Perreaux SILHOUETTE SXD2 User Manual

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Silhouette SXD2

USB DAC

Owners Manual

Perreaux Industries Limited makes no warranty for the use of its products, other than those expressly contained in the warranty detailed herein. The Company assumes no responsibility for any errors which may appear in this document, reserves the right to change products or specifications detailed herein at any time without notice, and does not make any commitment to update the information contained herein. No licenses to patents or other intellectual property of Perreaux are granted by the Company in connection with the sale of Perreaux products, expressly or by implication.

mboob^ru® is a registered trademark of Perreaux Industries Ltd.

Terms and product names in this document may be trademarks of others.

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i

Introducing the

 

Perreaux Silhouette Series

 

Designed as a range of high quality, yet affordable modules; the

 

‘Silhouette’ series will compliment and enhance your existing

 

system.

 

Drawing on our extensive knowledge gained from more than a

 

quarter of a century of developing highest quality audio products,

 

the ‘Silhouette’ concentrates our legendary design and build

 

quality into a compact package without sacrificing performance.

 

The Perreaux ‘Silhouette’ series provides performance levels

 

never before seen in its class.

SXD2 USB The Perreaux Silhouette series SXD2 is a sophisticated stand-DAC alone Digital to Analog Converter (DAC) module with Universal Serial Bus (USB) functionality. Designed to offerup-samplingto 192kHz with24-bitresolution, the SXD2 is an effective way to improve the performance of your CD player. The SXD2 accepts a coaxial SPDIF digital output directly from the transport of the CD player (digital out). Alternately, Hard Disc Drive (HDD), computer based, stored music files can beplayed-back

using the SXD2 via the USB connection.

The heart of the SXD2 comprises of a high-resolution24-bitTexas Instruments DAC and features other devices capable of automaticallyup-samplinga48kHz/16-bitdigital signal to a maximum of192kHz/24-bit.

CD players with an onboard DAC of inferior quality can be enhanced by the increased resolution and automatic up-samplingfunctionality of the Perreaux SXD2. In addition, the SXD2 features Plug & Play USB technology providing a convenient method of accessing your HDD stored music files.

The Perreaux SXD2 appeals to a new generation of music lovers, namely those that appreciate the increased resolution that the unit can provide to their existing CD player based system and additionally enabling access to the convenience of HDD computer based music storage systems. With the SXD2 you can now enjoy the best of both worlds.

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Key Features

 

USB connectivity

 

Up-samplingto 176.4kHz/192kHz

 

24-bitoutput resolution

 

Compatible with high resolution digital audio formats

 

 

(SACD and DVD-A)

 

Internal power supply featuring a custom designed, fully

 

 

shielded toroidal transformer

 

Multiple regulated supplies, including separate analog and

 

 

digital supplies

 

Optimal internal layout for increased channel separation

 

 

and isolation of digital stages from the analog stage

 

Enhanced audio design featuring highest quality PCB and

 

 

minimal internal wiring

 

Balanced current to voltage conversion in analog output

 

 

stage

 

 

Low output impedance

 

 

Compact

 

 

Stylish

The Perreaux “Silhouette” series takes you even closer to the elusive goal of “The Perfect Re-Creationof a Musical Event”.

From all of us at Perreaux Industries Limited, thank you for choosing the Perreaux Silhouette Series SXD2 USB DAC.

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ii Important Safety Instructions

Note: Please read all instructions carefully before attempting to operate your Perreaux “Silhouette” SXD2 USB DAC.

ALWAYS switch off power to your system before attempting to connect or disconnect cables.

ALWAYS disconnect your system from the mains before attempting to clean your unit.

ALWAYS keep electrical equipment out of reach of children.

ALWAYS unplug sensitive electronic equipment during electrical storms.

NEVER disconnect the mains earth from the system.

NEVER operate the SXD2 with the cover removed.

NEVER use any liquid inside the SXD2.

NEVER bypass any fuse.

NEVER attempt to repair the SXD2. In the event of a problem, please contact your Perreaux dealer.

NEVER expose the SXD2 to extremely high or low temperatures.

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iii

Table of Contents

i

Introducing the Perreaux Silhouette Series

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ii

Important Safety Instructions.............................................................

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iii

Table of Contents ..................................................................................

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1

Unpacking and Placement..................................................................

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2

Instant Install..........................................................................................

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3

Front Panel Functions ........................................................................

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4

Rear Panel Functions..........................................................................

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5

Special Design Philosophies..............................................................

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6

Special Design Features.....................................................................

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7

Care and Maintenance.......................................................................

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8

Warranty Information........................................................................

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9

Extended Warranty Registration Form..........................................

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10

Troubleshooting Guide......................................................................

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11

Specifications........................................................................................

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12

Physical Dimensions............................................................................

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13

Contact Details.....................................................................................

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1Unpacking and Placement

Unpacking The SXD2 is packaged for maximum protection. To open, sit theProcedure box upright and cut the reinforced tape at the top of the box. The

product can now be removed.

Pull the foam protecting end-capsoff either side of the unit and remove the black material covering.

The SXD2 USB DAC is now unpacked and ready for further installation.

Note: Please retain all packaging material for future transport.

Box 1 x SXD2 USB DACContents 1 x Product manual

3 x Performance analysis charts

1 x USB cable

1 x BNC to RCA adaptor

1 x Detachable AC power cord

Placing Your The SXD2 should generally be placed close to your source orSXD2 input equipment, thus keeping interconnect cabling between the SXD2 and input component as short as practical. This will reduce the inputs susceptibility to radio frequency interference

and the negative effects associated with long cables.

Ventilation The SXD2 is a digital device incorporating a low powerRequirements amplifier. Ventilation requirements are not considered an

important factor in product placement.

In the event that the SXD2 is to be incorporated into custom cabinetry, please refer to the dimensional information provided in the Physical Dimensions section of the manual (Chapter 12).

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2

Instant Install

If you are like us, the first thing you will want to do is to play your favourite piece of music through your new SXD2. The following instructions are written to enable you to achieve this as quickly as possible. These are not comprehensive instructions, but are designed to enable you to play music now!

Note: Please take the time to read the SXD2 manual thoroughly as it incorporates many features, which will enhance its operation.

Placement

The SXD2 is a sensitive digital device with a low power amplifier and best results will be achieved when placed away from potential interference from other components and electrical devices, for example AC mains cords/outlets, transformers, high power amplifiers, etc.

Place the SXD2 close or near the source or input component in order to make as short a connection as possible.

Turn off associated components

This minimises the potential to damage any other components when connecting your SXD2 into the system. It is OK to leave your computer running, although make sure your application software is not open.

Switch on SXD2

Insert the power cord supplied into the rear of the SXD2 and into the wall. Switch on the socket at the wall and turn on the power of the SXD2 by setting the power switch down.

Caution! Prior to connecting the AC mains, please check the voltage label on the rear panel to ensure that your unit conforms to the power supply in your area. Never attempt to connect the unit to the incorrect voltage.

Select USB input on SXD2

Set the toggle switch at the rear of the SXD2 to select the USB input. Refer to Chapter 4 for Rear Panel information.

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Connect computer to SXD2 via USB

Connect the USB output from your computer to the USB input at the rear of the SXD2 (the computer will automatically detect and install the necessary drivers). Refer to Chapter 4 for Rear Panel information.

Connect SXD2 output to preamplifier

Connect the outputs of the SXD2 to the unbalanced input of your preamplifier, integrated amplifier or powered speakers. Refer to Chapter 4 for Rear Panel information.

Play your favourite playlist

Open your preferred application software (eg. iTunes, WinAmp, Windows Media Player, etc.) and play your favourite playlist.

Switch on preamplifier

Turn on your preamplifier and power amplifier or integrated amplifier. Slowly increase the volume to achieve a comfortable listening level.

CONGRATULATIONS!

Now that you have achieved your first objective, sit back, relax and please read the rest of the manual at your own pace, in your favourite armchair, whilst sipping a hot cup of coffee. You’ll find the whole experience much more pleasurable whilst listening to music.

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3

Front Panel Functions

Power LED

This blue LED indicates the power status of your SXD2 USB DAC.

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4

Rear Panel Functions

Analog Outputs

These single-ended(RCA) outputs provideline-levelanalog audio, via suitable RCA interconnect cables, to a preamplifier or integrated amplifier.

For more information on output specifications, please refer to Chapter 11.

Digital Input

The single-ended(BNC) input accepts a Sony/Philips Digital Interface Standard (SPDIF) digital audio signal from a source component (e.g. Perreaux SXCD CD player, Apple AirPort Express, Sony PlayStation).

The SPDIF standard dictates 75H transmission of the digital audio signal. Use a digital interconnect cable specifically designed with a characteristic impedance of 75H.

A BNC connector has been used in place of the “standard” RCA type, because design limitations mean RCA connectors can never achieve a characteristic impedance of 75H. Refer to Chapter 6 ‘Special Design Features’ for more information on why a BNC connector is used.

If you already have a suitable high-qualitydigital interconnect equipped with RCA connectors, please use the supplied adaptor to convert the BNC output to RCA.

For more information on input specifications, please refer to Chapter 11.

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Note: Use a 75Ω digital interconnect cable equipped with BNC connectors to get the best possible digital performance.

Using the supplied adaptor to convert the BNC output to RCA will not degrade the signal any more than if an RCA connector was fitted by default.

Universal Serial Bus (USB) Input

USB input from computer, accepts a standard Type B USB connector. For more information on input specifications, please refer to Chapter 11.

Input Selector Switch

Selects between the coaxial digital input and USB input.

Serial Number/Voltage Label

The serial number is unique to your SXD2. Please record this number and store it in a safe place. For any service related enquiry, please be prepared to quote the product serial number to Perreaux personnel or their authorised service representative.

The voltage displayed in this area is the ONLY voltage that can be accepted by the unit.

Caution! Never attempt to connect the unit to the incorrect voltage.

AC Mains Input

An IEC-standardmains input is provided at the rear of the unit. The AC cord set is removable, allowing it to be upgraded at your will.

On/Off Switch

When operating the switch down, power is applied to the SXD2.

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5Special Design Philosophies

Perreaux has been designing and manufacturing only the highest quality audio componentry for more than a quarter of a century. Technology has continued to evolve rapidly over that time and our knowledge and application of design, materials and manufacturing techniques has advanced in tandem with this. Today’s Perreaux range comes closer to fulfilling our shared vision than at any other time in the past.

The SXD2 has been developed to meet customer demands for compact higher quality products. Careful attention has been taken throughout the development phase, not to make compromises that would degrade the high quality of reproduction that the unit is capable of delivering.

To follow is a discussion on some of Perreaux design philosophies that have been incorporated into the entire range.

Minimalist Leading British architect, John Pawson, writes:

Design

“The Minimum can be defined as the perfection that an object achieves when it is no longer possible to improve it by subtraction. This is the quality that an object has when every component, every detail, and every junction has been reduced or condensed to the essentials. It is the result of the omission of the inessentials”.

Perreaux has historically embraced the minimalist ethic from an audio design perspective only. The concept of “less equating to more” has been at the heart of all Perreaux audio designs for more than a quarter of a century. Our current product offering takes the minimalist ethic to new levels by totally embracing the concept.

Minimalist Electronics

We wish to maximise the quality of your listening pleasure by keeping the componentry and signal path as uncluttered, short and clean possible. All components in the signal path, even those of the highest quality have an effect on the signal, thereby altering the quality of the reproduction in some way. Our aim is to recreate in its entirety, the original performance by not adding or subtracting anything, irrespective of the source.

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Minimalist Aesthetics

Our products appeal to those who seek the ultimate in audio exclusivity, namely the perfect blend of “form and function”.

“Form and function” are both tough masters. We make no excuses for producing some of the most distinctive high-endaudio products on the planet. We let “form and function” blend together in perfect harmony. This surely is the essence of true minimalist utilisation.

Minimalism in a Wider Context

John Pawson writes:

“Clearly simplicity has dimensions to it that go beyond the purely aesthetic: it can be seen as the reflection of some innate, inner quality, or the pursuit of philosophical or literary insight into the nature of harmony, reason, and truth”.

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6

Special Design Features

Construction The beautifully styled curving front panel is milled from solid 6.0mm (0.2”) thick aluminium extrusion and finished in a satin chrome electroplate. The front panel also features themboob^ru® logo machined into the solid aluminium. The chassis and cover are both manufactured from heavy gauge steel. No cover fixing screws are visible. The “Silhouette” SXD2 is stylish yet functional and exhibits typical hallmarks of the Perreaux brand.

Circuit

Topology

The Power

The SXD2 has an internal power supply.

These designs are

Supply

invariably more sophisticated than those featuring external plug-

 

in power packs. Special attention must be paid to shielding,

 

transformer design, capacitance and earthing.

 

Separate

We have specially developed a fully shielded, toroidal

Analog and

transformer with three separate secondary

windings. Five

Digital

regulated power supplies are employed, three analog and two

Supplies

digital. This ensures the analog circuitry has maximum isolation

 

from any digital power supply artefacts and noise.

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Block

Diagram

USB The SXD2 is fully compliant with USB 1.1 specification andConnectivity utilises ‘Full Speed’ (12Mbps) transceivers. The bandwidth offered by ‘Full Speed’ USB is more than sufficient to stream

digital audio.

PlugandPlay Designed to bypass the inherently flawed soundcards internal to computers, the SXD2 offers plug and play convenience when connected via the USB port.

BNC Digital RCA connectors are inherently disadvantaged for use with theInput high frequency(1.4MHz-2.8MHz)signals associated withConnector 44.1kHz/16-bitdigital audio. Design limitations mean RCA connectors can never achieve a characteristic impedance of 75H, resulting in reflections and signal loss due to impedance mismatch. In contrast, BNC connectors are purposely designed to carry high frequency signals, up to 2GHz for 75H – therefore

overcome the problems exhibited by RCA connectors.

Up-Sampling The SXD2 automaticallyup-samplesthe digital signal 4x the input sample frequency, up to a maximum of 192kHz. For example, if the digital input is 44.1kHz (CD), the SXD2 will upsample to 176.4kHz (4x 44.1kHz).

Rather than offer constant up-samplingto 192kHz, we have purposely decided to use a multiple of the input frequency (4x). This guarantees that every 4th sample will be true. Using 44.1kHz sample frequency as an example, if it wereup-sampledto 192kHz, then only every 640th sample would be true to the original 44.1kHz signal.

24-bit Red Book Audio CDs have a sampling rate of 44.1kHz and 16-Resolution bit resolution. This results in a maximum possibleSignal-to-Noise Ratio (SNR) of around 96dB. Increasing the resolution to24-bitnot only reduces quantization error in signal amplitude, but also increases the maximum possible SNR to around 144dB.

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High Accepting PCM digital streams up to 192kHz and24-bit,via theResolution coaxial SPDIF input, allows the SXD2 to be compatible with

Formats high-resolutionformats such asDVD-A.

PCB Layout Special attention has been paid to the PCB layout to ensure maximum isolation between the analog and digital stages. Ground planes and earth returns have been meticulously designed to provide optimal current paths, so as not to interfere with the delicate analog section. Careful layout of the analog output guarantees that crosstalk is kept to an absolute minimum.

Localised All integrated circuits (ICs), both analog and digital, haveSupply localisedinductor-basedsupply filtering. Even though voltageFiltering regulators are used for all supply rails, they can be susceptible to picking up noise on their way to the ICs, especially with high frequency clocking and data lines present. By filtering locally, we are making absolutely certain that every last ounce of noise is

removed from the supply rails.

Localised filtering, along with meticulous PCB layout, paves the way for the SXD2 to utilise the higher signal-to-noiseratio (SNR) performance offered by24-bitresolution.

Balanced I-V Balanced current to voltage conversion is utilised in the audioConversion output stage. This ensures that anycommon-modenoise and

artefacts are removed before amplification and the analog filter.

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7

Care and Maintenance

Note:

Cover

Front Panel

Note:

Please switch the unit off and remove the cord set from the rear of the USB DAC before attempting to clean your SXD2 in the manner described below.

Never apply liquid directly to the SXD2. Never use abrasives.

Never rub in a circular motion.

The cover features a durable high quality powder coat finish. To remove finger marks and dirt, lightly rub the surface with a soft cloth.

If the dirt is not removed, dip your cloth in a mild solution of soap and water, squeeze excess moisture from it and then gently reapply to the surface.

Stubborn dirt may be removed by the application of a small quantity of isopropyl alcohol, applied directly to the cleaning cloth only, and reworking the effected area.

The SXD2 front panel features a high quality electroplate finish. Over time the surface may retain finger marks and may need to be cleaned to restore it to original condition.

Regular Cleaning

Gently wipe the front panel with a very clean cotton cloth. Wipe across the surface and never in a circular motion.

Removing Stubborn Marks

Only attempt this infrequently, as too regular or vigorous application may damage the surface.

Apply a small quantity of any car polish containing carnauba wax to a very clean cotton cloth.

The car polish must state “Safe for Clear Coats” as the polish will therefore contain the absolute minimum amount of abrasive compound.

Gently wipe over the front panel in lateral motion, allow to dry then gently wipe off with a very clean cotton cloth.

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8

Warranty Information

1 Year The Perreaux SXD2 is warranted free from defects in materialLimited and workmanship under normal use for a period of1-year(365

Warranty days) from the date of purchase.

To extend the warranty of the Perreaux SXD2 to three (3) years from date of purchase, please return a fully completed warranty registration form along with a copy of the original receipt of purchase to:

Perreaux Industries Ltd

PO Box 305

Mosgiel

Dunedin 9053

New Zealand

For the Extended Warranty Registration Form, please refer to Chapter 9.

3 Year The extended warranty for the Perreaux SXD2 is three (3) yearsExtended from the date of purchase. If during the warranty period theWarranty SXD2 exhibits defects in materials and/or workmanship, it will be repaired or replaced, at our option, without charge for either parts or labour, at our factory in New Zealand. The warranty does not apply to any unit that has been misused, abused or

altered.

Any unit that is not performing satisfactorily may be returned to the factory in New Zealand for evaluation. Return authorisation must first be obtained by either calling or writing to Perreaux prior to shipping the unit. Perreaux Industries Ltd and its authorised distributors and dealers shall not be held liable for any freight or insurance charges. Freight and insurance charges to and from the Perreaux factory will be the sole responsibility of the owner of the unit.

There is no other express warranty on the SXD2. Neither this warranty nor any other warranty, express or implied, including any implied warranties of merchantability of fitness, shall extend beyond the warranty period. No responsibility is assumed for any incidental or consequential damages.

Obtaining In the event that you are experiencing difficulty with your SXD2,Service please as a first step consult the troubleshooting guide in Chapter

10. For further assistance, please contact your Perreaux dealer.

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