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Sony MDS-JA50ESHigh End Home MD Deck
Intro: 12/1996
MSRP ¥180,000
in: optical x 2, coax, line. out: optical, line, hdphn.430 x 125 x 375 mm, 14.3 kg

Features: 24bit delta-sigma A/D. Current pulse DAC (same as JE700). ATRAC 4.5 (IC: CXD2537R) with new ``adaptive high frequency control technology'', 11.6ms edit point accuracy.

Adjustable recording level control for both digital and analog inputs. Non-clip function in digital recording mode automatically reduces recording gain to avoid clipping (can be disabled). Selectable fade-in and fade-out of digital inputs during recording. Fade in and out curves can be separately set to follow a linear, sin, or log curve. Fade in and out times can be set separately between 1 and 15 seconds. Digital level control has 3 settings: off, recording use only, recording and playback use.

Various track mark functions: off, auto (level based), as well as 1 minute and 5 minute intervals. Auto track mark silence detection level can be set from -72dB to -0dB in 2dB steps. Auto track mark minimum silence duration can be set from 0 to 9.5 seconds in 0.5 second steps.

Has selectable resume function modes: 1) disabled 2) starts play where it left off (just like the portables), or 3) starts play at next song, even after power off. During playback auto space (insert space when crossing tracks) or auto pause (enter pause when crossing tracks) can be set, or disabled. Peak hold function, works during recording or playback. Digital output filter has 4 settings to control rolloff of frequencies above 20kHz to better suit system, room or song acoustics (adopted from Sony ES CD player). 6 second time machine. Digital out word length can be set to 16 or 20 bits, when connected to another 20 bit machine or D/A converter can do 20 bit dubbing. Handy indicator LEDs on the play, pause and record buttons.

Entire front panel has 6 display modes: 1) time, track#, meter, misc. modes, disc/track title. 2) time, track#, meter, misc. modes, output filter setting. 3) time, track#, meter, misc. modes, rec. gain setting (in dB). 4) time, track#, meter, disc/track title (remove music calendar, mode indicators, etc). 5) time and track# only (remove meter, disc/track title). 6) blank entire display (remove everything, unit functions as normal otherwise).

20 segment level meter. Tray loading mechanism. Rigid vibration resistant chassis. Two R-Core transformers (separate ones for digital and analog sections). Note: No monaural recording. No mic inputs.

Specs: Freq resp: 5-20kHz +/-0.3dB, S/N: (brochure: > 108dB) (digital rec/play), Dynamic Range: > 105dB (digital), THD < .002% (digital), Wow/flutter: less than 0.001% W-Peak. 5 year warranty.

Links: German Stereo magazine review of this unit. Initial JA50ES technical info (translated). Sony's MD pages covering the 1996 Audio Fair mention this unit. Sony's JA50ES annoucement at CeBIT. Behnam Tony scanned in the Wide Bit Stream block diagram (showing a 24 bit data path from the ADC to the ATRAC chip!). Sony US's MDS-JA50ES page. A brief summary of MD activity at CES '97 mentions that the MDS-JA50ES will be introduced in the US.


User Manuals: MDS-JA50ES, MDS-JA50ES

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