Model S MkII

Two and a half year after its release, the Model S goes through a couple of changes. Admittedly, there were no previous plans for substituting the Model S with MkII successor and, as perfected as it is, the overall architecture remains actually intact. The time however brought some parts availability change, which made impossible to proceed with original parts set-up. Yet, it still appears better to continue with the Model S so long as the stash of key-part TDA1541A lasts here, than to abandon the unit we still consider the most natural and most charming sounding S/PDIF DAC available.

And the major change is about capacitors. Black Gates are out of production officially for three and actually for five years now, and even if stock lasted for longer, they are slowly becoming unsuitable for use in newly made devices, due to ageing. As the most suitable replacement, Model S MkII will continue using Rubycon’s best currently produced units. In addition, some Panasonic capacitors will be also changed by Rubycon.

Output coupling capacitors, if used, will change to polyphenylene sulphide film units. On demand, for use with high input impedance amplifiers, a low value polystyrene caps can be installed instead, at no additional cost.

At the same time, MkII mains transformers will abandon outer shields / cans. There are several practical reasons for this decision, weight being the most important, whereas on the other side cans didn’t prove to do very much of practical work, as transformers inside already have very low external dissipation. In practice even output signal coupling transformers are completely safe from any sonic harms caused by mains transformers external fields. (With EI mains transformers the things are very different though, and Model S USB employs several measures to block their external dissipation.)

These changes will become effective as of 1st July.