Philips DAC960

1 9 8 7 1987
1 9 8 9 1989

All but forgotten nowadays - but this is the unit that would lead to a well remembered and sought-after Marantz d/a converter : CDA-94 and their (many) LHH-1000 equivalents, like the export-only CD-12 combo.

The DAC960 was the original, before BitStream, and before Philips would gradually delegate its highend audio duties to Marantz only.
In fact, br minor board rearrangements, the DAC960 IS a CDA-94 from front to back !

No differences but the looks : black is black with a nicely naive frequency display and a beautiful green-backlit variable output volume knob.
Compared to the Marantz, this however strongly bears its period and is, let's face it, fairly ugly.


Hardware-wise, however, this was no mere afterthought : triple transformers, two dedicated transformers for the balanced outputs and TDA-1541A in DAC3 circuit.
An absolute phase switch is present, just like (real sci-fi at the time) an optical TOS input.

Even if barely available in 1988, a monitor loop for a DAT recorder was implemented as well.
32Khz for Digital Radio decoding is accepted - just as barely available.

The future was bright and soon all sources were to be digital - so the DAC960 doubles in fact as a preamplifier.
In retrospect, the future was bright indeed as nobody was yet hassled with SCMS, DRMs or any other such nice nasties : if digital sure was expensive then, it still was free.

The DAC960 was made to complement the CD960 CD player - another hoogtepunt in Philips' history.


Nudies aplenty of a DAC960 (aka CDA-94) here.

Philips DAC960, image 1 Philips DAC960, image 2 Philips DAC960, image 3
Philips DAC960 specifications
Title Value
System : System :
16bit + 4fs oversampling + Digital Filter & 1x TDA-1541A (DAC3)
D/A : D/A :
Frequency response : 2Hz...20Khz (± 0,01dB ; RCA)
20Hz...20Khz (± 0,01dB ; XLR)
S/N ratio : > 103dBdB
Channel separation : > 101dB (1Khz)
Phase accuracy : ± 0,2°
THD : < 0,0015% (1Khz)
Inputs : 2x coaxial (75Ohm 0,5V p-p)
1x TOS (-15...-23dB)
1x coaxial for tape input (75 Ohm 0,5V p-p)
Analog outputs : 2x RCA fixed (2V / 100 Ohm)
2x RCA variable (max. 4V / 100 Ohm)
2x XLR fixed (2V / 600 Ohm)
Digital outputs : 1x coaxial for tape monitoring (75 Ohm 0,5V p-p)
Headphones : Headphones :
Input impedance : 8...1000 Ohm
Output : 0...5V
Output impedance : 220 Ohm
Output power : 30mW / 32 Ohm...50mW...600 Ohm
Frequency response : 20Hz...20Khz (± 0,1dB)
Dynamic range : > 93dB
THD : < 0,003% (600 Ohm)
IMD : < 0,003% (600 Ohm)
Stereo separation : > 90dB
General : General :
PC : 35W
Dimensions : 42 x 10 x 36cm
Weight : 9kg.
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page online since : april 2007
page updated : january 2011
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