Cambridge Audio 851C DAC, Pre-amp and CD Player




You've heard of trick or treat, well how about TRIPLE treat? The Cambridge 851C is (1) a high-end CD player; (2) a state-of-the-art DAC and (3) a digital preamp - all in one highly accomplished package. The 851C has been designed to operate at the very heart of your digital music system, offering incredible functionality and performance.  As a high-end solution to the demands of today’s multi-format music lover, the 851C is truly capable of enhancing any digital audio that passes through its sophisticated electronics. 

Highest Quality CD Performance: If you've a treasured collection of CDs and are keen to keep increasing your collection, the Cambridge Audio 851C will get the very best out of the format. At the heart of the 851C is a 32-bit Analog Devices Black Fin DSP (Digital Signal Processor). This feeds two of its AD1955 24-bit DACs in dual differential formation, each handling just one channel for excellent stereo imaging. What you hear is an exceptionally unforced, natural sound. Instruments and vocals 'breath' with emotion and depth, the sound has colour, texture and fluidity for an uncanny a sense of realism.

AFT2 Audio Upsampling: The 851C also has an Anagram Technologies AFT2 24 bit/384 kHz up-sampling circuit. Up-sampling conventional CDs 'stretches' the format to give the highest resolution possible. It also aids standard 24-bit/192kHz recordings with a faster sampling rate for less jitter. Up-sampling gives a smoother, more relaxed sound quality with added detail. You'll also notice enhanced depth and a more natural quality without the 'edge' that can afflict digital music. You'll hear every detail, including the odd cough, squeaky chair and flutter of sheet music; in short, it's like being there for real!

Tailored Sound: As we all prefer slightly different nuances of sound quality, the 851C comes with Cambridge Audio's triple filter system. Select from Linear Phase, Minimal Phase or Steep modes and you can subtly alter the sound quality. You might even find certain types of music sound better with a particular filter engaged.

A DAC For All Your Digital Sources: The Cambridge Audio 851C not only has digital outputs but also comes with four digital inputs. What this means is that you can connect up sources via a choice of optical/coaxial for inputs 1 and 2 and XLR or USB. So pretty much any digital source with a digital output can have its sound improved by being connected into the 851C.

Digital Pre-amp Functionality: The Cambridge Audio 851C is not just a top quality CD player and DAC; it's also an impressive digital pre-amplifier too! Use digital inputs 1 and 2 to connect up your Blu-ray player, games console or any other source with a digital output and use the pre-amp to select the source and alter the volume/balance. Connect your PC or media device by USB, as well. Once processed, the signal is ready to go straight into a power amp or active speakers - making for a, very high quality minimalist system.

Extensive Damping: Using a full metal casing with rounded edges, doesn't just look and feel good, it helps the sound, too. The case is rigid and well damped, so it won't resonant unhelpfully. The thick aluminium front panel acts as a shield against electrical interference from sources such as dimmers and RF devices. All these details combine to create a hi-fi component that not only looks stylish but also offers exceptional resistance to both mechanical and electrical interference.

  • Design: High Quality Compact Disc Player/DAC/Digital Preamp
  • Disc Formats: Plays CD's, CD-R's and CD-RW's
  • Amazing Value: Functions as stand-alone digital-to-analogue converter and digital preamp with volume and balance controls
  • Audio Outputs: Balanced XLR and unbalanced RCA analogue audio outputs
  • Digital Audio Inputs: Three digital audio inputs with optical (Toslink), RCA coaxial (S/PDIF), and balanced XLR (AES/EBU) jacks
  • USB Input: USB audio (Type B) input allows streaming of up to 24-bit/192kHz audio from a computer (built-in USB driver handles audio up to 24-bit/96kHz)
  • ATF2: Anagram Technologies Adapted Time Filtering 2 (ATF2™) 24-bit/384kHz audio upsampling with jitter reduction for better sound with compressed audio sources
  • DAC: Dual Analog Devices AD1955 24 bit DACs delivering superior sound-staging and stereo imaging and featuring S/PDIF and Toslink digital inputs, AES/EBU balanced digital input and USB audio inputs (all 24 bit compatible)
  • Selectable Digital Filters: Linear phase, minimum phase, steep
  • Toroidal Transformer: Audiophile grade toroidal transformer delivering ultra-low low noise and distortion
  • Chassis: Full metal casework design
  • Front Panel: Thick brushed aluminium front panel and dual layer damped feet, giving enhanced resonance control
  • Control bus in/out, IR in, and RS232C port for custom installation applications
  • Remote Control: Full function system remote control with Cambridge Audio amplifier. Compatible with certain Apple Devices.
  • Detachable Power Cord: This means you can upgrade to an audiophile version
  • Power Input: 230-240V 50Hz
  • Power Consumption: 40 Watts
  • Standby Power Consumption: <0.5 Watt
  • Dimensions (WxHxD): 430 x 115 x 360mm
  • Net Weight: 10kg