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HiFiMAN Introduces EF1000DAC Hymalaya Pro R-2R Ladder DAC for $15K

Can HiFiMAN’s new flagship desktop DAC/Amplifier improve over its predecessor? We’ll find out soon.

HIFIMAN EF1000DAC Lifestyle Angle

HIFIMAN today announced the EF1000DAC ($15,000), a new reference desktop DAC/amplifier featuring the company’s recently developed Hymalaya Pro ladder DAC. It should drive nearly any headphone, and could it make for an even better pairing with Susvara?

The EF1000DAC is a statement of the HIFIMAN design team’s talent for developing high-fidelity, highly efficient technologies that represent unmatched sonic output with maximum energy savings. The headphone amplifier section features a power output of 13.7 watts with quad matched transistors.  

The standout feature of the DAC section is HIFIMAN’s proprietary Hymalaya Pro Ladder DAC, an update of the company’s first-generation Hymalaya DAC, originally released in 2021. 

HIFIMAN EF1000DAC Back

Between the R-2R resistor ladder network and the controller, the commonplace PCM1704 chip ladder DAC and others like it consume extensive power in the switch section. HIFIMAN’s Hymalaya architecture removes the switches while maintaining a similar or improved level of Total Harmonic Distortion (THD) as the PCM1704K DAC chip, with greater power handling and overall efficiency, as well as improved sonic performance.

As the new top-of-the-line DAC/amplifier in the HIFIMAN lineup, the EF1000DAC includes several updates to the original EF1000 amplifier. The new model is the first to feature HIFIMAN’s ultra-precise Discrete Op-amp at the input stage, which functions at high-voltage 26 V, with an output of 12 V at 0.0003% THD and output impedance measured at 100 ohms. 

HIFIMAN EF1000DAC Angle

Thanks to the Hymalaya PRO DAC and ultra-precise Discrete Op-amp module, EF1000DAC’s Total Harmonic Distortion (THD) is as low as 0.0012%. Rounding out the EF1000DAC are quad matched transistors in each channel, in the fully balanced 13.7 watt output stage. In addition, there is a fully balanced step volume control and a 150 W transformer with oxygen-free copper wire.

The EF1000DAC includes four input options: USB, optical, coaxial, and RCA. In addition, users can stream LDAC and Apt-X HD Bluetooth for sonics that are demonstrably better than standard BT streams. Outputs on the front panel include 4-pin XLR and 6.5mm, while RCA single-ended and balanced XLR outputs are on the back panel.

HIFIMAN EF1000DAC Front Panel

“From the beginning, innovation has driven every step of our company’s growth, with each generation of products representing a leap forward in terms of design, application, and performance,” said Dr. Fang Bian, President and CEO, HIFIMAN Electronics. “The Hymalaya Pro ladder DAC and its application in the EF1000DAC will set a new standard for what can be achieved in high-fidelity personal audio electronics at any price.”

The EF1000DAC will be available in June 2023 for $15,000 from authorized HIFIMAN dealers, store.hifiman.com and headphones.com.

Related reading: HiFiMAN’s EF600 DAC/Amplifier Utilizes A New R2R DAC

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4 Comments

4 Comments

  1. Peter Belli

    April 27, 2023 at 11:07 am

    Guess they should have paid a designer to do a couple of sketches before going with the 1972 UPS look.

    Looks absolutely horrible!

    • Ian White

      April 27, 2023 at 11:09 am

      Peter,

      It’s the size that throws people. Not sure I share your enthusiastic disdain for the industrial design, but I do think it could be smaller and rounded off in some spots.

      It does sound really good. Which it should for the asking price.

      Best,

      Ian White

  2. ORT

    April 27, 2023 at 6:29 pm

    If I may play the role of arbiter of elegantiae? This object d’not-quite-art needs only to be have its sides encased in fine wood and a burnished copper front with a vintage pair of VU Meters. Then and only then would it be worthy of being in the range of 1/3 of its axing price.

    Maybe.

    I think it looks cool but it needs more. A DAC/AMP just “sits” there but with the addition of VU Meters it silently shouts a vintage pedigree of worth to all who see it. Copper and fine wood + VU Meters adds to the ambience.

    Think Lang’s “Metropolis”. Silent? Yes. But visually? Emphatically classic.

    ORT

  3. Adam

    August 30, 2023 at 3:55 pm

    All I want is excellent sound, dont care how big it is or how “luxurious” it feels and looks like, I just need it to SOUND luxurious!

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