H I G H
D E F I N I T I O N®
Reference DAC
Thank you for choosing the
Reference DAC to be a part of
your high performance music
listening system. Since 1970,
Audio Research has been creating
some of the world’s finest
audio equipment. Each piece is
handcrafted in Minnesota, and has
been designed to provide many
years of listening enjoyment.
We understand you are eager
to begin listening; however,
please take a few minutes to
read through this guide for
useful information concerning
the operation of your new
DAC. Once installed, please
allow an appropriate breakin period to fully appreciate
the benefits this amplifier will
provide to your system.
Thank You.
After reading the user guide, if
you have any further questions
regarding your DAC, contact
your dealer or Audio Research
customer service - they will be
happy to help you make the
most of your new component.
Happy Listening!
3
Contents
Warnings
Illustrations and Diagrams
Front and Rear Panel
Menu Tree
Icons
Installation
Before operating the Reference DAC
In Your System
A note about Vacuum Tubes
Connections
Input Connectors
Output Connectors
Control Connectors
5
6
7
10
11
12
12
14
14
13
14
13
15
13
16
19
21
Maintenance
Vacuum Tubes
Servicing
Cleaning
Disposal and Recycling Guidelines
About Fuse Replacement
32
22
32
22
32
29
32
32
Warranty
33
Commpatibility and Connectivity
34
Specifications
35
4
Operation
Start-Up
Shut-Down
Break-in
Front Panel Controls
Settings Menu
Input Operation
Troubleshooting Guide
Software Installation
Windows PC Software Installation
Note to Mac OS Users
Removal of Previous Driver Versions
Warnings
To prevent fire, or shock hazard, do not
expose your Reference DAC to rain or
moisture.
If the unit is to be operated in an enclosure
such as an equipment rack, make certain
that adequate airflow above and to each
side of the unit is provided, and ensure that
the ventilation fans on the back panel are
not obstructed.
Do not place objects containing
water on top of this unit.
This unit contains voltages which can cause
The appliance coupler at the rear of this unit
serious injury or death. Do not operate with
must be accessible for emergency power
cover removed. Refer servicing to your
disconnect.
authorized Audio Research dealer or other
qualified personnel.
This unit is RoHS compliant.
The detachable power cord on your
A note about packaging...
Reference DAC is equipped with a heavy
Save all packaging in a dry place away from
gauge, 3-conductor cable and a standard
fire hazard. Your Reference DAC compact
three-prong grounding plug. For absolute
disc player is a precision electronic
protection, do not defeat the ground power
instrument and should be properly
plug. This provides power line grounding
cartoned any time shipment is made. You
of the Reference DAC chassis to provide
may not have occasion to return your
absolute protection from electrical shock.
unit to the factory for service, but if that
should prove necessary, or other occasion
For continued protection against fire hazard,
requiring shipment occurs, the original
replace the fuse only with the same type
packaging will protect your Reference DAC
and rating as specified at the fuse holder.
from unnecessary damage or delay.
5
INPUT
VOLUME
USB MEM
POWER
DIGITAL MEDIA BRIDGE
<
>
SELECT
EXIT
MUTE
REFERENCE DAC HIGH DEFINITION
REFERENCE DAC
DIGITAL MEDIA BRIDGE
PLYMOUTH, MINNESOTA
MADE IN U.S.A.
WiFi
RS-232
IR
INPUT
ANTENNA
USB2.0HS RCA
BNC
AES/EBU
TOS
RIGHT CHANNEL
ETHERNET
LEFT CHANNEL
ANALOG OUTPUTS
DIGITAL INPUTS
iPod
+12V REMOTE
TRIGGER OUT
CAUTION
FOR CONTINUED PROTECTION AGAINST
FIRE HAZARD REPLACE FUSE ONLY
WITH SAME TYPE AND RATING
WARNING
TO PREVENT FIRE AND SHOCK HAZARD, DO NOT
EXPOSE THIS DEVICE TO RAIN OR MOISTURE.
UNIT MUST BE OPERATED IN A HORIZONTAL POSITION.
VOLTS
-DO NOT OPERATE WITH COVERS REMOVEDUNIT CONTAINS VOLTAGES WHICH MAY BE HAZARDOUS.
SERIALt
REFERENCE DAC
FILTER
MONO
SAMPLE
INVERT
INPUT
HOURS
BAL L
BAL R
SHUFFLE
REPEAT
VOL DN
MUTE
VOL UP
PAUSE
PLAY
H I G H
D E F I N I T I O N®
6
SLO-BLO
T1A (230V)
POWER
EXIT
1.5A FUSE
140W MAX 50/60 HZ
7
8
9
Icons
Main Menu
HS
MEM
Status Bar
AES/EBU
Balance Left
BNC
Balance Right
Internet Radio
Sharp Filter
iPod
Soft Filter
Media Server
Invert
RCA
Mute
Settings
Mono
Toslink
Pause
USB 2.0 HS
Play
USB Stick
Repeat All
1
Functional
Loading
Repeat One
Shuffle
Music File/Album
Selected
Song/Station
10
Installation
REAR
V4
V2
V3
V1
V5
V6
TUBE LOCATIONS
TOP VIEW
FRONT
Installation of Vacuum Tubes
Do not attempt to install or remove any
This unit has been shipped with the vacuum
vacuum tubes unless this unit is turned
tubes in a protective foam block inside
off and disconnected from the A.C. power
a separate box. Using a phillips-head
outlet. Unit should be connected to the
screwdriver to loosen the fastening screws,
A.C. outlet and turned on only after all
remove the top cover and set aside.
vacuum tubes have been installed and
After removing the top cover open the box
appropriate panels have been replaced
of vacuum tubes and see the accompanying and fastened. See owner’s manual for
illustrated sheet for instructions on
installation instructions.
installing the tubes for your Reference
Before replacing vacuum tubes, turn off unit,
DAC in their proper locations in the power
disconnect from A.C. outlet and allow
supply and audio section. Note that the
installed tubes to cool before attempting
numbers written on each tube correspond
to remove them. Hot tubes may cause
to a ‘V’ number printed on the circuit board
burns or other injury if not allowed to cool
next to each tube socket. Insert each tube
before removal.
firmly, carefully aligning the tube pins with When removing or installing tubes, do
the corresponding socket holes.
not touch tube socket contacts or other
components as the circuit may retain
sufficient levels of voltage and current to
cause injury or death.Contact your dealer
or Audio Research Customer Service (763577-9700) if you have any questions about
installing or replacing vacuum tubes in this
unit.
11
Installation
In your system
To insure normal component life and safe
operation this unit must be operated
only in an upright position. Adequate
airflow and proper cooling can occur
only if there is no restriction above and
behind the unit and on either side.
The ‘ambient’ operating temperature should
never exceed 120° F or 49° C. Improper
installation will cause premature tube
failure and will affect your warranty,
as well as the service life of the unit.
It is normal for a vacuum tube component
to run quite warm, and if used for
prolonged periods, hot to the touch.
All components within are, however,
operated at safe, conservative levels
and will not be improperly affected
thereby, providing the requirements
outlined above are adhered to.
The special non-marring elastomer feet
provide adequate spacing and stability
only on a smooth, hard surface, and
also assist to isolate the DAC from
spurious vibrations. For upright stability
and best performance, never operate
the unit while it is sitting on a soft
surface such as a thick rug or carpet.
A Note about Vacuum Tubes
The vacuum tubes in your Reference
DAC have been burned in, tested and
electrically matched to provide the
best performance and reliability of your
DAC. That said, vacuum tubes must be
replaced from time to time. The 6H30
tubes in the Reference DAC should have
an expected life of approximately 4,000
hours, while the 6550WE tube in the power
supply should have a life expectancy of
approximately 2,000 hours. These life
expectancies are only approximate.
Due to its weight, this DAC must be
supported on a surface specifically
rated for such a load. Check with the
manufacturer of your support system to
be sure it is rated to handle this weight.
If the unit is to be operated in an enclosure
such as an equipment rack, make certain
that adequate airflow above and to
each side of the unit is provided.
12
Connections
Input Connectors
The Reference DAC provides seven
connections on the rear panel (USB 2.0HS,
RCA, BNC, AES/EBU, Toslink, Ethernet and
iPod) and one connection on the front
panel (USB Mem).
iPod: Connect the USB end of a cable
with the Apple 30-pin connector for use
with an iPod, iPad or iPhone. NOTE: This
connection is designed for use with an iPod,
iPad, or iPhone only.
USB Mem: Insert a USB memory stick into
the front slot on the Reference DAC to
access music files loaded on the memory
stick. NOTE: This connection is designed
for use only with a memory stick or
compatible mass storage device.
Digital Inputs
USB 2.0HS: Connect a USB cable from your
computer to the Reference DAC.
RCA (SPDIF): Connect an RCA cable from
a disc transport or other digital device
equipped with an RCA digital output
connector.
Output Connectors
One pair of balanced and single-ended main
outputs are provided.
BNC (SPDIF): Connect a BNC cable from
a disc transport or other digital device
equipped with a BNC digital output
connector.
Control Connectors
12V In/Out Remote Power Jacks: The +12V
DC input/output jacks provide the ability
to remotely turn on and off other linked
components such as power amplifiers
having similar capabilities.
AES/EBU: Connect an AES/EBU cable from
a disc transport or other digital device
equipped with an AES/EBU digital output
connector.
RS-232 Connection: The RS-232 connection
allows for control via systems such as
Crestron or other automation systems.
Toslink: Connect a Toslink optical cable
from a digital device equipped with a
Toslink output.
IR Input: The IR input allows a wired IR
connection to the Reference DAC. This
connection will defeat the front panel IR
receiver.
Ethernet: Connect an RJ-45 cable to a home
network or other compatible system for
use with the Media Server interface and to
supply access to the internet for Internet
Radio service.
13
Operation
Start Up
1. Secure all rear-panel connections
between Reference DAC, preamplifier or
power amplifier(s), and input sources.
2. Plug three-prong power cord from
rear of chassis into grounded A.C. wall
outlet. The Power switch defaults to ’off’
when the unit is plugged into a power
receptacle.
3. Press power switch (either remote or
front panel). The display will remain
black for approximately 8 seconds, after
which the Reference DAC splash screen
will appear. Once the splash screen is
gone, the main menu page is displayed,
and a countdown timer will show
the seconds until the unit is ready for
operation. After countdown, the unit will
be in Mute.
4. Select input source, unmute and select
volume level.
Shut Down
1. Activate ‘Mute’ function.
2. Set Volume level to 0.
3. Turn off power amplifier(s) and
preamplifier.
4. Press Power switch to ‘off’.
Turn off input sources.
Break-in
All quality stereo equipment benefits from
a break-in period; during this time, the
various components, wiring and solder
connections change as electrical signals
pass through them. While your Reference
DAC will sound fantastic out of the box,
it will only improve with continued use.
Note
The Reference DAC should be the first
component turned on in your system
(along with any additional sources). If
the Reference DAC is turned on after the
amplifier, and the preamplifier is also
powered, it will amplify any extraneous
turn-on noises the preamplifier or other
source components might generate, which
could potentially damage the loudspeakers.
Good operating practice dictates that
the amplifier should be turned on last,
and turned off first in an audio system.
Note
The Reference DAC is equipped with a
variable output and volume control. If
you are using this unit in conjunction with
a preamplifier, please set the volume to a
static location and use the volume control
on the preamplifier. A volume setting
of 66 is equivalent to Line Out on most
components.
14
Operation
Front Panel Rotary Controls
Mute: When activated, electrically mutes
The Reference DAC has two microprocessorall output of the DAC; indicated by ‘Mute’
driven rotary controls.
in display window. This control should be
The rotary control on the left adjusts Volume
activated before switching inputs, changing
(output level) up or down for both L and R
connections or shutting down your audio
channels. Volume control is also selectable
system to help protect your amplifier and
via Vol UP and Vol DN buttons on the
speakers from unexpected signal pulses.
remote control. Volume adjustment is
When deactivated, ‘Mute’ disappears
indicated in the display window by numeric
from the display window allowing normal
digits on 0–103 scale.
operation. Function also on remote
Do not turn volume up beyond normal
control.
listening levels when ‘Mute’ is engaged to
The Reference DAC also has automatic
avoid unexpected or possibly damaging
muting to help protects system
sound levels.
components during A.C. power
The rotary control (on the right) selects any
interruptions or low line voltage. When
of the inputs on the Reference DAC, and is
sensing these conditions, the preamp
also a navigator through the settings and
automatically goes into ‘Mute’ and disables
front panel interface.
all outputs. The Reference DAC will reset
itself and begin the initial startup sequence
Front Panel and Remote Control Buttons
as described under ‘Power On/Off’.
Power On/Off: Supplies power from A.C.
Note that automatic muting is only designed
wall outlet to DAC; indicated by active
to protect against power line interruptions
display window.
or severe voltage drop. It will not mute in
After pressing the Power button to turn
the event of subsonic transmissions from
on unit, the display will remain black for
a faulty input source, amplifier failure or
approximately 8 seconds, after which the
speaker malfunction.
Reference DAC splash screen will appear.
Once the splash screen is gone, the main
Select: Pressing the Select button engages
menu page is displayed, and a countdown
the highlighted input on the screen, or
timer will show the seconds until the unit
advances the Reference DAC to the next
is ready for operation. After countdown,
screen when using the settings menus. It
the unit will be in Mute.
also is used to select folders and tracks
when using an i-device or media server,
Left/Right Arrows (< >): Used during
or stations for the internet radio tuner.
menu navigation. The Right arrow (>) will
Function also on remote control (center
advance the Reference DAC to the next
button of navigation pad).
screen or selection, and the Left arrow (<)
will go back one screen or menu selection. Exit: Toggles the Reference DAC from the
Function also on remote control (Left and
current screen to the main menu/input
Right arrows on navigation pad).
selection screen.
15
Operation
Volume Up/Down: Using rotary control on
front panel or VOL UP/VOL DN buttons
on remote, increases/decreases overall
volume level of both channels equally
for whichever input has been selected.
Caution: do not turn up volume beyond
normal listening levels when “Mute” is
engaged to avoid unexpected or possibly
damaging sound levels. It is a good idea to
reduce volume whenever changing program
sources, even when muted.
Invert: Inverts absolute phase of the output
signal.
Input: Toggles through the different digital
inputs.
Repeat: Toggles the Reference DAC between
Repeat All and Repeat One track and no
repeat.
Shuffle: Toggles the Shuffle feature on and
off. Shuffle instructs the Reference DAC
to randomly select tracks from a device or
folder.
Input: Moves the selection bar up or down
on the display. Turn the Input knob to the
left or right to highlight an input, and then
press the ‘Select’ button to choose that
input. Also use the Input knob to move
the selection bar to the desired function or
folder when navigating the settings menu
or music folders. Function also on remote
(Up and Down arrows on navigation pad).
Note
Repeat and Shuffle only function with the
following inputs: Media Server, Ipod Dock,
USB Input.
Hours: When pressed, displays number of
operating hours vacuum tubes have been in
service.
Remote Control only Functions
Filter: Selects between Sharp or Soft digital
filter algorithms.
Warning
After replacing tubes, this function should be
reset to ‘0’ only by a qualified technician.
Hours display can be reset to ‘0’ by pressing
black button labeled located on upper
right corner of circuit board directly behind
display window. The unit must be “On” to
reset function – the service technician must
be careful to avoid any contact with other
circuit components during reset operation.
Contact Audio Research customer service
(763-577-9700) for information regarding
this procedure.
Mono: Sums L and R input for mono output
from any source selected.
Sample: Selects between the native sample
rate of the incoming signal or integerbased upsampling (Ethernet client board,
Media server, iPod, internet radio, USB
stick, max is 88.2 and 96kHz, SPDIF inputs,
max is 176.4 and 192kHz, and USB2.0HS,
upsampling is selected in the computer;
not done in hardware).
16
Operation
Settings Menu
Once the unit has been powered on and
completes the initialization sequence, the
main menu will be displayed. Navigate
to the bottom of the input list (using the
‘Input’ knob on the front panel, or the
down arrow on the remote) and select
‘Settings’. There are four options for setup
and functional aspects of the Reference
DAC: Network, User Interface, Playback,
and General.
If a password is required, the following
screen will allow you to enter it (use the
up and down arrows to scroll through the
characters, and the right arrow to advance
to the next space. Pressing the center
navigation button after completing the
password will make the connection). WPS
offers both PIN and push button support.
Network Info
This section will explain how the Reference
DAC is connected and how it appears
within your network.
Network
Establishing a Wireless or Ethernet connection
Network Setup
Two options will be displayed: Wired or
Wireless. The current selection will have
a check mark next to it; if you choose the
unchecked option, the unit will restart and
cycle through the initialization sequence.
For a wired setup, once you have selected
wired, the following screen will let you
select Automatic (DHPC) or Static IP
Address. The preferred setup is to choose
Automatic (DHPC); on the following
screen select Proxy off and then confirm by
pressing the center navigation button. Use
Static IP Address if you need the Reference
DAC to have a constant fixed IP address on
your network.
For a wireless setup, once you have selected
wireless, the following screen will give
you the option for Scan or WPS (Wi-Fi
Protected Setup). Scan will reveal any
existing wireless networks accessible by the
Reference DAC. To sign in to any network
on this list, scroll to it and select it.
Default UPnP Server
Use this feature to always direct the
Reference DAC to a specific location on
your network. If you specify a default
server, the Reference DAC will immediately
go to that location when the Media Server
input is selected.
Renderer Name
This section allows the Reference DAC to be
given a renderer name as displayed on a
network.
17
Operation
User Interface
Edit and change display features
General
Functional and Software information
Edit names
Several inputs on the Reference DAC can be
programmed to have customized names:
USB 2.0HS, AES/EBU, BNC, RCA, and TOS.
To change an input name, select the name
you want to change and use the navigation
pad to enter the new name (up and down
arrows select characters, right and left
arrows move the cursor back and forth).
Once you have entered in the new name,
press the center navigation button.
Reset Settings
Reset your Reference DAC to the original
factory settings.
Software Update
Check for any software updates for your
Reference DAC (internet connection
required).
Info
Displays current version of software loaded
on the Reference DAC.
Display Timeout
The display on the Reference DAC is set
Legal
by default to always remain illuminated
Website to view all legal documents related
(timeout is ‘Off’). This function allows
to the various licenses utilized by the
various timeouts to be chosen, from
Reference DAC.
10 seconds to one hour. To change the
timeout, simply select the appropriate time
out and press the center navigation button.
The currently selected timeout will have a
check next to it.
Playback
Control shuffle and repeat
Two options, Repeat and Shuffle, are in
the Playback section. Select Repeat to
choose to repeat one, all or no tracks.
Select Shuffle to choose to shuffle tracks
or albums or no shuffle. The currently
selected item will have a check next to it.
Note
Repeat and Shuffle are also both directly
accessible from the remote control.
18
Operation
Input Operation
Media Server
1. Ensure you have an Ethernet cable
connected to the Reference DAC, or you
have established a wireless connection.
2. From the Main Menu, use the navigation
buttons on the remote (or the Input
knob on the front panel) to scroll to
Media Server. Press the center navigation
button, or ‘Select’ on the front panel.
3. Navigate through the menu structure to
choose the desired folder(s), selecting
each folder of your choice. Once you have
reached the song level of the menu, you
will see notes appear next to each song
title.
4. Select the song of your choice. The
Reference DAC will begin to play music
from this point (assuming there are other
songs following the one you have chosen,
the Reference DAC will continue until the
final song).
5. For further features such as repeat and
shuffle, please see page 12.
1. Navigate through the menu structure to
choose the desired folder(s), selecting
each folder of your choice. Once you have
reached the song level of the menu, you
will see notes appear next to each song
title.
2. Select the song of your choice. The
Reference DAC will begin to play music
from this point (assuming there are other
songs following the one you have chosen,
the Reference DAC will continue until the
final song).
3. For further features such as repeat and
shuffle, please see page 12.
4.
USB Input (front Input)
1. Insert USB stick or other mass storage
USB device into the front slot labeled
‘USB Mem’. Ensure the device is seated
properly.
2. From the main menu, use the navigation
buttons on the remote (or the Input knob
on the front panel) to scroll to USB Input.
Press the center navigation button, or
‘Select’ on the front panel.
iPod/iPhone/iPad
3. Navigate through the menu structure to
1. Connect the cable supplied with your
choose the desired folder(s), selecting
Apple iPod, iPhone, or iPad to the input on
each folder of your choice. Once you have
the rear panel labeled ‘iPod’, with the 30reached the song level of the menu, you
pin connector inserted into your device or
will see notes appear next to each song
dock. Ensure the cable is seated firmly at
title.
both connections.
4. Select the song of your choice. The
2. From the main menu, use the navigation
Reference DAC will begin to play music
buttons on the remote (or the Input knob
from this point (assuming there are other
on the front panel) to scroll to iPod dock.
songs following the one you have chosen,
Press the center navigation button, or
the Reference DAC will continue until the
‘Select’ on the front panel.
final song).
5. For further features such as repeat and
shuffle, please see page 12.
19
Operation
USB 2.0HS Input
1. Install the included software on your
PC or Mac (see additional instructions
regarding software installation on page
14).
2. Connect a USB cable from the computer
to the input labeled USB 2.0 HS on the
rear panel of the Reference DAC.
3. From the main menu, use the navigation
buttons on the remote (or the Input knob
on the front panel) to scroll to USB 2.0HS
Input. Press the center navigation button,
or ‘Select’ on the front panel.
4. Launch the appropriate software program
on your computer for music playback.
Internet Radio
1. From the main menu, use the navigation
buttons on the remote (or the input
knob on the front panel) to scroll to the
Internet Radio input. Press the center
navigation button, or ‘Select’ on the front
panel.
2. Navigate through the different folders,
selecting the appropriate choices.
3. Once you have reached radio station
options, notes will appear next to the
name of the station. Select the station of
your choice to begin playback.
AES/EBU, RCA, BNC and Toslink Inputs
1. Connect the appropriate cable from
your source to the Reference DAC.
Ensure the cable is seated firmly at both
connections.
2. From the main menu, use the navigation
buttons on the remote (or the Input
knob on the front panel) to scroll to
the appropriate Input. Press the center
navigation button, or ‘Select’ on the front
panel.
3. Begin music playback from source
component.
20
Operation
Troubleshooting Guide
The audio intermittently distorts when
running with the USB input?
•Check to make sure you are using your
computers USB 2.0 HS (480Mbps) port. A
USB 2.0 FS (12Mbps) port will sometimes
work but will distort. Most PC and Mac
computers made after 2008 come stock
with USB 2.0 HS ports.
•On your PC go into the Device Manager,
then USB Controller, then USB Root Hub
panel and click on Properties and then
Advanced; there it will say the speed of
that USB port.
The USB input is not working?
•Make sure you SELECTED the USB as the
input on the Reference DAC
•Make sure you installed the DAC driver
software from the CD that came with
your Reference DAC and make sure the
computer recognizes the Reference DAC is
connected.
•Make sure you are using a High Speed USB
cable, one rated for 480Mbps.
I don’t see the Reference DAC in the
SOUND panel on my Mac or Windows PC
computer?
•After you install the DAC driver software
you must make sure the Reference DAC
is connected to the computer via the
USB cable and plugged into an AC outlet
otherwise the computer will not show the
Reference DACs presence in the SOUND
panel. In some cases it helps to RESTART
your computer with the Reference DAC
still connected; this allows the computer
to finish the installation and place the DAC
into the SOUND panel for selection.
It is possible for a static discharge to
temporarily disable the microprocessor
that allows the controls to function. If this
should occur, depress the ‘Mute’ button,
then turn off the unit and unplug the DAC
from the A.C. receptacle for 60 seconds.
Reconnect the A.C. plug and turn the unit
back on, along with other components.
The controls should resume normal
operation. If the problem persists, contact
your dealer or Audio Research Customer
Service at 763-577-9700.
The volume is too loud or the audio is
distorted using my Mac computer?
•Check the VOLUME control setting in the
AUDIO MIDI Setup panel. The Volume
should be set to about 0.0dB for both
channels. (The Mac computer allows the
customer to increase the digital volume
of the music past 0.0dBm consequently,
the Mac can overdrive the Reference DAC
and cause distortion. This is not an issue
with the Windows PC where 0.0dBm is the
maximum volume setting.)
21
Software Installation
Windows PC Software Installation Instructions
Installation of the DAC USB Audio Device drivers is only necessary when using the USB 2.0
HS input on the Reference DAC. Software installation is not necessary if only using the
two Toslink or RCA inputs.
Note to Mac OS users
No driver installation is necessary when using a Mac computer in conjunction with the
Reference DAC.
Before starting, make certain the Reference DAC is disconnected from the PC system.
You will be prompted to connectthe CD player at the proper time during the update/
installation procedure.
Perform the following operations with theReference DAC disconnected from the PC.
Note
If you have had another Audio Research driver installed on your PC, please see page 29 for
instructions to uninstall any previous driver versions before installing the new version.
Load the new Audio Research “dacusb_v1.36.1_setup” driver folder onto your PC, via internet
download or contact your sales representative (downloadable from: www.audioresearch.
com/downloads.html). This may initially be a zip folder.
22
Software Installation
Open (unzip) the new USB DAC driver folder and install the new driver, using the
“setup.exe” program, highlighted in the previous illustration.
Follow the installation steps when prompted.
23
Software Installation
24
Software Installation
You will have the option to complete the process by connecting the Reference DAC at a later
time if you choose. If so, click finish.
Otherwise, when prompted during the install, connect the Reference DAC to a USB 2.0 H.S.
or USB 3.0 port on your PC system. Prior to connecting the CD player, make certain the
system is powered off. Next, connect to the USB port, and power on the Reference DAC.
The PC system will acknowledge the presence of the CD player, and complete installation
of the DAC USB device driver. This driver attachment can be found in the Windows Control
Panel under:/Hardware and Sound/Devices and Printers.
The device should be shown as “USB DAC 2.0”, or, depending upon the operating system,
it may appear as “USB DAC 2.0 192”. (Please note that you will only see this device in the
control panel if the source player is attached to the USB port and power is on for the
Reference DAC).
25
Software Installation
When the device driver is successfully installed, power down the Reference DAC
momentarily, and power it up again (while remaining connected to the USB port on your
PC). At this time, the system will automatically search for and complete installation of the
audio output driver that is needed to format the audio output for Reference DAC.
The system will prompt when completed “DAC USB WDM AUDIO device driver software
installed successfully”. After the audio output driver is installed, your system drivers are
configured and ready to play audio source files.
Also, when the Reference DAC is connected and powered up, within the Windows: Control
Panel/ Device Manager, you will be able to see the presence of the “DAC USB DEVICE”:
26
Software Installation
If you open the window for that device, you will see the DAC USB device properties. Click on
the “DRIVER” tab to see the current revision of the driver software installed.
27
Software Installation
Next, You will need to direct your PC System music software player (e.g. JRiver, Foobar2000,
Signalyst HQPlayer, etc.) to connect and play your audio tracks through the Reference
DAC. With the CD player connected and powered up:
Set your software preferences to the DAC USB output path.
There is also a separate application control panel available for the Reference DAC. When
attached and powered, the ARC icon will be located in the pop-up window in the bottom
right corner of the PC master window:
Finally, verify in the Windows Control Panel, under (Devices and Printers) that your Windows
Speaker/Volume option is able to see and select the external Audio Research “USB DAC
1/2” audio output path. (Alternatively, you may need to select this path in the “Windows
Speaker/Mixer” popup.) Select the “MIXER” and then choose the USB DAC 1/2 in order
to set the audio output path to be directed to the DAC input. (Please remember that this
output path will not show up or be selectable unless the Reference DAC is attached and
powered up).
28
Software Installation
Removal of previous driver versions
Uninstall any prior/existing Audio Research Corp. system Drivers (Windows OS). Using your
PC system, find and open the Windows “Control Panel” features.
Find and open the “Uninstall Programs” for your particular computer. This may be named:
“Programs” or “Programs and Features”.
29
Software Installation
Find and select all programs named “DAC USB Driver” or similar, whose Publisher name is
“AudioResearch”, “AudioResearchCorp” or “RigiSystems AG” or similar.
Select Uninstall for each program found with this identity, and follow the directions to
complete this process.
30
Software Installation
After you click “Finish” you should see an updated Program listing with the driver(s)
removed:
31
Maintenance
Vacuum Tubes
It is recommended that you replace the
vacuum tubes of your Reference DAC in
sets. All of the tubes in your DAC have
been matched to have similar operating
characteristics, to provide the best sound
quality and reliability.
Cleaning
To maintain the visual appearance of your
Reference DAC, occasionally wipe the front
panel and top cover surfaces with a soft
damp (not wet) cloth to remove dust. A
mild, non-alkaline soap solution may be
used to remove fingerprints or similar
smudges. Cleaners containing abrasives
should not be used as they will damage
the brushed grain of the front panel finish,
as well as the LED display window. A dry
2-inch pure bristle paint brush works well
to remove dust from bevels, reliefs and
switches.
Servicing
Because of its careful design and
exacting standards of manufacture,
your Reference DAC should normally
require only minimal service to maintain
its high level of performance.
About Fuse Replacement
The Reference DAC has two fuses; the mains
fuse on the back panel, and an internal fuse
towards the front, beneath the toroidal
transformer. To access the internal fuse,
remove the top cover. See specifications for
information on fuse types.
Disposal and Recycling Guidelines
To dispose of this electronic product, do
not place in landfill. In accordance with
the European Union Waste Electrical and
Electronic Equipment (WEEE) directive
effective August 2005, this product may
contain regulated materials which upon
disposal require special reuse and recycling
processing. Please contact your dealer
or importing distributor for instructions
on proper disposal of this product in your
country. Or, contact Audio Research
Corporation (763-577-9700) for the name
of your importing distributor and how
to contact them. Packing and shipping
materials may be disposed of in a normal
manner.
Caution
Your Reference DAC contains sufficient levels
of voltage and current to be lethal. Do
not tamper with a component or parts
inside the unit. Refer any needed service
to your authorized Audio Research dealer
or other qualified technician. Should
service be necessary, please contact your
Audio Research dealer, or Audio Research
Customer Service (763) 577-9700.
32
Limited Warranty
Audio Research Corporation products are
covered by a 3-Year Limited Warranty, or
a 90-Day Limited Warranty on vacuum
tubes. This Limited Warranty initiates
from the date of purchase, and is limited
to the original purchaser, or in the case
of demonstration equipment, limited
to the balance of warranty remaining
after original shipment to the retailer or
importer.
In the unlikely event that technical service
beyond the ability of the importer is
required, Audio Research will fulfill the
terms and conditions of the Limited
Warranty. Such product must be
returned at the purchaser’s expense to
the Audio Research factory, along with a
photocopy of the dated purchase receipt
for the product, a written description
of the problem(s) encountered, and any
information necessary for return shipment.
The cost of return shipment is the
responsibility of the purchaser.
In the United States, the specific terms,
conditions and remedies for fulfillment
of this Limited Warranty are listed on
the warranty card accompanying the
product in its shipping carton, or may be
obtained from the authorized retailer
or from the Audio Research Customer
Service Department. Outside the United
States, the authorized importing retailer or
distributor has accepted the responsibility
for warranty of Audio Research products
sold by them. The specific terms and
remedies for fulfillment of the Limited
Warranty may vary from country to
country. Warranty service should normally
be obtained from the importing retailer or
distributor from whom the product was
purchased.
33
Compatibility and Connectivity
Codecs
MP3
Sampling Rate
8-48 kHz
Resolution
16 bit
Quality
8-320 kbit/s
Tags
ID3 V2.4
16 bit
8-320 kbit/s
ID3 V2.4
AAC/AAC+v1/HE-AAC
24-96 kHz*
Ogg Vorbis 1.0
32-48 kHz
16 bit
Q1-Q10
Ogg comments
44.1-96 kHz
16/24 bit
L0-L8
FLAC tags
176.4/192 kHz
16/24 bit
L4-L8
FLAC tags
22-96 kHz
16/24 bit*
-
WAV tags
FLAC
FLAC (high sampling rates)
LPCM
LPCM (high sampling rates)
WMA-9
WMA-9 lossless and WMA-9 pro
*output sampling rate=max 48 kHz
*16 bit Integer, 24 bit integer packed type1, 32 bit integer, IEEE-0.24 float type3
*16 bit Integer, 24 bit integer packed type1, 32 bit integer, IEEE-0.24 float type3
8-48 kHz
16 bit
5-320 kbit/s
WMA tags
-
-
-
-
Support through transcoding of unprotected tracks by Windows Media Connect only.
ALAC
8-48 kHz
8/16/24 bit
-
-
AIFF
8-96 kHz
8/16/24 bit
-
Id3v1 tags
File Formats
Protocols
MP3 (MPEG-I Layer 3)
AAC (MPEG-4 Advanced Audio Coding File)
WAV
WMA
WAX
ASX
M3U
PLS
WPL
JPEG
HTTP/1.1 Audio Transport
Shoutcast
WMA Streaming (including MMS and WMS)
RTSP/SDP (Real Time Streaming Protocols) over TCP
Ethernet
Ethernet - 10 Base-T
Ethernet - 100 Base-T
Ethernet PHY - Realtek
iPod
iPod over USB
Extended mode supported
(for iPad: streaming only)
UPnP
WiFi
Wireless-LAN-IEEE 802.11b/g/n
WiFi 802.11 compliant
Infrastructure mode
SSID - Site Survey
WPA
WPS
USB
USB 1.1 (FS) - Host
USB 2.0 HS - Host
UPnP digital media player (DMP)
UPnP digital media renderer (DMR)
Twonky compatible
Asset UPnP compatible
Windows Media Player (WMP 11 Vista & XP
and WMP 12 Windows 7) compatible
Philips Media Manager 3.3 compatible
Intel Media Server compatible
Mediatomb compatible
Simple Centre compatible
Control point SongBook
Control point Cidero
Control point PlugPlayer
Connectivity
IP
DHCP
Auto-IP
Static IP Address
Proxy Support
Web server
TFTP server
LLTD
Network API
34
Internet Services
vTuner
Specifications
Frequency Response: Analog tube amplifier: +0-3dB, 0.5Hz to 200kHz at rated output. 0.15dB 20Hz to 20kHz. (Balanced, 200k
ohms load). Digital Bandwidth Anti-aliasing filter @ Sample rate: 44.1kHz = 22kHz, 48kHz = 24kHz, 88.2kHz = 44kHz, 96kHz =
48kHz, 176.4kHz = 88.2kHz, 192kHz = 96kHz.
Distortion: THD+N Less than .006% at 2V RMS BAL output.
Signal-Noise-Ratio: 106dB
Dynamic Range (AES17): 106dB
IMD (SMPTE): .007%
Gain: Max. Digital Gain: 25dB Balanced, 19dB SE.
Input Impedance: Digital: 75 ohms BNC, RCA, 110 ohms AES/EBU, OPT 660nm TOSLink fiber 44.1 to 96kHz.
Output Impedance: 600 ohms Balanced, 300 ohms SE Main (2), 20K ohms minimum load and 2000pF maximum capacitance.
Output Polarity: Non-inverting.
Rated Outputs: 2V RMS .5Hz to 100kHz into 200K ohm balanced load (maximum balanced output @ 0.0dB input level is 17V
RMS at less than 0.05% THD+N at 1kHz) @ 192kHz sample rate.
Digital Sample Rates: 44.1kHz to 192kHz, SPDIF, USB 2.0 HS and Wired Ethernet. 96kHz max over Wireless Ethernet.
Master Oscillator: 22.579mHz ±20Hz for 44.1, 88.2 & 176.4kHz. 24.576mHz ±20Hz for 48, 96 & 192kHz sample rates.
Intrinsic Jitter: <10ps
Controls: Rotary volume selector (104 steps) and rotary input selector.
Push buttons: Power, <, Select, >, Exit, Mute.
Power Supplies: Electronically regulated low and high voltage supplies. R-core transformer & 7 low noise regulators. Automatic 45 sec. warm-up/brown-out mute. Line regulation better than .01%.
Noise: -101dBV RMS 20-20kHz A-weighted (Volume at 1)
Tube Complement: (4)-6H30 dual triodes, plus (1)-6550C and (1)-6H30 in power supply.
Crosstalk: -90dB
Power Requirements: 105-125VAC 60Hz (210-250VAC 50/60Hz) 140 watts maximum. Sleep mode 6 watts maximum.
Dimensions: Width: 19” (48 cm)
Height: 7” (17.8 cm)
Depth: 15.5” (39.4 cm)
Handles extend 1.50” (3.8 cm) forward of the front panel.
Weight: 32.0 lbs. (14.6 kg) Net; 43.2 lbs. (19.8 kg) Shipping.
This unit is RoHS compliant
35
There is only One Reference®
H I G H
D E F I N I T I O N®
3900 Annapolis Lane North
Plymouth, MN 55447
www.audioresearch.com
Specifications subject to change without notice.
©2016 Audio Research Corporation. Reproduction of this document in part or whole is expressly forbidden without written
consent from Audio Research Corporation.
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