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Unlike digital which auto upsamples all incoming data to 24/192 to run a single fixed clock—a scheme which "throws away all original 16/44.1 data to recreate it by interpolation" as some put it—the Eximus lets its users defeat the TI 4192 sample rate converter. Now incoming data is processed bit-original at its native rate. Unlike machines which do that automatically (Antelope's Zodiac Gold comes to mind), the DP-1 can upsample to 96kHz or 192kHz if desired. This puts the user in charge. In addition computer audio players like PureMusic can be set to upsample on the send side. This expands Redbook options to the integer x2/x4 88.2/176.4kHz sampling rates. For those one would defeat the upsampler at the receive end, i.e. in the Eximus.
In the DP-1 the U3 USB transceiver board with its dedicated clocks and XMOS chip mounts above the motherboard for physical isolation and to maintain the enclosure's target dimensions. The originally planned fixed/variable output switch was abandoned in the end as Simon and his listening panel determined that its presence compromised the sound just a bit. "The two clocks of the U3 board and the master clock of the DAC are super low jitter 2.5ppm TCXO. Here our test results actually show between 0.1~0.3ppm of jitter."
Simon Lee's lair
Thursday July 14 2011, 17:01: "I just checked out your update on the Eximus DP-1 review. You might be interested inMr. Simon Lee's initial impression of the first production DP-1. It hasn't been fully burned in yet but it supposedly drove the top-of-the-line Sennheisers, Ultrasones and AKGs "with an air of natural coolness"—can't think of the best way to translate this—"and the center of gravity shifted slightly downward."
Using a Mark Levinson N°.31 and his MacBook Pro with Amarra 2.2 as transport, he tried out songs with varying sample rates. After hours of listening he concluded that the DP-1's DAC was at least as good if not better than his reference Mark Levinson N°.30 and dCS Elgar+. In less than one minute of listening it was clear than the DP-1's DAC was far superior to the Cambridge and Benchmark converters.
So far the best performance came from Amarra and using the DP-1 as a preamp/converter. Then again this was only the manufacturer's initial impression so it can't be entirely unbiased. But as far as I know, Mr. Lee is a respectable man who personally and openly shares a lot of info, opinions, his ideals and philosophy with users of April Music components including myself." - SongKyung Han
Simon Lee's first unit still with fixed/variable switch and his MacBook Pro with Amarra
Because the Eximus DP-1 began shipping in Korea by the end of July to not kick off its worldwide export tour until about a month later, the U3 D/D converter arrived and went under the loupe first.