Return bridge or bridge and Directstream?

As I’ve posted, my new DS senior is having a bridge problem. I’m hearing periodic clicking and popping noises. Using USB without the bridge, it’s fine. PS tech support has been working to resolve the issue but just notified me that they have no fix. I’m still on the trial period so I must decide whether to return the bridge and keep the DS (and possibly get a Matrix) or to return both the bridge and the DS and buy a different DAC. I’m using an Innuous Zenith 3 for my Roon hub so I don’t need the bridge for that. However, I believe I will lose MQA decoding if I return the bridge. How important is MQA decoding? Is losing it a deal breaker/will I be unhappy long term without ths? Honestly, I hardly understand it.

If it were me personally I would ditch the bridge for now and wait until they put out the new bridge which will be internally made and supported by PSA. I think you’ll save yourself a bit of money and you could try the matrix but again if the new bridge is better I wonder what you would do with the matrix. But if the new bridge doesn’t support roon and you love roon then maybe a matrix does make sense.

I am now not sure if I actually helped…

Why don’t you let them just swap out the Bridge for a new one and if problems persist with a new one then return it too for a refund. As to MQA not important to me as I prefer Qobuz anyway. But you have to decide whether or not you think it is important.

Thanks. Sorry, I should have mentioned that PS Audio already sent me a new bridge and it had the same clicking/popping problem. As for Roon, Im using my Zenith server as a Roon hub even when I use the bridge so that’s not an issue. The matrix is cheap enough that I’m willing to take a chance if I return the bridge. I use both Tidal and Qobuz. As I mentioned, the options now are return the bridge only or return both the bridge and DS and look elsewhere.

If you disconnect the Zenith from the DS altogether and stream through the Bridge without Roon do you get the same noises?

Excuse my ignorance but…I don’t understand the setup you’re describing. If the DS is not connected to the Innuous, what would be my music source/where would the signal to the DS come from?

That tells me there is nothing wrong with the bridge (unless bad karma has whacked you with 2 faulty ones). Why look elsewhere at this point? I’d return the DS + bridge for replacement. I assume the trial period counter will reset with delivery of the replacement?

I would do that, return for a brand new unit. DS + Bridge.

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But the DS doesn’t have ticks and pops when used without the bridge—connected by usb to the Innuous. PS Audio tech support seems to think it’s a bridge firmware problem. There are many others who have reported the same problem. Not sure why some have it and some don’t. PSA has sent me several firmware updates, some still in beta, and have worked with the outside supplier who provides the firmware to develop a fix without success.

The DS/bridge of itself is a digital source/music renderer. Just connect it to the internet and use your iPad as the control point to play Spotify or Tidal. Start your diagnostics step-by-step with the most basic configuration, which is to remove all other hardware from the equation.

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You must be new here.

The Bridge can stream from Tidal or Qoboz on it’s own with it’s own app and doesn’t need the Zenith to do it. Connect your Ethernet cable directly to the Bridge and stream with MControl HD.
I suspect you won’t get pops and clicks that way.

Correct. I am fairly new. So do you understand why many people experience ticks and pops with the bridge and many others don’t?

Cool. I’m glad we agree on that.

If you are not dead-set on retaining the ability to do the final unfold of MQA music, then return the Bridge II for a refund and seek a better option to connect your Zenith. If it was me, I would go USB out of the Zenith into a Matrix X-SPDIF-2 and i2S from Matrix to DS DAC.

I can endorse such a statement since I was once a Bridge II owner, which was installed in my DS Sr. I now own a Matrix and its i2S output into the DS DAC has elevated the quality of the connection from a functionality/reliability standpoint. Most importantly though, it delivers a very distinct improvement in sound quality over my prior BII setup.

I love my DS Sr., but the Bridge II is whacky and not worth wasting any more time on. This is not to say that the Bridge II cannot function properly or that you will not be happy with its sound. There are plenty of happy Bridge II customers out there. Myself, and others who have experimented with other connection methods, have concluded that better sound can be had utilizing one of several alternative options to deliver music to the DS DAC.

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I have been streaming Tidal, Qobuz and Spotify for almost three years on streamers from Auralic, OPPO, Lumin, Teac Reference, and the Bridge II using only each streamers native software and never had the problems and anomalies that people using Roon and Audivarna have. The common problem is almost always the aftermarket software.

I have had a DSD JR for a little over a month. It comes with a built in Bridge. I have used it and decided it isnt something I am interested in. But the DSD JR has so impressed me that I have purchased a DSD SR, without the bridge. The DAC I am very excited about.
So put me in the lose the bridge keep the DAC club.

@brownsf - you may be perfectly happy simply connecting the Zenith to the DS DAC with a quality USB cable. You can achieve fantastic results this way as well.

Sure. I too have been streaming for years and have never had a problem, except for the PS bridge-related hardware which had the occasional gremlin from time-to-time. But I don’t use Roon or Audivarna or whatever else software, so I’m not exposing myself to trouble.

Quick other question, I assume the ticks and pops are while playing DSD files? If so you might try reducing the output of the DAC to like 90. I only get ticks and pops during tracks with DSD files. It has gotten better with software updates over time but nothing has eliminated them totally for DSD files for me at least.

Oh and I agree the matrix is a nice price to try and see, lots of very positive reviews on this site.