Meridian Introduces a $300 USB DAC

AR-explorer1.jpgI rarely do two Blogs in one day, but this announcement deserves your attention...

From their newly un-embargoed press release -

"Meridian has announced the introduction of its Explorer USB DAC. The Explorer is a pocket-sized high-resolution USB DAC from Meridian that delivers best-in-class sound from any computer. Featuring a range of connectivity, the Explorer can be used in a variety of applications from private headphone listening to full system playback.

Explorer replaces a computer's sound card with a USB-powered DAC featuring Meridian's award-winning resolution enhancement technologies, and makes any audio file, from MP3 to high resolution, sound its very best.
Plug the Explorer into a Mac, Linux or Windows computer and experience quality far beyond that of any sound card. Explorer is a fully asynchronous, USB audio class 2 DAC for the ultimate in audio quality. With premium parts such as high quality filter capacitors, 6-layer pc board, and elegant all metal enclosure, the Explorer, which is hand assembled at Meridian's Cambridge factory, is engineered from the same DNA as Meridian's 800 series Reference products to ensure the very best sonic performance. 

From its best-in-class audio performance to the elegant presentation packaging Explorer is the perfect introduction to the Meridian Experience, allowing users to discover more from their music.
24bit/192kHz native conversion capability

Separate low-jitter crystal oscillators for 44k1 and 48k based sample rates

Asynchronous data transfer

6 layer PCB

USB2 mini B socket - Plug and Play with MAC (Windows driver available)

Direct-coupled outputs

Variable line out - Full Analogue Volume Control for headphones or powered loudspeakers

Headphone amp

Fixed line out - 3.5mm connects directly to audio system

Optical digital output - full resolution for receivers or DACS (up to 96kHz)

Elegant metal case - durable and increases audio performance

Lights to indicate incoming sample rate

Soft convenient USB cable provided for ease of placement to protect computer mother board from mechanical stress

Hand assembled at Meridian's UK headquarters

US Price $299.00"

And, yes, I plan to review this little darling.

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