NuWave Phono Converter
The NuWave Phono Converter, NPC, is a new category of product for the high-end that I am extremely excited about. After years of development it’s finally here (well right around the corner anyway).
The NPC is a new category of product that combines a state-of-the-art phono preamplifier and analogDSD/PCMconverter together in one chassis.
You can input anything from an iPod to a $100,000 turntable setup and connect directly to a DAC, computer or preamplifier. Once connected you can play vinyl discs or any analog source either directly into your preamplifier or DAC.
You can also connect the NPC to your computer and RIP (record) content in either double DSD or 192kHz 24 bit PCM.
The NPC producesboth DSD and PCMfrom its digital outputs and high resolution fully balanced analog from its audio outputs.
The parallel digital path
The heart of the NPC’s design philosophy is running parallel and separate analog and digital paths, allowing each to be fully optimized for best performance and faithful to the original recording and mastering process.
Vinyl mastering is handled through filters and reverse RIAA EQ kept strictly in the analog domain from the input to the output of the cutting lathe. To help faithfully reproduce this delicate non-digital path an analog playback chain is the preferred reproduction method â€“ which is why the NPC is 100% analog through its phono chain.
Once the playback and EQ requirements of the vinyl path have been properly amplified, it is then a relatively straightforward process to quantize the output through a state-of-the-art Analog to Digital Converter (A/D Converter).
Using the NPC
The NPC can be used as a standalone A/D converter through its auxiliary analog input, a digital output phono preamplifier feeding a DAC or computer, or as a purely analog phono preamplifier. Simultaneous analog and digital outputs are available on the NPC. Connections to a preamplifier, DAC, or computer are simple and direct.
Using appropriate software on a PC, NPC owners can RIP their entire vinyl collections to their computers at 192/24 PCM or up to double DSD rate.
Connecting to the computer
You can record either DSD or PCM through either Mac or Windows machines using an off-the-shelf program such asAudacity. Because DSD is sent using DoP, Audacity or other recording programs handle the files as if they were standard digital audio WAV files. DoP does not alter the DSD data; instead it cuts it up into acceptable packets that look like PCM but are not. The pure DSD stream is maintained perfectly for future playback.
Recorded files play directly on your computer using a program likeFoobarfor Windows OS andPure Musicfor the Mac operating system. You can also stream these files directly to a DAC via USB from the computer or Ethernet with an appropriate server.