Hello Alvin, thank you so much for following up and making sure that the Venus arrive a bit earlier than anticipated.
I am enjoying the new DAC very much, below I am sharing my initial impressions after a couple of weeks of listening to my favorite music on it. I added some of the tracks for reference, mostly CD quality(from FLAC) and Tidal might have played some MQA versions but I didn’t pay attention to HiRes at all, although I saw the LED switching from 44.1k to 48k from time to time.
The Venus makes the soundstage to be bigger and taller than the Schiit Gungnir that I tried previously, placing the instrument's sounds at least 2 feet beyond speakers location with some recordings, this feat is not easy to accomplish in my tricky room setup as I live in a midsize condo apartment with big glass windows on one side of the stereo.
Image depth is great, complimenting the big soundstage while maintaining the cohesiveness of the recordings.
-I Don't Get It - Cowboy Junkies - on The Trinity Session
-A Place Called Home - PJ Harvey - on Stories From The City, Stories From The Sea
-A Lazy Afternoon - Guido Basso, Doug Riley - on A Lazy Afternoon
The high frequencies are a pleasure to listen to with no trace of the unnatural sibilance that I heard on some other DACs. Attack and decay of percussive instruments sound lifelike and natural to me. I am a regular at The Rex bar (before covid-19 that is), one the few Jazz bars in North America that do 2 shows each night, 7 days a week, sitting a few meters from the drummers 2 or 3 nights per month gives me a great appreciation for a DAC that can reproduce accurately, snares, cymbals and hi hat sounds.
Vocals, guitars and piano sounds are well defined, with palpable presence probably due to the great instruments separation illusion that a good DAC can bring in combination with other competent components. It also unfolds superbly the intricate passages of big orchestral classical music.
-Adios Nonino - Astor Piazzolla - on The Central Park Concert
-Broken Bicycles/Junk - Anne Sofie von Otter & Elvis Costello - on For the Stars
-CallingYou - Pedro Aznar - on A Solas Con el Mundo
-Mars, The Bringer of War - Von Karajan w Berlin Philharmonic - on Holt’s The Planets
Tonaly, the Venus, is not forward or sterile nor warm, just right for the taste of a listener like me that enjoys a good Unplugged version of its favorite artist from time to time.
-The Way Up: Opening - Pat Metheny Group - on The Way Up
-Morocco - Al di Meola Project - on Kiss My Axe
-Deja la Vida Volar - Mercedes Sosa, Pedro Aznar- on Cantora 1
Bass and lower end of electronic music displays with authority and engaging qualities that makes me want to listen more.
-Waiting for a Sign - Philip Selway - on Weatherhouse
-Song And Dance Man - Jason Collect - on Song And Dance Man
-Hell N Back - Bakar -on Will You Be My Yellow?
-Are You In? - Incubus - Morning View
In conclusion, the Denafrips Venus performs amazingly for my taste in classical, electronic, rock, pop, folk and jazz music; what else can I ask from a DAC? It has been a great addition to my stereo equipment, increasing considerably the enjoyment of music from digital sources.
My equipment, playing digital:
Dedicated Linux music server/streamer with SOtM-USBexp USB output and ROON + Tidal
CD Player NAD 521BEE - coaxial output
Denafrips Venus DAC
Blue Circle Integrated Amplifier 022i (https://positive-feedback.com/reviews/hardware-reviews/blue-circle-o22i-integrated-amplifier/ )
Jean Marie Reynaud Offrande Suprême V2 Speakers
-- Fabricio M.
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