Alex Halberstadt has been living with the review sample totaldac d1-direct ($19,280) and is feverishly writing his review (maybe it’s just the heat). Now the d1-direct is here for a follow-up from yours truly.
From Vincent Brient (Mr. totaldac):
The d1-direct is the only one-box DAC in the Totaldac range which has direct outputs from the R2R ladders.
Thanks to a new offset management and a special filtering technique it was at last possible to have a direct output like the d1-twelve.
This gives the highest transparency potential with a sound close to the sound of the d1-twelve but the 1.6V unbalanced output allows less versatility than the d1-seven.
It has been my totaldac experience, having reviewed my first totaldac, the d1-dual DAC, back in 2013 and following up over the years with reviews of d1-tube-MKII, d1-integral, d1-six, and d1-seven, that Vincent Brient describes the sound of his DACs accurately. I also owned the d1-six and d1-seven so a totaldac has been my reference for years.
My initial impressions suggest I like going direct.