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.


@sgreg1 I kept the DAC for almost 3 weeks. I believe I put in excess of 150 hours on the DAC. Like I said, I really liked the DAC but the Pontus II just edged it out ever so slightly. 

As for streamers, I tried it with the built-in streamer, a Bluesound Node, and an Aavik streamer. The R26 streamer was about as good as the BS Node but not better. My point is that you're still better off with a separate streamer if you're trying to extract more performance out of your system. Having said that, it does compete well with sub $500 streamers. So for those looking for a great DAC and streamer combo under $2K, the R26 should be on the top of your list.

Just picked up a like new used R26.  Very nice easy to set up component.  (Sonic transporter roon-ethernet-Fmc-opt cable-Fmc-ethernet-R26-amp) Sound quality is fantastic no matter the price.  On my system I was finding it with the default settings too bright and not as real sounding as I am used to and prefer with prior DAC/Streamer.  Detail, separation  and soundstage were exceptional.  After playing with the settings and turning NOS and DSD settings on it improved considerably.  Also, switching from high quality silver plated OCC ethernet cables to nice quality basic copper CAT 8 made an additional improvement.  We’ll see how more time listening plays out.  Anyone else experience this minor brightness challenge?

Anyone feeding their R26 via USB? My Aurender is USB out only, and even though I've read the R26 is optimized for LAN, I've really been enjoying the well-defined sound through the USB connection. It's like someone finally dialed-in my system's focus. 

All I use. It works great and sounds great.

It is more optimized for USB, as it uses the same USB chip that is used in other Gustards and SMSL.

@botrytis, that's good to hear. Do you mean more optimized than the other inputs on the R26?