TEAC unveils the elite DAC and headphone amp I'll buy when I win the lottery

TEAC UD-507 on black background with TR's Money No Object banner
(Image credit: TEAC)

Like many music fans, I have a wish-list of "lottery-win" audio kit I'll buy when I either win big, or find myself the unexpected beneficiary of a previously-unknown rich relative's will. You know the kind of thing: an Avid Acutus turntable with Magico M7 speakers, or perhaps an entire Linn flagship hi-fi setup. Then again, maybe I'd go for Sonus faber's Suprema speaker system, Moon's flagship North amplification or a B&O limited edition refurbished CD player and speakers from the 90s – in fact anything from our Money no Object series. 

And it looks like there may be a new entry on that list in the form of the exquisite and expensive TEAC UD-507. It's a high-end DAC, pre-amp and headphone amplifier that promises an incredibly accurate audio experience.

The DAC takes a lot of its design inspiration from TEAC's high-end 700 series, but inside there's something unique: TEAC's brand new TRDD5, which is short for TEAC Reference Discrete DAC. TEAC says it was designed with "musicality" in mind, and that it delivers incredible sonic accuracy and a superb sound stage.

TEAC UD-507: specifications and (deep breath) price


It's a looker in either of its two finishes (Image credit: TEAC)

The new TEAC is larger than any of the best portable DACs we've tested, with a footprint roughly the size of a sheet of A4 paper. And that means it's got room for a good selection of connections.

There are five digital inputs here with USB-B on the back, type C on the front and co-ax, optical and Bluetooth connectivity. There's also RCA and XLR inputs. As a USB DAC the UD-507 supports 22.5MHz DSD and 384kHz/32bit PCM playback, and there's full MQA decoding for all of its digital inputs bar Bluetooth. 

The Bluetooth receiver supports LDAC and aptX HD, and there are more acronyms too: a TEAC-QVCS high resolution analog pre-amp circuit and a proprietary EAC-HCLD2 output buffer. 

The headphone output is 1,200mW + 1,200mW (balanced at 100 ohms), and there are three switchable gain levels to match the sensitivity and impedance of different wired headphones.

It looks like it'll be an impressive part of any serious sound system, but at $2,099 (or around £1,650 or AU$3,165) it's a little beyond my budget. But if you're a lottery winner or otherwise fortunate enough to be able to drop over two grand on a high-end DAC, you can find out more on TEAC's website.

Be right back, I'm off to buy my lottery ticket…

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Carrie Marshall

Writer, broadcaster, musician and kitchen gadget obsessive Carrie Marshall (Twitter) has been writing about tech since 1998, contributing sage advice and odd opinions to all kinds of magazines and websites as well as writing more than a dozen books. Her memoir, Carrie Kills A Man, is on sale now. She is the singer in Glaswegian rock band HAVR.