To create a moving, once-in-a-lifetime connection between music and a listener, the vitality of the music needs to be conveyed in its purest form without stress. That is the ultimate mission of top-quality audio. ESOTERIC’s P1 and D1 digital source systems combine remarkable new technologies such as ES-LINK4 and 36-bit D/A processing. It’s easy to see why these flagship models are called Grandioso.
The D1 follows the monaural configuration of the D-01, which we introduced in 2004 as the world’s first monaural D/A converter. The D-01 was developed with the goal of attaining the highest level of channel separation and the ideal power supply to each channel. In the new D1, we have introduced the latest technology and further enhanced the design. The right and left channels can now be link-connected with a single HDMI cable (provided), and easy input from external source devices is possible. With the D1, you can enjoy a world of incredible stereo with the rich stereo image and sonic depth that is only possible with a monaural configuration.
Outstanding sound quality with 36-bit processing resolution
Aiming for the pinnacle of sound quality, we have incorporated the AK4495S, a state-of-the-art 32-bit DAC device developed by Asahi Kasei Microdevices Corporation. Sixteen circuits per channel are provided to achieve phenomenal linearity and low noise. In addition to direct processing of the DSD signal, a new 36-bit D/A processing algorithm has been adopted for analog conversion of the PCM signal at 36-bit resolution. The result is fine, smooth sound quality as along with high resolution.
ESOTERIC-HCLD*: ESOTERIC’s own output buffer circuit featuring fortified current transmission
A high-speed current transmission capability is the most important factor of an analog output circuit for transmitting a wide dynamic range of music signals downstream without deficiencies. For the ultimate performance as a line driver, the output buffer amplifier circuit of the D1 makes extensive use of materials and is configured with its own board separate from the D/A converter. The current output capability is high, and the high-performance elements adopted for the slew rate, which indicates response speed, boast the incredibly high speed of 2000V/㎲. The ability to supply instant current is maximized with an extravagant buffer circuit configuration utilizing one circuit for RCA output and one circuit each for hot and cold connections for XLR output. With the ESOTERIC-HCLD, the D1 reproduces the dynamism of music with breathtaking reality.
*HCLD=High Current Line Driver
Large toroidal transformers boasting high speed and surplus power supply capacity
Two large toroidal power supply units are installed for the digital and analog circuits, enabling high-efficiency and high-power drive operation in addition to low noise and low distortion. Stable and clean power is supplied to each circuit block by strong power supply circuits incorporating multiple large capacitors.
High sound quality through the separation of digital and analog circuits
D All analog circuits (DAC circuit analog portion, HCLD buffer circuit, etc.) are electrically separate from the digital circuits. This further enhances the clarity of sound quality by preventing the intrusion of digital noise.
Wide-ranging D/D conversion functions to handle many source types
In addition to playback in the original sampling frequency, the D1 has functions for x2, x4, and x8 up-conversion of PCM digital signals. There are also various D/D conversion modes for PCM format (PCM-to-DSD conversion function, etc.)
Seven types and eight channels of digital input that support high sampling rates
To enable connection to an extensive range of devices, the D1 is equipped with wide-ranging digital inputs of seven types and eight channels (ES-LINK x 1, XLR x 1, i.LINK 4p/6p x 1, USB x 1, coaxial x 2, optical x1), and can be used for high-sampling-rate sources of up to 24-bit/192kHz. In addition, XLR x 2 supports high-sampling-rate/high-bit inputs of 48-bit/192kHz (ES-LINK3) and 24-bit/384kHz (Dual AES 8Fs).
New ES-LINK4 enables broadband transmission
ESOTERIC has developed an original, state-of-the-art transmission format called ES-LINK4, which allows DSD and 352.8kHz/48bit PCM ultrawideband digital transmission using an HDMI cable. ES-LINK4 performs a large part of the digital signal processing on the sending side, greatly reducing the digital signal processing load on the D/A converter. In addition to ultra-wide bandwidth, we sought high sound quality through our “Pure D/A” concept, in which the D/A converter specializes in its original function of D/A conversion processing.
A new dimension of isolated clock technology
The clock circuit, which supplies highly accurate reference clock signals to a digital circuit, can be considered the core unit of a digital player. The clock circuit of the P1 and D1 is completely independent of other circuits, including its power source and ground, enabling pure clock signals to be supplied to the system. The voltage controlled crystal oscillator (VCXO) was developed especially for the P1 and D1 in a joint effort with Nihon Dempa Kogyo (NDK), a major manufacturer of crystal oscillators. For a high-precision custom clock device worthy of leading models, high sound quality playback is provided thanks to an extremely low level of phase noise and a crystal element that is even larger than before.
High-accuracy clock sync
Jitter is reduced by connecting the P1 and D1 with a BNC cable for clock sync (synchronized playback). ESOTERIC’s original technology for direct master clock linkage without Phase-Locked Loop (PLL)* is also supported. This technology enables pure clock processing, achieving a clear and accurate stereo image and ultra-clear sound quality.
An even more sophisticated level of system operation is possible by connecting the high-precision G-01 rubidium master clock (sold separately). This master clock supports clock sync for a variety of frequencies to suit your sound-quality preferences, including master clocks (22MHz/10MHz) and WORD clocks (44.1kHz/88.2kHz/176.4kHz).
*This master clock is a digital audio output reference clock (22.5792MHz) generated within the high-accuracy clock module of the D1. The system also uses this master clock as the clock of the digital output circuit supplied directly to the P1 without passing through the P1’s internal PLL circuit. It also supports the LINK 10MHz direct master clock using the 10MHz clock supplied from the G-01 (sold separately).
USB input supporting 32-bit/384kHz PCM, 2.8/5.6MHz DSD, and asynchronous transmission
The D1 comes with USB input supporting asynchronous transmission and rates up to 32-bit/384kHz PCM and 2.8/5.6MHz DSD. Using ESOTERIC’s original PC driver software, the D1 achieves high-grade playback of even studio-master-quality source files. DoP and ASIO 2.1 are also supported.
*Mac is supported only by the standard driver DoP method.
Either Hot 2 or Hot 3 can be selected for the pin assignment of the XLR audio output.