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lwhitefl
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dCS Scarlatti SACD playback system article

In his review Michael Fremer wrote: "at some point soon the floodgates will open, and you'll be able to download hi-rez digital files of all your analog favorites."

I will be thrilled if Mr. Fremer's prediction becomes reality in the near future. I would purchase considerably more albums if all recordings (new and old) offered high resolution downloads; and a really great audio hardware delivery system for $15K or less.

I really like the Rhapsody business model that allows unlimited downloads for a monthly fee. But currently that type service only offers low resolution files.

While there are some extremely good RBCD recordings (e.g., Ray Lamontagne: Till the Sun Turns Black, Hadouk Trio: Live at FIP), they don't possess the relaxed, flowing, and spatial sound compared to well recorded and mixed SACD offerings (e.g., Patricia Barber: Verse, Eleanor McEvoy: Yola).

The dCS Scarlatti system is far too expensive for me, but I certainly hope the technology matures to a lower price point so I can seriously consider ditching my optical digital front end.

ncdrawl
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Re: dCS Scarlatti SACD playback system article

I dont see DSD being offered in download form...ever. 24/192 yes, but no DSD / DXD

dcstep
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Re: dCS Scarlatti SACD playback system article

I was disappointed that Mikey didn't compare the Scarlatti to some of the best one-box SACD/CD/DAC devices. I've only heard the Scarlatti in a very poorly run show demo at RMAF, in conjunction with some absolutely ghastly speakers, so I can't really comment on its capacity.

I DID hear the Esoteric multi-box solution compared to the Playback Designs MPS-5 and found that competition VERY close. Three sets of ICs and power cords really do muddy the waters with those multi-box set ups. Beside adding a ton to the system cost, they greatly endanger the transparency of the system. Multi-box in a digital playback system just doesn't make sense to me.

Dave

Michael Fremer
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Re: dCS Scarlatti SACD playback system article


Quote:

Quote:
... they don't possess the relaxed, flowing, and spatial sound compared to well recorded and mixed SACD offerings (e.g., Patricia Barber: Verse, Eleanor McEvoy: Yola).

I was under the impression that the Patricia Barber SACDs are in fact from PCM sources (which would make them not the among the better SACD mixes). Although they sound pretty good though.

In the article, MF doesn't mention it, but I wonder if he listened to the Scarlatti deck bypassing his Pre-amp going directly into his Amps and using the Scarlatti DAC's volume control.... In my system, bypassing my pre-amp resulted in a genuine revelation... there's just no going back once you've heard the amazing clarity and explosive dynamics that the Scarlatti is capable of.

I'm also curious about MF's discussion on DVD-A/DAD in the article... considering the Scarlatti transport does not read DVD-A nor DAD, which transport was being used? And did that transport actually output 24/96 PCM to the Scarlatti DAC?

I thought I mentioned in the article that I used my MacIntosh laptop into the Scarlatti's USB input to play DVD-As....

I did try the Scarlatti without an intervening preamp but I think the results depend upon your particular preamp...I chose to review it in the context of my system. I didn't hear that great a difference either way, but I think the darTZeel preamp is reliably neutral tonally and doesn't restrict dynamics

silvertone
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Re: dCS Scarlatti SACD playback system article


Quote:
I was disappointed that Mikey didn't compare the Scarlatti to some of the best one-box SACD/CD/DAC devices.

Same here. I was hoping he would also draw comparisons against the Ayre CD5. L

Let's also not forget the new Mark Levinson No. 512 and Audio Research CD8. I'm completely puzzled as to why Stereophile has not reviewed these two pieces. In my humble opinion, these two players sound more natural and more accurate than the Meridian JA is so fond of.

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