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Benchmark DAC3 DX - Digital to Analog Audio Convertor

The Benchmark DAC3 DX is a premium quality digital-to-analogue convertor, designed for high-end professional applications such as mastering studios. The DAC3 DX is also for elite home theatre and audio entertainment systems, that require the absolute best in sound quality. The DAC3 DX features a range digital inputs including AES, optical, coax and USB. There are both balanced and unbalanced audio output connectors that can be calibrated accordingly. The system is available in silver or black, with or without a remote.




      The conversion system in the DAC3 DX achieves a 4.77 dB signal to noise improvement through the use of 3:1 summing on the main output bus. The ES9028PRO D/A is an 8-channel 32-bit converter. In the DAC3 DX, three channels are summed in the analog domain to form each of the two output channels on the main bus. The remaining two channels provide the aux bus outputs

      The 3:1 summing also improves the THD. The non-linearities in individual conversion channels are averaged across the four summed channels and incoherent non-linearities are attenuated by up to 4 dB.

      The ES9028PRO has two distortion compensation systems that independently remove most of the 2nd and 3rd harmonic distortion in the D/A converter. Benchmark's ultra-clean analog output stages allow these systems to be fully leveraged in the DAC3 series. To the best of our knowledge, no other D/A converter has lower THD than the Benchmark DAC3 series.

      The DAC3 DX is Benchmark's newest 2-channel D/A converter. When compared to the legendary DAC1, the DAC3 series has lower noise, lower distortion, and improved accuracy. The DAC1 and DAC2 series converters have become the reference standard in many of the finest recording studios and mastering rooms. The DAC3 defines a new reference.

      DAC3 converters deliver outstanding musical detail and precise stereo imaging. They employ an advanced high-headroom digital filter design, and a high-sample-rate Asynchronous USB Audio interface. All inputs are fully isolated from interface jitter by Benchmark's new UltraLock3™ jitter attenuation system.

      Internal digital processing and conversion is 32-bits, and includes 3.5 dB of headroom above 0 dBFS. Three balanced 32-bit D/A converters are summed together to form the main output bus. Two channels are reserved for the auxiliary RCA output bus.

      The performance of the DAC3 DX exceeds the measurement limits of today's state-of-the art test equipment.

      DSD (in DoP 1.1 format) is automatically detected on USB, coaxial, and XLR digital inputs. The system seamlessly switches between native DSD and native PCM conversion. DoP 1.1 is supported by many media players, and DSD downloads are now available from several sources.

      Enjoy seamless transitions between native DSD and native PCM playback.

      Benchmark DAC1, DAC2, and DAC3 converters are designed to directly drive power amplifiers and powered speakers. Benchmark converters feature adjustable low-impedance passive attenuators at the XLR outputs that can be used to optimize the interface to the power amplifier (or powered monitor). The sonic importance of these attenuators cannot be overemphasized. Proper gain matching between the DAC/preamplifier and the power amplifier is essential for achieving peak system performance. The attenuators allow precise matching to all amplifiers and powered monitors.

      Passive output attenuators are only found on Benchmark converters - don't settle for anything less.

      All Benchmark converters are designed for maximum transparency. This transparency is absolutely essential in the studio monitoring chain. DAC3 converters are ideal for critical reference-quality professional systems. In home applications, the DAC2 delivers the sonic signature that was created in the recording studio.

      Hear the music exactly as it was heard in the studio.

      When Benchmark's professional converters are used in hi-fi applications, studio-quality sound can be enjoyed in a home environment.

      Discover the natural, uncolored, analog sound of the DAC3.

      The DAC3 DX is the DAC3 of choice for users who do not need analog inputs.

      The DX is well suited to the needs of professional users and includes an XLR AES digital input. The DAC3 DX is the only DAC3 model that includes dual stereo output buses. The analog output buses can be independently set to fixed or variable gain. The DAC3 DX is also the only DAC3 available in a rack-mount version.


      Sample-Rate Display
      Word-Length Display
      Six Digital Inputs
      Three Stereo Analog Outputs
      Two Independent Analog Output Buses
      Digital Pass Through
      Dual HPA2™ Headphone Outputs
      Headphone Mute Switch - left headphone jack mutes main output, function may be defeated
      Native DSD Conversion
      Native PCM Conversion
      Asynchronous USB 2.0
      Asynchronous USB 1.1 for Driverless Operation
      Volume Control Bypass Function for Main Bus
      Volume Control Bypass Function for Auxiliary Bus
      12V Trigger I/O - for sequenced system power switching
      Mute Relays - on all analog outputs
      Optional IR Remote Control - with heavy-duty metal housing
      Power Switch
      Low Power Consumption


      Fs = 44.1 to 96 kHz, 20 to 20 kHz BW, 1 kHz test tone, 0 dBFS = +24 dBu (unless noted)

      SNR – A-Weighted, 0 dBFS = +28 dBu: 127 dB
      SNR – Unweighted, 0 dBFS = +28 dBu: 125 dB
      THD+N, 1 kHz at 0 dBFS: -111 dBFS, -111 dB, 0.00028%
      THD+N, 1 kHz at -1 dBFS: -112 dBFS, -111 dB, 0.00028%
      THD+N, 1 kHz at –3 dBFS: -116 dBFS, -113 dB, 0.00022%
      THD+N, 20 to 20 kHz test tone at –3 dBFS: -108 dBFS, -105 dB, <0.00056%

      Frequency Response at Fs=192 kHz +/- 0.005 dB (20 to 20 kHz)
      -0.013 dB at 10 Hz
      +0.005 dB at 20 kHz
      +0.006 dB at 40 kHz
      -0.002 dB at 80 kHz

      Maximum Amplitude of Jitter Induced Sidebands (10 kHz 0 dBFS test tone, 12.75 UI sinusoidal jitter at 1 kHz)
      < -144 dB

      Maximum Amplitude of Spurious Tones with 0 dBFS test signal
      < -138 dB

      Maximum Amplitude of Idle Tones
      < -147 dB

      Maximum Amplitude of AC line related Hum & Noise
      < -135 dB

      Inter-channel Differential Phase (Stereo Pair – any sample rate)
      +/- 0.25 degrees at 20 kHz
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