Analogue and digital - thoughts?

WARNING. This is going to be very controversial on this forum but I am interested to know what other dCS users are finding in all honesty. I have been enjoying digital since 1983 when I sold all my LPs and bought my first CD. I haven’t considered going back to vinyl in all that time and am the very satisfied owner of a Rossini player, clock and recent APEX upgrade. BUT last week I went to an event at my local dealer during which we played the same tracks via Qobuz (over full dCS Vivaldi stack) and then via LPs on a decent SME turntable with Dynavector MC cartridge. Worth noting that the analogue source was significantly less expensive than the digital. The vinyl blew the streaming away - no contest for every track played. Everyone in the room heard the difference and agreed. I was shocked. To be clear, the streaming on its own was sensational, it’s just that the LPs conveyed more… music! Streaming is fabulous for discovering new music, but tbh I think I need to invest in a new vinyl system and restart a journey I thought had ended 40 years ago! I can’t explain it technically, but emotionally it makes sense. I await the missiles heading in my direction.


A very interesting observation, and I ‘get it’ too. I recently went to an audio show where the rooms I enjoyed the most typically played LPs and had high sensitivity speakers - Living Voice, Snell, Klipsch. Pretty much the opposite of my system and listening too.

What was the rest of the kit you heard? Especially amps and speakers?


I enjoy both, I have a Vivaldi set up, but sometimes I listen to music with my Linn LP12, it can be softer on some vinyl compared with digital, on some other records, the digital is the same as vinyl, sometimes it is better.

If you do want something better than digital, you must listen to reel to reel tapes, but it is very expensive and the choice of music is very limited, but it sounds very good.

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Never preferred the sound of cd over vinyl. Reluctantly converted primarily to cds when lp production became obsolete. Full stack gets most of my listening but i have a gigantic cd library plus large digital library on local server and sub to qobuz and amazon. My record collection is pared way down to what i consider to be better quality recordings. Vinyl gets machine washed and dried and archival storage. That being said, i listen probably 2-4 hrs every day. The cd is my meat and taters. It sounds terrific. Qobuz and server are for when i have a short time to listen, looking for obscure music or to hear a recommendation by others or am multitasking and when in my car. Records are played like dessert when i want to simply savor with no distractions and expect none. My turntable isnt as high end as the dcs but it is well up the chain with an atlas cart. I cant say at all that vinyl blows the cd away but the difference on a good record is easily notable and worth the hassle when i have the time to indulge myself.


I have the same experience. I really love my Rossini Player & Clock (soon to be Apex’d) but when playing f.e. Yello on my Bergmann Galder/Odin (with Vandenhul Colibri) the latter sounds ‘better’ (to my ears). Ofcourse it all depends on the quality of the source. I recently re-enjoyed listening to CD’s too.

I never sold my vinyl collection I built up since the 80-ies :slight_smile:

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Is the elephant in the room here Qobuz? I wonder whether the difference from vinyl you report would have been quite as marked if you were spinning a CD.

I love analogue, had an almost full spec LP12 and roughly 1000 records. Sold everything due space reasons and wanted to go from there for the best digital source. Now on dCS, Mleco, Qobuz, Innuos switch. Do I miss my LP12? Yes, sometimes ….especially when playing some Lambchop, Portishead, or alternative music.

Well, we all know the quality of the source -wether it be vinyl, CD or streaming- is essential. But (very) generally speaking vinyl > CD > streaming.

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I agree but generally speaking I would say vinyl > SACD > CD > streaming

The old “bits are bits” slogan was rightly debunked years ago. Even so, I don’t see why a recording on CD would necessarily sound better than the same recording streamed. Ultimately, it is the exact same bits placed in a buffer before playing.

I use Qobuz streaming a lot of the time. When I do play CDs, I’m often surprised at just how good they can still sound. But does CD generally sound ‘better’? I really don’t think so.

A couple of years or so back, I would’ve agreed that streaming isn’t as good. But since sorting my network out and using an optical link, I would say that Qobuz streaming is every bit as good as CD and hi-rez can be distinctly better.

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No missiles, so many guys share your observations. I have the Rossini Player and clock and find that CD betters Qobuz at every turn, but they tell me vinyl betters them both, however, I am willing to sacrifice performance over convenience! I just don’t think I could go back but I think it’s great that a lot of audiophiles do!!


I have a Rossini (waiting for Apex upgrade) and Rossini Clock. I have a modest turntable rig (Pro-Ject RPM 9 turntable and Dynavector DV-X20 cartridge.

In my system I rank my source SQ formats as follows: vinyl > SACD > hires local on my NAS > Qobuz hires > Redbook either via CD player or Qobuz.

Vinyl has more depth and dynamics as digital seems more compressed. You hear the improved SQ right away.

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