Friday, 07 August 2015 09:41

Audial Model S Mark III - upgraded reference DAC

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Serbian Audial has launched an upgraded version of their reference DAC. Model S MkIII has the main novelty in transfer capabilities.


Just over a year ago we wrote about Model A , an extreme minimalist amplifier from Belgrade. It is available both as an integrated amplifier, and as pure power amplifier.

Audial Model S is a reference DAC, where it also has been thinking minimalism, here primarily in the digital signal path. It was originally introduced in 2008, and got his first graduation in 2012, where among others Black Gate capacitors were replaced by capacitors from Rubycon and Elma Silmic.

This time it's significant upgrade lies in the digital inputs. One S / PDIF input has been replaced by a set of direct high PCM inputs, which support I2S and Philips simultanous data protocol . This means that the data and clock signal is split, with the corresponding opportunity for reduced jitter. This input consists of a set of four BNC connectors and a switch on the rear for choosing between the I2S and the Philips protocol. I2S utilizes otherwise only three of the four BNC connectors.

DAC chip in Model S is a reputable classic, the decades-old model Philips TDA 1541 is by some claimed to be the most musical DAC chip ever. Our senior HiFi-reviewer Stig Arne has just tested rehabilitated versions of the classic Philips players Philips CD 304 MkII and Philips CD 960 where this DAC is used. In addition to the original CD 304 , where the predecessor TDA 1540 is used. He was so excited that he ended up being the owner of the top model.

Audial advocate to shy away from both oversampling and upsampling. They think that this gives the best result, despite the fact that it has been developed very sophisticated methods for upsampling during recent years. Regarding Non Oversampling this is an interesting phenomenon that recurs in the previously described rehabilitated Philips players and DACs from Audio Note. But also in other completely modern constructions - DACs from Metrum Acoustics, which has just launched Musette that we wrote about here .

The output stage in Audials Model S is running in Class A, without global feedback. Audial claim to use one of the most serious construction of the power supplies on the market.

There are two sets of analog outputs on Audials Model S MkII, where you can choose between single ended or balanced.



Manufacturer enumeration of properties:

  • S / PDIF and PCM direct (I2S or simultaneous data mode) input
  • Advanced DEM clocking scheme for TDA1541A converter chip
  • Audial unique hybrid output stage without feedback yet with top level Linearity
  • Transformers, capacitors or Directly coupled output
  • Isolating mains transformer with split secondary output (AC power, balanced)
  • Nine independent supply lines, each with three stage passive common mode filtering and zero feedback low noise regulators
  • A highest quality parts
  • Engraved solid aluminum chassis
  • Each sample of the Model S is shipped with its own lab report.




Audial Model S Mark III is available in two versions, and costs, respectively 1900 and 2200 Euro.

Read more about Model S Mark III with Audials


Also read:

Model A - New amplifier from Audial

Musette - new DAC from Metrum Acoustics

Philips CD 304 and 304 MkII - are the antique CD-players still best?

REVIEW: Philips CD960 Compact Disc Player

Last modified on Friday, 07 August 2015 10:37
Karl Erik Sylthe

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