Peachtree Decco 2 setup...

I need advice, I recently picked up a Peachtree Decco 2 for a bedroom system. I've got an NAD DVD player as the source, connected via PS- audio digital interconnect to the decco. I'm also using my pc for digital (flac) files, tied in with a no-name USB cable. Speakers are dynaudio audience 42 with analysis plus oval 9 speaker cables. So that's the setup, here's the problem... It sounds, well, like crap!! Theres hardly any bass, the highs are much too 'soft' and the midrange seems over-pronounced. Am I using the wrong equipment somewhere in my setup? Any advice would be great, thanks in advance.
hi, i have the decco and it is a bit different than the 2 in the dac area and some features. it does have a soft sound because of the tubes imo. and there is some compromise in the amp section but your report is the first one i have ever seen where it sounds like crap. your other gear is very nice. i see your other system is good too so you know what good sound is. the speakers are in phase i assume. did you get it locally? as a snap look i would guess it may have a problem or your expectations are too high maybe. possible some dynaudio expert can shed some light here. i;d like to know what is going on ,good luck. ps. david at peachtree has answered questions from me quickly so call him monday possibly. they care about good sound and customers
I would question where and how you have the speakers set up. As mentioned by Hotmailjbc, are they in phase? How close to walls, etc...
You can test the digital part by hooking up the cd with rca cables to the decc0 to compare? Also, tubes do get old. Have you had it checked? Supposedly, the tube can be bypassed.
Final question: Have you compared your pc audio vs using a real cd? Is there a difference?
From what I've read, the Decco amp is designed for smaller speakers and doesn't have a ton of power. You could always try an external amp to see if the amp section is your problem.
I would suspect a poor speaker/amp match just because all the Dynaudios I know like lots of juice. From what I've heard or been told, SimAudio amps like them, so do KT88-based tube amps.

That said, positioning and the room make a great difference in how speakers sound. More hard than soft surfaces tend to make the music sound, well, hard. Positioning near the wall or too close to a corner can make boom.

If you suspect your DVD player is the weak link, cheap tweaks include a power cord, an isolation transformer (eBay) and antivibration footers like the ones from Herbie's Audio Labs. The PC source can be helped with a quality USB cable like the one from Acreyes here.

Also, is your digital interconnect 1.5 meters long?
Can you bring your main system's integrated amp and try that in place of the Decco? If so, do that without changing the speaker positioning. If it sounds equally crap, you know it's not the Decco.

If the integrated fixes the problems, it may be you don't like the DAC section of the Decco or it's not driving the Dyns well enough.

If the integrated fixes problems, try using the Decco as a preamp/DAC with the integrated as a power amp.

Experimentation should tell you what you need to know. All it costs is a bit of time and effort. I don't have a Decco, so I'm not defending it nor am I blaming it.

The other posters having given good advice, especially swapping out another amp and seeing if it too sounds bad.

I had the first gen. Decco for a three day audition in my system about a month ago. I used a Tara Lab digital cable to use my NAD c542 cdp as a transport. I also use Analysis Plus Oval 9 speaker wire. And I used my NAD 320BEE to compare.

I had similar impressions as you. It sounded just as you described. I did prefer the sound with my cdp connected directly to the amp section by rca jacks. And when I used the NAD as a transport I preferred it not using the tube section of the Peachtree. The tube section imparted a bright forwardness to the sound which completely threw me as I never expected that from a tube stage.

When using the Peachtree DAC there was definitely more detail but the music lost much of its weight, presence and body. I was very disappointed because I really wanted the Decco. When putting the NAD 320BEE back in the musics fullness was restored.

I believe it is a great piece of equipment. It's beautifully built too. And I can see why people love it. I just wanted to post my impressions for you because maybe you and I just came across a compatibility issue in our systems and thought you might be a bit relieved that you are not alone. Sometimes things just don't work out.


I haven't heard the Decco, but I doubt it has the juice to drive *any* Dyns. I had Excite X12s (easier to drive than your Audience 42s) and my Nait 5i didn't have enough to open them up.
Thanks to all. Prior to the decco, I ran the dyns with my nad c-350, sounded great. Since my post, I switched the dynaudio 42's with a pair of dyn 62 floorstanders I have. The sound has improved, but not by much. Ill try the NAD power section with the decco preamp this weekend. Is that even possible? I know the NAD can be used as just a pre, but can it also be used as just a power amp? I never thought of that.
It can. There's a Main In/Pre out loop on the back. Remove the jumpers, and put the preamp out from the Decco into the main in using RCAs.
There are a couple of buttons on the back of the Decco that toggle in and out -- one that is for jitter (narrow versus wide) and I believe the other is some type of filter slope.

In my experience, setting the jitter button on the back to narrow sounds noticeably better (and might explain the "soft" sound you hear). I believe the wide button is to be used only if you have a very high jitter source. I would also experiment with the other button as well to see which sounds better to you.
Thanks for the input everyone , by alas, the decco is gone. After trying all possible combinations within my means, I concluded it just didn't gel with my system. Oh well, the search continues...