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I've bought an Ares II 12th Anniversary Edition as an emergency DAC to tide me over until I decide which TOTL DAC to go for next. It arrived from Singapore yesterday. This is the second Ares II I've owned, the first took a month of burn in before sounding good. I left the new one playing a Roon stream for 4-5 hrs last night, popped my headphones on and sat stunned for the next 3 hours, listening to CDs on my AudioLab CDT and streamed files from Roon. It sounds amazing. Unbelievably good. I don't even have the superlatives to articulate my experience.


Streaming chain: Roon Nucleus > Ethernet > Ubiquiti Switch > Optical > Media Converter > Ethernet > Pi4 Ropieee > USB > Denafrips Iris > I2S > Denafrips Ares II 12th > RCA > LTA MZ3 > ZMF VC and Arya Stealth CDT chain: AudioLab 6000CDT > SPDIF Coax > Denafrips Ares II 12th > RCA > LTA MZ3 > ZMF VC and Arya Stealth The FPGA update is a game changer. For real. The Ares II was already a 'bang for buck' champion; it's just been elevated into the stratosphere. I really can't believe what I am hearing. Stunning.

Main System Metrum Acoustics Ambre • Metrum Acoustics Adagio • Metrum Acoustics Forte • NVA Cube 1 Headphone System Linear Tube Audio MZ3 • Sundara • Arya Stealth Edition • Vérité Closed Ltd Cables NVA TSCS • Blue Jeans • DH Labs • Periapt Power Farad • Tomanek Sources Roon • Tidal • Qobuz • AudioLab 6000CDT

Credit: John @ UK





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