The DAC is running now for quite some time. Sound wise this is very good.
Skipping the active gain stage completely and do the needed gain by a
quality step-up transformer. It seems that the transformer coupling does
compromise the music less than an active gain stage.
The act that the print and transformers are completely naked/bare in the
open is funny as everybody can check when visiting me is that there is
absolutely no hum. Even all the wiring is in the open. Nevertheless this
situation is not perfect as it tends to attract dust. Nowadays there are a
lot of options when choosing enclosures and I found something that really
was in the same style as the Bel Canto CD2 player.
Everything is nicely inserted into the aluminium enclosure. The Silvercore
step-up trannies are fixed by means of mumetal Meccano (found at Ebay.de);
there is a „power up“ LED and a „lock“ LED which communicates with the
cd-transport. On the backside the BNC-input is obvious (BNC is a very good
connector); here is also the floating earth visible.
Sound wise nothing changed; but this looks far more sophisticated.