The Balanced version is a top of the line DAC III and a smaller brother to the DHT powered signal output transfromer de-coupled DAC V.
Similarly to the Special version it comes equipped with a EL84 power tube output stage. The step up in transparency over the Special version is provided by a signal output transformer de-coupled EL84 power pentode (triode connected) tube output stage driven by the mighty 6N1P 0r 5687 double triode.
Signal Output Transformer de-coupling of the Valve Output Stage is the closest approximation to a truely “invisibly” sounding DAC.
The major benefits of having a signal output transformer (L- inductive loading & de-coupling) over a resistor-capacitor (RC) signal de-coupling is as following:
Signal output transformers can become invisible components only if the finest core materials, wires and optimum winding techniques are employed – the transparency as well as linearity are improved relative to capacitors, which all tend to mask low level nuances
The dynamics are stepped up because the tube is inductively loaded (one gets all the gain of a tube but at lower DCR) unlike with a high value resistor which lessens dynamics
The output impedance of a tube output stage is lowered (stepped down, squared root of the ratio), which gives a better drive to the consecutive amplification stage. This in turn provides a more convincing dynamic realism
Super HiB signal ouput transformer with silver windings de-coupled limited production Signature version of the DAC III Balanced is available on request.