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ESOTERIC Super Audio CD/CD Player - D/A Converter
SA-50 Super Audio CD/CD Player - D/A Converter
Capture the soul of your music

Stereo Sound “2011-2012 Best Value Component”    Stereo Sound “2011-2012 Best Value Component”

The Absolute Sound “2011 Editor's Choice Award“    The Absolute Sound “2011 Editor's Choice Award“
The Stereo Times “Most Wanted Component Award 2010”

   The Stereo Times “Most Wanted Component Award 2010”
Stereo Sound “The Best Buy Component 2009-2010” digital disc player category (¥200,000 - ¥500,000) second prize    Stereo Sound “The Best Buy Component 2009-2010”
digital disc player category (¥200,000 - ¥500,000) second prize

Ongen Publishing “Audio Excellence Award 2010” Bronze Prize
   Ongen Publishing “Audio Excellence Award 2010” Bronze Prize

With our proprietary VOSP transport, the latest 32 bit DAC, up-sampling / re-clocking function and USB connectivity, the SA-50 is a hybrid of our state-of-art cutting edge technologies.

Breaking boundaries of listening style, the SA-50 brings out a truly involving musical performance, and captures the soul of your music!

VOSP Mechanism

VOSP mechanism

VOSP (Vertically-aligned Optical Stability Platform), features a specially designed shaft-mounted laser pickup assembly. This pickup system evolved from ESOTERIC's P-01 and P-03 transports. This pickup design ensures that the laser optical axis is always at the center of the data track for optimal reading capability. With VOSP implementation, no off axis error correction is needed because no off axis data tracking is allowed. The VOSP mechanism is rigidly clamped by a steel plate and a large diameter stabilizer made of 8mm-thick steel for superior anti-resonance and anti-vibration properties.

Highly advanced digital conversion capability

The SA-50 has a highly advanced pre-D/A stage digital to digital signal conversion capability fully utilizing the 32 bit digital processor on board.

PCM up-convert function is available for PCM signals read from Redbook CDs, and PCM up-conversion capability is allowed from other external digital devices. Oversampling frequency is selectable from original Fs, ラ2 (64 / 88.2 / 96 kHz) or Fs, ラ4 (128 / 176.4 / 192 kHz). The SA-50 can also convert PCM signal to DSD signal. As for Super Audio CD, not only processing native DSD signals directly into analog signals, the SA-50 can also convert the DSD signal into a PCM signal, with oversampling frequency selectable from ラ2 (88.2 kHz) or ラ4 (176.4 kHz).

These functions provide a wide range of options to match to your hi-fi system, or your general listening preferences based on your choice of software.

USB and digital inputs

The SA-50 is a CD/SACD player and is also highly capable as a standalone 32 bit D/A converter providing 3 digital inputs. (COAX, OPTICAL, USB). PC connectivity via the USB interface will provide audiophile playback quality to your hard drive based streaming audio media.

Dual PLL circuits reduce jitter when connected to external digital source devices

The SA-50 shares dual stage PLL jitter reduction with the ESOTERIC D-05 D/A converter, and is highly capable as a standalone D/A converter / re-clocker, when connected with CD transports, media servers, or other external digital devices. The second stage PLL circuit has its own voltage controlled crystal clock, and re-clocks the signal produced by the first stage PLL circuit. Dual PLL circuits, with two different characteristic responses in jitter reduction effectively purify the input digital signal.

32 bit digital volume attenuator

The SA-50 features a 32 bit digital volume attenuator. Wide 32-bit headroom ensures highly precise volume attenuation for disc or digitally input data playback without degrading the signal.

As a result, the SA-50 can be used as a digital preamplifier, connecting directly to a power amplifier.

High quality 2 channel dedicated analog audio output
Precise imaging and deeper sound stage

The analog audio output circuits are in a dual mono configuration producing excellent channel separation. 2 channel dedicated circuit design further enhances precise imaging, transparency, separation and depth of soundstage.

RCA (single-ended), output or XLR (fully-balanced), output is selectable. The analog signal path that is not used can be completely de-activated. XLR terminal pin assignment is user selectable between 2 pin hot or 3 pin hot*.

*The hot pin is fixed to 2 pin hot for dual (RCA + XLR), output mode.

Rich and high speed power supply capability

The large custom designed toroidal transformer, has a very highly efficient power supply capability. This provides electrical power to the drive mechanism and audio circuits very quickly, without adding noise or distortion to the signal path.

Word synchronization

The SA-50 features a WORD SYNC input terminal to accept an incoming external WORD clock signal* from an optional external master clock. The incoming ultra-stable clock signal produced by an external master clock sync generator (ESOTERIC G-03X or G-0Rb), effectively upgrade the unit; delivering higher performance with better acoustic transparency, greater separation and a wider sound stage.

*The SA-50 will not accept an external clock input signal when used only in its DAC operating mode.

Highly rigid chassis construction for optimal resonance control capability

The extra thick aluminum front panel and T5mm aluminum top and side panels help the unit to control unwanted vibrations and resonance. The bottom chassis features a heavy duty 5mm thick steel plate combined with three pinpoint isolation feet made of quenched steel. This base design helps to provide a level platform that is vibration free. Highest order resonance-control functionality is accomplished through this engineering in a contemporary audiophile design.

Compatible disc types Super Audio CD, CD (CD-R/CD-RW compatible)
Audio output (Analog Audio) Jacks XLR jacks (2channel) ×1
Output impedance XLR: 100Ω
RCA: 100Ω
Maximum Output level (1kHz, full scale, 10kΩ) XLR: 2.2Vrms
RCA: 2.2Vrms
Frequency response 5Hz to 40kHz (SA-CD)
Signal-to-Noise Ratio (S/N) 130dB
Total harmonic distortion 0.001% (1kHz)
Audio output (Digital Audio) Optical digital jack ×1 15 to 21 dBm
Coaxial RCA jack ×1 0.5 Vp-p/75 Ω
Digital audio input Optical digital terminal ×1 24.0 to 14.5 dBm peak
Coaxial RCA terminal × 1 (Input impedance 75Ω) 0.5Vp-p
USB port B connector USB 1.1 or higher
Word Synchronization input format Jack BNC
Input impedance 75Ω
Input level Equivalent to TTL levels
The SA-50 can accept and synchronize to the following frequencies received from external clock devices (rectangular wave): 44.1kHz, 88.2kHz, 176.4kHz, 100kHz
General Power supply AC 230V 50Hz
AC 120V 60Hz
AC 220V 60Hz
Power consumption 15W
External dimensions
442×153×353 mm
(17 3/8×6×13 7/8 ")
(including protrusions)
Weight 18kg (37 15/16 lb)
Operating temperature +5°C to +35°C
Operating humidity 5% to 85% (no condensation)
Storage temperature +20°C to +55°C
- Design and specifications are subject to change without notice.
- Weight and dimensions are approximate.
- Illustrations may differ slightly from production models.
- This product is available in three different power supply variations shown in the chart above. Make sure that the voltage shown on the rear panel matches the AC line voltage in your area.
- The shape of the AC inlet and plug of the supplied power cord depends on the voltage rating and destination country.

SA-50 SA-50 SA-50

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