DIY audio blog for projects, schematics, PCB's, designs, electronics, mods


DIR9001+TDA1541A Classic NOS DAC

The whole thing started as a simple idea – to design a simple S/PDIF input DAC for my PC. So I turned to the classical chipset – DIR9001 + TDA1541A in NOS mode. I just wanted to keep thing simple and at low cost(compact PCB). So eventually the thing grew up to a group project with many people sharing opinions on the mater.
The whole discussion thread is here(Bulgarian language):

Since some people suggested to make it possible to use TDA1541(non A) DAC chip the project was altered this way. The interesting thing about TDA1541(non A) is that it allows a master clock to be fed directly to pin 4. This one accepts 11.2896MHz clock frequency. In TDA1541A non such thing is available.

From TDA1541 datasheet:
“A separate system clock input (SCK) is provided for accurate, jitter-free timing of the analogue outputs AOL and AOR.

So the PCB was designed to allow this mode, should a TDA1541(non A) was used. For some reason Philips had decided to turn that feature off in their later TDA1541A DAC chip. Here is how it should be implemented according to a Philips application note from 1985 :

The application is a bit misleading. The SAA7220 chip actually outputs 11.2896MHz at pin 9.

As for the analog section. It’s of course a pure classic. Opamp based I/V converter, followed by an active low-pass filter. Nothing fancy here. The project uses one double opamp (NE5532) per channel. Of course a DC null correction is used at the DAC chip outputs. Despite that a output coupling capacitor is paced on the PCB.

Here are some pictures of the PCB:

Almost completed project forum mate Stanislav
Higher end implementation from forum mate Nikolay Kolev
Here is a set of measurements taken by user pid_58 (thnaks mate 😉 ) using EUM 0404 sound card.

The final version of the schematic is available for download HERE.

I am adding the gerber files for this project. To download click here – >>>[ LINK ]<<<

Update 19.08.2012
The project was further tweaked by a fellow Plamen Todorov by adding a ECC88 tube stage. More info on this HERE

WARNING – this project is provided to the DIY community for free and is intended for personal usage ONLY. Therefore a commercial usage is NOT allowed without author’s exclusive permission!!!

*****************THANK YOU FOR READING THIS ARTICLE*****************


Low Jitter Clock For CD Player – Upgrade Module


DIY USB Isolator Made Easy


  1. Anonymous

    I like your design of the DIR9001+TDA1541A DAC. I am thinking of using your design for my TV to use the SPDIF output.
    Can I buy the PCB from you? Or can I get the PCB design?

  2. Vencislav Simonov

    Hi, I don’t have any PCB’s at the moment. I will publish the gerber files on Monday.

    Regards, Venci.

  3. Vencislav Simonov

    Article updated.

    Regards, Venci

  4. Anonymous

    Could you repost the gerber? Seems broken now…


  5. Ventsislav Simonov

    Hi. The link is fixed now.

    Thank you for your interest, Venci.

  6. Anonymous

    Hi Venci,

    Thanks 🙂

    Any chance I can use the LM4562 opamps here, without any modification?


  7. Tesla

    Very well thanks Mr simonov for this schematics
    what this format schematics?

  8. Marius


    I have one question: what is the value of the CL5/CR5 in parallel with the 1.2k resistor on the reaction of the opamp? I want to use only the preamp part together with my TDA1541 from my CD player. Thank you very much !

    • Hi,
      it’s usually 1 to 10nF. However you only need those if you have stability issues. If you plan on using current-feedback op-amps those caps might do more harm than good.


      • Marius


        Thanks for your quick answer. Basically, is a I/U preamp using the output of the TDA1541. I will try with an 1nF first…or maybe less ( pico values) to see what is the result. Do you have any other recommendations? Thank you very much.

  9. James Lorence

    Hello Vetsislav,

    I’d want to build this DAC using your PCB design and I’am having a problem importing your Gerber files (Drills in particular). Would it be too much to ask to upload or just send me by email the archive in Eagle format?

    I appreciate your help and thanks for an elegant design and for making it public.


    • Hi James,
      thank you for the interest. Unfortunately due to recent data loss I won’t be able to send the files. I will be updating this project however. A new design with this configuration will be available soon, together with manufacturing files. I’m sorry I can’t be of much help here 🙁

  10. Adam

    Hello Ventsislav, we have 2021 year and your project is still up to date. I would like to create such DAC, very interesing project, I tried to order PCB based on your Gerber files but I do not know what is size of the PCB, Second do you have such PCB for sell? Kindly ask for answer.

  11. Carmine

    Hi friends, im Carmine from Italy, nice to meet you.

    Congratulations for your site/blog, an excellent point of reference for audio manufacturers. I need to know something about this post.

    in the HDR1 connector, can I use the TosLink input, with coaxial cable, right?

    I only have TDA1541A, but I think the TDA pin4 connection is the same for the TDA1541, right? I understood the difference between the two, but in my case can I use this TDA1541A having the same connections of your electronic scheme?
    I await your news and thanks in advance.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén