It occurs to me that I have been assuming that people reading this would be very familiar with the virtues of the PDX DAC, but that might well not be the case. I thus hope the following recent comments from respected SNA members (on the Playback Designs thread) might be helpful:
“I had now the PDX level2 with Dueland Arrived, just a quick listen last night on some songs. Huge different to the standard PDX i heard before. Impressive sounds from the PDX level 2
. - dalamii 26feb
There followed a shootout between the $17k Playback Designs MPS-5 SACD Player and a Level 2 PDX. The DAC only version of the MPS-5 is the $13k
MPD-5. So the shootout was effectively between the PDX and a $13k
Playback Designs DAC. Unlike the PDX, the Playback Designs DAC does not include a USB interface.
The shootout attendees commented as follows:
“while the MPS-5 offers a kind of audio presentation different to anything I can recall hearing - hugely impressive in some regards - I enjoyed music more with the PDX
“I think when people say they find the PDX to sound more "live", it has a lot to do with the tube output stage. “ - DoggieHowser 18mar
“To really unlock its potential [The Playback Designs] the Off-Ramp was required. It does not surprise me kdoot and others preferred the PDX through it internal USB - it [The Playback Designs] was slightly ordinary that way to my ears and the PDX was better
.” - Bhobba 18mar
The owner of the Playback Designs SACD player (who preferred it to the PDX) commented as follows: “There is no doubt that the PDX is a great value for money DAC. And I can only recommend that it is on your short list no matter what your budget
.” - jrisles 21mar
“I have got both a PDX and Playback Designs because I see the virtues of both. The Playback Designs was the first DAC that got to me compared to my PDX.”
- Bhobba 22mar
“I had the chance to have a listen to the PDX level 2 with upgraded caps this morning. It certainly has "wow" factor. And it's a very, very capable DAC. - alastairm 22mar
“At my house I preferred the Pdx
over the mpd 3 player. My system is fully Solid state. The pdx added a lovely forward mid which makes it really additive to listen to, especially to string instruments. Not exactly neutral, but sure is musical. The PBD is mean lean detailed, never bright, but in my system I needed the pdx warmth injection
. - petng
“Mike put the PDX and the Playback on an AB this morning, running through the Macs and ML3Reference and I personally preferred the PDX
. - DoggieHowser 5May
Clearly, the PDX is an excellent DAC! Make the most of this opportunity to buy a DAC that is clearly competitive with the $13k Playback Designs DAC, for a small fraction of that price! -- AND you don't need to buy a $1500 offramp USB interface to make it shine: there is a battery powered jitter reducing USB interface built right into the PDX!
Edited by rab, 09 May 2012 - 07:12 AM.