Berkeley Audio Design Alpha USB Interface

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  • Regular price $1,995.00


Berkeley Audio Design Alpha USB Interface

Convert the noisy USB output of your streamer into low-noise, low-jitter AES/EBU or S/PDIF for your standalone DAC

A breakthrough product that not only overcomes the limitations of the USB interface, but provides a state-of-the-art method of getting audio out of a computer. Switching over to the Alpha USB system was like sharpening the focus on a camera; very-low-level detail that had been just a bit indistinct or smeared snapped into vivid clarity.
— ROBERT HARLEY, THE ABSOLUTE SOUND

The Alpha USB is an asynchronous USB Audio 2.0 to digital audio interface designed to provide the highest possible audio quality from computer and music server audio sources.

The Alpha USB has a USB Audio 2.0 Standard input and switch-selected digital audio output signal type, either coaxial S/PDIF using a BNC connector or balanced AES using an XLR connector. Sampling rates up to 192 kHz and word lengths up to 24 bit are supported.

Great care was taken in the design of the Alpha USB to isolate the noisy computer/USB environment from the digital audio output. The USB receiver and processing are powered by the computer, while the output master clocks and line drivers are powered by a separate isolated linear power supply. There is no DC connection and also a high degree of capacitive and inductive isolation between the USB input and the digital audio output.

Two key factors combine to achieve the excellent audio performance of the Alpha USB; the unprecedented degree of electrical isolation between the USB input connection and the digital audio output and the very low noise/low jitter performance of the individually tested audio output master clocks.

The Alpha USB is designed to work with Apple Macintosh and Windows PC computers and Linux-based music servers. For Linux, the operating system must be ALSA 1.0.23 or above. It must also have the ability to select the output device. Apple computers using Snow Leopard or later operating systems also interface directly with the Alpha USB. It is not necessary to install a USB Audio 2.0 Standard driver for those operating systems.

PC’s using Microsoft Windows 10 release 1703 and above do not require installation of the Alpha USB Windows driver and the driver provided with Windows should be used. Only Microsoft Windows PC’s using Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8, 8.1 and earlier versions of 10 require the Alpha USB Windows driver which is available on the Downloads page.

A 6' power cord is included. It is recommended that the USB cable be sited as far away from the DAC as reasonably possible.

Specifications

Input: USB B Audio 2.0 Standard asynchronous connection

Outputs: Coaxial BNC S/PDIF , AES XLR

Sampling rates: 44.1 kHz to 192 kHz, up to 24 bit

Supported operating systems: Apple, Windows, and Linux

Dimensions (WHD): 10.5" x 2.5” x 5”

Weight: 2.5 lb