Paul demonstrated the DS last night for our club! THANK YOU PAUL! I must say I'm at a loss for words. To say the DS sounded absolutely stellar is an understatement. It has a natural and organic quality that makes it a joy to listen to. I was off axis, but still the placement of instruments stood out. There was a deep and wide soundstage too. Sure you expect this with a good DAC on axis, but I was not on axis at all. Impressive. The detail was beautiful, and not hi-fi sounding at all. ORGANIC. Nothing was glaring about the sound at all, though you could hear so much resolve, so much detail, but it was not analytical at all. Strangely, nothing stood out- everything about the sound seemed RIGHT. This was a first for me.
Yes, I'll say the Direct Stream DAC IS a game-changer. :D