If you're looking for a versatile DAC and headphone amplifier to handle your assorted hi-res music library, Cambridge Audio may have just what you need. The British audio brand has just launched its latest flagship model, the DacMagic 200M.
Successor to the previous generation DacMagic Plus, the DacMagic 200M is the first product from the company to natively support MQA technology, meaning it can decode and play downloaded MQA files, in addition to Tidal Masters (which are based on the tech). That's alongside native support for 32-bit/768kHz PCM and DSD512 files too.
Twin coaxial (up to 24-bit/192kHz) and optical (up to 24-bit/96kHz) inputs allow you to feed a number of digital sources through the DacMagic 200M, including CD players, games consoles and Blu-ray players. There's also a USB type-B socket (32-bit/768kHz, DSD512) for hooking up a laptop, plus balanced XLR and unbalanced RCA analogue connections.
Last but not least for those who'd like to easily and conveniently stream files from their device over wireless means, the DacMagic 200M now has built-in aptX Bluetooth.
As for its DAC architecture, the new top-of-the-line DacMagic utilises dual ESS Sabre DACs in a mono configuration, meaning one chip handles the right channel while the other handles the left. Three pre-set filters (Fast, Slow and Short Delay) offer a level of sonic personalisation and help to reduce noise generated by the digital-to- analogue conversion process, too.
As you can see below, filter and source selection as well as file type and size are indicated by the series of LEDs on the front panel.
The headphone Class A/B amplification, meanwhile, drives a front-panel 6.3mm socket that, thanks to a reduction in impedance output, promises more power and less distortion than the one in the previous design.
The versatile Cambridge Audio DacMagic 200M is available now, priced £449 ($499, AU$899). In Australia, it's distributed by Synergy Audio Visual.
Best DACs 2021: USB, portable and desktop DACs
Focal Arche review: French speaker/headphone brand has a crack at DACs