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Wolfson unveils ‘best sounding’ audio DAC

Wolfson Microelectronics has announced the ultra-high-performance WM8741 24-bit stereo DAC, which combines high-end specifications with advanced digital filtering options that allow designers to shape the subjective quality of the sound. According to the company, the device creates a more “analog feel” than previous audio DACs using conventional digital filtering and conversion techniques.

The WM8741's digital filters include several selectable roll-off and performance characteristics, as well as a selection of advanced digital filter characteristics, including non-half band filters and minimum phase filters, enabling significantly reduced pre-ringing and minimal group delay. The internal digital filters can also be by-passed, allowing the WM8741 to be used with an external digital filter.

Specifications include a 125-dB SNR ('A'-weighted stereo @ 48 kHz), a sampling frequency from 32 kHz to 192 kHz, and operation from 5-V (analog) and 3-V (digital) supplies. The WM8741 supports PCM and DSD formats, including DSD direct and PCM-converted DSD modes.

Other features include fine resolution volume and soft mute control and digital de-emphasis, followed by a multi-bit sigma delta modulator and switched-capacitor multibit stage DAC with differential voltage outputs. The WM8741 supports both hardware and software control modes, and is a drop-in replacement for the previous-generation WM8740 in some PCM-mode applications.

Pricing/availability: The WM8741 is sampling now in a 28-pin SSOP and priced at $6.71, in quantities of 10,000.

Product literature:
WM8741 datasheet(PDF)
WM8741 technical brochure (PDF)

Wolfson Microelectronics , +44 (0) 131 272 7000, www.wolfsonmicro.com

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