dCS Verdi: Upsampled PCM vs. Converting PCM to DSD

I have a dCS Purcell/Delius combo and am considering buying the dCS Verdi SACD/CD transport to replace my Sonic Frontiers T3 so that I can take advantage of dCS's clock link provision in addition to playing SACDs. I was surprised to learn that the cost of upgrading the Purcell/Delius with the 1394 digital interface and new software will run around $5400 for both units in addition to the $11K MSRP of the Verdi. Since my interest in SACD is secondary giving what's currently available, I am particularly interested in the sonic improvement, if any, that the Verdi and associated S/W upgrades, will provide:

(1) as an improvement in transport ( and one that will clock link) to upsample 16/44.1 "redbook" CDs to 24/192.


(2) is the ability to convert 16/44.1 PCM "redbook" CDs to a DSD data stream sonically superior (or inferior) to upsampling redbook CDs to 24/192 PCM?

Your counsel/experience would be greatly appreciated given the potential expense involved.
you're going the same path I did about a year or so ago. I too used to have SFI T3/P3/L3 and Power 3. So I am speaking here form experience. Verdi with the dCS gear you have is well, let me say again well worth it.

I bought the Purcell/Delius first then sent them to dCS for upgrade and then used them for a while with my T3. I was happy for a while much better than the SFI DAC 3 (Processor ) even though I was using the SFI (Assembly) out-board up-sampler. But when you listen to the Purcell you will quickly realize that the SFI (Assembly) up-sampler is a child play compared to the dCS gear. I tell you it will be very easy to tell the difference. I had a friend who is not an Audiophile but he listens to music a lot, sit in my room and did the A/B (with/without up-sampling) on him. He was able to pick it up every time. The music is more in the air not just between the speakers.

Take my advice, do the upgrade and get the Verdi, you will not regret it. I for sure don’t. As a matter of fact I feel that it is the best investment I ever made. The only negative thing is dCS gear doesn’t offer multi channel SACD yet. But I know they will do. As for the software, since I got the dCS gear I mostly buy SACDs now, I have about 50 of them and I enjoy them very much. The thing is you will enjoy all your collection again because you will upsample all of them to SACD, forget about the 192khz. you will save the cost of two XLR digital cable.

Good luck and if you have any question don’t hesitate to ask.
My Delius and Procell are about 2 years old. The Verdi was added in September as step #1 with no upgrades to the original equipment. Sound quality is extremedly good and well worth the cost of the Verdi. It is also faster than many transports. I have about 2 dozen SACDs and a huge red book collection. It is so satisfying that I may never take the upgrade path but that option is avilable. You may want to do it in steps which reduces the initial outlay. Good luck and ENJOY! Chuck
With regard to CD listening, I use a Classe Omega SACD player as a CD transport with an older dCS Purcell/Elgar pair, and love the set-up. Before buying the Classe, I had a chance to do a head-to-head comparison of the all dCS system against a CEC transport and the Purcell/Elgar combination with three balanced Purist Dominus digital cables from the transport to the Purcell and the Purcell to the Elgar. The result was one person in the room preferred the CEC/Purist/dCS PCM connection, one the all-dCS DSD, and one thought they were different but equal. Since I already had the Dominus cables, and got a great price on the Classe as a demo, it was a no-brainer for me. If you don't already have three really fine digital cables, and good SACD, it's a lot closer a call in terms of bang for the buck. I can't compare the all-dCS SACD playback to the Classe, as I have never heard them in the same system. One last point--converting the data stream to DSD off a PCM CD is NOT creating an SACD, even on the all-dCS system. If you want to prove the point without paying for the hardware, Tower has been importing a number of Japanese SONY CD's which have been made from DSD masters of analog material, which they have also released here in SACD (mainly Szell/Cleveland reissues). Do the DSD-mastered CD's sound good? You bet. Do they match the SONY SACD releases? No way.
Thanks guys for your responses; they were very helpful! FYI, I'm pretty well set in the cable department since my entire system is connected with Synergistic Designer's Reference Squared w/Active Shielding. As you guys suggested, this leaves me with a few options starting with the transport, as well as a S/W upgrade path if I stay with an all dCS system (my preference, but expensive). And if I end up preferring converting redbook CD's to DSD (vs. 24/192 upsampled PCM), I could always sell my balanced digital cables.