Esoteric SA50 Super Audio SACD Player/D/A Converter
VOSP (Vertically-aligned Optical Stability Platform), features a specially designed shaft-mounted laser pickup assembly. This pickup system evolved from ESOTERIC's P-01 and P-03 transports. This pickup design ensures that the laser optical axis is always at the centre of the data track for optimal reading capability. With VOSP implementation, no off axis error correction is needed because no off axis data tracking is allowed. The VOSP mechanism is rigidly clamped by a steel plate and a large diameter stabilizer made of 8mm-thick steel for superior anti-resonance and anti-vibration properties.
Highly advanced digital conversion capability
The SA-50 has a highly advanced pre-D/A stage digital to digital signal conversion capability fully utilizing the 32 bit digital processor on board. PCM up-convert function is available for PCM signals read from Redbook CDs, and PCM up-conversion capability is allowed from other external digital devices. Oversampling frequency is selectable from original Fs, ×2 (64 / 88.2 / 96 kHz) or Fs, ×4 (128 / 176.4 / 192 kHz). The SA-50 can also convert PCM signal to DSD signal. As for Super Audio CD, not only processing native DSD signals directly into analogue signals, the SA-50 can also convert the DSD signal into a PCM signal, with oversampling frequency selectable from ×2 (88.2 kHz) or ×4 (176.4 kHz). These functions provide a wide range of options to match to your hi-fi system, or your general listening preferences based on your choice of software.
USB and digital inputs
The SA-50 is a CD/SACD player and is also highly capable as a standalone 32 bit D/A converter providing 3 digital inputs. (COAX, OPTICAL, USB). PC connectivity via the USB interface will provide audiophile playback quality to your hard drive based streaming audio media. Dual PLL circuits reduce jitter when connected to external digital source devices The SA-50 shares dual stage PLL jitter reduction with the ESOTERIC D-05 D/A converter, and is highly capable as a standalone D/A converter / re-clocker, when connected with CD transports, media servers, or other external digital devices. The second stage PLL circuit has its own voltage controlled crystal clock, and re-clocks the signal produced by the first stage PLL circuit. Dual PLL circuits, with two different characteristic responses in jitter reduction effectively purify the input digital signal.
32 bit digital volume attenuator
The SA-50 features a 32 bit digital volume attenuator. Wide 32-bit headroom ensures highly precise volume attenuation for disc or digitally input data playback without degrading the signal. As a result, the SA-50 can be used as a digital preamplifier, connecting directly to a power amplifier.
High quality 2 channel dedicated analog audio output
Precise imaging and deeper sound stage. The analog audio output circuits are in a dual mono configuration producing excellent channel separation. 2 channel dedicated circuit design further enhances precise imaging, transparency, separation and depth of soundstage. RCA (single-ended), output or XLR (fully-balanced), output is selectable. The analog signal path that is not used can be completely de-activated. XLR terminal pin assignment is user selectable between 2 pin hot or 3 pin hot*. *The hot pin is fixed to 2 pin hot for dual (RCA +XLR), output mode.
Rich and high speed power supply capability
The large custom designed toroidal transformer, has a very highly efficient power supply capability. This provides electrical power to the drive mechanism and audio circuits very quickly, without adding noise or distortion to the signal path.
The SA-50 features a WORD SYNC input terminal to accept an incoming external WORD clock signal* from an optional external master clock. The incoming ultra-stable clock signal produced by an external master clock sync generator (ESOTERIC G-03X or G-0Rb), effectively upgrade the unit; delivering higher performance with better acoustic transparency, greater separation and a wider sound stage. *The SA-50 will not accept an external clock input signal when used only in its DAC operating mode.
Highly rigid chassis construction for optimal resonance control capability
The extra thick aluminum front panel and T5mm aluminum top and side panels help the unit to control unwanted vibrations and resonance. The bottom chassis features a heavy duty 5mm thick steel plate combined with three pinpoint isolation feet made of quenched steel. This base design helps to provide a level platform that is vibration free. Highest order resonance-control functionality is accomplished through this engineering in a contemporary audiophile design.
G-03X Master Clock Generator
High precision crystal master clock oscillator core
The G-03X uses a high precision crystal oscillator (Accurate to ±0.1ppm). The G-03X is a younger sister of the flagship G-0Rb and is an evolutionary successor to the crystal clock generator model G-0. The G-03X has an OCXO (Oven Controlled Crystal Oscillator), circuit on board. The OCXO is a small thermostatic chamber used to heat the combination oscillator core and control circuits at a fixed, high thermal level. This provides stability to the crystal clock, being free from unwanted and characteristic variations. As a result, the G-03X is exceptionally stable at ±0.1 ppm, even within severe thermal environments ranging from -20 °C to 70 °C. The crystal master clock generator G-03X can be used with a wide range of digital source components with the same established product quality level achieved by the G-0.
Power supply equipped with large capacitors and highly quality R-core transformer
The G-03X uses a large R-core transformer to provide maximum performance in a newly designed low profile cabinet. Combined with high-speed Schottky barrier diodes, low-impedance, and smooth chemical capacitors and other unique power supply components, the power circuit design of the G-03X provides extremely stable electronic power to the internal circuitry.
Proprietary gold-plated BNC ports
The G-03X uses ESOTERIC's proprietary gold plated BNC ports, providing highly reliable electrical contacts. Furthermore, these ports are securely fastened to the rear panel so that they are robust enough to handle even the heaviest and thickest types of audiophile high grade BNC cable.
Mechanically inert and structurally refined for optimal performance
In the tradition of ESOTERIC's product line development, the G-03X housing is designed with high rigidity throughout. Thick aluminum exterior (front, top and side panels), and multiple internal reinforcement materials provide a very strong housing to minimize cabinet vibration and resonance. Three ESOTERIC exclusive pinpoint feet (patent pending), made of quenched steel, allow the unit to be completely stabilized during operation. Thanks to ESOTERIC's vibration and resonance free construction, the rigid housing blocks small vibrations which could affect clock precision, allowing the oscillator to operate at its full potential. The G-03X is manufactured with this highly rigid housing construction in a 2U height (90mm/3.5inch).
Easy operation of the G-03X is allowed by simply by pressing the buttons on the front panel. Equipment settings can be checked at a glance on high-quality LCD displays.
Three separate output systems
The G-03X has three separate output systems which can output 1×, 2×, and 4× multiples of the base frequency (44.1kHz/48kHz). G-03X has two output ports, making it possible to supply word clock signals to up to six different compatible devices. It is also possible to cancel the clock signal from any unused sub-system to prevent sound quality degradation due to unnecessary interference from active outputs.
Proprietary universal clock output
ESOTERIC developed a universal clock which serves as a new Word Sync format for A/V connections. The G-0s was the first product equipped with this universal clock. This universal clock is also included in the G-03X, and its sync signal can be supplied to compatible devices available from ESOTERIC. This function allows an ultra-precise oscillator to centrally manage everything from audio to video.
External 10 MHz signal input port
The G-03X has an input port capable of receiving a 10 MHz reference signal from an external component. This port can be connected with devices such as an ultra-precise cesium atomic oscillator as a "system upgrade," for special applications.
LCD Display panel
These new ESOTERIC model feature an LCD display panel specifically designed for a high level of visibility. The new LCD display has three brightness levels(plus display off mode) -- a useful feature in home theaters where excessive light is not desired. As in most audiophile electronics, an incremental audio improvement may also be achieved by "powering down" the LCD display during use.