Chinese brand Khadas, owned by Shenzhen Wesion Technology Co. Ltd., announced the start of sales of the Tone2 Pro DAC. We announced the new product a month ago.
Note that in addition to the on-board ESS ES9038Q2M chips, which transmit the signal to four OPA1612 operators with three buffer amplifiers, the XMOS XU216 processor is installed here. It provided hardware MQA decoding. The new product works with PCM resolutions up to 32 bit/384 kHz and DSD512. At the same time, the level of “distortion plus noise” at the output is not worse than -118 dB.
in addition to the coaxial digital input, the tone2 pro has two usb-c connectors installed at once. One is for communication with a computer, the second is able to work with I2S devices or receive power from 5 V linear sources, which improves the signal-to-noise ratio.
in addition to balanced and unbalanced headphone outputs, there is also a balanced line output. it uses proprietary proprietary balanced rca connectors. unlike conventional ones, they have not one, but two sequentially arranged tubular internal contacts.
If you connect to them with a conventional RCA cable, you can get an unbalanced signal converted from a symmetrical one. the center pin of the rca cable connector simply short-circuits these two internal contacts. Khadas has already prepared cable adapters from XLR to balanced RCA. apparently, the company intends to actively distribute its development.
The small dimensions of balanced RCA connectors (not only compared to XLR, but also with conventional RCA) allowed us to seriously reduce the size of the Tone2 Pro. On top of its aluminum body is an encoder of a hybrid digital-analog volume control, pressing which also switches the operating modes of the device. They are displayed by an RGB LED indicator.
It is known that in the near future Khadas plans to release Tone2 (in the name there will be no prefix Pro) without MQA support in the form of a DIY kit for self-assembly.
In the US, the price of Tone2 Pro for prepayment was $170.