quality to die for.
John Atkinson, Stereophile, October 2020
To say that I was impressed with the Weiss DAC501 is a gross understatement. The Weiss DAC501 ranks among the top of my running list of favorite DACs. Bravo!
Michael Lavorgna, Twittering Machines, Favorite DAC Award, February 2021
Quite simply, the Weiss DAC 502 is the best DAC I have ever heard.
What HiFi?, December 2021
I can proclaim it as the most well rounded, best sounding, most addictive DAC I have ever heard.
Steve Huff, Reviews From The Heart, February 2022.