The DAC502 is an absolute reviewer’s dream. In addition to being a DAC, the ‘502 is also a RoonReady and UPnP endpoint, topped off with a built-in selection of DSP algorithms offering an unprecedented range of control over virtually every aspect of the sound. All of its functionality is poured into a very responsive UI with direct access to every function, topped off with utter stability.
Super-neutral, highly-revealing and with a solid, punchy and no-nonsense delivery, the DAC502 does not hide its studio heritage. It is an analytical DAC with a slightly cool perspective but that does not mean that it inhibits any warmth that is in the recordings. There is absolutely nothing etched, hard or even slightly edgy about its intrinsic sound but it’s just not one to romanticize things. Rather, it is extremely transparent to the source. What’s in the recordings is what you’ll hear.