DirectStream VS Nuwave


#1

Hi,

My name is Bertrand, I’m new here, live in France, so be indulgent for the vocabulary… smileand i hope i post at the right place.

So, I just bought a second hand DS with Bridge 2 in replacement of my network player Bluesound node2 and my ps audio nuwave dsd. I have a naim supernait 2 as amp and B&W CM10 S2 as speakers. I purchased it from an Italian guy who bought it from an Italian dealer HIFi Prinzio. Unit looks mint, cosmetically new. It was manufactured in april 2015. It’s for the little story of this DS.

After a comparative test between the DS and the nuwave, I come back with some questions:
to clarify things a little bit, I did the test using the bluesound player in coaxial and with cables in RCA for the connection to the supernait 2 amp.

And, during the test, with equal volume, I have a noticeable difference of sound power between the DS and the Nuwave.

The nuwave sound lauder, and I have to play with the remote control of the amp to put the sound at the same level.

I specify that coaxial source, on the display, was with volume at 100%, filter checked so that it is not at “60” and phase on “in”.
Would you have an advice or a solution for? Or it’s may be normal?

It’s the same with Torreys and Huron.

I also have to say that in my ears, and with the material of this test, the nuwave seems as qualitative as the DS. To tell you the truth, I’m a little disappointed.

But I think that with your help and advice, I’ll be able to optimize it and make it more qualitative.

One question more: I‘m already registered on Qobuz for the music… So would have you a solution to read music files with the Bridge2, from the streaming website Qobuz, which is also an excellent streaming website with a very good catalog? I guess you probably know it! But, may be I’ll find the answer on your forum !

Thanks for your answers ! wink

Best regards

Bertrand


#2

Welcome to the forum Bertrand! Your English is excellent.

The maximum volume on the DS is lower than for the NuWave DSD so what you are seeing (or hearing) there is normal and is not a problem unless you are going directly into your amplifier and the DS does not have enough gain (which does not seem to be the case as you are able to adjust the volume on your amp). It is very important to match volumes carefully when comparing the two components because otherwise the louder one tends to sound “better.” I have a DS in my main system and a NuWave DSD in my second system. The NuWave DSD is quite good but I found the DSD to be substantially better when I put the NuWave into my main system to compare. That’s just my experience. Yours may be different, although I suspect with a little more time with the DS you will likely come to agree.

Qobuz is not available in the US and I don’t have any experience with it but some of our European members love it and I expect some of them will be able to make software suggestions.


#3

Bertrand, for an excellent and good-sounding application that supports the Bridge and Qobuz, use BubbleUPnP on Android. It’s the one of the best players available and can run on any Android tablet or phone.

Meanwhile, back in reality, Qobuz is easy to use in the US - you need to use one piece of Internet software once, when signing up. After that, its just like streaming Tidal in BubbleUPnP.

When signing up for the Qobuz account, you need to briefly use software that creates a temporary internet VPN connection through a non-USA location, like the UK. You should also use PayPal to pay for it, the point being that Qobuz does not identify you as being in the US, but in the UK instead.

For the VPN, I used TunnelBear, as they offer a free limited trial, and it is extremely easy to setup and use.

Once you have a Qobuz account, either trial or paid, you can exit and uninstall the VPN software, as you won’t need it again to stream. Set Bubble to the appropriate bitrate when you enable the account, and stream away…


#4

Thank you vey muchStevem2 for sharing your experience and I confess that I am now a little more quiet to take time to enjoy music with the DS.
Now I have to get to work bridge2.
In a few days I’ll be in your beautiful city for a week, to visit it for the first time!wink

Thanks too Eldrick for your answer.

Currently I was driving qobuz from my ipad, using the bluesound application and player but I see that with the Bridge, I will have to invest in a network hard drive (QNAP i think), then install Bubbleupnp.

A little more complicated for me than the simplicity of the bluesound, but I hope to be able to get there, for listening Qobuz!
Anyway, khank you both for your help ! happy-048_gif


#5

Welcome, Tyber!


#6

Enjoy your trip to NYC! My wife and I love to visit France.


#7
EldRick said

Bertrand, for an excellent and good-sounding application that supports the Bridge and Qobuz, use BubbleUPnP on Android. It’s the one of the best players available and can run on any Android tablet or phone.

Meanwhile, back in reality, Qobuz is easy to use in the US - you need to use one piece of Internet software once, when signing up. After that, its just like streaming Tidal in BubbleUPnP.

When signing up for the Qobuz account, you need to briefly use software that creates a temporary internet VPN connection through a non-USA location, like the UK. You should also use PayPal to pay for it, the point being that Qobuz does not identify you as being in the US, but in the UK instead.

For the VPN, I used TunnelBear, as they offer a free limited trial, and it is extremely easy to setup and use.

Once you have a Qobuz account, either trial or paid, you can exit and uninstall the VPN software, as you won’t need it again to stream. Set Bubble to the appropriate bitrate when you enable the account, and stream away…

EldRick, your method worked like a charm. Took less than 10 minutes to setup TunnelBear and sign up for Qobuz's 15-day trial. Easy peezy!

But, as I later found, I can play Qobuz through my Mconnect Control app to my mobile device but when I try to send it to Bridge II, not supported. BubbleUp is the only way so far.


#8

Hello, Bertrand! I also came from the NuWave DAC to the DS DAC and had a similar experience. When I first got the DS DAC I was a bit underwhelmed since it didn’t blow away the NuWave. I think part of that was due to how excellent the NuWave is as a DAC, really. It is the best DAC bargain out there, or at least it was until the Gain Cell DAC. My being underwhelmed was also partly due to the need for break in since the sound opened up significantly over the next several weeks. I also really noticed the DS to improve when I upgraded the standard fuse to the Audio Magic Beeswax fuse, which absolutely blew my mind. I really was skeptical about how a fuse could make a difference, but it really did. Finally Huron is the icing on the cake. Now my DS sounds significantly than I remember the NuWave did (although I sold it long ago so can’t do a direct comparison). So give it some time to settle in, maybe try the AM fuse. I see you’ve already upgraded to Huron, which several have reported takes a little time to settle in as well. Good luck!

Adam


#9

Thank you all for your feedback and Adam, i think you’re right, i’ll take some time to settle it.

I’ll may be try with the AM fuse, if i understand which one i have to choose and how install it ! I will read a litle more about that !

But thank you for sharing your experience !

Bertrand


#10

It’s not hard, Bertrand. All you need to know about changing out the fuse is in this thread:

http://www.psaudio.com/forum/directstream-all-about-it/fuses-in-the-directstream-question/

Keep in mind, the inside edge of the DS DAC is very sharp so be careful! Let me know if you have any questions.

Adam