When it first debuted, Arcam's irDAC proved to be a mighty impresive digital-to-anlaogue converter, winning a Group Test back in HFC 379. And now Arcam has unveilled the follow up to the succesful DAC in the shape of irDAC-II. The asyncronous USB DAC can also be utilised as a digital preamp, headphone amplifier and Bluetooth streamer.

At its heart sits the ESS Sabre ES9016K2M DAC chip, while the headphone amplifier stage is taken from Arcam's flagship A49 amplifier. The digital and anlogue stages are both individually isolated, while an ultra-low power supply and direct coupled signal path are also included. Arcam has described the thorny subject of jitter as being something of an obsession for its engineering team, and consequently they have worked to produce a signal that they describe as almost jitter free.

The irDAC-II provides full 24-bit/192kHz and DSD128 support and can be hooked up via a selection of digital sources including asynchronous USB, aptX Bluetooth, optical and coaxial. All inputs can be operated via the IR remote, which also provides transport control of a connected PC or Mac source via USB.

The irDAC-II will be on sale from March for £495 and you can find out more details here or check out the specifications below...

DAC - ESS ES9016K2M 

Inputs - USB, 2x coaxial, 2x optical, Bluetooth 

Frequency Response - 20Hz-20kHz, +/-0.1dB 

Total Harmonic Distortion + Noise -0.0007% 

Signal-to-noise ratio (A-weighted) - 117dB (24-bit) 

Maximum output level - 2.1V RMS 

Supported sample rates 

USB: 32kHz, 44.1kHz, 48kHz, 88.2kHz, 96kHz, 176.4kHz, 192kHz, 384kHz 

Optical: 44.1kHz, 48kHz, 88.2kHz, 96kHz 

Coaxial: 44.1kHz, 48kHz, 88.2kHz, 96kHz, 176.4kHz, 192kHz 

Bluetooth: SBC, AAC, aptX, aptX-LL 

Bit Depth - 16-bit, 24-bit 

Headphone - 30Ω - 600Ω, 3.5mm plug 

Dimensions - W194 x H44 x D124mm 

Weight - 1.1kg