Beta Tester’s Impressions of the New PerfectWave SACD Transport

Well, the drive is an Esoteric one used in the PerfectWave SACD Transport if information on this forum is correct. Perhaps the isolation as well stems from Esoteric.

At a comparable price-point, for DSD capability the only comparison would seem to be with the Marantz SA-12 (or SA-10), but as it has the same transport and isolation, the. comparison would effectively be of the DAC rather than the transport.

For CD use, which is where the more general market is likely to be, a sound quality test would seem to be against other transports of a similar price into various DACs. There transports used seem to be much cheaper, well under $1,000.

This is all a bit much to ask for beta testers and I can’t think of any transports at this price, which for me would be £6,500, almost $9,000. Surely you would rather a TD-1601, or perhaps both?

The Marantz SACD 30n basically has the same transport and has digital outputs, and is less than half the price in the UK (£2,700), but it does not have the same level of isolation as the SA-12 or presumably the PST. Expecting anyone to test these permutations is wishful thinking, as I would be surprised if anyone would be buying the 30n other than as an all-in-one digital to analogue player, not least as it is one of the few with Amazon HD built in to the app.

Surely the beta testing has ended if it is on the market for sale?

FYI. From

In second paragraph of the “Design” section, it said
“…The PWT’s main mechanical component was a computer CD/DVD drive made by LG … The DMP is based on an Oppo universal Blu-ray player, …”

Current PST uses Marantz transport mechanism - SACDM-3.

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Out of patriotism, communist states of the past century took a lot of pride in making their products with components sourced at home. Those products were neither competitive, nor reliable. Also, some large companies in the OECD tried integrate their supply chains in all directions, but could not always make better or less expensive products.

Today, you’d be hard pressed to find a manufacturer using components all made in-house or even in their home country. Big conglomerates do sometimes buy out their suppliers to secure their long term needs, but that is hardly the case in electronics as parts are so diversified and so ever evolving. For me, a product made of outsourced / imported parts is to be assessed / evaluated in its own right for design, quality and reliability of the complete product.

“Acoustic Zen Crescendo Mark II speakers”
I own these wonderful loudspeakers too. Could not be happier!!! :grin:

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indeed. a fine full range transmission line speaker. folks are generally amazed that i do not have a subwoofer. they resolve nicely with classical music down in the low 20s in my room. but dont beat you to death. balanced i would say in their frequency response? own the adagios also. use in my video sound system. Robert Lee is an interesting and friendly fellow!

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Rather than clutter up the forum, here is a link to my comments on the PST left on the sister thread:

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I was fortunate to be a first time beta tester of the PS Audio Perfectwave SACD Transport (PST). I really enjoyed being a beta tester and I hope this review gives perspective buyers of the PST some useful input. I consider myself the kind of person that is most likely to use the PST. That is, my digital front end was a PS Audio DS DAC and a PS Audio Directstream Memory Player (DMP). Also, my principle digital source material is an SACD. I have a collection of about 600 SACD’s that are mostly classic rock and the blues. If you are interested here is a link that will list my audio system in extreme detail: https://forums.stevehoffman.tv/members/tony-plachy.1886/ . (Click on the Information tap to see my system listed.) The most important detail (in my opinion) is that I use a very short (1 foot) Wireworld top-of-the-line HDMI cable to connect the transport to the DAC. The two units are stacked one on top of the other and using the shortest highest quality HDMI cable to connect them does make a noticeable improvement in the sound. Also, I only tested the PST using the I2S connection.

The bottom line of my review below is that if you have a DS DAC and a DMP digital front end and you are wondering is the PST is a better transport than the DMP the answer is YES, the PST is better than the DMP. I was amazed at how much improvement in sound quality (SQ) there was with the PST. I never thought that a transport could make this much difference. I attribute the SQ to improvements in memory player aspects of the player that results in lower jitter and the galvanic isolation of the output section that results in lower noise.

For the actual review I choose a track from four different SACD’s that I play very often and know very well. My wife who has much more musical ability and experience than I do participated in the review. She agreed with me on this review. The main things that we found on all the track was a clearer sound where both the notes and the time between the notes is better delineated. There is a better three dimensional acoustic image. There i9s fuller deeper bass. The individual songs are below.

“Wild Horses” from Sticky Fingers by The Rolling Stones, SHM-SACD Universal Japan. Voices were clearer than I have ever heard them. When Charlie Watts comes in on the drums the leading edge of each drum strike was sharper than ever before. You could hear further into the music, you could tell were each instrument was.

“Black Magic Woman” from Abraxas by Santana, Hyprid SACD MoFi Original Master Recording. All of the above plus the fuller deeper bass was really there. The Congo drums sounded cleaner than ever.

“Aja” from Aja by Steely Dan, SHM-SACD Universal Japan. Again all of the above plus the Xylophone sounded more real than ever before and there is a section where there is only drums ( I believe it has two drummers playing ). On the DMP this sounds more like a blur of drumming, whereas, on the PST each drum strike is clear and the space between them can be heard.

On the above three the DSD digital files were made from the original analog tapes.

“Songbird” from Rumours by Fleetwood Mac, Hybrid SACD WB Japan. This is a solo track with Christine McVie singing and playing piano. Her voice was clearer than with the DMP and the piano notes were as pure as I have ever heard them.

As they say in the audio magazines, highly recommended!

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I can’t comment on the sound quality of the player but I can on the SHM SACD’s particularly Sticky Fingers and Aja! Great sounding discs!

Thank you for the review!

Thanks for the review Tony! Great having you a part of the beta crew!

Been looking at wireworld cables for a bit. Which one did you use?

Wow, Their line up has really changed. I have the Wireworld Platinum Starlight 7 HDMI cable in a one foot length. I did not get my DS DAC and DMP until the DMP was launched because I had to have a way to play SACD’s. I think that was late in 2016. The only place I could find that short of a high quality HDMI cable was Wireworld. To me it looks like they are phasing out the Platinum Starlight 7 because they only have long lengths left. I have used Audioquest HDMI cables in my video system and am very pleased with them, however, I have never used them in my audio system. I think AQ makes a 2 foot cable.

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Audioquest makes a 2.6’ cable aka .75m. That’s the shortest length. I own a .75 AQ Diamond HDMI and love it!

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