Singularity 11, is a real fully balanced discrete design.
Applies the 4 Pieces Expensive high-end grade PCM1704UK, which is
the top grade R-2R chips, every channel had built in 4 pcs , every 2
pcs in parallel, and then they are working in balance mode . In my
particular design, all 8 pcs PCM1704 are working for outputs, even
just connect the RCA outputs .
The SPDIF inputs can support up to 24Bit / 192KHz ,and the USB, IIS
inputs support up to 32Bit / 384KHz .Cause by the PCM1704 support up
to 1536KHz sampling, so the 192KHz or lower sampling can working
between NOS to 8x times oversampling, over 192KHz will working with
4x times oversampling auto, or by the users setting between NOS to
4x times oversampling .
Different to other PCM1704UK designs , it applied Non-feedback ACSS
analog stages. The 8 pcs PCM1704UK feed to the ACSS analog stages
without any OPAs and couple caps so it can avoid sound coloration .
The ACSS is a non-feedback technology made with fully discrete
amplifiers. Most people know the global feedback design can offer
better specs in test measurements, and classic non-feedback can't do
well in test measurements but can offer better sound for the human's
ears. Here is a conflict of the classic circuits. But the ACSS opens
a new field, it can offer a least coloration sound which is more
neutral with very low distortion and high linearity. So it can
retain the dynamics, detail and neutral sound but not sound bright
About the ACSS technology detail, Mr. Ho had post some
few articles in the monthly <Radio & television > since 2007 year.
Output buffers :
Singularity 11 output buffers had applied 4 pair power transistors ( 150W / 15A
) working on class A state, the output impedance is only 1
ohms , it can drive most headphones and amps as well .
Singularity 11 has all components of four channels exactly matched
The analog part is without couple caps to avoid coloration, and
power supply by four groups class A PSUs.
Applies ACSS technology, even though maybe you only connect to XLR
or RCA output, Singularity 11 will always operate in ACSS technology,
and benefit from ACSS technology. Therefore, XLR and RCA output will
also definitely bring about improvement in sound quality. Even
through RCA output, the 4X PCM1704UK DA chips will perform fully.
Most DAC products
design , will applied the normal Logic chips to process the digital
signal, but the normal Logic chips most had the 40HMz speed. In long
term ago, the music files only had 44.1K and 48K,40MHz is enough for
process the signal. But nowdays, 384K music files had popular, 40MHz
limit even can play the sound but the input signal speed had close
the chips highest working frequency, the signal had serious delay
and distortion, cause the sound lost a lot detail .
Now, Singularity 11
release, the design had give up the normal and low performance
chips, which is only can working with tens MHz frequency clock , it
applied two pcs Xilinx CPLD, and an Altera FPGA to perform all the
data process . All three chips can process a lot different data
simultaneity up to 450MHz speed, and simultaneity data process can much exact to process and this
is most important in digital audio area .
Singularity 11, built in
two high performance TCXOs for process different sampling signal,
working as in the no jitter state, revert all detail and soul of the
Singularity 11, no longer
had the performance and sound quality limit by the normal and fixed
function chips like the DIR9001, WM8805 and the DF1706, all function
blocks are through the design with the ultra speed
characteristic in the FPGA, can got the best timing performance , minimal
jitter , boost the sound quality most neutral , the detail, dynamic
can fully show in your system.
Singularity 11, through
design and perform below hardware circuits:
SPDIF (coaxial and optical ) decoder .
AES/ EBU decoder.
Source signal select with minimal timing delay .
Clock signal regeneration .
Digital signal process and refuse jitter process.
Digital filter process.
Singularity 11¡AI had
design the most neutral sound quality, but for best
suite the users personal flavors which is like the coloration sound
flavor , it had built in different setting
for users can through change the setting and oversampling (8x, 4x,
2x and NOS) to get different sound flavors .
Singularity 11 applies the excellent
4 pcs PCM1704UK with DSP-1 combo
and excellent analog
output amps, but these are not the only keys of the best sound.
The power supply is most important. Even applying the best DA chip
and the best amp, if matched to a normal power supply, the total
sound may still be average or sound musical, but can't be neutral
and detailed. That is why it is easy to find hi-end grade gears
maybe without the best chips or amp stages, but with plenteous
dedicated DC supply circuits.
Singularity 11 uses
8 groups of high-quality class A parallel
connection PSU , which can
offer very clear DC power for the DAC and amps, producing
a very black background and neutral sound characteristic. The
class A PSU is very important for digital parts. Some designs
may have very low jitter in theory, but if the power is supplied by
a dirty or low-speed power supply, it will increase the jitter and
pollute the data, and degrade the sound quality obviously.
The class A parallel connection PSU has very high input
impedance to avoid pulse through the PSU from affecting the DAC and
low output impedance with very fast speed and high linearity, so it
is a very clean power supply. In my experience, its sound is better
than battery power supply, better human sound and neutral.
The Singularity 11 uses three high performance transformers. More than
50,000uf audio grade NOVER capacitors are used to ensure ample and
smooth power feed. A total of 8 groups class A SPUs and 3 groups
linear PSUs are used to purify the power supply. To achieve high
S/N, the control circuit is powered with separate regulator.
The volume control is also different from conventional technology.
Conventional volume control technology is the volume control
implement in the analog amp input stage through a volume pot to
reduce the signal . The volume pots quality effect the sound quality
direct , the low quality volume pot cause lost the detail and
channels imbalance cause the soundstage distortion . Even the high
performance volume pot still cause the detail lose. Whatever quality
volume pots, must cause the S/N worst .
But in the Singularity 11 , we applied the I/V conversion volume control
, the volume control just a variable passive I/V conversion place at
the ACSS amp output , where the output is the current signal, not
the voltage signal. The volume control is I/V conversion, and the
volume depends on the current (I) conversion to the voltage (V).
(Like R-2R D/A chips output passive I/V conversion) It can keep the
signal frequency band flat and not lost any detail. It can't degrade
on sound quality in every volume level . After the volume , there
are four groups diamond non-feedback buffer output stages offer the
very low output impedance .
The volume control quality is much important in the real balance
gear . It must guarantee the four channels signal control exact to
achieve the performance of the real balance gear . If the cool and
hot of the balance signal can't guarantee exact, the balance output
will has large distortion cause the sound quality and performance
even much worst than a single end gear waste the balance gear design
and the cost.
In Singularity 11 is applied a four channels digital control relays based
volume control. .Singularity 11 has total four channels through changing
the DALE resistors to control the volume for avoid channels
imbalanced ,achieve the best performance and sound quality of the
Singularity 11 have 100 steps volume control, control range achieve 90DB
(usually the steps volume ports, potentiometer volume port, relays
base volume control all have around 70DB range ), very smooth
control range on first 50 steps , cooperate with 20DB high gain, so
can very easy adjust the volume for both high / low sensitivity
headphone and speakers. While change the volume, the different
relays break or close, it may had slightly switch sound on output
and disappear while stop change the volume.
Supper Exponential volume characteristic
The Volume steps comparison to normal volume knob
Singularity 11, it is not put the parts full in
the chassis, but the audio grade parts can offer better performance
and working steady . Applied the normal parts not worst if the
design is excellent, still can had rich musical , but no way to had
the most neutral sound .
Singularity 11 had most applied
DALE, WIMA and Nover ect. audio grade parts, and the Canare , Natrik
sockets, and the OCC wires, custom order TCXOs which is building
without compromise .
Singularity 11, assemble in a heavy monsters chassis which is built
by pure aluminium . It had the thick aluminium board to separate the
power transformer, digital parts , the left and right analog parts.
Even the IEC power inlet, had shield in a pure cooper shield box .
, every unit finished the parts assemble , must had the full test by
the technician , then build by another technician . There are 300
hours burn in time after building, during the burn in time, every
unit must had two times test in every day . Finally , the QC
technician had the final test and audition before package and
shipping. The complex process in the building , just for keep
every units had the highest quality .