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Esoteric K-05X CD/SACD Player and DAC

The World's Reference-Standard SACD/CD Player and DAC: Esoteric K-05X Boasts the Best Transport Mechanism, Mammoth Power Supply, and 34-Bit D/A Processing for Preeminent Sound and Precision

Massively updated for 2015, the Esoteric K-05X CD/SACD player and DAC constitutes the absolute reference-standard for disc and music-file playback.The 31-pound K-05X contains the world's best transport mechanism, the VRDS-NEO VMK5, a design that yields pinpoint precision, atomic-clock-like accuracy, and unshakable stability. A mammoth toroidal transformer, five separate digital filters, and an enhanced voltage-controlled crystal oscillator clock generator complement K-05X's 34-bit D/A processing that uses an astounding four AK4490 32-bit balanced DACs to convert high-res 34-bit PCM to analog for optimal dynamics, expressiveness, and detail. Ready for anything the future holds, K-05X even touts USB support for 2.5/5.6/11.2MHz DSD and up to 32-bit/384k PCM. Read more about the fascinating technology and unsurpassed parts below, but know that the end result is peerless musical playback and beautiful emotional involvement. No, it doesn't get better than K-05X100% Music Direct Guaranteed.

The World's Best Transport: VRDS-NEO VMK-5 Improves Reading Accuracy

Esoteric's unique VRDS-NEO VMK-5 transport mechanism incorporates a high-precision turntable that greatly improves reading accuracy by mechanically correcting for disc-surface run-out. The hybrid construction integrates precision-machined aluminum with polycarbonate to help minimize rotational inertia. Formed of high-rigidity BMC (Bulk Molding Compound) and steel, the hybrid turntable bridge also makes a significant contribution to the suppression of rotational vibration and run-out. In addition, the transport's spindle motor realizes further improvements in reading accuracy with an advanced servo control that uses rotation-detection circuitry. Mechanical operations – such as opening and closing the tray and clamping the disc – are performed by a unique differential gear system.

Refined Dual Mono D/A Converters Achieve Premium Channel Separation and Power
The D/A converter's analog output circuitry features excellent high-end resolution and natural musical texturing. Centered around Asahi Kasei's high-end AK4490 32-bit DAC, this circuitry accentuates the player's expressive power with four parallel/differential circuits and eight outputs driving each channel – twice that of conventional players – to further enhance sound quality with excellent linearity and low distortion. Arranged in a discreet dual-mono configuration, the D/A converters and analog output circuitry are laid out in parallel on either side of the board and completely isolated from the DSP circuitry, achieving superb channel separation.

34-Bit D/A Processing Translates Into Optimal Musical Expressiveness 

Employing a 34-bit D/A processing algorithm with an encoding resolution that is an astounding 1,024 times greater than that of 24-bit encoding, multiple 32-bit DAC devices are combined to convert the high-resolution 34-bit PCM signal to analog. In the digital range, high-bit data gradation minimizes calculation errors and provides faithful conversion to analog, attaining outstanding powers of expression with even extremely small music signals.

A Power Supply to Write Home About: Incorporates High-End EDLC Technology
K-05X is equipped with a large, high-efficiency, high-powered toroidal transformer custom-designed to ensure excellent sound quality. Technology developed for Esoteric's Grandioso C1 preamplifier is also employed, and features EDLC (Electronic Double-Layer Capacitors). This regulated power supply boasts an astounding total capacity of 500,000μF per channel for exceptional low-frequency sound reproduction. High-output power-supply circuitry further provides clean, steady power to all circuit blocks.

Proprietary Esoteric-HCLD Type 2 Current-Enhancing Output Buffer Circuit

Providing excellent current transmission capability as well as a strong drive output, K-05X employs Esoteric-HCLD Type 2 buffer amplifier circuitry first used in such high-end models as Esoteric's C1 preamplifier. Two buffer circuits are installed per channel and configured differentially to drive the XLR outputs and in parallel to drive the RCA outputs.

High-Precision VCXO Clock for Serious Accuracy and Sonics

K-05X's high-precision VCXO (voltage controlled crystal oscillator) supplies a highly accurate reference-clock signal to the digital circuitry. K-05X's large, custom-designed VCXO is jointly developed with Nihon Dempa Kogyo (NDK), a leading manufacturer of crystal oscillators. Incorporating an unusually large crystal element, the VCXO realizes both excellent center accuracy (±0.5ppm) and extremely low levels of phase noise to ensure exceptional sound quality.

External Clock Sync Ability

Connecting K-05X to a high-precision master clock generator (G-01, G-02) allows synchronization of its operation with an external clock signal, thereby enabling an upgrade of system sound quality. Compatible with 44.1/88.2/176.4kHz input frequencies, both the 10MHz and 22MHz direct master clock linkage and external clock synchronization are supported for both digital optical and digital coaxial inputs, as well as when the USB input is used.

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Compatible disc types: Super Audio CD, CD (including CD-R and CD-RW)
Analog audio outputs:
    XLR connector (2ch) x 1
    RCA connector (2ch) x 1
Output impedance:
    XLR: 20 Ω
    RCA: 20 Ω
Maximum output level (1 kHz, full-scale, into 10 kΩ):
    RCA: 2.5 Vrms
    XLR (set to 0dB): 5 Vrms
Frequency response: 5 Hz to 70 kHz (- 3 dB)
S/N ratio: 117dB
Total harmonic distortion: 0.007% (1 kHz)
Digital audio output:
    RCA connector x 1: 0.5 Vp-p (into 75 Ω)
    Optical digital connector x 1: -21 to -15 dBm peak x 1
    USB-B port: USB 2.0 standard
Digital audio input:
    RCA connector x 1 (input impedance 75 Ω): 0.5 Vp-p
    Optical digital connector x 1: -24.0 to -14.5 dBm peak
    USB-B connector: USB 2.0 standard
Clock sync input format: Connector: BNC
Supported input frequencies (±15 ppm): 44.1, 48, 88.2, 96, 176.4, 192, kHz, 10/22.5792/24.576 MHz
Input impedance: 75 Ω
Input level:
    Rectangle wave: equivalent to TTL levels,
    Sine wave: 0.5 to 1.0 Vrms (50 to 75 Ω)
Power supply:
    AC 230 V, 50 Hz
    AC 120 V, 60 Hz
    AC 220 V, 60 Hz
Power consumption: 23W
Dimensions (WHD): 17-5/8" x 5-1/4" x 14"
Weight: 30.8 lbs.
Included accessories:
    Power cord set
    Remote control (RC-1251)
    Batteries for remote control (AA)
    Owner's manual
    Warranty card

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User Manual (PDF, 1.7 MB)

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