Copland 215 DAC and valve headphone amp lands in the UK

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The old-school design has bags of appeal, but don't let that traditional exterior fool you: this is a versatile piece of kit, combining a DAC (digital-to-analogue converter), preamp and headphone amp in a single box.

It can be used as a pure DAC in 'direct' mode. The DAC section is based around the 32-bit, eight-channel ESS9018 Sabre32 Reference DAC chip in quad-mono configuration. It can handle PCM (Pulse Code Modulation) data up to 32-bit/384kHz and DSD (Direct Stream Digital) 64/128.

The Class A analogue section borrows technology from Copland's CD players, while the valve-based headphone amp section uses a pair of ECC88/6DJ8/6922 valves.

Connectivity is comprehensive, with one coaxial and two optical digital inputs, asynchronous USB and one RCA analogue input.

As for outputs, you get two RCA (fixed gain for pure DAC mode, variable gain for preamp mode) plus a 6.35mm headphone jack.

The Copland DAC 215 is available in the UK now for £1998 with a silver or black fascia.