The Alpha DAC from Berkeley Audio has been rev’d. Apparently, all new DAC shipments out of the CA-based company will sport new labeling as “Series 2”.
The new DACs will look exactly like the old DACs, aside from the new label on the back of the unit. Not doing much to advertise their on-going R&D, are they?
Anyway, the changes are (most likely) due to their work on the Alpha USB. Speaking of which, the Alpha USB (a now-$1900 USB-to-S/PDIF converter) will sport some brand new bits, too. Bits that Berkeley says put the performance of the unit far above that which was reviewed (and raved about) by Robert Harley earlier this year.
My guess? Those bits (clocks, from what I hear) have found their way into the new Alpha DAC.
My understanding is that the bulk of Series 1 DACs cannot be upgraded, unfortunately. If this is a concern for you, I strongly suggest you reach out to your dealer.
The price of the Series 2 DAC will be the same as that of the Series 1: $4995 for either a black or silver face plate.