Listed in The Absolute Sound 2012 High-End Audio Buyer's Guide
Upgraded 'Link' to Your Digital Audio System
A steadily increasing number of people are storing their cherished music collections on computers these days. This exciting consumer led revolution offers new and exciting possibilities for audiophiles. However, the standard USB output from laptops has been a serious limitation on ultimate quality.
Standard computer USB outputs are synchronous. This means that the computer will determine its output data rate at its whim. From an audiophile’s perspective this is a disaster. The data rate might be 14-bit, 32 kHz, or it might be at a higher data rate. It just depends on what the computer decides to do.
The solution to this problem is asynchrony. Simply put, the receiving device instructs the computer to give it data (via its USB output) at whatever rate it has been stored on the computer disc. This is a big change. Now an audiophile can be confident that the data received from his computer is genuinely high quality and unfailingly consistent.
Data Rate Problems Solved
The Musical Fidelity V-Link II is a 24-bit, 96 kHz asynchronous USB to S/PDIF converter. It is an exclusive in-house, Musical Fidelity development. The V-Link II offers perfect performance from USB. Jitter is eliminated. Data transfer is perfect. It really, really does the job.
True to its name, the Musical Fidelity V-Link II is the missing link in the evolution of your audio system. If you've been suffering from the computer music blahs, wrestling with low-fidelity music, try the V-Link II and hear what you've been missing. No, the V-Link II isn't a DAC. But it allows your DAC to receive up to a true 24-bit, 96 kHz data stream from your computer so that you can enjoy better-than-CD audio quality.
The Musical Fidelity original model V-Link was honored by being included in The Absolute Sound 2012 High-End Audio Buyer's Guide. According to the magazine, "SS was especially impressed with the V-Link's ability to retain all the dynamic subtlety he experienced through FireWire and S/PDIF connections, as well as retaining all the dimensional solidity and image definition of the original recording. The V-Link can be recommended almost without reservations to anyone with a high-end DAC that lacks USV capabilities…"
"Works Superbly" – "Magical"
"The device works superbly," reports the June 2011 issue of Hi-Fi World, magazine. "There’s a clear sonic improvement."
"Whether streaming music from my hard-disc storage over the home network, or with high-quality internet streamed services, the V-Link/netbook combination sounded magical – and I don’t use the term lightly," raves Gramophone, magazine for May 2011.
Perfect and Consistent Performance
The V-Link II has been designed from the ground up to offer perfect and consistent performance. It uses Musical Fidelity’s unique proprietary asynchronous digital control system feedback technology software. It will work with a huge range of computers and operating systems. The low-jitter power supply feeds an ultra-high precision clock, which is positioned almost on top of (in PCB terms at least) the V-Link’s vital components. This achieves extremely short tracks and ultra accurate clocking. An advanced I2-Bus-to-S/PDIF converter ensures jitter free precision conversion.
No Drivers or Software Needed
The V-Link II is a true plug-and-play product. Connect it to your PC or Mac, and it's ready to go, without headaches. There are absolutely and positively no software or device drivers to install. "This is a big deal," notes ComputerAudiophile.com. "No matter how often manufacturers suggest that software installation isn't an issue, they never seem to provide evidence supporting that claim."
Listed in The Absolute Sound 2012 High-End Audio Buyer's Guide
"SS was especially impressed with the V-Link's ability to retain all the dynamic subtlety he experienced through FireWire and S/PDIF connections, as well as retaining all the dimensional solidity and image definition of the original recording. The V-Link can be recommended almost without reservations to anyone with a high-end DAC that lacks USV capabilities…"
- The Absolute Sound 2012 High-End Audio Buyer's Guide
Praise for the V-Link II
"The device works superbly. There’s a clear sonic improvement."
"Overall, the new V-Link is a fine little tweaky product for computer audiophiles."
- Hi-Fi World, magazine, June 2011
"Whether streaming music from my hard-disc storage over the home network, or with high-quality internet streamed services, the V-Link/netbook combination sounded magical – and I don’t use the term lightly."
- Gramophone, magazine, May 2011
Praise for the Original V-Link
"Editor's Choice" - Hi-fi News Magazine
"It’s simplicity itself to install and delivers great performance."
"There’s no driver to be installed: the V-Link is quickly recognized by the computer’s operating system once connected and offers compatibility with 16- or 24-bit files of up to 96 kHz."
"Moreover, it offers completely jitter-free conversion from one interface to the other."
- Keith Howard, Hi-fi News magazine, February 2011
"Overall, and especially considering its price, the Musical Fidelity V-Link seems a well-engineered solution to get USB audio from a PC with minimal jitter."
"With the V-Link's price of just $169, it becomes difficult to justify recommending other USB-S/PDIF converters… Musical Fidelity's V-Link should justifiably sell like hotcakes to those with legacy DACs who want to use a PC as a server."
- John Atkinson, Stereophile, April 2011
"When I finally discovered low little they cost… I was more than pleasantly surprised. Practically anyone who can afford a Mac Mini can probably also spring for an M1 DAC and V-Link, creating a playback system that will enthrall all who give it a listen."
"The Musical Fidelity V-Link and M1 DAC certainly changed my opinion of what level of performance can be expected from a budget DAC and converter box…"
"While on the subject of USB and the V-Link, I can almost without reservations recommend it to anyone with a high-end DAC that lacks USB capabilities. It renders USB almost as well as the [$699-$999] Empirical Audio Labs Off-Ramp 3 converter box."
"Even if you can afford to pay more, maybe even a lot more, I strongly advise you to listen to and live with the Musical Fidelity M1 DAC and V-Link converter for a week in your system. Consider the bar raised."
- Steven Stone, The Absolute Sound, May/June 2011
"It was pretty easy to hear how much improved the sound was when the V-Link was in place. The whole image tightened up immediately with the V-Link."
"The V-Link requires absolutely no manual software or device driver installation. This is a big deal. No matter how often manufacturers suggest that software installation isn't an issue, they never seem to provide evidence supporting that claim."
"It has been nearly six years since I enjoyed a Musical Fidelity system as much as the M1DAC, M1HPA, and V-Link… In an industry with six and seven figure audio systems it's hard to believe three zeros can be removed from the end of the price tag and still allow someone to put together a really good system. I applaud Musical Fidelity for producing such good sound at such good prices."
- ComputerAudiophile.com, January 22, 2011