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dCS Bartok

Discussion in 'High-end Audio Forum' started by tmarshl, Mar 5, 2019.
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  1. tmarshl

    I just received my dCS Bartok with Headphone Amp today. Sounds great out of the box, but will wait until fully broken in to provide a review.
  2. ufospls2
    Awesome! Please do report back : )
  3. Thenewguy007
    What were your previous reference amp/dac for your headphones?
  4. tmarshl
    Previous DACs: Chord Dave; Exasound e32; PS Audio DirectStream DAC with Bridge II
    Previous AMPs: First Watt F1 (for AKG K1000); Blue Hawaii Special Edition (for STAX SR009); Pass HP1 (for Focal Utopia)
    Thenewguy007 likes this.
  5. DVass13
    I'm excited to hear your reviews of the Bartok, especially with the Utopia. I'm looking to simplify my headphone/2-channel setup and this seems like it would be the perfect solution as well as a nice upgrade.
  6. emrelights1973
    waiting for you feedback, it is an interesting device
  7. SalR406
    Congratulations on the Bartók. Great looking piece. Enjoy it.

    I just bought a second hand Ayre QX-5 Twenty, as a more cost-conscious alternative. I've had it for about three weeks in my office desktop system and very happy so far. I have it set up as an all-in-one Roon endpoint, DAC, and headamp. I listen through Focal Utopia headphones and Genelec 8030C active monitors. Maybe in a few years when I'm ready for another change, there will be Bartók options on the second hand market.
  8. tmarshl
    That is a very nice alternative, enjoy! I also love using Roon for my music, and have gone so far as to dedicate a Roon Nucleus for this purpose. It does make a difference by a total focus on music streaming and playback, and by eliminating a lot of the noise present in our multi-multi-multi purpose computers.

    The dCS Bartok is still breaking in, and seems to get better and better over time. I am very pleased with the combination of DAC and HP amp in the Bartok, and look forward to receiving a Transparent Ultra mini-xlr4 cable to go with it.

    I love having this combination unit fed by the Roon Nucleus. I am using a USB hard drive (My Passport) connected to the Nucleus for storage and retrieval of my DSD music files. The whole system is seamlessly managed by Roon, which I access through an iPad Pro 12.9.

    I believe that this is my "end-game" headphone system. (but,LOL, I have said that before!)
    superfrognyc likes this.
  9. Icenine2
  10. iDesign
    The dCS Bartók is a compelling integrated option given its network connectivity options. Also interesting that you previously owned the DAVE.
  11. tmarshl
    The DAVE is an excellent DAC as well. I enjoyed listening to the Focal Utopias with it. There moments of revelation in music which I find in the dCS Bartok, which I have never experienced before. That moment where the veil is removed, the hair stands up on the back of your neck from the unreal reality of what you are experiencing, that is the audiophile dream.
    ekfc63 and Mudshark like this.
  12. Icenine2
  13. tmarshl
    Just received my Transparent Ultra Balanced XLR4 cable today, rounding out my SOTA headphone system. First listen is amazing! Looking forward to some concentrated listening time this weekend. My system is now complete (Roon Nucleus, My Passport USB Drive, dCS Bartok, Transparent Ultra Balanced XLR4 cable, Focal Utopia, iPad Pro 12.9 with stand. Note the MQA logo on the Bartok screen.

    dCS Bartok System.JPG
  14. Icenine2
    Very nice!
  15. vlsj
    Congratulations on the Bartok; I’m also eager to hear your impressions as the system gels. I note that you had the PS DirectStream at one point. That is my current DAC so I would be most interested in your thoughts about the difference between it and the Bartok (if your aural memory permits). I have enjoyed the DirectSream’s organic, “analog” characteristics, and generally don’t like hyper resolving but (to me) artificial-sounding DACs. Hoping to find one which improves on the PS in resolution but without losing the musicality and believability. I have high hopes for this new dCS model.
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