Originally Posted by uchihaitachi
Just curious how a source can.sound warm or harsh or cold etc etc. What is the cause of this? Is it distortions? And what component of a source is accountable for this, dac amp or ???
You should not assume that just because somebody reports a source as warm or harsh or cold etc etc that their perception is always an accurate reflection of reality.
The vast majority of digital sources (outside of looney boutique designs or very bad designs indeed) have a FR that is utterly flat i.e that no part of the audible spectrum is more pronounced than any other.
Yet if you trawl through the Dedicated Source forum you'll find endless A is brighter/warmer than B reports , and if you can find measured performance data 99% of the time both A and B have flawlessly flat FR(excepting the aforementioned looney designs)
Sadly many of the boutique/expensive manufacturers will not publish measurements on their kit, luckily folks like Stereophile do comprehensive measurements. The measurement guy (John Atkinson) often
stating bemusement that his reviewer heard some difference between two items such as different outputs which measured exactly the same !
Of course it is possible to make something so bad that it is easily distinguishable from decent kit such as the objectively awful and awfully expensive Zanden kit http://www.stereophile.com/content/zanden-5000-mkivsignature-da-converter-2000-premium-cd-transport-measurements