New DS owner, share your experience of the DAC running in from new?


#1

Started using my DS last night, blown away by how musical this thing is.

Obviously mines is fresh out the box and Ive read the Dac takes time to properly bed in and sound as good as it can.

How did your Dac sound from new, and how did it improve over time.

Thanks guys.


DSJ General Questions
#2

I hear the things I like about the DS and DS Jr right out of the box. Some others don’t like the sound as much out of the box.

When I had my very burned in test DS and got another new one the new one sounded covered, muffled and a little dull. I let it play continuously for a week or two and then it sounded much better. The bass firmed up, the top opened up the presentation got more balanced, etc.


#3

Thanks Ted,

Will look forward to that, happily though just enjoying the music and will let the Dac settle down in the background. It’ll be an enjoyable journey.

:slight_smile:


#4

My experience has been like Ted’s. The DS sounds good out of the box, but really does improve over a couple of weeks of enjoying the sound. And after a while you forget about it and then PS Audio announces a firmware that gets you discombobulated again. :wink:


#5

I never used to believe in break-in time. However, about 2 weeks after I started listening to my Directstream I can say that it sounded head over heels better than when it was first taken out of the box and initially played music through it. I think I remember Paul saying that certain types of organic compounds (oils for instance) that are on the electronics take a certain amount of time to burn/evaporate off of the electronics inside and this is why the sound changes. However it works, you’ll be surprised to hear what happens in the next couple weeks with your Directstream.

What firmware are you running? Be sure to update the Directstream to the latest Red Cloud firmware if that’s not already on it.


#6

I realized it was done at about 450 hours. If your streaming, just let it stream for a few weeks, even if your amp is off. Listen daily though- don’t wait for the entire break-in!


#7

How would you characterize the sound differences between the DSD and the DSD Jr? I’m curious to know what you gain sonically in the upgrade.


#8
Seegs108 said What firmware are you running? Be sure to update the Directstream to the latest Red Cloud firmware if that's not already on it.
My DS came from Boulder fully working with Redcloud pre-installed, which was great given the issues I had with my first unit.

On switchon must confess to holding my breath at the “Initialising” screen! :slight_smile:

A few seconds and a relay click later, the system screen came in showing Redcloud Rev. 0150 and was promoted to update Bridge firmware (to 3.5.1).


#9

Hello , new member and new owner here. I received my DSJ last Wednesday and it sounded great to me out of the box. Even my wife commented on the sound and she’s not a critical music listener by any means. I downloaded the new bridge software this morning and the popping and incorrect bit display are gone. If this is going to sound better as it breaks in I’m thrilled because to my ears it’s already great.

Regards,

Mike.


#10

Welcome, Mike!

Yours parallels my experience; all PS Audio products sound excellent right away. It is not as if a new owner is suffering as the product breaks-in. :slight_smile:


#11

I receive my DS on the 12 of January. Since, I got a new amplifer and interconnect at the same time. My burn in experience must be a combination of the three components.

Upon power up, all I can say is it sound musical. Around 50 hours, details surface but everything sound hash. At 100, I begin to like what I heard. Currently at 150 hours, I am enjoying my music as I continue the burn in process.

I must have receive an early production unit sitting at my dealer stock. Mine is still with firmware 1.2.1. I plan to upgrade the firmware first to Torreys and then Redcloud, experience the sound in the process. Skipping the rest. What do you guys think?


#12

Welcome, sdwong!

I would go directly to Redcloud as I find it sound the best and it is Ted’s best effort to date on a technical basis. There are those who find earlier firmware to sound better, but the majority prefer Redcloud.

Then, if you find Redcloud lacking in any way, you can try other firmware variants. It is fascinating how they sound different.


#13

From the first listen to the DS I was captivated… Straight from the get - go the DS trounced the (twice as expensive) dac that I had been very happy with and using daily for 3 years. Back then from new the DS sported 1.2.1 O/S: - The DS did go through a cycle of good and bad days as the DS burnt in - but at no point was it unbearably bad, or worse sounding than the well played dac now pushed to the sideline… The improvement(s) was emphatic with the DS musically on another level, I sold my old dac within a week and never regretted it; not once did I feel a pang of doubt that I had jumped the gun and moved on too swiftly… 18 months on and I bought another DS for my second system and this was when I really noticed the burn -in phenomenon: because it took DS 2 ‘many weeks’ to attain the musical engagement level of the older DS1…!

The DS was the catalyst. 3 years almost to the day since I bought my first DS - I now own the whole catalogue of P S Audio equipment. The DS is still my favourite product - it keeps reinventing itself - in a family of incredible musical instruments…


#14
Elk said

Welcome, sdwong!

I would go directly to Redcloud as I find it sound the best and it is Ted’s best effort to date on a technical basis. There are those who find earlier firmware to sound better, but the majority prefer Redcloud.

Then, if you find Redcloud lacking in any way, you can try other firmware variants. It is fascinating how they sound different.


Agreed! I would go straight to the “cat’s whiskers” (based on what most have reported) and get RedCloud for your initial impression.

#15

Upgraded to RedCloud last night. The improvements are immediate and across the board. I am not going into the details but just enjoy the music. Well done and thanks to Ted and PS Audio.

Thanks to those who give suggestion.

My unit run in is at 180+ hrs. I have read it takes 500hrs or even 800hrs to fully settle. Really curious how good can the DS get,


#16

It’s been just over a week since I first started using my DSjr. I notice the top end has improved, I can hear the cymbals more clearly than at first, also the sound stage has opened up and I can hear this clearly over both the speakers and headphones. I haven’t been playing music the whole time but I leave the unit turned on. At this point you couldn’t pry this out of my cold dead hands. Love it!


#17
sdwong said ..My unit run in is at 180+ hrs. I have read it takes 500hrs or even 800hrs to fully settle. Really curious how good can the DS get,
Numbers seem about on target. At about 700 hours my DS peaked and I have never heard better sounding digital... Enjoy!!!

#18

I’ve had my DSJ for a week now & it seems my experience is different from others. Mine has sounded like 4 different DACs…seemingly changing every 50 hours or so. It’s run continuously since I installed it and I listen for a couple hours each day. It’s set up to my Ayre K1xe on one input w/my existing DAC (Gustard X-20u Pro) on another input. Both use XLR cable to balanced inputs, so I can switch between the DACs. I listen to the USB input from uRendu w/LPS-1 power supply on the Gustard and the Bridge input from SonicTransport i7 DSP on the DSJ. I group the zones in Roon, so I can A-B on the fly.

  • First 50 hrs. sounded nearly identical to the Gustard...edgy, tight, a little grainy. Hard to tell them apart. Not what I was hoping for but not unexpected.
  • Next 50 hours almost 180 degree change. Loose, a little boomy, muted treble...an unexpected transition.
  • Next 50 hours it seemed subdued, mellow, indistinct (all relatively speaking). It was not unpleasant, and seemed to be moving in the right direction.
  • Last 50 hours it has really started to come on tune. More texture, snap, resolution, bass has tightened up...it's making music now and is very engaging listening. Assuming it keeps moving this direction, I think it's a keeper. Looking forward to see what else it has in store.
I've experienced most of the anomalies related to the Bridge II that have been noted on this forum. Pops, ticks, crackling, et al. Drop outs mid track on MQA, missing second or so at beginning of tracks, skipped tracks, etc. I'm hopeful that Bridge II will become unconditionally stable before Bridge III rolls out.

#19

I had my DSJ for about 5 days now… it is getting better from not sounding good out of the box. Read about my initial experience here…

http://www.psaudio.com/forum/directstream-all-about-it/new-directstream-jr-arrives-and-out-goes-the-nuwave-dsd-but/#p87401

After five days of always ON… I have to say the DSJ is more detailed than anything I heard or have … but my old Accuphase is more musical… I am crossing my fingers… each day it gets better. I honestly don’t think I ever really had a piece of equipment that required burn in… warm up yes, but continued burn in?

Peace

Bruce in Philly


#20

I don’t think I have ever owned a piece of high end equipment that didn’t need burn in. Kind of surprised to hear you say that you never had anything that required burn in. Many people say that the DAC really starts to open up after 500 hours. I just got a pair of the Focal Clear headphones and the recommended break in period on those was 200 hours. YMMV. Enjoy getting to know your new DAC.