DMP vs Bridge II - with the DSD Snr


#21
badbeef said I'd personally guess it's a case of simpler is better. Really takes a lot of expense and messing around to get a server setup that outputs a signal as unsullied as that read off the disc in the DMP.
I agree completely that what you feed the Bridge makes a lot of difference. I'm not sure it has to be all that complicated, though. I have a Synology NAS in my audio rack, connected to a network switch that is in turn connected to the Bridge. I found that powering the NAS and the switch from a LPS helped, as did upgrading my ethernet cables (Audioquest Vodka). I've thought about optical isolation. I have no more places to plug in small power supplies, each of which probably adds a little more RFI to the soup that's already in my listening room. So I haven't. The sound is I get now from the Bridge is so close to the DMP that I am quite content. Yes, I have gone to some expense (cables and LPS), but nothing too serious relative to the price of the DS DAC. Not particularly difficult.
So to get back to answering the question, Em2016 (and other threads), if you're thinking about getting into computer audio and have a lot of discs, and are used to that, and have/are getting a DMP with DSDAC - the EASY way to the best sound is to keep playing discs.
A very sensible suggestion.
Computer audio is definitely worth it in terms of organization and search and so on, though I do seem to find completely different things to listen to when I'm searching through piles of discs with my hands and looking at them in meatspace vs. searching a database on a screen. (Advantage - Reality)
This matches my experience. For me there is one additional consideration, though. I am out of storage space for physical discs; even if I weren't, at this point in my life acquiring more stuff to be lugged around is becoming less and less attractive. That is a significant advantage to digital files. I have about 650 albums purchased and downloaded to my NAS, with no shelving for an additional 650 discs.

#22

Magister - I bet when a not particularly computerish person reads the paragraph following, “I’m not sure it has to be all that complicated, though” they are likely scratching their heads wink

re: storage - I dumped most of my jewel cases long ago, and put the discs in binders. Since doing the DMP beta, I now have stacks of discs laying around on the floor and on tables. So I just got an “as is” 400-disc changer on eBay to use solely as storage and retrieval for discs. Of course now (after entering title and artist info for any non-CD Text disc to the changer’s memory) I then need to make a database of some sort so I can look up which disc is in slot # ___. May be a dumb idea and will go back to binders…


#23
badbeef said Magister - I bet when a not particularly computerish person reads the paragraph following, "I'm not sure it has to be all that complicated, though" they are likely scratching their heads wink
That's probably the case. It's true that getting my NAS took some learning and a bit of expense, and then learning about how to use digital files (tagging classical music, etc.) involved a great deal more time. Once I had the NAS set up, though, optimizing its sound quality was not difficult. As an audiophile I knew (of course . . . ) about cables and power supplies, so upgrading those elements was not a big deal and really improved the SQ. I think that's what I had in mind when I responded to your comment "Really takes a lot of expense and messing around to get a server setup that outputs a signal as unsullied as that read off the disc in the DMP." If one has a server but it sounds inferior to the DMP, addressing that difference may not be so difficult. Starting from scratch is different.
So I just got an "as is" 400-disc changer on eBay to use solely as storage and retrieval for discs.
Wow. I did not know there were such large changers.

#24

As badbeef noted, perhaps the upcoming Octave is that “external Bridge” we have bandied about in some of the other threads. I remember when I first saw the RJ45 slot in the pics of the DMP and I thought: “this could be Bridge III if it acts as a streamer.” No such luck yet.

Interestingly, my MSB UMT does act as a server transport as well. It’s not Roon-capable, but it can access my MinimServer, and it outputs the bits through its I2S link into the Select II DAC. The interface is essentially the Oppo interface (the UMT has a video output to allow you to interface with the device just as you would any Oppo if you want). That means its somewhat kludgy and slow. Very primitively compared to Roon. But the sound quality is superb. On some high quality discs, for example the AIX discs that have both audio and video, it makes for a nice experience.

David, it was you who gave me the idea for the fiber media converters. Thanks. I was more receptive to it after installing the Mivera Superstream, which is built for fiber. No RJ45 on that little box.

badbeef, I had a Sony (I think) mega changer years ago in my system. I thought about keeping it as a storage device but I bailed. I hate jewel cases, but I don’t love binders either.


#25
magister said
badbeef said So I just got an "as is" 400-disc changer on eBay to use solely as storage and retrieval for discs.
Wow. I did not know there were such large changers.
They even have 400 disc units that do DVDs and SACDs in multichannel, etc. (Ignore the dangling wires and dust :) )

2007-11-25-194707.jpg


#26

Ted - sure, but on a thread about one of the best transports there is, those would tends toward the worst. And for my purpose, I can put any kind of disc in there. I’m sticking a junk disc at the 100’s places for when I want to close the thing, since it auto loads whatever slot’s selected when you close the door.

Now if I could just get one with a robotic arm that takes it out and puts it in the DMP…kiss


#27

I was just joking about people not knowing that Sony has big jukeboxes. But FWIW they do make good CD cases: I have them controlled with a Nirvis Slink-e so I can select whatever disc I want on my laptop and have it pop out. I find that a lot more convenient than jewel boxes. On the other hand I have all of the CDs ripped to my computer anyway so I don’t often play individual CDs. I sure enjoy playing MC SACDs in a transport tho.


#28
pmotz said Paul, more so than one of your HDMI-12? I do like the stock cable but thought I heard a slight improvement with the HDMI-12. Actually I am using the stock one with the DMP since I need a 1M cable (the HDMI-12) for my NPC. The HDMI-12 cables are harder to find than hens teeth!
Yes. In my opinion, the new stock HDMI cable outperforms even the HDMI-12 and quite noticeably.

#29
davidl said

Hi palerider

This is a very helpful post. I’ve been following the reviews of the beta DMP and hoping to find a census on the relative SQ of the DMP and the Bridge II, but without success - opinions range from ‘DMP is better: no contest’ through to ‘cannot tell the difference’.

I think you’ve probably hit the nail on the head as regards the Bridge II: your efforts to isolate it from upstream noise result in SQ comparable with that from the DMP. As you may recall I’ve been down a similar route with optical isolation for the DS DAC and noted the SQ benefits.

I’m now less convinced that an upgraded bridge (probably stand-alone box) with an FPGA implementation of the lens technology from the DMP, which I mooted early in the DMP beta review thread, would bring significant improvement in SQ … but I could be wrong of course.

Any comments Paul?


I have tried to be clear on this issue and probably haven’t done a good job. Sorry.

DMP is better than Bridge II IMHO. I use the stock HDMI cable into DS I2S input with DMP.

On the Bridge II I use JRiver and stream through the Mac.

The differences aren’t huge, but they are there and noticeable to these ears.


#30
Paul McGowan said DMP is better than Bridge II IMHO. I use the stock HDMI cable into DS I2S input with DMP.

On the Bridge II I use JRiver and stream through the Mac.

The differences aren’t huge, but they are there and noticeable to these ears.


Paul, you have been clear about this. I don’t know what steps, if any, you’ve taken to tweak the Mac (eliminate unnecessary background processes, etc.) nor do I know what SQ JRiver provides since I don’t use it (but it surely is a complex piece of software). Have you ever compared the DMP against a more minimalist setup feeding the Bridge, something like the NAS running MinimServer that I use? The NAS is a low-powered computer and it runs only the Synology operating system plus MinimServer and BubbleUPnP Server. It introduces as little digital grunge as is possible, I think, and would be a very interesting comparison to the Mac.

#31

Just got my DMP, been playing with it and for the moment I don’t think I’m updating from the 3.10 that’s loaded (by the dealer in my country of residence). Functions well so far and everything that’s been thrown at it reads and works fine, fingers crossed. Great, pristine sound indeed!

I’m on the road this coming few days, but starting Monday I’m toying with 5-6 different HDMI cables to see what works best on my system.

I did try it with my DSjr/Bridge II for a few minutes but… no contest IMHO though still very good.