SGCD questions

Just got the SGCD and M700 mono amps and had some questions.

The amps have ground posts, but not the pre amp. Isn’t is more common to have a ground On the. pre amp for turntables? Fortunately I don’t need it with my current TT, but maybe someday?

I struggle to hear the differences between the filters. Same issue when I demoed the Strata.
What am I listening for? Highs, soundstage differences, dynamics?

Most people can’t hear a difference between those ESS filter setting so don’t feel left out. The ground posts on the amps are for people who want to line level connect subs like REL as the negative binding posts on the amp are not a true ground but rather a floating one.

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I was pretty sure the ground posts on the amps were for REL subs.

Probably a reaction to all the problems people had with the BHK’s and the REL’s.

Setup and cabling will greatly effect the ability to hear these effects.

Speakers are also a major factor. When I had GoldenEars it was very subtle… with Zu and no crossover it’s very obvious.

Edit… component isolation (example - Isoacoustics) helps as well.

I have a good set up.
Vortex Acoustics (VonSchweikert) VR-35 speakers bi wired with Audience Au24SX on the top and Audience Conductor SE on the bottom. Cardas Clear Sky between the pre-amp & amps.
I am downsizing, used to have BHK Preamp and 250 amp and the system was very revealing.

My question I suppose is what differences are YOU hearing between the different filters?

I hear a slight difference with the filters with a sgcd and M700’s into Focal 948’s. I seem to like F3 but would be very hard to spell out the difference sonically as I don’t know how to express it. 3 just seems a little more real to me.

That would be Fast linear phase… that’s how I feel on Strata (filter 1).

Min phase filters sound dull to me… cymbals sound lifeless, electric guitar doesn’t sound right like the leading edge is gone - just mush. Texture is gone. Drums thud but don’t snap… basically nothing sounds like real instruments. Vocals sound straight up weird. Technically Min phase should be the easiest to pick out since it introduces transient distortion/phase shift.

The other two filters are both linear, one fast and slow. One should just sound a bit smoother (slow) than the other. Preference for this can vary greatly based on how hot the system is set up, cables, and the bass response. In general though Fast is immediate and transients sound more real to me. Slow is smooth but sounds like everything is a little less present. Electric guitar - harmonics are dulled, bite is not right. Cymbals - timing is ok but just soft in tonality, lack of shimmer. Vocals - Slow roll a bit less defined than Fast, a tiny bit muffled.

Two speakers have gone through my system, one engineered fancy… one a full range driver… and the more time coherent design (full range driver) was much easier to hear the differences.

It is not very common to have a grounding post on a line level pre. Almost all phono pres have a ground post which is likely what you’ll use in the future. Dawk is exactly right, the ground post on the M700s makes it a lot easier to hook up RELs.
I’ll also admit that I don’t hear much of a difference between the filters. If I remember correctly, when I had a GDAC, I kept it on filter 2.

I wonder why they kept the filters anyway?
I’ve have a Direct Stream DAC also and in prior versions there were selectable filters, but now on the newest version they are gone.

Is the ground post a recent addition? My M700s don’t have one. Not an issue as I don’t have RELs, but interesting…

@todd-r The old PW DAC had selectable filters, but I don’t remember any version of DSD firmware having this option.

@umiami91 Yes, fairly recent. I don’t remember exactly when, but all of our Stellar amps include them now.

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You always have to have an alternative grounding point for any type of Class D amp with speaker level sub connections. Since Paul advocates for REL subs and speaker level connections it makes sense and something cheap that other Class D amp companies could do. I’ve only seen it on Nuprime amps before.

I suppose then it’s a good thing that my subs are “substandard”.

Oh, I crack myself up.

PW, right. got them mixed up…

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A little more listening (and probably some more break in) and I’m starting to pick up on the differences.
So far filter 3 is the best. Soundstage is a bit wider and the sound is a bit warmer and fuller.

I have the SGCD since June 2019 with the S300 amp.
Have had problems with both units since date of purchase.
The S300 had a bad 12v trigger and two bad output boards-was on line and voice with PS Audio support and finally they conceded to have the amp sent in for repairs-exhausting. Also, from day one, I realized that the filters F1,F2 and F3 fail to exhibit any audible difference-Also from day one, I have had problems with the display of the correct sample rate-its always 44.1 irrespective of the input rate-and using USB there is no sample rate display.
Numerous calls and notes have passed from me to PS Audio over the year + of ownership. No resolve-I just realized on the Forum that these sample rate display have been an issue for a long time and even in units that were sold in 2020!!!

I have had emails from Paul indicating that this is a software problem and its on the list to be corrected- well if this has been known to be a problem why are the SGCD being sold with the problem??? Again, it was noted in 2019 and in 2020 for current new owners!
Does PS Audio care???

Its intuitively obvious that continuous sales without correction of problems prevails.
This is sad-
I find it annoying to see the daily podcasts from PS Audio revealing a “home town-folksie” attitude with poor QC and service of known problems being ignored.

In addition, since there are no local dealers to go to handle problems and the 1000 + mile barrier between this consumer and the supplier further insulates and delays resolve. As you know, email and IM, communication is , at best, ineffective and mostly ignored.

BTW have you read the manual for the pre-map? Aside from spelling errors, incomplete explanations of the functions dominate.

I’m done with this company. However, it is not a comfortable position to “write off” the problem and swallow the cost for a product with problems known to the manufacturer!