REVIEWS & TECHNOLOGY
MATRIX X-SABRE PRO 3 DAC
With four years of technological expertise and research, Matrix Audio is now ready to announce the X-SABRE 3 and ignite a new generation in the X-SABRE line-up. Housed in a brand-new chassis, with a new user interface and sonic capabilities, the X-SABRE 3 DAC is now transformed to function fully as a network capable streaming host.
We gave the X-SABRE 3 a brand-new high-resolution LCD display, allowing for crystal clear updates on the current operating status of the device. While streaming, album art covers will be displayed, aligning with current technological demands from a user’s perspective. A modern step forward, deserving the title of a new generation in our X-SABRE lineup.
Tucked neatly under a top made from tempered glass is the secret to the capability. A set of 2.4GHz and 5Ghz dual-band Wi-Fi antennas are hidden away from view to retain the elegant lines of the X-SABRE 3. In areas of weak network coverage, a Gigabit Ethernet option is available to maintain stability of connection. High-sampling audio transfers within the local network can count on rock-solid stability for uninterrupted listening.
Being a Roon Ready certified device means that you connect to Roon without further configuration, and bit-perfect audio is promised from Roon to your X-SABRE 3. With the Roon app, you can now control the playback, output volume and standby. With softwares that support UPnP or DLNA, you can stream with the original sampling rate in the local area network to X-SABRE 3.
X-SABRE 3 is the first of Matrix’s line up to include Tidal Connect and Spotify Connect. Detection of the X-SABRE 3 as a playback device with your choice of streaming service and enjoy lossless playback seamlessly. Playback and volume can be controlled via the apps. Airplay is also supported.
Switching of the working mode of the D/A chip can be conveniently done through the touch panel of X-SABRE 3. In the Async mode, the master clock of the D/A chip comes from the Crystek CCHD-950 femtosecond clock inside the X-SABRE 3, and the clock from the front-end device will be abandoned; in the Sync mode, the built-in femtosecond clock will be turned off, and the D/A chip depends on the clock of the front-end device completely. In this mode, with a high-quality digital interface, you can bypass the digital processing part of the DAC through the IIS-LVDS interface, send the digital audio stream directly to the D/A chip to achieve different experiences.
The streaming capabilities of the X-SABRE 3 allow more ease of controls via your mobile phone. The standard Trigger port enables you no need to turn on and off the power amplifier manually. When the X-SABRE 3 powered on or entered standby, it will also turn on or off any connected 12V trigger device automatically.
In order to preserve the famed noise and distortion performance that Matrix Audio is synonymous with, we have isolated the power, digital and analogue circuitry in X-SABRE 3 into individual compartments carved from aluminium. As a result of the network streamer, faster processing speed and higher clock frequency, it was necessary place the D/A conversion and output stage into independent cavities. We successfully eliminated any noise contamination and source of interference in this flagship of digital audio.
CPU: NXP i.MX 6Quad 4x Cortex-A9 @1.2 GHz
D/A Chip: ES9038PRO
Clock Source: Crystek CCHD-950
Digital Input: COAXIAL & OPTICAL: PCM 16-24 Bit /44.1 kHz, 48 kHz, 88.2 kHz, 96 kHz, 176.4 kHz, 192 kHz DSD 2.8 MHz (DoP)
IIS LVDS: PCM 16-32 Bit /44.1 kHz, 48 kHz, 88.2 kHz, 96 kHz, 176.4 kHz, 192 kHz, 352.8 kHz, 384 kHz, 705.6 kHz, 768 kHz DSD 2.8 MHz, 5.6 MHz, 11.2 MHz (DoP) DSD 2.8 MHz, 5.6 MHz, 11.2 MHz, 22.4 MHz (Native)
USB AUDIO: PCM 16-24 Bit /44.1 kHz, 48 kHz, 88.2 kHz, 96 kHz, 176.4 kHz, 192 kHz, 352.8 kHz, 384 kHz, 705.6 kHz, 768 kHz MQA 16-24 Bit /44.1 kHz, 48 kHz, 88.2 kHz, 96 kHz, 176.4 kHz, 192 kHz, 352.8 kHz, 384 kHz MQA or MQA Studio stream DSD 2.8 MHz, 5.6 MHz, 11.2 MHz (DoP) DSD 2.8 MHz, 5.6 MHz, 11.2 MHz, 22.4 MHz (Native)
XLR SNR > -134dB 20Hz-20kHz A-Weighting. THD+N <0.00012% at 1kHz A-Weighting <0.00015% at 20Hz-20kHz A-Weighting
Frequency Response 20Hz-20kHz (+0.01dB/-0.02dB) Crosstalk > -151dB @1kHz. Output Level 4.5Vrms Fixed at 0 dBFS DAC MODE 0-4.5Vrms Adjustable at 0 dBFS
RCA SNR >-129dB 20Hz-20kHz A-Weighting. THD+N <0.00018% at 1kHz A-Weighting <0.00030% at 20Hz-20kHz A-Weighting. Frequency Response 20Hz-20kHz (+0.01dB/-0.02dB) Crosstalk >-143dB @1kHz. Output Level 2.25Vrms Fixed at 0 dBFS DAC MODE 0-2.25Vrms Adjustable at 0 dBFS
LAN 10/100/1000 Mbps
WLAN 2.4 GHz / 5 GHz
MA player Lite
Roon Ready: PCM 16-24 Bit /44.1 kHz, 48 kHz, 88.2 kHz, 96 kHz, 176.4 kHz, 192 kHz, 352.8 kHz, 384 kHz, 705.6 kHz, 768 kHz
MQA 16-24 Bit /44.1 kHz, 48 kHz, 88.2 kHz, 96 kHz, 176.4 kHz, 192 kHz, 352.8 kHz, 384 kHz MQA or MQA Studio stream
DSD 2.8MHz, 5.6MHz, 11.2MHz, 22.4MHz
AirPlay 2 The audio specs depend on the service provider
DLNA/UPnP The audio specs depend on the service provider
Tidal Connect The audio specs depend on the service provider
Spotify Connect The audio specs depend on the service provider
Power Voltage 230V position is fit for AC220V-240V 50/60Hz / 115V position is fit for AC100V-120V 50/60Hz
Power Consumption <10W
Dimension 310L x 218W x 43H