I have abandoned all other formats and now listen exclusively to digital music. I began my
streaming journey with the DAC in the Bluesound Node 2i, then upgraded to the Schiit Modi
Multibit. The step up to the Pontus II is such a quantum leap in sonic quality!
I’m listening mostly with Qobuz, with some Amazon HD where the Qobuz catalog falls short. The soundstage and definition are incredible... The dynamic range in the Herbert von Karajan recording of Holst’s The Planets, especially “Mars,” is downright frightening. In Shirley Horn’s “How Am I To Know?”, you can feel – not just hear – Charlie Ables’ fingers slide up and down the strings of his bass. Hi-res recordings are even more amazing. Listening to Coltrane’s “My Favorite Things” (24/192) I closed my eyes and could visualize the exact angle of the placement of McCoy
Tyner’s piano, and could “see” that Elvin Jones’s drum kit was further back in the studio, etc.
Likewise, on Neil Young’s remastered “Out on the Weekend” (24/192), the clarity of the vibrations of the bass’ speaker cone, and the attack and then decay of energy as the drumstick
hits the snare allows you to get completely lost and feel like you’re actually in the studio.
I was shocked to hear details I had never noticed before on that song – like when someone
accidentally brushes up against a microphone...
The Pontus II is something very, very special.
• Raspberry Pi 4, with Allo Shanti linear power supply (running Moode) USB out into IRIS
DDC; I2S out into Pontus II (controlled via Linn Kazoo; likely moving to Roon on Mac Mini
hardware running Linux for better user interface)
• Additional Chromecast HDMI out to Tendak HDMI audio de-embedder SP/DIF optical
out into Pontus II for casting YouTube and other random sources as needed
• PrimaLuna EVO 300
• Two PrimaLuna EVO 100 Stereo amps, each amp driving one B&W CM7 in bi-amped
• Sunfire True Jr.
• Morrow Audio interconnects and speaker cables
• Furman power conditioning
Credit: Glenn K, San Francisco
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