Breathtakingly realistic reproduction of digital music – In a compact form
The HD-Player Model 4 is a fully integrated digital playback device, encompassing music server, streamer and DAC. It requires nothing more than an amplifier and loudspeakers. The Player handles practically all digital formats available today – regardless whether from the internal hard drive or from an online streaming provider – at best-in-class sound quality. Controlling it is conveniently done through a mobile device, like a tablet or mobile phone.
The engineering effort is reflected in the implementation of only-the-best selected components as well as in the complex chassis construction dividing the whole unit in a number of separate compartments in order to minimize interference between the functional units or in the separate power supplies for each functional unit.
The digital/analogue converter alone utilizes 2 torodial transformers. The converter board is completely galvanically isolated to maximize signal-to-noise ratio. The selected R-2R NOS converter chips feature integrated I/V-conversion, so that no external output stage is required. Since four chips are implemented per channel, they produce sufficient power to drive any downstream equipment, so that the signal path is kept to an absolute minimum.
The overall result of all this effort is a breathtakingly realistic and emotionally involving listening experience.
What the Experts say
HiFi Statement, 12/2018: „Simply closer to the analogue original“ than reference digital systems, many times its price level
Quotes: “Already the PCM version [of the test track] leaves absolutely nothing to be desired: tonally everything is perfect. The music flows harmonically without any trace of ‘digitalness’; the space is stunning. In short, I have never heard a digital version of that peace so smoothly. The DSD version is even a smidgen more flowing.” … “In my view the Model 4 is simply closer to the analogue than my digital reference system [Melco server, Auralic Aries streamer, Chord DAVE DAC].” The Model 4 produces a slightly larger sonic stage and exudes a bit more warmth.” … “I know of no digital player in this price range that would come close to the Model 4.”
You can find the full review here.
- 4 TB of internal storage capacity (stores approx. 11,000 CDs in FLAC format)
- Support of all common audio file formats: Ogg Vorbis, FLAC, Opus, APE, WavPack, MP2, MP3, ALAC, MP4/AAC, AIFF, MOD, Musepack, wave files, Dff, Dsf etc.
- Playback of all PCM-formats with a bit depth of 16bit to 24bit and all sampling rats of 44.1kHz to 192.0kHz as well as all DSD-formats to 128x
- Playback of DSD 64x and DSD 128x via PCM-conversion to 24bit /176.4kHz ***
- Integrated online streaming services: Qobuz, Tidal
- Gapless playback
- Optional up-sampling to 176.4kHz respectively 192.0kHz
- Optional loudness normalization via ReplayGain****
- Non-oversampling DAC; no digital filters** for an analogue sound image free from digital artifacts
- Four R-2R Ladder DACs per channel
- No current/voltage conversion or analogue output stage, since the selected DAC-modules deliver sufficient Voltage themselves. This enables shortest-possible signal path
- Full galvanic separation of all the boards to exclude any electromagnetic interference between them
- Output voltages: RCA: 2.0 Vrms
- Output impedance: RCA: 85 Ohm
- Frequency response: 1Hz (0dB) up to half the sampling rate (-3dB)
- Distortion: < 0.03% THD
- Signal-to-Noise: -120dB at 16Bit; -125dB at 24Bit
- Slew Rate: 35V/mS
- Separate power supply for DAC
- Analogue Out: 1x RCA Stereo
- Digital Out: 1x SPDIF
- USB-Data Connection: 2x USB 2.0
- Network Connection: 1x Ethernet
- Massive chassis made from aluminum with separate internal chambers for all functional sections in order to minimize electromagnetic and vibration interference
- 3 level damping absorber feet
- Finishes: brush-finished Aluminum, silver or black anodized, with side panels with various options in aluminum or wood
- Dimension: 255 x 140 x 360 mm (W x H x D)
- Weight: ca. 10 kg
||To protect down-stream equipment, the DAC features a mild 1st-order 70kHz analogue filter at the output stage
||Conversion from DSD to PCM is a virtually lossless process (in contrast to conversion from DSD to PCM), achieved through a simple decimation filter. Since 64xDSD corresponds roughly to 20Bit / 96kHz and 128xDSD to 22Bit / 120kHz, a conversion to 24Bit / 176.4kHz PCM provides sufficient headroom to ensure full preservation of sound quality
||ReplayGain is an optimized RMS normalization, avoiding dynamic compression or other interferences with the original music