Showing (off) your dCS setup - description and photos


We were using the Vivaldi DAC directly into the Dags as that was the setup that we considered best for showing off our kit in our room, other rooms may have used dCS DACs into integrated / pre amplifiers depending on what they wanted to show and how they wanted their systems to work - we had quite a number of other manufacturers using dCS kit in their setups which was lovely to see but a bit of a nightmare to co-ordinate! :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes:

I will say that given the issues with setting up rooms at these shows (the rooms are exhibition spaces and are not in any way designed to be ideal audio environments) and how many years I’ve been doing these kinds of events I was really pleased with how the system was sounding and “outside of show hours” we did have some fun playing stuff that we simply wouldn’t have gotten away with while the public were there - Sunday morning for example I woke up the Dags and the Wilsons with a bit of Infected Mushroom. :smiley:



Not quite satisfied with the SQ of music streaming in my system (full Vivaldi stack), which is far from comparable to the quality of vinyl or SACD or even redbook CDs.

The system is externally re-clocked with a Mutec Ref 100 SE and it’s streaming music mostly from Qobuz through Roon (with a Roon Nucleus acting as Roon Core). I am also using a SotM sNH-10G ethernet switch with a SoTM PSU.

Any idea of possible actions to substantially improve SQ (other than changing cables and the like)?


In my opinion SQ is ranked in the following order:

  1. Turntable or Reel-to-Reel (a tie from my experience)
  2. SACD
  3. CD
  4. Streaming

I am not sure with our current state of tech, if your wish for streaming will equal anything above it.

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Where would you position downloads in your list because many of download hires files to a music server? Presumably higher than streaming but would it be as good as or better than CD, SACD and/or vinyl? I appreciate it will depend upon recording quality.

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Agreed 100% but in my case streaming is way beyond the other sources, hence my post.

For me in my current system, hi-res downloads still sits at #4 (maybe #3) but as I said far away from #1 and #2. Asking here what’s everyone’s experience and ideas to improve SQ of streaming.

That is a very interesting question, Franco. Maybe you could put it in a separate topic, not to derail this one :pray:


Makes sense @Ermos.

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Thanks Franco :+1:

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My setup with dCS Bartók (sans Apex). Added a new preamp since my last post (Audia Flight Strumento No 1 mk3) and a lamp


My simple but fantastic system, with non-APEX Bartok (undecided how to proceed, wait and see).

The Aurender is a new addition and has made a tremendous impact! I moved the previous Roon Nucleus+ to a headphone system.

I keep thinking about getting a proper audio rack, I look a lot, but so far I have not taken any action. I always need space for photobooks; I can use every square inch I can find. The Luxman amp is super heavy–the photobooks are there in case the shelf pins fail. Most of my photobooks are still in storage following a recently completed remodel (CDs are too).

It’s a small room and the Harbeths are simply divine. Placement is not ideal, I’m sure, but I have to work with the room and its many uses. Synergy with the Luxman is perfect.

Next change is speaker cables. I have been using the same DNM cables for a long time; time for an upgrade. I recently replaced the DNM interconnect and the difference/improvement was obvious.The DNM cables are a legacy of the Resolution Audio system I had before, as seen by the Cantata Music Center V3 you see here, for spinning silver discs.


Nice setup! I love those Harbeths and I really like the Luxman. I have a pair of P3s myself in one system and the SHL5+ in my main system with the Bartok. The Harbeths are among my favourite speakers - they just get the tone right IMHO.

If you think of upgrading cables, buy them 2nd hand at a fraction of the initial cost! Burnt-in cables also “sound” better. But start with the power cords. Otherwise you will not know what your system is capable of. Over the years, I realised that spending 50% of my hifi-budget on racks/ platforms/ cables/ power conditioning is the best hifi investment I ever made.

I am now at the apex with a nearly complete loom of Nordost Odin2 (mostly 2nd hand and trade-ins). I demoed one Nordost Gold power cord at home, replacing the Odin2 power cord going into the power conditioner which supplies the rest of the system (consisting of Vivaldi-stack plus Clearaudio Master Innovation). The improvement was unfortunately very noticeable. One power cord!