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Denafrips Pontus discussion (was Review)


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Being in Singapore, I can safely say that ive heard quite a bit of the denafrips offerings. They really changed to game for us audiophiles who are looking for the bang for the buck. No product can be

It is fine to agree.  However to me it is a questionable review.  For example it has contradictions.  He says "...the best sounding DAC this reviewer has ever heard"   He then says that

me to

1 hour ago, Niktech said:

Glowing review here that I thoroughly agree with:

 

https://audiophilestyle.com/ca/reviews/review-denafrips-pontus-dac-r966/

It is fine to agree.  However to me it is a questionable review.  For example it has contradictions.  He says

"...the best sounding DAC this reviewer has ever heard"

 

He then says that the higher priced models in the Denafrips range have

"....better realism and analog-like presence".

 

Then I read the first paragraph in the section titled Sound.  Silly comments

 

That is all I read.  Very ordinary review.

John

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On 10/12/2020 at 9:03 PM, Niktech said:

Glowing review here that I thoroughly agree with:

 

https://audiophilestyle.com/ca/reviews/review-denafrips-pontus-dac-r966/

Hey Nik, I take it if you agree with the review that you have the Pontus ?  DO you mind sharing your thoughts on it and if you compared it to other DAC's,  I am interested in getting an R2R DAC but am on the fence since there seem to be some strengths but some complaints about them sound "soft" or lacking dynamics ?

 

thanks 

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Hi UJ,

If you have a look at the Denafrips Aries II thread, you will see there that I posted my thoughts on the Pontus.

My previous DAC was a Matrix Audio X Sabre, which I found clinical and fatiguing to listen too.

 

The Pontus has also won the Writers Choice Awards for 2020 on the Positive-Feedback website. A full review is in the works, but a snippet is on the Denafrips website

https://www.denafrips.com/single-post/the-17th-annual-positive-feedback-writers-choice-awards-for-2020

 

Cheers

 

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On 10/12/2020 at 8:02 PM, Assisi said:

It is fine to agree.  However to me it is a questionable review.  For example it has contradictions.  He says

"...the best sounding DAC this reviewer has ever heard"

 

He then says that the higher priced models in the Denafrips range have

"....better realism and analog-like presence".

 

Then I read the first paragraph in the section titled Sound.  Silly comments

 

That is all I read.  Very ordinary review.

John

He says he's hasn't heard the other higher priced models, but based on what he's heard of the Pontus he assumes an even greater realism and analogue presence. I don't see the problem there, just your misinterpretation.

 

Each to his own. Not everyone is into an ASR style review.

 

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I recently purchased a Musician Pegasus DAC that is R2R based too.  I haven't heard any Denafrips DACs yet.    Let me know if any interest in a comparison... I am in Perth too :)

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The "best ever" ???  :hmm: 

 

Am always of wary of gushing reviews where emotion has taken over.  Would have been much better if the reviewer had taken a more considered approach over a longer evaluation time...

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55 minutes ago, Niktech said:

He says he's hasn't heard the other higher priced models, but based on what he's heard of the Pontus he assumes an even greater realism and analogue presence. I don't see the problem there, just your misinterpretation.

 

Each to his own. Not everyone is into an ASR style review.

 

Where does he say that he hasn't heard the higher priced models if he then says that they have more realism?  If he is relying on assumptions to justify his review perspective then his comments are  even more questionable than I thought.  If you rely on review like this one then that is fine for you.  I suggest that most people wouldn't   I am probably one of the last people around to require a ASR review to confirm my perspective of a component.

 

At price points Denafrips product is probably value for money.  I am certain that performance wise they are not equivalent to the likes of dCS Vivaldi for example.  Mind you when you you get into hi level it is about personal taste.  I am not a dCS fan.  I consider that my Weiss Medus DAC is definitely superior to any Denafrips  DAC

 

John

 

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Being in Singapore, I can safely say that ive heard quite a bit of the denafrips offerings. They really changed to game for us audiophiles who are looking for the bang for the buck. No product can be the "best". Our hobby is based on assumptions and subjectivity so I can understand why someone who has invested 10k in component does not want to hear that a 2k component is the best component. The better way to approach Denafrips, Line Magnetic,Holo Audio, Kinki Studio and all the Chinese upstarts is that they offer crazy value. They perform more than what they are asking for, they are cutting out the middle man and in a way disrupting the industry. They are doing something like what Andrew Jones did to the entry level speaker market 5 years ago. Today, more brands are offering very good value at the mid level and below and that in the end is good for us the consumer. All reviews and opinions in forums are to be taken with a pinch of salt. my 2 cents. Cheers. 

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7 hours ago, BrownMagic said:

Being in Singapore, I can safely say that ive heard quite a bit of the denafrips offerings. They really changed to game for us audiophiles who are looking for the bang for the buck. No product can be the "best". Our hobby is based on assumptions and subjectivity so I can understand why someone who has invested 10k in component does not want to hear that a 2k component is the best component. The better way to approach Denafrips, Line Magnetic,Holo Audio, Kinki Studio and all the Chinese upstarts is that they offer crazy value. They perform more than what they are asking for, they are cutting out the middle man and in a way disrupting the industry. They are doing something like what Andrew Jones did to the entry level speaker market 5 years ago. Today, more brands are offering very good value at the mid level and below and that in the end is good for us the consumer. All reviews and opinions in forums are to be taken with a pinch of salt. my 2 cents. Cheers. 

Well said.

 

I respected George's review as he is a long standing member of Audiophile Style and other members including myself trust his judgement. I'm new here, but I've been member there for many years 🙂.

 

Cheers

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don't know about that one but i just got one,4 months old,was only used for a short time so not fully run in yet,but i still like what i am hearing,i was using the ares11 before i recieved the pontus a definite upgrade,my first impression was how much better tidal+spotify sounded  just using my laptop via usb into the dac,now to get some more hours on it, i have the tidal and spotify going through it also coax from both oppo 95+rega apollo 35 anniversary model cd connected also should be an interesting Christ🎼mas.

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28 minutes ago, PositivelyMusicallyGeared said:

There was word earlier that Pontus II was in the offing, and I wonder whatever happened to it.

I think they call it a Pontus II when it has the new DSP board installed. However, Pontus I is user upgradeable by purchasing and installing the DSP board yourself. 

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There is no Pontus II yet. The dsp upgrade will still only be a Pontus I. I believe they will need to make a significant upgrade before they will give it the II monicker and that should be somewhere in the future. No timeline available right now.

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On 15/12/2020 at 8:40 PM, Assisi said:

I am not a dCS fan.  I consider that my Weiss Medus DAC is definitely superior to any Denafrips  DAC

 

John

Wondering which Denafrips dac you compared it to?

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1 hour ago, Lazz said:

Wondering which Denafrips dac you compared it to?

I have heard a couple of Denafrips DACs.  Specifically, which ones I do not remember.  I understand the interest in Denafrips as at a price point they provide a relative quality benefit.  I do not consider that the benefit is up with the Medus though.  The price points are slightly different.  My issue is not about per se Denafrips but the frivilous review.

John

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The Ares II doesn't compete with my Abbas Audio DAC2.2SE TDA1541A R1 either though to be fair that is priced a little under halfway between the Pontus and Terminator.  Two DAC's which I've not had the pleasure to hear. I still place the Ares II as top of my recommendation list for a great value DAC that punches well above its price point.

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@MattyW Do you have a photo of your Abbas Audio DAC2.2SE TDA1541A R1? I googled it when you mentioned it in another thread, but wasn't sure what I found was it. 

Cheers mate

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24 minutes ago, Niktech said:

@MattyW Do you have a photo of your Abbas Audio DAC2.2SE TDA1541A R1? I googled it when you mentioned it in another thread, but wasn't sure what I found was it. 

Cheers mate

 

Certainly

 

20201221_212247.thumb.jpg.31183029e4666d61bd164ab1bf61d3f0.jpg

 

I reviewed mine a while ago as best I could over here:

 

The only other SNA member I know has this exact unit is @DrMikeOz if you wanted a second opinion  :)

 

One thing to keep in mind is that Abbas products eschew features and convenience in favor of outright sound quality. So you get an on/off switch on the back and a single coax digital input.

 

Edited by MattyW
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One before the tubes when in, Matt will need to dig up some others.

 

Most realistic sounding DAC I have heard so far, not tuby or analytical, just correct sounding.

 

20200402_150116.jpg.825aede55bbe46e1521f160cfadd0419.jpg

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15 minutes ago, MattyW said:

 

Certainly

 

20201221_212247.thumb.jpg.31183029e4666d61bd164ab1bf61d3f0.jpg

 

I reviewed mine a while ago as best I could over here:

 

The only other SNA member I know has this exact unit is @DrMikeOz if you wanted a second opinion  :)

 

One thing to keep in mind is that Abbas products eschew features and convenience in favor of outright sound quality. So you get an on/off switch on the back and a single coax digital input.

 

Nice! Convenience and features just makes additional noise 🙂 I'll have a read of  that other thread with your review

Cheers

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7 hours ago, MattyW said:

If you don't mind using Google Translate there's a long and winding thread on Abbas components over on dastereo.ru. :)

Cheers 🙂👍

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On 21/12/2020 at 1:06 PM, BrownMagic said:

There is no Pontus II yet. The dsp upgrade will still only be a Pontus I. I believe they will need to make a significant upgrade before they will give it the II monicker and that should be somewhere in the future. No timeline available right now.

An upgrade in line with the changes done in Venus II and Ares II ought to be expected soon, as Pontus II. 

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On 21/12/2020 at 9:08 PM, Niktech said:

Yeah, it's just you, your ears and your brain 🙂

I consider that it is for all of us with our audio including you.  As I see it our systems are the journey and the destination is then is our listening with our ears and our brains .  Each of us and our respective systems are connected.

John

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35 minutes ago, 7502dan said:

Denafrips should have called the current pontus mk2 as they upgraded the power suply,fpga and dsp board just as they did to Venus 

27 minutes ago, 7502dan said:

Screenshot_20201223-164827_Samsung Internet.jpg

 

Same here mate. My Pontus was purchased in October, and I have all the upgrades too. It does seem strange not to assign it Mk II status. Hopefully a new model isn't just around the corner 🙄

 

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I don't think so, why change anything when the formula is so successful, the pontus is on back order, together with Ares  2 ,they are their best sellers. 

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