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TEAC UD-501 Dual-Monaural DAC/Amp

TEAC UD-501 Dual-Monaural DAC/Amp

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Product Description
Winner of Japan’s prestigious Visual Grand Prix Gold Award and one of Audiostream’s “Greatest Bits,” the TEAC UD-501 DAC/amp “invites you into each musical performance, making it downright difficult to leave.” Its dual-monaural design features two BurrBrown PCM1795 32-bit DACs, two MUSES8920 opamps, and two toroidal-core power transformers per channel—which together make for a clear, pure, three-dimensional sound. Along with native DSD playback at either 2.8 MHz or 5.6 MHz (DXD) rates, the UD-501 supports ASIO2.1 and DoP playback and PCM audio up to 384 kHz/32-bit resolution Read More

Customer Reviews

(3 reviews)
Sep 10, 2020
checkVerified Buyer
Fantastic DAC, very capable headphone amp.
Ladies and gentlemen, this DAC is so good it hertz. It looks great. Especially when paired with my AX-501. The menu is simple and easy to navigate. Using the one menu button to cycle through choices, and the input selector dial to make selections and change options, it only takes a couple seconds to run through all the options and probably less than a minute to completely configure. I spent a fair amount of time listening to just the DAC with my M70x and Fidelio X2 and I'm really impressed. It makes a great headphone amp. It sounds fairly similar to the AX-501 I paired it with, until you get up into almost uncomfortable listening levels. I haven't tried it with any hard to drive headphones yet. I also took some time and made myself a pair of custom length XLR interconnects to connect the UD-501 with my AX-501. They're hilariously short and totally unnecessary because of their length. But I really like big chunky connectors with locking mechanisms. If they had SpeakOn jacks, I'd use those. So far I've only tried the USB from my Surface Pro 4, but the driver was easy to install and the DAC sounds fantastic. I A/B tested it with the Surface as the source, switching between the USB input and headphone output of the Surface routed to the AX-501's Line 1 input (bypassing the UD-501 and using the Surface's internal DAC). At lower listening volumes, I couldn't tell much of a difference between them. The UD-501 might sound a little bit clearer, but not significantly in my limited listening experience. I will have to sit down and do some serious critical listening with some better headphones and speakers, than the aforementioned X2's or the old Technics SB-x10 speakers I happened to have handy. Eliminating the AX-501, the UD-501 can crank out significantly more power than my Surface, obviously. At higher volumes the DAC really shines over using the tablet's internal DAC. Channel separation is far better on the UD-501. Music sounds crystal clear and voices sound natural right up into the double-aughts on the volume dial. One thing to note; if you haven't already, you should check out TEAC's HR audio player available on their website. I like the clean interface and ease of use. I also like that you can set options for DSD over PCM or Native DSD right in the player's configuration menu.
Jun 30, 2018
checkVerified Buyer
Great DAC, outdated or not.
First off, this is *not* an amp of any worth and I don't understand why they label it as one. This is a DAC with a monitor port. It sounds purty and extremely clear via phones, but is worthless at driving planar cans (HE4xx & T50RPmk3). Turned the dial to 0 and my brains didn't attempt to melt, sadly. The monitor out on my Behringer XR18 destroys it, power wise. This was expected, and absolutely not why I ordered it. The single purpose in life for this unit is to provide fully balanced output to the aforementioned XR18 mixer, which will route the audio where it belongs. The audio coming out of the XLR on this unit is nice and clean with no background noise (that my ears register, or show on VU). I've not tested the RCA (I'm too lazy to move the Dot 1+). The levels are FIXED, which is great for driving high end gear, but will require a preamp if you want volume control. I've not had a chance to test how well it handles the SPDIF and TOSLINK interfaces, but I'm going to assume they'll work just fine. I will have to route some glastic from one of my workstations and find out. The only real WTF moment I had with it was not understanding that it defaults to output on RCA, not XLR. Input selection is all done via jog, no menu required. Output selection is done via menu. Would I suggest one of these at this point? If you need a DAC? For bloody sure. This will happily feed any audio device delicious sound. Update 2019.09.28: I use this DAC every single day. I ended up pairing it with an AX-501 for use with my TV, media-center, and turntable. It is reliable and sounds good. By far my favorite DAC out of the handful I have, likely something to do with the wonderful TI/BurrBrown PCM1795 chipset used. TEAC no longer has them in production, but if you run across one of these units new or used at a good price, it is totally worth buying.
Recommends this product? Yes
Nov 12, 2019
checkVerified Buyer
Clean and linear!
Recommends this product? Yes
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