PS attenuator on or off

What is the best practice with respect to PS Sr. DAC 20dB attenuator?

I was recommended to keep it engaged when using with PS Pre and set PA DAC volume between 90-95.

@tedsmith any kind suggestions on this?

Hi @karthick
There are various threads where members have discussed DS DAC volume alone or combined with BHK Preamp. I recall this one:

If memory serves well, Ted once recommended 92 or 94. I prefer 94. I still use the DS DAC and the BHK pre, but changed my power amp to Meridian Reference 857.

It’s purely your preference. I recommend having both the DS’s and the pre’s remotes handy and letting your subconscious gravitate towards a particular setting on one unit and using the remote on the other… Over a little time, you’ll discover what you prefer.

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I keep mine off and have the volume set to 76. Turning it down slightly opened up the soundstage and gave everything more air.

I have two DSD DACs and use them each in a different manner. On my main system with the modded DSD I do not use the attenuator and have the volume at about 92 about 92 percent of the time. :wink: On the DSD in my second system I use a tubed preamp/headphone amp that has a very high gain input and use very high efficiency headphones; using the attenuator allows me to turn the volume up higher and get me into a more mellifluous output point of the headphone amp.

In my system the DS at full output into my tube preamp sounds best, even if the preamp is only at the first or second detente.

Using the 20 db pad sets one up for apossible problem where one to have the gain set high on anything following the DAC and accidently release the pad the volume would suddenly jump up 20 db! I have never used the pad as I always felt when I tried it that it compromised the sound.

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