Bartok Measurements

What do you think about these measurements?

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I don’t think anything of them. Measurements of this kind may be of use if they reveal clearly incompetent engineering ( for those of us who have not been around this hobby for half a century or longer you might be surprised how rare that state of things is nowadays compared several decades ago). Otherwise they are just indicators of the choices made by the designer . Without his (or her) commentary they are without significance. I say “choices” as all engineering involves compromises as pointed out by Andy McHarg (dCS Tecnnical Director) in the Qobuz /dCS video ( YouTube).

I suppose that i am surprised by someone representing themselves as an expert in this field who appears to find the ultrasonic noise produced by DSD processing a novel discovery!

I am exasperated by the follow up commentator who goes on about the THD spectrum and the “brightness” of Bartok ( I am sure that everyone here finds Bartok bright, not :grin:). I suspect that if he were honest with himself he would find that he simply means that he cannot afford it. Sadly I sense one of my countrymen here - I recognise the trait.


Must be boring to only listen to 1 kHz test tones.


Jitter performance was seemingly identical on both USB and ethernet. In both cases it was ‘good’ but honestly not as good as you’d expect for this price. dCS recommends using their master clocks for best performance but it is a shame that jitter is not as good as other similar or lower cost dacs including competing products like the Rockna Wavedream (which keeps all jitter products below -160dB) or Holo May (which has no visible jitter products down to -170dB), or even many lower cost products (such as the Gustard X26 Pro which keeps all jitter products below -150dB)

Can this mean something? For example, that all dCS DACs without their own clock do not work in the best way?

Dcs claims jitter isn’t ultra important in their design. Or at least not a sensitive. Can’t imagine they couldn’t produce a sota jitter measurement if they thought it necessary.

A couple of thoughts on this;

  1. It makes sense that USB and Ethernet inputs into the Bartok would result in identical jitter performance since the packet data from both interfaces get decapsulated and emerge from the S800 compute board as I²S bitstreams into the Upsampling/DAC stage. When it’s bit perfect and identically clocked, it’s bit perfect :slight_smile:

  2. I wouldn’t worry about GoldenSound’s description of the Bartok’s jitter performance. In Stereophile’s measurement of the Bartok, the measured jitter noise floor was actually worse than whats shown in GoldenSound’s measurement, presumably because John Atkinson used the TOSLink interface, and yet his view was, its “superb”. I bet GoldenSound doesn’t even know what increased jitter actually sounds like! :laughing:


Meh. I got my dcs to listen, not measure, it. Still though, those measurements are excellent, can’t really find any practical fault.


i think one channel performing 6db worse in all measurements is more of concern than jitter. even goldensound did not emphasize this very much. this seems to be there in stereophile measurements too. any idea why it is so ? does bartok not follow dual mono design topology ? also cross talk figures are nothing to boast about.

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Rachit, welcome to the community. As you are new here and as you are voicing some criticisms of the performance figures of Bartok it would be of help to understand your position on this. Are you a Bartok or other dCS processor owner or are you looking at this from an academic perspective only?

Other than some minor channel differences at below -90dB measurements, could you point to where you’re seeing a 6dB channel difference? (Would help if you point to a specific graph numbers on Stereophile’s measurements page).

Also, channel separation is >123dB @ 1k and 100dB @ 20k (Stereophile), and >135dB @ 1k and 110dB at 20k (GoldenSound) - very respectable numbers that match the Rossini if I’m not mistaken. The similarly priced Chord Dave is >125 @ 1k and 95dB at 20k, i.e. worse than Bartok. The Holo May mentioned on GoldenSounds’s page isn’t significantly better.

So, when you say it’s “nothing to boast about”, would you care to mention which DAC you’re comparing it to, and the source of your reference?

chord dave 95db crosstalk at 20k , where ? do you want to compare $17500 bartok with holo may ? you can’t even have the plea of R2R generally measure poor as bartok is not R2R.

You haven’t answered;

Where are you seeing “6dB worse in all measurements”?

Channel separation was superb, at >125dB in both directions below 1kHz, decreasing to a still-excellent 95dB at the top of the audioband.

where do you not see ? it is there in sinad, it is there in imd, it is there in every graph. tell me in which measurements it is not there ? why a $17500 dac should have this ? it is evident even in stereophile measurements too. difference is of not just few decimal dbs it is almost 6db. don’t you think it will affect the depth perception abnormally as depth is perceived by two channel when they behave exactly same.

Please post a URL and point to one specific graph please, where there’s a clear 6dB difference between left and right channel.

why are you so defensive ? did not you check sinad figures of both channels ? it is very clear. you can’t pick and chose for $17500 product. for some measurements you refer dave then why not to refer hidizs s8 ?

You asked where, and I provided a URL and specific quote. I asked where and all you can provide is more hand waving. Seriously? :rofl:

Anup has asked a direct question which has a straightforward response available : identify your source and post a URL so that it can be looked at.

You refer in your earlier post to a 6dB difference between channels in the Stereophile measurements:

I have looked at the Stereophile review and measurements and there is NO evidence of a 6dB difference between channels in any measured factor. However I can guess why you may think that there is if you are not very experienced in interpreting such graphs. Please post the fig. number of the graph or graphs that you refer to as shown in Stereophile. Here is a link to the entire review and measurements to assist you:

fig 12 and fig15 shows that both channel not behaving identically and also see the distortion in the text above fig 15 where one channel has -114db and other channel has -122db distortion. both channels not behaving identically that’s what is there in stereophile and golden sound measurements. there is no point in repeatedly defending measurements which are bettered by much cheaper dacs. either you say measurements don’t matter or accept these.

Like I said in post 10, there are channel differences far below -90dB levels. Inconsequential nitpicking to say the least.

Enjoy your cheaper better measuring DACs :smiley:

Just looking at numbers and assuming that if one number is bigger then another it necessarily has significance is naive. As Anup says your points are inconsequential.