SMOOTH AS SILK
In our quest for developing a package for the audiophile seeking more than just high-quality audio reproduction, we realized several things. First, we need digital precision but with “analog” charm, free of any “digital glare” yet with rich detail. Second, this package needs to provide outstanding value, future-proofing, new features, and a stunning, timeless design. This is how the Wavelight DAC was created, more than just a little brother for the accomplished Wavedream.
SOFTWARE-DEFINED ARCHITECTURE & FPGA TECHNOLOGY
Wavelight DAC employs the latest Xilinx 7-series FPGA which allows us to assemble the functions of a custom high-performance R2R processor. The Wavelight’s digital processing capabilities are built with complex VHDL coding and state-of-the-art FPGA hardware. The architecture is described, in fact, by a piece of software.
When upgrading the Wavelight with new firmware, you actually change its hardware. This system allows great flexibility, and obsolescence protection and lets us improve the sound of your DAC by changing its internal architecture, adding new, cool features, or improving the existing ones. Each digital block is custom built under the Rockna Audio high-performance standard.
For the Wavelight we truly did our math and extended our testing methodology. Careful optimizations allowed us to achieve subtle nuances in listening sessions so that any listener is catered to. Powerful, customized DSP units are performing high-precision calculations in real-time for studio-quality upsampling. Users can choose between 4 filter modes: linear, minimum phase, hybrid mode, and NOS.
RECLOCKING & D/A CONVERSION
A combination between memory buffers, a digital phase-locked-loop (DPLL), and a custom input clock-decoupling scheme provides effective jitter cleaning before the conversion itself. Using the advanced Femtovox2 technique, the final result will lead to an analog sound without compromises.
A high precision R2R discrete ladder is performing the conversion from digital to analog domain, driven by the FPGA algorithms. The Wavelight DAC is capable of operating in pure R2R mode or in a Hybrid mode ladder*. Future firmware will allow the switch at the touch of a button.
ANALOG SECTION & POWER SUPPLY
With 5 digital inputs and one analog input, the unit is also capable of operating as a preamplifier. To avoid data truncation, the volume control inside the Wavelight is fully analog, even if controlled digitally. The analog path is fully discrete. Two toroidal power transformers allow the separation between analog and digital circuitry. A massive filtering bank capacity (over 100.000 uF) is conditioning the power supplies.
Each Wavelight is manually assembled in the Rockna factory, individually tested, and undergoes our strict quality control process. We believe that sound should be complemented by detail in fit and finish, sturdy construction, thorough circuit design, and reliability. This is why we are using selected components such as high-precision resistors or audiophile-grade decoupling capacitors. The chassis is entirely built from massive aluminum with anodized finishing and a fine brushed texture.