Burson Audio - DA-160 - DAC

rate 4.0

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  • Brand: None
  • Category: Audio Interfaces
Fully Discrete: Their dissatisfaction with IC based building blocks such as IC opamps and 3 pin power supply regulators have been well aired. The DA-160 is completely free of such cost focused building blocks. Instead they have built the entire DAC with idealistic circuitry designs and top quality discrete components. The focus of their discrete approach was purely on performance. A More Matured And Refined Sound Although the DA-160 is based on the DAC section of the HA-160D, being a stand alone DAC they had more freedom to further optimise its performance. They decided to tweak the power supply network into a constant current source power supply and use two power transformers to lower the noise. The result is a more matured sound with even richer micro dynamics and substance. Connectivity The new DA-160 is designed to be the heart of an audio system, therefore connectivity is a must. They added two sets of USB inputs to make sharing the DAC between 2 PCs or wireless player easy. Apart from the standard RCA S/PDIF, an additional Optical Toslink was also added. Furthermore there are two sets of RCA outputs running parallel to make sharing the outputs of DA-160 between the two systems possible (eg, headphone amplifier and intergraded amplifier). Sonic Characteristics Reproducing Ray Charles through the DA-160, his emotional expressions through words or through his unique sounds was superbly controlled. In his duet of "Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word" with Elton John, you could hear that Ray Charles was weakened by cancer but the fire in his voice burned bright, turning a simple tune into an intimate and enticing lover's plea! You can also hear Elton John is deeply moved. Ray Charles once said that he never sings the same song twice. He said that it's because he sings based on how he feels on that day and every day is different. With satisfaction, the DA-160 was able to reproduce how he and Sir Elton John felt on that day.


  • Frequency response: 5Hz (-0.3dB) to 35 kHz (-1dB)
  • Signal to noise ratio: >101dB at 0dB gain
  • 2 x USB Connection (Support up to 24bit @ 96Khz with 10ppm low jitter clock)
  • 1 x Coaxial RCA (Support up to 24bit @ 192Khz) ; 1 x Toslink / SPDIF (Support up to 24bit @ 192Khz)
  • 2 x RCA output (line level with +6dB gain selection)
  • 24bit 192 DAC / 96k USB
  • 2 x USB Inputs, 2 x RCA Outputs, Digital Inputs - Coax and Optical
  • Frequency response: 5Hz (-0.3dB) to 35 kHz (-1dB)
  • THD: <0.001% at 6mW/300 Ohms
  • Signal to noise ratio: >101 dB at 0dB gain
Jason S "J Sox" 4.0
I can't give a full review yet, only have about 150 hours on the DAC at this point. I love the sound so far, especially for vocal detail and front and center sound. I've been doing a lot of testing against my Peachtree IDac and find the Burson to be equally as pleasing to listen to as the Peachtree which is a Class A Stereophile rated DAC. The Peachtree has a slight edge for the ability to make lower quality recordings easier to listen to, but I would say the Burson comes out ahead for build qua ... lity and vocal detail. I'm more into vinyl than computer audio and find the Burson to give me a little more focused tighter sound. I ended up buying mine through Jaguar Audio Design after talking to Darin who really knew his stuff. More >