DCS DAC as preamp

Hi, anyone tried using DCS DAC (Rossini or Vivaldi) as preamp, meaning using them as preamp n direct to naim power amp?

SQ difference?

I run my Rossini into a 552 and then 500. Dunc on this forum experimented and did not like his Rossini direct into his Naim amp. Others on the dCS forum have found the same - one gentleman purchased the Allegri+ passive pre and is quite happy using that.


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May i ask then the comparison between ND555+1 x 555ps dr vs rossini with master clock?

I saw one member mentioned the Rossini is better (but didnt state if its w the master clock).

I can only comment on my comparison with the Linn Klimax DS which I have been using since 2011 (/1,/2,/3 versions). IMHO the Rossini with Master Clock is in a different league.

I originally had no intention of replacing the KDS in my 500 system and I purchased the Bartok for use in a headphone only system. When I determined the performance of the Bartok (on a numerical scale) to be a 90-95 vs. the KDS at 100 - but at half the cost of the Linn - I then had the desire to try the Rossini.

The Rossini/Master Clock has now supplanted the KDS in my Naim system and the Linn is relegated to headphone only duties.


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A search of the streaming forum should find a thread of mine on that topic.

Best, BF

How about comparison between Rossini dac + clock vs vivaldi dac standalone?

Cant find any of this comparison. In dcs forum, no real comparison as i am looking for.

To add a bit more to this.
The difference in sound using the built in pre amp and say the 552, is not massively different, but i did find it lost some dynamics and certainly prefer it with. Now this could also be because i have the 500, and the 500/552 are a great pairing, and work so well together.
But the problem with the Bartok, rossini, and vivaldi is that the volume control is digital and once you start to use it to lower the volume from the direct 0.0 db, you lose bits, and the dynamics drop off, the more you adjust the volume down, the worse it gets. Now you can try and over come this by adjusting the output voltage, but its a pain, and when you know it can be better, its even worse.

Like all DCS dacs, they all sound better with the clock, once again its not a massive difference and it hard to say what it does, but live with one for a few days and then turn it off, and it straight away just sounds wrong, as said its strange, but i certainly wouldn’t want to go without it.

The difference between the Bartok and rossini is easy to hear, the rossini to vivaldi, i found not as big, yes its better, but the price difference doesn’t for me reflect great value, but i would have one if i could, but the vivaldi really is a 3 box dac, dac, clock and upscaler/streamer, this is about 3 times the price off the rossini/clock.

As for comparison against the ND555, then i found the DCS rossini in a different class, add the clock and it only opens that gap up even more, it has all what the naim has, plus all the detail the chord dave has, it simply was stunning.
The first time i heard it, it made the hairs on the back off my arm, stand up, i knew then i had to get one, and that my NDS replacement had been found, it was funny really as i went in to try the nd555, dave, and upscaler, both didn’t do it for me, jokingly the dealer said you really need one off these and went and got the rossini, the rest is history as they say.

Thx Dunc for ur feedback. I guess we shared similar system as i had 552 & 500 (both dr) too.

I m now asking if i can try the vivaldi dac standalone (w/o clock or upsampling options) with my system since i dont stream. Hence i thot vivaldi makes more sense to me.

Nice one.
You will like it, i am sure, but the clock will certainly be an upgrade you will want at some point,if you go down this road, as well as the upscaler, to fully exploit the vivaldi, and then you have the transport, if you still use CD’s, this is the full 4 box stack, but very expensive.
If you can try the rossini and clock

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Dealer vivaldi yet to arrive but get to try rossini w clock. Quite impressive.

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