"It sounds most of all like a really good turntable"
The B-400XS is the second CD Player from Densen. But the B-400XS was actually the reference used during the development of the B-400. However, it was delayed due to the complex development process of the unique Plus Bit Technology©. Developing the B-400XS has involved a lot of rethinking of the traditional CD Player design, resulting in several unique solutions.
The cornerstone of the B-400XS is a transport from Sony, that is delivered with a glass-optic, instead of a plastic optic. This reduces false tracking and extends the player's lifetime. All control logic, the servo controller, engine controller, laser reader etc. is designed by Densen and is located on one board beneath the transport, ensuring the shortest possible signal path and removing potential jitter between laser and laser reader. At the same time this secures a much higher quality data transmission.
The main computer is developed together with Sony but Densen has, unusually, decided to use two microcomputers. This means that one computer takes care of digital transmission, while the other takes care of secondary things like display, DeMagic, remote etc. This secures the load, meaning that the speed of the microcomputer that takes care of the digital signal is always constant.
The main CPU can be upgraded by connecting a portable computer to a socket on the back on the B-400XS, or by changing the actual chip (which is mounted in a socket)
Finally, Densen has designed its own databus to secure perfect transport of the digital signals. There is a socket on the back of the B-400XS for this databus, so the B-400XS can later be upgraded to seperate transport/converter via a D-Sub 9 socket. Besides this there is a conventional digital output through a BNC socket.
The B-400XS has 2 further D-sub plugs, so that it can communicate with other Densen products, and be used in multiroom systems with a system remote.
B-400XS offers the possibility of inverting the absolute phase.
The display can be switched off, so that it lights up for only 2 seconds after a button has been pressed.
The real breakthrough with the B-400XS is, however, the converter.
Audio designers normally focus on improving the conversion process, resulting in the use of 18, 20 or 24 bit converters; however the source material remains 16 bit. The XS converter contains a groundbreaking new technology from Densen that matematically improves the original signal. This technology is called PlusBit technology©, as it can add as many bits to the original source material as are requested. The technology is currently being patented, and is very costly to implement. In the B-400XS the PlusBit Technology© is used to add one extra bit, so the original source material, instead of containing 16 bits, contains 17. This is a dramatic improvement on the original material as it results in a doubling of the resolution of the CD. As a side effect of the plus-bit technology, the converters work at 25 Bit (!), so that all aspects of the conversion are optimised far beyond what has been seen before in a commercial CD player.
The complex technology of the PlusBit© design means that the convertion board on the B-400XS is substantially larger than a normal B-400. Since the PlusBit© converter is on a seperate board, it can be moved to a seperate cabinet, and the B-400XS can later be upgraded to a seperate transport and converter.
At the same time the data-stream is controlled by a sophisticated clock controller circuit with a fault rate of 0 ppm (this rate is normally between 100 and 300 on conventional cd-players), This secures a jitter level that is (or nearly is) immeasurable.
The DA Converter board also contains is a trimmer that makes it possible to adjust the clock circuit to a precision of 0 (zero) PPM in error… naturally, the B-400XS comes directly from the factory perfectly adjusted.
The converter board includes a HDCD chip. At the same time there are seperate converters for left and right channel, to secure no phase-shift between the two channels.
The analog stage is designed as a 6W Class A amplifier totally without feedback (no local or global feedback).
The most important circuits on the DAC board are enclosed in special boxes to ensure no high frequency interference between the most important circuits.
Both the B-400 and the B-400PLUS can, via an update kit, be upgraded to a B-400XS.
PlusBit Technology© places the 2 ladders over each other with half a sample delay. The result of this will be the sum of the two ladders.
The resulting ladder is therefore a ladder with one bit more resolution, and the resulting ladder is significantly more smooth or analogue, resulting in a much much more refined and musical sound.
It is extremely imporant to point out that ALL OTHER technologies (One/16/18/20/24-bit convertion, various degrees of oversampling and up-sampling) only try to recreate the 16 bit signal as precisely as possible. This results in ALL conventionel cd-players only recreating a 16bit signal, no matter what technology is involved.
Densen has applied for worldwide patents on the Plus-Bit Technology©, and will introduce the B-400XS as the first proof of the significance of the new technology.
Sound: It is important to point out that this is not just another fancy small improvement of the D-A convertion process, but rather a dramatic improvement of the quality of the source material.
When listening to the B-400XS it is important to understand that for the first time ever, CD-players are not comparable using the same software. There is a dramatic difference between 16 and 17 bit resolution on the source material, and therefore the sound of a B-400XS is markedly different from everything else.
This is immediately obvious for listeners familiar with the Densen Beat B-400. The only word that springs to mind to precisely describe the difference is "analogue". The sound is simply so different from that of a normal CD-player that several listeners have initially dismissed the B-400XS as significantly inferior to the B-400, only to find out after extended listening that the B-400XS is so much better than the B-400 and other CD-players that it is almost unbelieveable… We therefore urge listeners to use extended listening before paasing judgment.
The B-400XS is simply so much more real, musical, emotional and passionate that it must be heard to be believed.