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RME's anniversary reference AD/DA converter is a host of devices all put together into one unit, with a simple and mostly automated way of using it right out of the box. A unit with the industry's biggest footprint per feature ratio, excellent tech specs, crystal clear and transparent sound signature, and two extremely powerful headphone outputs.
As the most flexible converter available, the ADI-2 Pro offers balanced/unbalanced analog I/Os, double Extreme Power headphone outputs, SteadyClock FS, 4-stage hardware input and output level control, DSP-based signal processing, external power supply operation, Class Compliant USB compatibility, sample rates up to 768 kHz as well as DSD record and Direct DSD playback (256 / 11.2 MHz).
The ADI-2 Pro includes two servo-balanced analog inputs on combo XLR / TRS jacks, two separate balanced and unbalanced outputs on XLR and TS, two stereo Extreme Power headphone outputs on the front, an optical SPDIF I/O that also understands ADAT, and coaxial SPDIF (RCA) and AES I/O (XLR) via an included breakout cable. This universal set of I/O options offers superior quality and flexible connectivity to those who take a no-compromise approach to audio.
The USB 2.0 port is fully Class Compliant (UAC 2) for connection with compatible iOS devices, and is also used for firmware updates. Including an external switched power supply with lockable connector, the ADI-2 Pro can be easily powered from battery, opening up mobile applications as well as galvanically isolated use cases.
Aiming for the absolute reference sound, any detail in the ADI-2 Pro is special and has its own story. The main PCB is an extraordinary 10 layer design with custom copper thickness, guaranteeing finest undisturbed sound as well as ample but separated power for the phones outputs. Internal power supply stages and precise regulators use a super-low-noise design to not degrade performance through the power rails. Selected SoundPlus operational amplifiers maintain highest SNR, lowest THD and high slew rate under all conditions. The whole analog circuit design is fully symmetrical and balanced throughout - and DC-coupled. The only capacitors in the signal path perform DC protection at the analog input sockets, and have been carefully selected to avoid any sonic impact.
The 4-channel AD-converter, supporting 786 kHz sample rate and DSD recording, is used in a dual mono design, with 3 dB improved signal to noise ratio. Two premium DACs are used for two separate stereo outputs. Internal audio processing like EQs, Crossfeed and spectral analysis, is done by a high performance DSP with 2.17 Giga FLOPS (2882 MIPS), delivering enough computing power to work even at 768 kHz sample rate.
RME have incorporated many unique features, not found on any comparable devices, like 5-band parametric EQs for fully individual phones compensation, adjustable Bass/Treble controls with quick access, a binaural crossfeed function, adjustable loudness filter, selectable AD/DA filters, four discrete I/O reference levels, auto reference level setting, auto balanced phones mode, and many more. The display is not only used to control the unit, but also shows warning and guidance messages.
Professional features such as M/S Processing, stereo width and phase reversal up to full control and storage of all settings are included, as well as RME's famous Spectral Analyzer, a 30-band biquad filtered analysis tool offering unprecedented musical visualization, perfectly complementing the high-resolution IPS display.
There is no use in boasting about -110 dB THD, when such values are not available in real world operation - for example when a 32 ohm headphone is connected. RME's engineers therefore designed a new headphone output stage that brings the full performance of the premium DAC to the phone jack - even when using low impedance headphones. The Extreme Power design excels with 0.1 Ohm output impedance, a maximum output level of +22 dBu, and a maximum output power of 1.5 Watts - per channel! The two, fully separated stereo headphone outputs deliver the same 120 dBA SNR performance as the line outputs, for a full hum and noise free listening experience. THD is far below -100 dB (0.001%) even at full power, for the most clear and detailed soundstage possible. The Extreme Power design also incorporates current limiting, power surveillance, overload detection and DC protection. A low power mode and a high power mode are provided, for a perfect match from IEM up to planar.