Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

Headphone Amps

Rolling Your Own with the Centrance DACmini?

Consumers get to decide the final look and feel of the Centrance DACmini DAC/Headphone Amplifier. Will it be worth the asking price? We will find out.

Centrance DACmini Angle

If you’ve been active in the Head-Fi or personal audio space for the past decade, you’re probably very aware of Centrance. The brand also has a sizable presence in the professional space and recently had their DACProHD top the “Dongle Madness” list which ranked over 200 models.

Their M8V2 DAC/Amplifier was just reviewed by Lynn Miller and he lamented having to send it back; it was that competitive with his existing desktop system in a much smaller package. Considering how prominent Centrance is in both markets, it’s rather surprising that they didn’t have a desktop DAC/Amplifier in their line-up until now.

Enter the new Centrance DACmini; don’t let the name fool you either as the DACmini 2 is a fully featured desktop DAC/amplifier with all of the bells and whistles that most consumers would ask for in 2022.

centrance-dacmini-front-rear

The only issue is that Centrance has not yet decided on the DAC and specifications of the unit — consumers get to decide that. You get to roll your own if you ask hard enough.

Much like the original DACmini of nearly 10 years ago, Centrance has asked for user feedback in helping to decide on what features to include.    

Here is what we do know so far:

The DACmini 2 is a balanced desktop DAC and headphone amplifier as well as a pre-amplifier for use with powered speakers or a separate power amplifier.

It will offer both balanced and single-ended options for both headphones and for the pre-amplifier.

DACmini atop Mac mini
DACmini atop Mac mini

It can be powered either directly from a computer or through a second USB Type-C charging port. In addition to USB inputs, the DACmini will have both coaxial and optical inputs as well as Bluetooth supporting both aptX HD and LDAC.

It will also feature multiple gain levels to allow use of sensitive IEMs and hard to drive full-sized headphones. A digital volume control for improved channel balance and lower distortion and a custom-tuned EQ system designed to give users the best possible sonic experience.

The aluminum case shares its design aesthetic with the new Mac Studio for those who want to pair the two and create a true studio. But for those non-Mac users, the DACmini is equally at home with Windows, Android, or even Pi-based systems.  

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

Centrance began taking pre-orders today and is giving the first 50 orders a $100 discount which will make the DACmini 2 only $999 USD for the first few early buyers. Pre-orders will continue at $1,099 after the first 50 orders with an expected retail of $1,850 once the pre-order period ends and the unit is in full production.

For more information: centrance.com

3 Comments

3 Comments

  1. ORT

    May 22, 2022 at 8:03 pm

    Nice! I am currently using as my main set up, a new Schiit Magnius hooked to via the balanced outputs of my much liked Emotiva XDA2. I go back and forth between using the Magnius for headphones or the infernal mini-jack of the loverly XDA2. Both sound the same to me, which is to say like music!

    For such as I, this other wise excellent piece of gorgeousness made metal by Centrance needs a pair of VU Meters up front, especially so at this price level. ’tis an amp, correct? Then lavish it with not only function but functional, traditional, mechanical beauty. VU Meters!

    And I should like to thank the designers at Centrance for placing (or so it appears to me) the power switch up front, thus eliminating having to perform that which I have adroitly named the “Schiit ReachAround®­”. Thankyew…Thankyewveruhmuch!

    Emotiva? If you are reading this (and you should be!) I am becoming impatient waiting for a new XDA3 with both the gorgeous trademark blue lights, build quality and the inclusion of a pair o’ VU Meters. Please, while were “young”?!

    ORT

    • Michael Goodman

      May 23, 2022 at 3:24 am

      Thank you for your comments. We are crowdsourcing this effort and feedback like yours is extremely important in making this product a runaway success. Please reach out to us via the website and we will make sure to integrate your input as best as possible! There is a contact form at the bottom of the page. Thanks again!

      http://www.CEntrance.com

      – Michael Goodman, CEO, CEntrance

      • ORT

        May 23, 2022 at 9:07 pm

        As you suggested sir, I have filled out the form. Thank you, Mr. Goodman! Your DacMini is quite loverly and doubt less of the highest build quality. I saw no mention of MQA and that is heartening as I find that voodoo to be of no use to a music enthusiast such as my self.

        Again, thank you sir!

        ORT

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Advertisement

You May Also Like

DACs

Does the Questyle M15 Dongle DAC deliver more for less and rival the Cayin, AudioQuest, and THX Dongle DACs?

Headphone Amps

The Ferrum ERCO made its N. American debut at CanJam NYC 2022 last weekend and it's another new Polish manufacturer in the Head-Fi space.

DACs

The Cambridge Audio DacMagic 200M DAC/pre-amp/headphone amplifier might be the high-res audio hub you're looking for.

Headphone Amps

There's a lot to test with the CMA Fifteen and this $2500 DAC Headphone Amplifier handled it all exceptionally well, but is it right...

DACs

At $199, the THX Onyx Dongle DAC may have stepped on Kong and left the rest of the competition in its wake. Is this...

DACs

The $139 Questyle M12 Dongle DAC/Headphone Amplifier is here and it works with every format and platform there is. DragonFly killer? Quite possibly.

Headphone Amps

The Xduoo Xa-10 DAC/Headphone Amplifier might be ideal for those working from home during the pandemic. It's versatile and sounds great.

DACs

The Schiit Audio Hel 2 has gamers screaming for joy with more power, inputs, and support for phone conversations while gaming.

Advertisement

ecoustics is a hi-fi and music magazine offering product reviews, podcasts, news and advice for aspiring audiophiles, home theater enthusiasts and headphone hipsters. Read more

Copyright © 1999-2022 ecoustics | Disclaimer: We may earn a commission when you buy through links on our site.