My Rossini Clock Listening Results after asking: "Clock & Installation Time Before Critically Listening?"

An auditioning Rossini Clock was just received from FedEx. It is a demo unit, so it is burned-in. After installing it and before critically listening, should it be left in place for a certain period of time? I believe a recommendation in this forum suggested that the clock be left in place to “stabilize” before analyzing its performance. Is there any substance to this suggestion and if yes, approx how long should it be powered-up and placed in position, before critical auditioning should ensue?

About 30 seconds should be about right. In my experience 99% of performance is there straight away. BTW, what’s “critical” auditioning? Just chill and enjoy.


Thanks for the input Omni. Very good to know, 30-seconds or something not to dissimilar, it is!! :slightly_smiling_face: Analysis vs enjoyment/ yin & yang.

In my experience, I judge a new component’s insertion pretty rapidly compared to what some others seemingly do. Others talk about the importance of listening for say a week, before making any judgements. But once an item or a component is burned-in, I have found minutes to a few hours, to be more than sufficient for decision making.

My Rossini changed as it was running-in, but it sounded pretty great right out of the box. A previous experience with Synergistic Research cables provided a terrible initial impression compared to the cables they replaced. But after a few hours of leaving them alone, they sounded considerable different and much for the better. That left me a little gun shy about formulating conclusions too quickly.

After analyzing all of the input from posters about the pros and cons of the addition of a dCS Clock, I decided as I always have, to allow my room, system and ears to be the final arbiter of whether the Clock stays or leaves.

My State doesn’t have a dCS dealer. But I found a dealer in an adjacent State who provides superb service and was happy to send a Clock for my perusal. So, as soon as my son can get over to help install the Clock, I’m looking forward to hearing one for myself.

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Holly smokes Omni, you were spot on – 99% in 30-seconds! Leaving me to wonder why I waited so long to try the Rossini clock!?! I’m impressed with the first few seconds of what I initially played. As I played more tracks, the more impressed I became. My Rossini sounds like an improved DAC.

In my audio journey, after achieving what I found to be a good frequency response with nice details; for improvements, I migrated towards what I term the all-important intangibles. Those incremental component deletions and additions that allow one to better suspend belief and provide a better illusion of being there – in the hall, the recording studio etc.

My words for what I have been pursuing is a deeper, blacker noise floor, better imaging, sound-stage, instrument separation and delineation which results in less congestion in general and especially on orchestral crescendos. These enhancements are what I have found the Rossini Clock to provide, in the form of better ambience cues – i.e. an enhanced and more enveloping 3D sound-stage. Additionally, the leading and trailing edge of vocal and instrumental notes linger for lack of a better description (better noise floor?). Another detail I noticed is that audience applause on live recordings is less strident, more well delineated and as such, more pleasant and seeming more real. With the clock, I’m sensing an ease to the sound, better harmonics, making the reproduction more organic, and as such, more analogue vinyl-like! All in all, something that is for me, much better than anticipated. Least my superlatives suggest that the clock is a major leap forward and to reference a much over used audio adjective, my jaw remained closed and never dropped. But once a system reaches a certain level, I have found advancements to be mainly subtle – but like the Rossini clock – definitely appreciated.

If the Apex upgrade is akin to adding the clock, it would be an interesting endeavor to pursue.

Because everything is important in our audio hobby, everyone’s mileage may vary due to the room and ancillary equipment and one’s sonic preferences. In my case, because I was unable to physically spin vinyl, I left my Galibier Design TT with my son along with the need for equipment switching, so I also left behind my Aria Audio pre-amp. Thus, I’m using the Rossini direct into my Atma-sphere MA-1 OTL amps, which are driving SoundLab Majestic 845 electrostatic speakers.


I tried the clock and thought well it’s Ok, it is better, but viz a viz the price I wasn’t really convinced. I played for about a couple of hours and then took the clock out. Oh my word, I was then really convinced and put the clock back in. In all honesty if you can afford a Rossini the clock is mandatory.

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I agree Tony. Most of us have experienced getting accumulated to a specific sonic portrayal level. Once done, we no longer realize how darn different/good it is until what it is providing, is removed (hence the need to A/B). My experience with the clock is no exception to that rule.

Not having heard the Rossini Apex upgrade, I do wonder if it the improvement is approximately equivalent to adding the clock? Or if folks feel one is better & more valuable cost wise than the other? I know, once money is added to the equation, the subject’s relativity gets more personal and as such, more complex to address. Nevertheless, I remain wondering, what percentage improvement folks would apply to each upgrade…

I tried the Rossini clock. At the dealer, on his expensive rig it made a very small difference. However, at home on my Rossini Player it made no difference at all. I tried expensive cables and kept listening, but could discern no difference at all. I wondered if it was even working, but the dealer insists it works just fine. So I must be missing something. I just cannot reconcile the comments by those who say it’s night and day. Maybe it’s got something to do with the rest of you kit, or the age of your ears, or something.

I did not find the clock to be night and day. For me, and my rig and not-so-young ears, the benefits are subtle, but positively noticeable. Enough so for me, that I’m going to take the plunge. A decade or two ago, with differing fund allocations and funds in general, I may have decided otherwise.

Obviously, the room, how the DAC is being driven and everything after the DAC, makes a difference. My SoundLab electrostatic speakers provide a dipole and different radiating pattern and soundstage than more usual cones and domes. This obviously will result in a different perception than some others; especially when I found one of the clock’s positives to be an enhanced soundstage. Also, I’m running sans a pre-amp, direct into my Atma-sphere OTL amps. I imagine the direct approach is another difference than the norm, or even greater than the norm.

Indeed, the subject is well…subjective and personally dependent upon each person’s component mix and their audio preferences and values. That’s why it is very important to audition more subtle changes like I have found the clock to provide, in one’s room and system. Like “SimonA” said, he noticed more of a clock difference at a dealer’s than in his system. That sort of conclusion is what I would expect more times than not.


I think my Rossini and clock are too good for my rig. I don’t get the complete clock or Mapper or filter benefits because I have downstream limiting factors.
I have Mcintosh C12000, MC1.2’s and XRT1ks.
My current thought is that the XRT1ks are the bottleneck. Secondarily I have to say the setup sounds incredible.

I too have difficulty perceiving filter differences. Mapper differences are more obvious. Many years ago and younger ears, I didn’t hear much difference with Wadia filters. Perhaps some are more sensitive, to these effects than others, I don’t know. However, the clock’s differences/pluses were obvious, but again, what I would term subtly so. Pull it out and I want it back.

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I think terms like “night and day”, “not subtle”, etc mean very different things to different people. For example, I can say with confidence that swapping to the best cables in the world would never make a “night and day” difference to my system/ears. People use this term all the time to describe cable changes though. Maybe they’ve just tried so many cables that do nothing that when they hear what we consider a subtle difference they feel it’s very significant.

Anyway, I wouldn’t worry about it too much. If you can’t hear a benfit from the clock then you just saved yourself a bunch of money. Sounds like a good situation to me!

I couldn’t agree more that the terms we use: “mean very different things to different people”!

An experience, especially a sensory one that elicits emotions like music does, is meaningful to the individual who experiences it. But the question we wrestle with – on forums such as this – is would that experience in the same room and in the same seating position, be perceived the same by another person? The answer is probably not and who really knows. I assume we all have seen the results of equipment shoot-outs. A percentage generally clusters together. But there are always outliers. The same could be said for expert opinions regarding medical and scientific subjects…but I digress.

Thus, generally a 95% level of confidence can’t be reached when the room, Spl’s and the components are controlled. If the results of a controlled listening experiment can’t be assumed to be transferable to and be the same for others; how much credibility can we apply to the adjectives used, when the variables involved are profuse and virtually infinite. Variables such as different rooms, different regions and even different countries different upstream and downstream components and all the other differences, such as temperature, altitude, the listener’s attitude, hearing acuity etc. Should we then attempt to compare the results of a sensory, emotional experience described in words with uncontrolled definitions from person-to-person? And then, should we use those obviously dubious particulars as the reason to spend or not spend our hard-earned money on a component? Well of course not! That’s why absolutely nothing, can substitute for a component’s audition in our room and in our sweet spot. Is there any wonder that dCS forum members have different views on different components!?!

Yeah, your and my results will not only vary, they can and will quite possibly, significantly vary!! So, what I perceive from adding a clock, a cable, or any other component, I can attempt to quantify my perceptions and results via words and emotions, but even that is fraught with the lack of the same meaning of the words used. (NOTE: in an attempt to assign standard definitions to audiophile terms, the following audiophile glossary was published by Stereophile in 1993: At best, from forums, we can obtain a very general and basic idea of how a component is perceived. The larger the sample size the better. But it is more than a reach to believe that someone else’s results will be our results.

With that said, I still want and enjoy to read about the experiences of others! I can only audition a small percentage of the thousands of audio components available, not counting the additional thousands of accessories available, such as cables, tubes, footers, racks, power conditioners etc. Other than flipping a coin or throwing darts, to make a purchase, one must find a way to start somewhere. The where and with what, is what I am trying to glean from professional reviews and forum posts. My experience using such information to acquire components has been positive and productive. By doing that, I have found, bought and enjoyed several wonderful boutique components sold direct by their manufacturers from around the world. Without forums and recommendations, that would not have been the case. A specific and revelatory example of using this logic to audition components, I experienced over 2-decades ago. I favored a webzine whose author I tended to agree. If it wasn’t for his comments about a CAT (Convergent Audio Technology) amplifier I wouldn’t have auditioned CAT JL-1 monoblocks. Because of their 190lb weight (each) and what I assumed was probably an under-powered output @100w/ch. to drive my SoundLab stats, I would NOT have pushed and drug the CAT JL-1’s home! However, I was more than rewarded for doing so!! The CAT’s literally trounced the 336, 350w/ch Levinson amp that I owned and the 400w/ch JC-1 Parasound Halo amp pair that I also hauled home with the CAT’s. And trounced means that they not only drove the SoundLab’s they controlled them in a fashion I had never experienced.

Thus, a certainty is that everyone’s audio experiences will be different. As audiophiles we are seeking a very personal, subjective, sensory, emotional response and experience. In terms of value, amount and degree, how could our experiences not be different!?! However, if one can find someone with comparable preferences when it comes to components and the assessment of a system and music, I have found that their recommendations can and should be used for auditioning purposes.