In Barn for Review: Denafrips ARES II DAC

The Denafrips ARES II DAC uses R-2R DAC technology to convert digital to analog, an approach I’ve found can please the ears with a naturalness that evades many a chip-based DAC.

On the digital input side, we’re looking at 2x Optical/Toslink, 2x Coax (RCA), and a single USB in, while the Ares II offers both balanced XLR and single-ended RCA output pairs. Via USB, the Ares II supports data rates up to 24-bit/1536kHz (!) and native DSD1024, while the S/PDIF inputs max out at 24-bit/192kHz.

The font panel, as you can see, houses a total of eight buttons for power, input selection, and to set operating modes for NOS (non-oversampling) / OS (oversampling), the latter offering a choice of two filters (Slow and Sharp).

photo credit: Denafrips

Denafrips Ares II DAC
Price: US$780.00 (S$1,028.00)


AC Power: 115/230V, 50/60Hz
Power Consumption: < 30W
Frequency Response: 0-70K Hz (-3dB)
THD+N: ≤0.004% (1KHz A-weighted)
Output: (RCA) 2.2 (+/-10%) V RMS (1KHz)
Output: (XLR) 4.4 (+/-10%) V RMS (1KHz)
Supported Format: (DSD) DSD64 All Inputs, DSD64 –DSD1024 USB Only
Supported Format: (PCM) 24bit/44.1, 48, 88.2, 96, 176.4, 192kHz All Inputs, 44.1 –1536 kHz USB Only
S/N Ratio: 115dB (RCA), 114dB (XLR)
Dynamic Range: >119dB (RCA), >120dB (XLR)
Stereo Crosstalk: ≤-124dB (RCA), ≤130dB (XLR)
Dimension: 215 *230 *45 mm
Weight: 3.5kg

Company Website: Denafrips
Worldwide Distributor Website: Vinshine Audio