What's the deal with album art on the DirectStream?

Well, sad to say – I have taken advantage of PS Audio’s generous 30 day return policy. I was on the fence with whether to keep the DirectStream or not. I found that its sound quality wasn’t a significant improvement over my existing DAC. But the DS is always updatable, so I knew that could improve down the road. It was a tough decision.

However, the issue with the album art continued to irritate me. It wasn’t a major issue by any means. But I thought it was troubling for a device at this price level. As an example my Raspberry Pi running Ropiee has no trouble interfacing with Roon and displaying the album art on it’s 7” display – total cost under $100 (and it pulls up the jpg instantly – doesn’t take 15-30 seconds).

PS Audio’s customer support is absolutely first rate, and I hope to do business with PS Audio again in the near future when I will be looking for an amp.

FWIW I leave the DS display (and the rest of the components with displays) off to keep any possible hash from them out of the chain so cover art is a non issue.

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Which DAC are you going back to?

Just received by new DirectStream as well, and running into the same issue.

  1. I don’t think the manual even mentions that an SD card is needed.
  2. I formatted the supplied card through my Mac (MS-DOS (FAT)), but still nothing.

I’ve tried both Roon and mConnect, but have not seen a single piece of Album Art.

I can understand it’s not an easy thing to “fix”, but we’re also not talking about a $99 piece of equipment.
I’ll order a new SD card on Amazon and try that, but I don’t get why this doesn’t work out of the box.

Perhaps a Windom patch can increase the time available with a few seconds? I think we’re all fine waiting 3-4 seconds into a song to see the art appear, if that means it will work reliably.

The art appears after about 15-20 seconds. Make sure the card is in the DSD contacts up. Also make sure there is a folder.jpg that includes the album art in the directory of all albums. I know album art, in general, works. There are issues, explained in detail above, but it does work.

Thanks, but wouldn’t it also work with songs from Tidal or Qobuz streamed through Roon?

How far away from the DS is your seating position?

Good question. Don’t know. I don’t stream.

I experience intermittent album art as well. What is “best practice” to get it
to present? Basically what strategy does the DS use in order to retrieve Album Art? I’m using a NAS with a Bridge 2 and have a new 32gb memory card in the back formatted as fat32. All of my folders have a folder.jpg that is light weight at 600x600. Half of my files have the album art embedded. File types are Flac’s & Dsf’s.

I’ve been streaming Tidal and the album art is hit or miss. It is a bit frustrating to spend this much money and can’t get a straight answer as to why this is a problem that can’t get resolved. I traded in a CA CXN that never failed to display the album covers. I just don’t get it.