I’m a little bit embarrassed each time I share on this PS Audio forum some comments about gear of different brands. So first of all I would like to thank Paul and all the staff for this forum and how the members are allowed to express opinions, reviews, thoughts. Even if reporting about competitors. Hats off!
I respectfully apologize if what I’m writing here below could create any sort of disappointment. I’m and will ever be a loyal customer and fan of PS Audio products.
Having said that, as I promised, here below I’m happy to report my week with the MSB S202 stereo amplifier.
I’m not a reviewer or an expert audiophile, so please take my comments with a grain of salt. I’m just a music lover with no competence, two ears and a (Italian passionate) heart.
You can find my system on my forum profile, here I need to premise just that:
- the amplifiers I’m familiar with, are the M1200s. Any comparisons would be pretty unfair so my intent is just to express what I liked about the S202
- I plugged all week long the S202 to a Puritan 156 conditioner by a Dragon HC
- I used the BHK Pre between the DAC and the amp before. Then I went direct from the MSB Premier DAC to the S202. The sheet below shows my valuations in both set ups.
Here a few numbers able to describe my thoughts better than words
|SOURCE||STREAM/||STREAM/||CDISC /||CDISC /||VINYL|
Listening to albums I know very well, from different genres like rock and jazz, I took instantly a few notes, I’m glad to share with you here below. Take these as spontaneous thoughts put black on white on paper just to remind what I felt.
Especially I’m referring to impressions during my last two days, when I connected the S202 directly to the Premier DAC, it means without the pre in the chain.
What did impress me more?
BODY, in mid bass area there is a fullness expanding the music in the room, a smoother richness of texture from wall to wall in front of me.
DECAY, each note lasts way way longer before disappearing
BLACKER BACKGROUND, the music seems to come from a silence, like a deep immensity
SPEAKER DISAPPEARED, on the front wall the sound is painting a strong image, it seems that the speakers are completely off
MUSICAL, you are more into the music, like the performers were here at know, in a larger room where you are in too. All seems to be exactly in its right place, tonally correct and natural, you’re tempted to turn the volume up a notch, and again and again. And every increment is enjoyable, enriching the sound image with nuances without the slightest noise or distortion or excess. especially the mid-low frequencies take on body, consistency, structure. the sound is full, round with a perfect detachment from the mid-highs which instead are pleasantly detailed, precise, with small details that emerge continuously by shifting the attention from one instrument to another. The inflection of the voice is so articulate that even the most intricate and complex passages are rendered easily and realistically.
AUTHORITY, it reminds me of the power of a car engine, when silent it goes uphill without the slightest difficulty and you clearly feel that if you accelerate, an important starting point and recovery is immediately available but it is not necessary to deliver power because traveling at idle you feel safe and relaxed.
SILENT CHASSIS AND DEAD SILENT TWEETERS, due to tubes in M1200s I was always used to listen to a subtle white noise from speakers, with the S202 the room (acoustically treated and therefore very sensitive) is completely silent. It means that also on delicate passages the subtle nuances like whispering, singer breath or rumors on the stage are clearly audible and it brings a realism very very immersive.
LIQUID, the music flows like suspended in the room, ethereal vivid palpable as if it floated on placid waters with such enjoyable delicacy.
Did I decide to buy it or not in conclusion?
Some guys in California are assembling a unit for me in a warehouse right now, black of course,