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SW1X DAC III Balanced

SW1X Audio Design™ DAC III Balanced

Performance Level 3/4
EL84 Valve Power D to A Converter


The Balanced version of the DAC III is a non-compromise valve output stage design DAC III, equipped with Signal Output Transfromers (OPTs), a smaller brother to the DAC IV and DHT output stage based DAC V. The step up in transparency of the Balanced over the SPX version is provided by a signal output transformer de-coupled EL84 power pentode (triode connected) tube output stage driven by the mighty 6N6P double triode.

Available in different versions: Special, Classic and the limited Signature version with different power output transformer options (M6 EI, SHiB and UHiB DC cores) and all Copper, Copper/Silver or all Silver wiring.

SW1X Audio Design™ DAC III Balanced Features:

  • Pure & Elegant NOS (Non oversampling – zero digital domain filtering) R2R Design
  • Balanced (& Single Ended) Signal Output Transformer de-coupled Valve Output Stage Topology
  • EL84 Power Output Tubes, Zero NFB, Class A, Valve Output Stage
  • Passive I/V conversion via a specially selected resistor with the shortest signal path directly connected to the tube grid
  • Dynamic Element Matching (DEM) powered by an asynchronous Valve Clock with Valve Rectified & Choke Filtered Power Supply
  • Discrete Transistor, Shunt Voltage Regulated Low Voltage Power Supplies
  • 5U4GYB/5R4GYB Directly Heated Valve rectified CLC (choke filtered) B+ Power Supply


Specially Selected and Harmonically Matched Component & Material Quality

  • Specially treated SW1X Audio Design 80% Nickel Mumetal Core Intefrace Transformer
  • SW1X Audio Designall Copper (Copper/Silver {Classic} or all Silver {Signature}) wound M6 EI core, Super HiB or Ultra HiB DC core Signal OPT
  • M6 grain orient EI core Mains Transformers & Chokes (SHiB double C-core available as an option)
  • Black Gate de-coupling Capacitors for TDA1541 DAC
  • Internally wired exclusively with our SW1X Magnum, Genesis and Opus conductors of various geometry (single strand or Litz)
  • AN Copper Foil in Oil (or Silver foil on request) interstage Signal de-coupling Capacitors
  • AB 2W non-magnetic Carbon film Resistors


Tube Compliment:  2 x EL84, 1 x 6N6P, 1 x 5U4GB 1 x E180F, 1 x EAA91


DAC III Balanced is avaiable in 4 Versions with either Satin Silver or Matte Black front Panels:

The Balanced version comes with following output transformer (OPTs) specifications:

  • Standard : SW1X Audio Design all Copper wound, orient grain M6 EI Core OPTs
  • Special :  SW1X Audio Designall Copper wound Super HiB DC Core OPTs
  • Classic : SW1X Audio DesignCopper/Silver Windings, Super HiB DC Core OPTs
  • Signature : SW1X Audio Design™ Silver/Silver Windings, Super HiB DC Core OPTs


SW1X Audio Transformers

Optional Extras:

  • Fully Hardwired Tube Output Stage on the Bakelite Board
  • Fine Silver wiring on the Input, Bakelite Board and Output
  • Super HiB double C-Core mains transformers for the digital and DHT/DHD power supplies
  • TDA1541R Selected or optional TDA1541A S1 or S2 Selected Crown version
  • Silver Foil capacitors Inter-stage signal de-coupling capacitors
  • XLR AES/EBU or I2S input


Note: Due to SW1X Audio Design’s ongoing research and development process, specifications are subject to change without notice.

dac iii

Dimensions: Height (mm) 150 x Width (mm) 450 x Depth (mm) 410

Weight (kg): 18

Max Power Consumption (W): 23

Output Noise, Unweighted (mVrms): < 0.5

Output Impedance (Ohms): <100



Digital Transport Product Overview

Signal Output Transformers vs Signal Capacitors

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