updated 02:28 pm EST, Tue January 7, 2014
Company promises enhanced playback, clearer sound with new DAC
From the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show, music equipment builder Korg has unveiled a pair of new AudioGate USB Digital to Analog Converters (DAC). The system consists of Korg's proprietary AudioGate 3 software, plus a choice of the DS-DAC-100 or DS-DAC-100m hardware interfaces. Both are USB digital-to-analog converters that will allow any Windows (ASIO) or Mac (Core Audio) user to play back their audio with the highest possible fidelity.
The software and hardware combination allows users to play back their existing audio from CDs, downloads or other sources, as high-quality DSD audio on their computer or laptop, resulting in audio playback that sounds better. Korg claims that the benefit of AudioGate conversion is a "purer end result: experiencing the audio as it was originally intended."
In addition to a quarter-inch stereo headphone output, the DS-DAC-100 provides XLR and gold-plated RCA outputs for connecting to devices like power amplifiers. The DS-DAC-100m's 1/4-inch stereo headphone output is aimed at those new to DSD audio.
Both the DS-DAC-100 and DS-DAC-100m support ASIO, WDM (Direct Sound, WASAPI) and Core Audio drivers. Installing the Korg USB Audio Device Driver will allow native one-bit DSD playback on either Mac or PC. Supported audio input sample rates range from 44.1 to 192 kHz for PCM; both 2.8224 MHz and 5.6448 MHz are supported in the 1-bit DSD realm.
The entry level DS-DAC-100m retails for $350, with the DS-DAC-100 selling for $600. Both units will see release in March.