Denafrips Ares II

I'm interested in trying this DAC.  For anyone familiar with it, what have you compared it to?  I currently have a Benchmark DAC1, and am looking for a more involving and analog sound.  Thanks very much!

Showing 4 responses by jjss49


pontus and black ice >> ares 2

pontus vs black ice... lateral ... slightly different presentation, one not clearly better than the other (note my black ice is upgraded by wally/chris j)
the ares 2 was part of my big dac shootout i conducted the first half of this year - tried some 25 well reputed dacs as i implemented streaming into my system 

the ares 2 is a spacious sounding dac with extended treble and bass, and lots of features (os/nos, xlr etc etc), it is a great value for the money - though as on all dena dacs the leds are a pita (can barely see them)

in my system, i found this dac to be lacking a little in treble refinement compared to others i liked better - this can be heard in sibilance on vocals (yes i tried different inputs and cables :) )

moving to the pontus improved this critical aspect for me, sound definitely had a family resemblance but more subtlety in handling of treble region and also a slightly silkier midrange

also (still) have the jolida/black ice tube dac - this is not nos (burrbrown 24 bit 1798 dac chip), but it has a tube output stage... the advantage of this one is a volume control (non remote control) as well as the ability to tube roll - overall this one sounded a little sweeter more relaxed to me than the ares 2 on a/b comparison (volume controlled of course)
i certainly felt the pontus is a significant step up from ares 2 - much better control of sibilance in my experience while maintaining a similarly organic full yet lively sound