The Maestro has been Audiomat’s reference DAC for the longest time and is now in its Maestro 3 guise. The Maestro 2 you see here had the 24 bit/192 kHz DAC chip which was a newer chipset over the 24 bit/96 kHz found in the first Maestro. The Maestro 3 is more contemporary where it now has 32 bit/384 kHz, USB (with DSD capability) and ethernet inputs and a digital display screen. The Maestro 3 sells for thousands more than the Maestro 2 so if you are not after the USB or ethernet inputs or need to have a digital display screen, the Maestro 2 is just as musical as the Maestro 3. To say one is better than the other is really splitting hairs. In the typical CD transport/ DAC setup, the Maestro 2 shines with lesser money. The level of detail and precision is truly impressive with a warm musicality that is reminiscent of Micromega but with a much higher level of resolution and transparency. Built and finish is also better than the earlier French renaissance. So for under $2,500 now, the Maestro 2 is amongst the best you can buy now at this price range. Accepted digital inputs are coaxial, optical and AES/EBU with RCA and XLR analog outputs. Power supply is housed separately in a chassis on its own to eliminate the electrical interference on the sensitive DAC circuitry.
Cosmetically, the unit looks good overall. There are some small nicks and scratches here and there but barely noticeable 3 feet or more away. Unit will be securely packed for safe shipping.