Gustard R26

Is anyone else looking forward to the reviews coming out on the Gustard R26 r2rDac? I am interested to see if it can compete with the Holo Spring at a lower price point. How will it stand up to the other r2r dac’s out there right now. It does present well and is feature rich right out of the box. Is it a true proprietary resistor board or is it off the shelf and tweaked? I know the other Gustard equipment is well received and liked so my hopes are high for this as well.


From the dozen people I know with an R26, they do not use it as a streamer and are very happy with its performance.

Seems to be well worth its cost. 

i do use it as a streamer and roon endpoint, it works flawlessly and sounds very nice

@arafiq which did you keep? pontus or r26? 😁

btw, i posted the following several weeks back (unwisely) in a thread about a different dac... anyways, i will share it here as these comments properly belong here...

fwiw, i bought a nice used r26 just to try it, see what the fuss is about, and i would agree that for the $ it is absurdly good... particularly from the lan input (i am a roon user) - i have confidently poo-pooed the chifi brands since i started my dac journey at the start of covid, especially those from the guangzhou/shenzhen factory alley (smsl, gustard, topping, singxer, matrix and so on...) but this r26 is pretty amazing... with an effective built in streamer too...

In  my previous post regarding the Gustard R26 I forgot to mention that dynamics were substantially better with the R26 compared to the Ares ll. With good source material, I fount the R26 to be quite holographic. I am well pleased with the R26.

@jjss49 I ended up returning the R26 and kept the Pontus II in my second system. Honestly speaking, they were both excellent and I could have lived happily with either one. The R26 had a wider soundstage and better treble. But in the end, I preferred the slightly fuller, weightier sound signature of Pontus. It just sounded a bit more organic to me. But as I said, the differences were subtle at best. 

The streamer in R26 is just average in my opinion. If I was buying the R26, the streamer would not factor in my decision. But the DAC function is excellent and can compete with more expensive DACs. I can see someone preferring the R26 over Pontus depending on their preferences.

I know a few who have added a Leo Bodnar external clock to the Gustard R26, which makes a significant improvement.