dCS Bartók Streaming DAC + HP amp

(Paul Kwan) #82

Do the Line Level setting working in analog output stage, or in digital domain ?
I’m playing around with 0.6v and 2v. If setting at 2v, my integrated amp volume usually set at ~ -3x to -2x dB. If set at 0.6v, then will be ~ -1x dB to -2x dB, where i find the setting at 0.6v sounds a little bit better.
But seems most people will advice to set it to 2v, so this confuse me.


Hi Ermos, I had the Bartók for home loan and was very impressed (speakers listening). However the version I had was without the optional HP amp. I am currently using a Violectric V200 with Senns HD 800S with excellent results. Based on your experience would the extra outlay to get the HPA version with the Senns be worth it (one less box one less interconnect) or should I go for the version without the headphone amp?


Hi Andrew, I too would love a native Qobuz integration (especially if it would show the booklets that for classical music fans is a big Qobuz plus :-)). However, although I was extremely pleased with the sound of the Bartók during my home demo, I was underwhelmed as far as the dSC app is concerned. My humble opinion is that either dSC has to put serious effort on the app development (I have been a member of the beta testing group for a product of the competition and know how tricky this can be…) or simply rely on using 3party apps or Roon (as some other competitors do). I don’t have experience with the app on other products like Rossini or the bridge and may be unfairly critical. Not a deal breaker at all though, Roon works like a charm.


I too looked at the dCS app when I first purchased my Vivaldi set-up and decided that Roon was the way to go for me. The app was probably a good option when dCS first released those products.

(Andrew P) #86

We are well aware of the issues with our app and are working to make improvements.


Thanks for clarifying


Hi DrPo,

I would certainly go for the integrated HP amp. Its performance is improving over time (now 6 weeks for me), and the sound quality is very pleasing, both with the Senns HD 800S, and the Focal Utopias. Besides, the integration is very convenient to use: just press the output button and the line outs are closed and the HP out is activated. Bartók remembers your last volume settings, both for line out and HP out. You can set both the line out level (0.2 - 0.6 - 2 - 6V) and headphone out level (0 - -10 - -20 - -30dB) independently, to match both your amp and headphones.

If you have the opportunity, listen first before purchase, as always. If not, you will not regret the HPA.


thanks Ermos, appreciated! As said I cannot demo the headphone amp equipped version so it will be a leap of faith (with a good measure of trusting other listeners’ feedback like your good self)

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(Sean) #90


I had a look at the manual, regarding crossfeed.

Is this using the Bauer method/s? I only see on/off, so is it just one of the Bauer methods? Or something else/different?


(Andrew P) #91

It’s traditional Bauer


dCS Bartók on steroids - minor upgrade, major effect

Since end of February I am enjoying my dCS Bartók, both through my speakers, and headphones.

Because of a planned renovation in our apartment, I got the easy opportunity to ‘lend’ the present electrician, and asked him to replace and upgrade our MCB [miniature circuit breaker] distribution board. I finally got my separate electrical group, just serving my audio rig. It is using a Kemp Elektroniks Supreme³ Cylindric Fuse Cartridge, containing 2 HiFi-Tuning Supreme³ Fuses. Audio part of the upgrade was just under € 300, including high grade separate wiring to dedicated wall socket.

Result: dCS Bartók on steroids! The audible result of this upgrade is a bass response that’s even more taut and goes deeper, an even better reproduction of details, and all together an even more natural, richer and cleaner sound that’s reproduced with the right timbre and texture. Voices are as real as they can get.

Between the dedicated electrical wall socket and the Bartók and amp are: to Audioquest Niagara 1000, and from, with Audioquest Hurricane power cables. They were in place already before the MCB + fuse cartridge upgrade.

Roon is running on a Win10 PC, fed separately, not on the audio group.

The electrician told me before he started: “Electricity is just electricity…”, suggesting a ‘snake oil’ upgrade. I believed him until my ears told me he is completely wrong.

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Interesting. I am in the beginning of a renovation myself. Are there any more details or general principals you can provide?

Is this just for a dedicate circuit for the Bartok (and related power conditioners)? Or did you create dedicated circuits for any other components?

I have two rooms where I listen to music — presumably I would create separate circuits for each?


The general idea is to create a separate, low-distortion, low-impedance AC power connection to the entire audio system, in my case just the dCS Bartók and a power amplifier.

Modern consumer units make use of automatic, resettable fuses. They measure current-flow on a magnetical basis to interrupt current after an overload or short circuit. An advantage of these fuses is the reset function, a major disadvantage can be found in the negative influence it has on sound (and vision) quality.

If you listen to 2 separate audio systems, I think best is to feed them separately as well.

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(Patatorz) #95

Do you think that from « legal » stand point and insurance it is ok ?
A MCB is tripping on overload but also on overheat, differential to protect people etc…

Fuses are the old style of protection according to what regulations are requesting all over the world.

Thanks for sharing your experience


Interesting, do you know the science behind this?

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I did use a fully regulatory MCB from Siemens, but a model that uses cylindrical high grade fuses, instead of a resettable electro-magnetic circuit breaker. These fuses will melt their special OFC/Silver mixture melting wire in case of overload, short circuit or overheat.


I do not, apart from that a fuse contains wire, and all wiring in a audio system matters.

What I do know now that it does have a fairly large and positive impact on the overall sound quality. One can clearly hear it. Even switching the used types of fuses has different results.

There is a review with some background info here: https://6moons.com/audioreviews/net/net.html

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Thanks, I was just interested in the science. Just curious.

(Warren ) #100

Question from a novice Bartók owner. Just installed a new Bartók with an ethernet connection and a Roon Rock. When using the headphone output the music is showing in Roon as downsampled for airplay. Early days for me and the product is new but wasn’t expecting this. Can anyone point me to a solution.
Also the headphone output seems to have limited gain, adequate for a Focal Stella but limited for a Sennheiser HD820.

(Andrew P) #101

You most likely have the Airplay device enabled and selected in Roon, not the RAAT device. Go to your Roon audio settings page and make sure that your Bartok is enabled in the Roon Ready Section, not the Airplay section below it.





Have you adjusted the gain settings for the headphone output?