MSB Discrete to Premier

skids929

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Dec 31, 2020
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Anyone made this jump from Discrete to Premier? Considering it and wanted to hear some current feedback on the jump from Discrete to Premier. If it's worth the extra $14k or not, if the Discrete is 80-90% of the Premier I just assume not bother. Just curious on actual experiences with this upgrade from those who have done it.

Thank you!
 

docvale

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Mar 22, 2011
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I haven't done the comparison, nor I could be on the market for such a jump into DAC prices.
But I have a curiosity, though: what kind of improvements would you look for? a potential "20% improvement" (personally, I am not fond into the quantitation of improvements) might occur in areas you could or could not be into.
 

skids929

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Dec 31, 2020
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I haven't done the comparison, nor I could be on the market for such a jump into DAC prices.
But I have a curiosity, though: what kind of improvements would you look for? a potential "20% improvement" (personally, I am not fond into the quantitation of improvements) might occur in areas you could or could not be into.
Not sure what you mean..Do you have an MSB DAC?
 

docvale

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Mar 22, 2011
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No, I don't. I auditioned the Premier in a showroom, but with a complete different system (VTL + Wilson).

My question is: you have the itch to upgrade and I'd be curious to know in which areas you think your system might benefit of improvements. I'm asking since you mentioned the upgrade to Premier would have a $14k sticker and this budget might give ample room to work on other aspects of the audio chain. This, particularly, considering that I'm sure your DAC must already be a fantastic device.
 

skids929

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gotcha...I'd say a little more energy in the sound, maybe a bit more resolution although it's not terrible with the Discrete at all. System is pretty strong otherwise, I have great connections already and don't plan to chase sound through cables. Maybe my renderer but I'd challenge even MSB's renderer to beat out the Bricasti, it's really excellent. I think my weakest link is not my DAC it's my server. So I could send some fund there but I'd have to audition one to see if it actually makes a difference. I am using a Mac Mini but between the Bricasti and the gigafoil I'd question the benefits to putting alot into a server.
 

docvale

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Mar 22, 2011
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gotcha...I'd say a little more energy in the sound, maybe a bit more resolution although it's not terrible with the Discrete at all. System is pretty strong otherwise, I have great connections already and don't plan to chase sound through cables. Maybe my renderer but I'd challenge even MSB's renderer to beat out the Bricasti, it's really excellent. I think my weakest link is not my DAC it's my server. So I could send some fund there but I'd have to audition one to see if it actually makes a difference. I am using a Mac Mini but between the Bricasti and the gigafoil I'd question the benefits to putting alot into a server.
Ok. Then you'd need someone that truly went to the upgrade path to advise.
But, unless you received informative feedback and you could validate that with your own ears, I think you could, in the meanwhile, audition different amplifiers or speakers? That might be a more impactful twist into the overall sound rendition of your system.

Good luck and have fun with your quest!
 

KeithR

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it's interesting, I know 2 different MSB dealers who say different things on this. one says he much prefers the Premier's midrange energy to the Discrete and even prefers some other $10k dacs. the other loves the Discrete and says Reference or "bust".

The Premier was a big step from my Analog, but I haven't heard the Discrete in my system.

I do think you are very much limiting yourself with a Mac Mini and would first recommend an Innuos server to run isolated ethernet with the MSB renderer. That is a *large* upgrade.
 
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Gregm

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Mar 14, 2019
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Agree with Keith & Valerio above suggesting you consider improving on the front end.
For what it’s worth i have compared the two dacs and, subjectively, preferred the Premier for its improved treble clarity and detailed rendition. That said, i favour dynamics, clarity and fine detail... the illusion of being there, as it were. Also i listen and judge by classical.
Regards
 

gds7368

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Jan 9, 2015
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gotcha...I'd say a little more energy in the sound, maybe a bit more resolution although it's not terrible with the Discrete at all. System is pretty strong otherwise, I have great connections already and don't plan to chase sound through cables. Maybe my renderer but I'd challenge even MSB's renderer to beat out the Bricasti, it's really excellent. I think my weakest link is not my DAC it's my server. So I could send some fund there but I'd have to audition one to see if it actually makes a difference. I am using a Mac Mini but between the Bricasti and the gigafoil I'd question the benefits to putting alot into a server.
I used to use a Mac Mini as a server, and each step up the Aurender chain (in-home demo of N10 and W20, and purchased a W20SE) nets you a solid sonic improvement. That Mac Mini is definitely holding your system back, believe me. The step from the W20SE to the Extreme is another huge wow moment. I would strongly suggest starting there, having done the server journey myself over the past 5 years. Best of luck and enjoy in good health!
 
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jaxho

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May 18, 2021
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I have listened to Premiere and Discrete back to back on good gear and...yesterday i got my Premiere home:p!
There was no going back when i had heard what the Premiere do.
I did consider the Reference but have not heard it. Persons i trust say it is better but...i ordered the Taiko Extreme instead!
Source first etc. I convinced that the Extreme will give moore of the good stuff with the Premiere than a Reference with my NUC/ Roon rock.
I will run it with MSB Proisl. Quite a lot better than the renderer v2.

Gretings Jaxho
 

gds7368

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Jan 9, 2015
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I have listened to Premiere and Discrete back to back on good gear and...yesterday i got my Premiere home:p!
There was no going back when i had heard what the Premiere do.
I did consider the Reference but have not heard it. Persons i trust say it is better but...i ordered the Taiko Extreme instead!
Source first etc. I convinced that the Extreme will give moore of the good stuff with the Premiere than a Reference with my NUC/ Roon rock.
I will run it with MSB Proisl. Quite a lot better than the renderer v2.

Gretings Jaxho
Fantastic decision! Would you please consider reporting back on the sound of your DAC through the NUC vs through the Extreme? It won't be a subtle difference, but would appreciate your thoughts!
 

bryans

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I have listened to Premiere and Discrete back to back on good gear and...yesterday i got my Premiere home:p!
There was no going back when i had heard what the Premiere do.
I did consider the Reference but have not heard it. Persons i trust say it is better but...i ordered the Taiko Extreme instead!
Source first etc. I convinced that the Extreme will give moore of the good stuff with the Premiere than a Reference with my NUC/ Roon rock.
I will run it with MSB Proisl. Quite a lot better than the renderer v2.

Gretings Jaxho
Wow congrats! MSB Premier with Taiko Extreme has to be an incredible combo. :D
 

Motoman

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Jul 25, 2021
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Anyone made this jump from Discrete to Premier? Considering it and wanted to hear some current feedback on the jump from Discrete to Premier. If it's worth the extra $14k or not, if the Discrete is 80-90% of the Premier I just assume not bother. Just curious on actual experiences with this upgrade from those who have done it.

Thank you!
You don’t mention what you are using for the power supply for the Discrete. I went from the Analog with power base to the Discrete with the Premier Power Base. If you are using just one power supply for the Discrete, you will notice a significant difference by moving up to at least two power supplies, although I highly recommend going to the Premier Power Base. You may find that you get enough of an improvement for the $$ that you wont make the BIG leap. I also highly recommend using a Gigafoil v.4 between the DAC and the server. . . a noticeable difference for $500, and I neither have golden ears nor am I a big “tweak” guy. But I was surprised that the Gigafoil actually audibly improved the sound.
 

jaxho

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May 18, 2021
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power supply for the Discrete
Thanks for your interesting question. Both DACs had the Premier Powerbase. Gigafoil was acctually rekomended by MSB when i asked them but i very much doubt that that rout would be better than PROISL.

Gretings Jaxho
 

Motoman

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Jul 25, 2021
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Since I use the Renderer v2, I can't opine on the GigaFoil when used with the ProISL. However, I can say that at least with the Renderer v2, there was an audible improvement for $500. The GigaFoil was recommended to me by the MSB National Sales Manager. Was it a "blow me away . . . did I come into the right music room?" difference? No, but when you can get an audible improvement for $500, I'd say that its a damn good deal!
 
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jaxho

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May 18, 2021
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initial impressions
I dont know if i will take the the time to answer- it pulls me away from listening;) and i dont want to stop!
Joking aside, the differens is...hard to put into words because its VERY big.
I built a NUC in an akasa fanless chassie and in a shootout with a Nucleus it was very very close soundwise (but 1/3-1/4 of the price).
Perhaps the differens in soundquality is reflected in the differens in the cost of the server?
I made a deal with my dealer (!) that we shall have a shootout between the Extreme and some other servers during this fall. That will be interesting- but i think i know how it will end, i have heard a few of them:cool:

Gretings Jaxho
 

skids929

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Dec 31, 2020
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Thanks for your interesting question. Both DACs had the Premier Powerbase. Gigafoil was acctually rekomended by MSB when i asked them but i very much doubt that that rout would be better than PROISL.

Gretings Jaxho
I have the Pro ISL and the Gigafoil..It's all additve in my experience when it comes to cleaning up the network part of the digital chain. The GF will still help you with the ProISL. Since I posted this I finally eliminated the Mac Mini and replaced with a K50 from Antipodes, next is to layer my switches, taking delivery of a new switch from HNE Labs soon. Once that is done I am focusing on the DAC again..

I have an AWESOME dealer who is sending me a Premier DAC to listen to so this will be the final part of the upgrades (for now) if it makes me feel it's worth the upgrade. I will report back.
 
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skids929

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Dec 31, 2020
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So in fulfilling my promise to report back, I have the K50 (so no more Mac Mini) which is proving to be a huge improvement. I even had a MSB Renderer V2 in here and A/B them and it was no contest. K50 by a large margin, the compounding clocks just win out over the MSB renderer, which is as it should be when one considers the cost difference. My Switch (HNE LABs) is installed and that made such an impact I ordered a second to layer them. This was one of my better upgrades to my front end, the switch and the K50.

What I have not done yet is convince myself the Premier DAC should be my next step. I've bought new speakers (Wilsons) so I might wait until after I break them in. The Discrete with two power supplies is really fantastic, but my curiousity for the Premier is unrelenting, as I feel that is where I should have jumped in.
 
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