I recently purchased a used DSD Sr. and AC5 from Upscale Audio. I’m traveling right now so it won’t arrive until early June. To say I am anxious and excited to get it is a massive understatement.
I’ve read most all available online reviews I could find on Sr., so I have a general idea of what Sr. Excels at. What I’m wondering about is the potential degree of differnce in separation, detail and musicality that Sr. Could bring to my set up.
I’ve enjoyed the Bifrost in my system for many years so it’s hard for me to wrap my head around the potential magnitude of this upgrade. I realize there are always loads of system-specific variables at play but Is “night and day" a fair expectation? That’s fine of its not, just super excited over here!
AVA Vsion+ Pre w/phono
Dennis Had KT150 Firebottle power amp
Raspberry Pi feeding Schiit Bifrost via USB
Roon + Tidal
Salk Songtowers with Ribbon tweeters
Hsu powered sub
Cullen speaker cables, interconnects
Cullen Gold Series Power Box
I’m thinking the Pi USB setup maybe the weak link there? I’m open to suggestions. I’m also open to a Bridge II once funds are available.
I think you are right about the Raspberry straight being a weak link. Have you considered getting the add on piece, I think Allo is the one, but do some research, as one of them outputs I2S. And a linear power supply.
Not familiar with your DAC, but I have found differences in DACs can be more subtle than disc transports. But after hours of listening, the subtleties become very clear. I don’t own a Directstream but have heard one and it would be my first serious audition. I have a Benchmark Dac2, now in my bedroom system, and the DAC that replaced it, is just better. It is a Lindemann 825, I had to change the toe in on my speakers, and the differences while not great in an A-B test, proved it’s superiority, and still does the longer I listen. I think you will be very happy. Especially if you upgrade your digital sources. One of my sources is a laptop, dedicated to music, running JRiver, Vinyl Studio, and Tidal’s desktop player. I use an AQ Jitterbug with an AQ Carbon USB cable, and I am very happy with the quality of sound.
I have had a Bifrost 4490 (not the multibit) for the last couple years, and added a DSjr in February. Night and day? No, it’s more subtle than that IMHO. The Bifrost gets you ~75% of the way there. Law of diminishing returns applies. The DS takes it to 100%. I use the Bifrost in my 2nd system now. These were my initial impressions to a friend back in February comparing the DSjr to the Bifrost:
The DSjr very well rounded, natural, analog but still very detailed. acoustic guitars sound fuller when plucked rather than a twang. piano also sounds fuller without sounding like a toy piano. treble is not irritating or digital. bass is very detailed and separated - you can tell exactly where the double-bass is in a jazz ensemble for example.
For the record, I’m comparing:
Roon --> Airport --> ethernet --> DSjr Bridge II
Roon --> Airport --> toslink --> Bifrost 4490
I was thinking about the sonre signature rendition or Bridge II. I’m sure there is a debate ranging on about those too somewhere here in the formus…I just haven’t had thebtime to research it. I’m leaning towards the bridge though bc I’d prefer not have another box (or two with ps).
I’m thinking my Bifrost will make it’s way into the second system so I can have Roon playing in the back house too.
I had been debating about trying the m700 monos for more power in my larger space, but I saw the Sr. used for a good price at a reputable shop. Sr.'s have been moving at a decent clip in the $3k range so I didn’t want to miss another one.
You can’t go wrong with a DS in the 3k range, that’s a screaming deal.
I’ve gotten more than twice what I expected from my DS, it’s the keystone of my system.
It has proven to me just how good the rest of my system truly is.
My perception of component hierarchy has been rewritten.
Don’t expect it to fix poor source material or sub-par renderers.