The Digital To Analog Decoder for music lovers
To commemorate DENAFRIPS’s 12 years of digital audio excellence, the most popular best selling PONTUS II 12TH-1 Anniversary Edition features several performance enhancements at components level that might not be visible by the naked eyes but certainly audible for the seasoned and trained audiophiles' ears.
The original Pontus II DAC shattered the expectations of what a R-2R Ladder DAC could be. PONTUS II 12TH-1 superior sound quality enhancement took it to another level.
FPGA DSP Module
- FIFO & Reclocking
Tuned Capacitor Bank
- Electrolytic + Film Caps [ERO/WIMA]
R-2R Ladder Network
- True Balanced R-2R
- Hand-picked tight tolerance resistors
Gold Plated Screws
- Enhanced gold-plated screws for PSU Power
The PONTUS II 12TH-1 is a true balanced, dual mono R-2R Ladder Network Arrays DAC. Each channel is equipped with independent high-speed FPGA to facilitate the digital signal decoding by means of 4 sets of 0.01% R-2R network. The choice of such design yield very small linearity error, high decoding speed, low digital noise, not only to ensure that the audio signal is of very low distortion, but also to ensure a very low background music noise; allow listener to enjoy the true music with dark background.
All digital input are FIFO buffered and reclocked by the on board FEMTO crystal oscillators. The excellent rejection of word-clock jitter makes DENAFRIPS DAC less reliance to the source equipment clock quality. PONTUS II 12TH-1 can transform your consumer grade computer, CDPlayer to high-end sound quality.
Non-Oversampling R-2R DAC /Signal fed to the DAC remain in its native sampling rate without additional processing. PONTUS II 12TH-1 is a true NOS DAC.
Enhanced PSU & Conductors
Gold-plated copper screws and conductors for power transfer from PSU to DAC mainboard
Fine Tuning of the PSU at components level to further enhanced the AC/DC rectifiers and DC regulators
In the PONTUS II 12TH-1, DENAFRIPS has made a deliberate and significant change by introducing a simplified AC main power socket. Contrary to being a cost-cutting measure, this modification reflects DENAFRIPS' commitment to high-quality power supply as the cornerstone of superior sound.
To achieve this goal, DENAFRIPS has gone the extra mile by customizing the AC mains power socket in-house using UPOCC gold-plated copper. In the PONTUS II 12TH-1, a non-switched AC mains socket, firmly believing that this step will bring the device even closer to attaining an exceptional level of perfection
LINEAR POWER SUPPLY
Clean power equates to the foundation of good sound. A dedicated linear power supply unit, designed and encased in a 1.5mm thick metal alloy enclosure, can be found underneath the DAC motherboard.
The box-within-box design, not only does it eliminates the inherited problems of dual box solution, it presents the details and attentions DENAFRIPS put into the premium DAC design.
Beefy dual O-Core Transformers for Digital and Analog sections, Ultra-Low ESR, Long Endurance Reservoir Capacitors, and multi-stages super linear power supply, ensuring ultra precision, low ripple power supply charging up DAC.
The PONTUS II 12TH-1 is ideal digital-to-analog converter (DAC) for music enthusiasts who prioritize intricate details, expansive soundstage, precise imaging, and a touch of warmth to enhance musicality.
Its remarkable performance is arguably one of the pivotal elements in high-fidelity audio systems.
This is a true bargain in the realm of high end DAC’s. If it were $5k I would give it a positive review and say it was priced right. As it is, the cost is $1700 and that my friends is remarkable. This could be an end game dac for many out there, no matter the cost of your system. That in itself is remarkable.
An Expressway to Your Skull
With a combined price of roughly $2200, I know of no other digital to analog converter solution that comes anywhere near the IRIS II / PONTUS II combo in terms of conveying music with all of its attendant power and beauty in tact.
Michael Lavorgna @ Twittering Machines
Denafrips Pontus is an excellent DAC that moves digital sound forward and does not have the usual bevy of digital warts. It breaks some of the long-standing digital barriers that have kept me from fully engaging with digital music. It is at a reasonable price point (by audio standards) and, based on construction and parts alone, represents a tremendous value. Now throw in the sound quality that I experienced, and I can’t think of a better value in a DAC today.
Ken Redmond @ The Audio Beatnik
Positive Feedback Writers' Choice Awards for 2020
In my DAC rating scheme, the Pontus is number one with a bullet. It's price of $2298 in Singapore dollars, puts it at about $1700 USD and I'm confident that nothing under $2000 will come close, they won't even make it into the same neighborhood. I told Alvin that its the high-end analog turntable of DACS, no, it's the tubuliscious tube amp of DACS, no... it's both. No kidding.
Stu McCreary @ PF
The Best DAC This Reviewer Has Ever Heard; Bar None!
This DAC is transparent in ways that you won’t believe a piece of electronics could be transparent. The soundstage is holographic, the bass is punchy and deep, the midrange is unbelievably creamy and rich yet incredibly detailed at the same time. When playing music, the electronics simply disappear letting all the music out into the room. I rate this DAC an 11 out of 10 and I can’t recommend it highly enough. In fact, I’m going to buy the review sample!
George Graves @ audiophilestyle
Audiophilia Star Component Award
The most impressive aspect for me is the huge image it renders, putting the musicians in a deep and natural space, and making my small listening room open up into something much, much larger. This DAC is an easy recommendation for almost any listener looking to move up the food chain, but at $1700 it is a no-brainer, and could easily hold its own in 5-figure systems. My strongest recommendation.
MICHAEL JOHNSON @ Audiophilia
The Best DACs Buyers Guide Summer 2021
A Chinese-built DAC sold directly through a Singapore source, the Pontus sounds like a risky purchase. We got one, tested it, and discovered that it featured a “lot of cutting-edge DAC tech” and that “the price is certainly right.” “It sounded so good we’re curious about how much better the higher level Denafrips DACs are,” we concluded.
6moons - Blue Moon Award
The effect is quite striking. Envision a picture that had some low-level details obscured. Suddenly a light from within reveals those missing details. It doesn't make tone colors paler. There's no bleaching, no undue sharpness or glare. It's indeed the same picture, just with more information. With Pontus you hear bigger space, room echoes that lack with Ares II, musicians breathing. You gain a more organic impression because real life has many of those little parasitic sounds that only are noticed when stripped out but which contribute to the live feel.
Frederic Beudot @ 6moons