I always imagine progress as a seesaw; as one side goes up the other travels down—often frustratingly so. Take the original PWT Memory Player as an example. For years, simple Red Book CDs sounded better than any streaming device I had experimented with. Then a combination of cables, USB regeneration, shaman-waving potions, elevated the Mac Mini a little beyond the PWT. Seesaw. What was once on top of the heap has begrudgingly taken second place. Then a new I²S cable lifted the PWT's performance beyond the server and it was relegated to use as a convenient source of high-quality music, but not the ultimate. Seesaw. And then came Bridge II, then server "secret sauce", followed now by DMP back on top of the heap. Seesaw. Woody, one of our local customers, visited Music Room One yesterday and compared the San Francisco Mahler rips to the discs on DMP and heard it for himself. And as thanks, he turned me on to the best recording/performance of Puccini's Turandot I have ever heard. It's a Red Book which I immediately ordered up. The depth, bass, performance!! are stunning. Sutherland knocks it out of the park and I only heard the opening. Can't wait to spend time when the disc set arrives. Seesaw. And here's what's interesting. No source I have described is worse than it ever was. But that's not how it feels to me. Once in second place, I find it hard to listen because I know all that I am missing. If you were to visit us you'd be thrilled with the server's performance as I have been before something better came along. Which begs the question, if ignorance is bliss, is knowledge ecstasy? I for one cannot restrict myself from the opportunity for musical ecstasy.
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