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Obviously, everything depends on system synergy, and the Direct Stream makes a good fit with Tannoy 215 DMT II speakers, Cary SLP 05, Art Audio Jota monoblocks, and Wyred 4 Sound server.
I no longer miss the sound of vinyl, and I love the convenience of having my library on a server.
Can I use that directly with streaming services with My IPAD? or do I need something else to stream from my IPAD wirelessly?
I am glad you and others have found the DirectStream DAC to your liking. So much does depend upon system synergy.
In my system, in my dedicated listening room, I have had a different experinece. I used the DirectStream DAC connected to the PSA DirectStream Memory Player by I2S ICs (0.6 m & 1.0 m), feeding SS amplification to full range speakers all via balanced ICs (see my main system). "Pure" audio was toggled "on" and the latest software updates were loaded (2017). After extensive "running-in," a persistent difficiency remained in the sources' reproduction of LF music when directly compared to an Ayre C-5xe MP.
First, I recognize and appreciate the high quality of in-home music reproduction the DirectStream combo provides. Very high quality tone, texture, decay, micro- and macro-dynamics throughout much of the audio frequency range. Hoewever, ... :
At music content near and below 155 Hz, an obvious departure from the duo's presentation at other frequency points occurs as a perceived roll-off of presence, texture, tone, and level. Initial pluck or strum of upright bass notes are softened almost to create the perception of a 6 to 12 dB, plus, difference from the remaining musical mix. And as the notes go lower, the perceived roll off accelerates. Also absent is the first wave impact of low frequency notes from upright or electric bass, massed string double bass, electronic synth, tuba, etc. In addition, the decay normally associated with LF string or piano is likewise lower in perceived level and discernable texture.
I compared the combo to my analogue set up and discovered that for music with frequencies between 100 Hz and above, the presentation is very similar except for some lack of decay (think triangle, chimes, xylophone) that may be attributable to Compact Disc recording limitations (compared same title on LPs and CDs or SACDs). The difference in reproduction of musical content with frequencies below around 120 Hz was less pronounced than when comparing level matched digital reproductions, but still clearly evident as a deficiency in the overall presentation.
I know that PS Audio claims the combo's performance is "flat" across the audio spectrum (presumably down to 18 or 20 Hz), but in my system that does not translate to balanced, coherent musical reproduction of the lowest frequencies in symphonic, jazz, and other acoustic and amplified music. Of equal importance to me is the corresponding lack of ambient venue cues presented in the PS Audio combo's reproduction of "well recorded" acoustic music (e.g., Cowboy Junkies "The Trinity Session," Ry Cooder produced "Talking Timbuktu," Mikey Hart's "Dafos," "CSO Brass Live," or studio: Patricia Barber's "Modern Cool").
I do recognize that the PS Audio combo has a very clean, transparent presentation at those musical frequencies that dominate most listening sessions. It is very nice in that respect. It just doesn't do it throughout the audible spectrum in my system.
Ah, system synergy ... .
Gonna' measure with an SPL meter one of these days.
That sounds like a description of tube/vinyl v digital. In my system the level of bass was always fine, perhaps even more via digital but between the two the tube/vinyl combo was just more realistic as it also is the HF texture realm. My DAC has tube out by the way. Thanks for the reply.
"If at first you don't succeed, keep on sucking till you do suck seed" - Curly Howard 1936
The DS lacks midrange richness and texture as well.
Selection of interconnects helps with this.
I am using the DS too with a SLP 05. It is a good synergistic combination.
What cabling do you run between them?
Have you tried running the Cary CD player via its digital outs to the DS to see if there is an improvement using it as a transport with the DS as a DAC?
Not using the Cary CD player now. Will use it in future when auditioning new discs, though.
Avoided it because the discs were so expensive. Now I'm loving my redbook collection.
Tha Marantz only does 4X DSD.
I love 2x, tho, still pretty good.
I would love hear both the PS and Marantz here...
Just as a point of information and forgive me if I'm stating what you already know. Although the PSA DS DAC does upsample everything to 10X DSD what's output is 2X DSD.
What I should have said was the DS DAC then takes the 10X DSD and uses a double rate DSD core engine to output the analogue signal.
Are we talking about the expensive PS Audio gear?
I'm surprised it isn't 10x at output-
Of course, I've only picked up snippets of info here and there.
Thanks for your input!
I thought we were talking about PS Audio. Yes, it ain't cheap. There is a smoothness to the sound of the DirectStream DAC which may be particular to DSD. But what I find is that when I listen to the Oppo 105D solo it sounds a little crude in comparison. Quite clear but less pleasing. Just my 2 cents.
then say that only 2X DSD was output.
Seems like deceptive advertising.
Although You know, so it must be in the Documentation somewhere.
I'm not saying it doesn't sound great, tho...
Just wondering why they did that.
In their web site they say:
"Unlike other processors available today, DirectStream unifies all inputs (PCM or DSD) at 10 x DSD, then uses a true single-bit double-rate DSD core engine. True DSD core engines (compared to the standard multibit Sigma-Delta converters followed by random lower quality multibit converters) offer advantages in simplicity, linearity, and in analog-like overload characteristics that avoid PCM's hard clippingŁ potential and a PCM processor's propensity to mask subtle details."
From what I understand by upsampling so far as they do eliminates some issues. I'd be lying if I said that I understood all of this. It does sound very good but the DirectStream DAC is my only experience with the higher priced spreads.
Especially using the I2S input. Have not tried the bridge but would like to someday.
I do as well. I predict it will become known as a legendary breakthrough product, putting to rest any legitimate criticism of digital audio as inferior to analog. It is so versatile. I run the optical audio digital out from my TV through the optical input in the PS Audio unit, on to preamp. Movies and shows sound fab, and the music channels sound almost listenable!
By the way, I owned the Cary SLP-05 several years ago and it was my all time favorite tube preamp. It looks like you have a cutout in the shelf above the preamp which means all that heat goes straight up into your new DAC. I don't remember if the preamp power supply cord was long enough to allow the two pieces to sit side-by-side instead of one on top of the other.
I have the entry model PS Audio NuWave DSD DAC which I consider to be somewhat of a bargain in recent DACs. It replaced my x3 more expensive Ayre QB9-DSD DAC. I actually prefer the PS Audio. I'd love to try PS Audio DirectStream Jr DAC someday.
I left some breathing room for the tubes.
Hopefully, the heat isn't great enough to cause a problem. So far, so good...
What Dac did it replace?
What digital front end are you using?
After much DAC research, I made a good choice IMHO. Being fed by W4S Server.
Previously was using Cary 303/300 CDP that I'll keep, too.
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