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Wadia 151 PowerDAC Mini Digital Integrated Amplifier - Black

3.9 out of 5 stars 18 customer reviews
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  • 24-bit/384kHz Proprietary Wadia Digitmaster Algorithm
  • Accepts Data Rates up to 24bit/192k
  • <50 watt/channel into 8 & 4 Ohms
  • 4 Digital Inputs 2 Coaxial (S/PDIF (RCA), 1 TOSLINK, 1 USB
  • Full-Function Remote Control
2 used from $595.00

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Product Description

Wadia 151 PowerDAC Mini: The Perfect Match for Any 21st Century System. An incredible 24bit/384k DAC and integrated amp in a single chassis. The Absolute Sound Editor's Choice award-winning component is now available for over 60% off! Wadia Digital has always been on the cutting edge of digital technology, and the Wadia 151 PowerDAC mini is best described as a DAC with a 50-watt integrated amplifier bolted to it, but that does not capture the innovation inside. It's literally just a digital-to-analog converter with gain, meaning that the signal stays in the digital domain, untouched by anything that could add distortion, right until the signal exits as an analog waveform. "Audiophiles often bemoan how expensive great-sounding audio can be. For only $1,200 you can own a device that will form the backbone of a revealing and musical system...the Wadia PowerDAC mini delivers sonics that should enthrall anyone who gives it a listen!" - Steven Stone, The Absolute Sound This is a 21st Century audio component that should fit anywhere with ease. You should be able to have the 151 up and playing music with one hand tied behind your back in under 3 minutes. Consider this as essentially a $600 DAC and a $600 integrated amplifier in one chassis. You will be hard pressed to find this kind of performance anywhere at this price. "The Wadia 151 PowerDAC mini is the perfect anchor for a high-performance digital system. We are happy to award it one of our Exceptional Value Awards!" - Jeff Dorgay, Tone Audio Purity is what gives the PowerDAC mini its unbelievable detail and imaging skill. Wadia's proprietary Digimaster up-sampling technology (24bit/384k) ultimately creates the holographic soundstage and pure insight into the original recording space. This product sounds so musical, with all the warmth and natural tonality of the actual recorded event. You owe it to yourself to give it a listen. 100% Music Direct Money Back Guaranteed!

Product Information

Product Dimensions 8 x 8 x 2.7 inches
Item Weight 5.9 pounds
Shipping Weight 5.9 pounds
ASIN B0038WWJDI
Item model number W151BK
Customer Reviews
3.9 out of 5 stars 18 customer reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
Best Sellers Rank #130,558 in Electronics (See Top 100 in Electronics)
#717 in Electronics > Car Electronics > Car Audio > Amplifiers > Multichannel Amplifiers
Date first available at Amazon.com June 22, 2010

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

This is a seriously good piece of gear for the money.

Sure, there are some ergonomic issues. No outputs except speaker outs. If you want analogue out or headphone out, Wadia makes the 121, which has both. No volume knob. You won't want to use this at your desk using the remote to change the volume all the time. These are some of the inconveniences that we audiophiles deal with.

I hooked this up to my main speakers (Aliante Pininfarina One) and the bass is the first thing I noticed. Wow, good weight, good control no bloat. Nice midrange. Smooth highs. You get some of that signature Wadia sound.

This thing is $800. My cables cost more than this. It's a bargain for the money. Hook up an old mac mini, airport express, sonos or transport and you're done.

I imagine the DAC section is better than the amp section. Doesn't have the bloom, air, dimension as my tube amps (highly modified GTA SE40SE, Joule Electra Emerald) or the special magic of my Audio Note Pre, but the 151 doesn't suck. Not quite as refined as the dCS rig or the better Meridian digital stuff, but it doesn't embarrass itself. It's quite remarkable for $800.

If you can tone down the audiophile neurosis, the 151 can be quite satisfying. I recommend it.
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This little baby needs no introduction. Web is already flooded with excellent reviews. I paired it with Dynaudio exite x16. And still breaking in. Both amp and speakers need at least 160 hrs of breaking. I am half way there but this pair is already touching that level. I also paired it with wadia i170 transport and all of sudden iPhone/iPad started producing excellent music. I am a happy customer.
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Verified Purchase
lots of clipping when you turn it loud, sound quality is just OK. i have heard better for cheaper but not a bad product. built in dac and small footprint is nice but i was expecting something more from wadia with this unit especially for how much the msrp was. my rotel,parasound and arcam products kill this unit easily.
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So, what does a power DAC mean?
We all know the current hype about LPs and turntables. For those of us who really listen and get lost in the music, its true. Something may get lost in the "digital" thing. That is why there are $4,000 Digital to Analog Converters (DACs) out there that sell. A good DAC makes a huge difference when the rest of your playback system (preamp, power amp and speakers) are up to the task. Unfortunately, the longer the chain, the more likely it is you will loose the emotion, the sparkle in the music. Digital cables (average cost for good ones is $300 or more), analog cables between DAC and preamp, and the preamp to power amp (similarly, you pay $200-300 for a "decent" pair), and then it is widely known that preamps and analog volume controls affect the signal…. and rarely for the better.
Enter the Wadia 151. No DAC, no Preamp. Well, DAC yes, but here is the important thing. Volume attenuation occurs in the digital domain. No line level DAC, no preamp. The Digital to Analog conversion occurs in in the power amp stage, making everything simpler, and more pure. And you can hear it. Really, the more revealing speakers, the better it sounds. But the catch is, as a result, there is no Analog, all the way, until it hits the speakers. By design, so you can't hook up your turntable. But that is what creates the tube-like final magic. The current price is ridiculous. The Power DAC 151, hooked up to a Macbook with quality USB cable playing high resolution files, powering good sensitive speakers such as Triangle, Focal, or Reference 3A, will blow away systems costing (including cables of course) 5-10 times as much. The only pity is that it it is not turntable friendly, by design. But you can't have it all. Highly recommended!
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Wadia 151 PowerDac Mini AmplifierJohn Schaffer / President of Wadia demonstrated their new 151 at Rocky Mountain Audio Festival October 2009. Set up with a 170i and a pair of Dynaudio Excite x16's, the sound was quite incredible for such a simple and affordable system. I immediately contacted my local dealer and put one on order. Initial shipment was delayed, but it was well worth the wait. Perfect combo....excellent for a office setup. Mine is setup with Wilson Benesch ARC speakers. Love it so much, I'll probably purchase another.
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Verified Purchase
I used the Wadia with a pair of high quality D.I.Y. 2 way monitors and Goertz flatwire. I used a dell laptop through USB and a cheap but new model Sony BD player as a source.

The sound can be very light, as in not full bodied, or shallow. The wattage output of 15wpc is not the only issue in the weak sound. Right now I am using a Topping 14wpc amp and an OPPO 103 as a source, and the sound is sufficiently full bodied. Considering my experience with the output of the Wadia, I would only recommend it for desktop nearfield (<4FT) listening with small coaxial or 2 way speakers.

On the plus side the sound quality through the Wadia 151 is transparent, mostly free of grain and very natural. The left to right soundstaging is also good, but the amp stops short of being very 3d or holographic in terms of sound staging depth. I had the best luck with the USB input which worked flawlessly and was plug and play. Through the USB sound was more full bodied than through the BD player, but male vocals still didn't sound quite deep enough. When watching Captain America through the optical or coax connection the more layered parts in the soundtrack got a bit stuffy, same was true with music, instruments and vocals lost detail with difficult material. While watching the T.V. show Continuum, the Wadia sometimes lacked such body that female vocals sounded like they could have been from the T.V. speakers.

If the Wadia is used with the right speakers in the right environment the sound is very good and sounds how you would expect a sub 1300$ amp to sound. At the asking price its a very good value when used in this way. But as the main system in a 200sq ft room, I had no luck.
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