I owned the Wadia 581-SE and auditioned the 781i and the Puccini. I currently also own the DCS classic Verdi Encore & Elgar plus which sound much better to the Puccini IMO. Funny thing is, I found the 781i to be a bit softer sounding than the 581-SE. It lost the scale and resolution to the 581-Se.
The Emm Labs CDSA-SE ( latest version ) even in stock form IMO out class all of the players mentioned but my unit has been upgraded and is now the best sounding player I have heard to date regardless of price.
Hope this helps.
Flashunlock i was thinking that also about my wadia 781i. It is really soft in the low end. I was thinking of going with dcs puccini since it has a preamp feature like the wadia.
Usarmyvet91, You really need a good pre amp for either the Wadia and the DCS. I found running those two directly to power amps gave a thinner harsher sound.
I want to get one box unit, something that sound better in the bass than my wadia 781i. It has to have built in volume control. I have not listen to the dcs puccini if you have any suggestion let me know.
Do not sell your 781. Get an Elrod Statement II powercord for it. You are not really hearing the bottom end of the Wadia without a good powercord.
I think the bass is one of the many strengths of the Wadia.
What are your cables, speakers, and amplifier?
Wilson 6 speaker and jeff rowland 312 amp have wadia hooked direct to amp. My cable are stereovox i found to very good for price.
Usarmyvet91, the DCS Puccini's bass is on par with the Wadia 581-SE I owned. Only Esoteric have better bass than the two but they do not make a one box with pre out.
Your system has plenty of potential for bass. Try the power cord on your source first. If you are using a stock cord, I would insist you start there. I know nothing about Stereovox - it may be great or it may be a weak link. Try repositioning your speakers. Pay attention to platform and shelving on the Wadia (mainly for clarity, not necessarily huge improvement in bass).
You already have a reference digital front end. No need to worry about the others.
Usarmyvet91, FYI,I conducted all my findings with a Virtual Dynamics Rev-2 power cord.
Steeovox works just perfect with Wadia, especially the BAL-600 cable. As suggested, try another power cord (Elrod, Electraglide or JPS Labs).
Maybe you should get Kubala-Sosna Emotion series of cables, you'll get excellent timbres and fantastic extremes.
i tried the wadia 780i with tara labs cobalt cable ($5000). It had extremely fast bass response with all the inner details.
I tried the DCS puccini which was more musical than the wadia.
But none could match the air, richness and huge sound stage of my stahl-tek DAC ($18k).
I agree with the Elrod Statement II PC suggestion. That would be my first move before I tried or did anything else. You can probably pick 1 up to try from the Cable Company for a very minimal cost, which would get applied towards any future purchases with them. A great way to try cords. You will be pleasantly surprised at the difference the Statement makes. Alsom FWIW, the Statement had more bass weight and range in my system than did the VD Rev pc.
I have directly compared the DCS Puccini and the EMM LABS CDSA and I believe that the DCS is better in terms of transparency, resolution, low end, less grainy sound.
If I was looking for an one box player right now I would buy the dcs puccini!
Weiss is better though....lol
I owned the Weiss Jason & Medea in the past and my Emm Labs CDSA-SE modded is clearly much better in my system.
1) Your CDSA is modded and
2) I am using the Medea together with a Mac Pro through the Weiss Vesta Interface, using a Firewire connection.
The CDSA sounded like it was malfunctiong compared to the above configuration, if you know what I mean...
dCS Puccini outperforms emm labs cdsa se, I was there (had cda se) and now Puccini. The differences are nt subtle, especially in bass region and soundstage. Also the reliability and the transport are night and day. Also I have the choice to dsd upsample or not, can have a hell of agood preamp, spdif to computer connection, constant upgrading and support with either U-clock or other dCS gear!
Wadia is aslo good and Accuphase dp700 as well.
My 3 top integrated cdpalyers list is
1. dCS Puccini
2. Burmester 069
3. Accuphase dp700
Though if I started right now I'd gowith dCS Paganini DAC, computer astransport and u-clock for usb and antijitter hands down.
Thx flashunlock and others who told me to change power cords. Wow what a difference a power cord makes. I have always used the stock power cords for all my gear. I have added mit cables to my system and i bought the mit magnum power cords to the wadia. The bass was tighter, sound stage wider and low level detail was so much better. I have always thought of a cable of any type an after thought or hype. No more i will not make that mistake ever again. On that note, on one of my daily 2 ch music system i was using a factory power cable that came with my paradigms active 40v2 speakers and using mit shotgun again i could not believe what i was hearing. I have been into audio for over 15 yrs now i am 34 now and just thought cables were not important. Thanks guys.
cables are always important!
Right. Ditto for a power conditioner... With the proper power cord...
A digital source can be very sensitive to power.
I agree, yesterday I used a Shunyata Hydra with my Weiss, and although my electric installation is already very good the results were very positive!!