Questyle CMA Eighteen Master Desktop Headphone Amp/DAC

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CMA Eighteen Master Desktop Headphone Amp/DAC

Since the debut of the first CMA, each flagship in Questyle's series has shared the same soul: Current Mode Amplification Technology. The CMA Fifteen, released in 2020, featured the flagship ESS Current mode DAC for the first time. Coupled with Current Mode Amplification, it established the CMA series as a new era of full current processing, essentially "lossless throughout the entire chain."

The CMA Fifteen was almost perfect 3 years ago, but Questyle sought to improve it. Over the past 3 years, they have continually refined, explored and sought superior designs giving you their latest flagship: the CMA Eighteen Master.



The New Flagship

The CMA Eighteen Master features the upgraded XMOS XU316 USB platform, supporting D/A conversion up to PCM768@32Bit / DSD512. It also supports both USB-B and USB-C interfaces, avoiding audio quality degradation issues associated with USB-C converters.

The CMA Eighteen Master's bluetooth mode has been upgraded to support both aptX-HD and LDAC, ensuring optimal wireless sound quality and connectivity.



Current Mode Amplification

This patented Questyle technology is a state-of-the-art audio amp design different from traditional amplification. As the "engine" of the audio system, Current Mode Amplification with fully discrete and topological structure, achieves ultra-high sound performance close to the original recording, yielding a much better listening experience with your premium headphones or speakers.

To dissipate the substantial heat generated by processing ultra-high-definition lossless audio data with the ES9039PRO, the PCB has been upgraded to Rogers material. Originally designed for military equipment, missiles, and specialized instruments, they are approximately 20 times the cost of ordinary materials.



Synchronized Performance Enhancement

The performance of the headphone amp and independent pre-amp have also been enhanced. The latest optimized Current Mode Amplifier, combined with a Rogers board with a dielectric constant only 1/10th of regular PCBs, shows a 30% improvement of performance in distortion tests compared to the previous generation. There is also a noticeable improvement in the dynamic range and background tranquility.

The headphone amplifier features a fully balanced architecture. Along with ALS quad analog potentiometers and peak current output capable of up to 3A, the CMA Eighteen Master will unleash the full potential of all high-end headphones.

Additionally, the digital power and Amp/DAC power are entirely independent, ensuring the purest signal processing. An independent NORATEL toroidal transformer and Schottky rectifier provide the cleanest power to the analog side of the DAC.

Digital Input
USBPCM: 44.1kHz-768kHz/32Bit
USBNative DSD: DSD64, DSD128, DSD256, DSD512
USBSupports UAC 2.0
USBSupports Win XP/Vista/7/8/10/11, Linux, Android, HarmonyOS, macOS and iOS
Optical + COAXSupports PCM 44.1 kHz~192kHz/24Bit
BluetoothSupports BC, AAC, apt, aptx-HD, LDAC (up to 96kHz/24Bit, 990kps / 909kps)
Headphone Amplifier Output
Headphone Amplifier Output4.4mm BAL, 4-pin BAL, 6.3mm
Pre-Amp Output
Pre-Amp Output(x1) XLR, (x1) RCA
Headphone amplifier
Max Output Power6.3mm: 188mW@3000 | 1.5W@320
Max Output Power4.4mm BAL / XLR 4-pin BAL: 765mW@3000 | 2W@320
THD+N< 0.0003%
Frequency Response±0.2dB (DC-22kHz) @48kHz/24Bit
SNR6.3mm: > 117dB
SNR4.4mm BAL / XLR 4-pin BAL: > 120dB
Maximum Analog Output LevelRCA: 2V (STD), Studio mode output increased to 14dBu
Maximum Analog Output LevelXLR: 4V (STD), Studio mode output increased to 20dBu
Frequency Response±0.2dB (DC-22kHz) @48kHz/24Bit
SNRRCA: >116dB
SNRXLR: >119dB

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