Devialet D-Premier - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 17 Old 03-29-2011, 03:31 PM - Thread Starter
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Hi all,

I haven't seen this unit discussed here much at all and I am very curious about it. It's a very interesting product that sounds very good in theory and is extremely appealing to a guy like me. I've never been a lover of tubes, analog, LPs, etc. so digital is just fine by me and is usually preferred. Beyond that, there's a definitie appeal to an all in one unit that is very capable. That being said, it raises some questions outside of the obvious "Does it sound like Class D, Class A (or AB), or somewhere in between?". Here are the thoughts that come to mind for me.

- No USB input. They are taking the wireless route here with a WiFi plug-in module that will be a free upgrade for all customers. Devialet's statements about it include the following:

"It delivers distortion-free, asynchronous audio streaming (up to 24-bit/192kHz), using the D-Premier as the master clock to synchronise the data with extreme precision."

It sounds interesting, but WiFi interference can be a nagging issue. As such, I'd prefer a wired connection for pristine quality and reliability. And yes, I know that you can use any number of USB/Firewire -> S/PDIF converters to accomplish this, but a more direct wired connection would be desirable.

- All incoming analog signals are digitized (selectable at either 96/24 or 192/24) for processing and amplification. This means that the DAC and the amp can never be separated. So, if later on you want to use some external DAC, the A/D D/A pathway here limits the benefit (other than support for conversion of a format that this unit can't be upgraded to handle).

- No ethernet. This goes back to streaming. Wired is just plain more reliable.

- Horizontal placement (as opposed to vertically mounted on a wall) means that you can't see the display from across the room. The RS-232 port hasn't been enabled yet (software upgrade is coming), but you could easily see support for 2-way communication when that happens. Also, the WiFi module could make IP control possible, so that's another solution. I also know that Devialet is aware of this feedback and is working on a solution. The idea of a 2-way version of the existing remote has been suggested, but it's unclear if they will go that route. That would be cool, especially if they could just build it in to the center portion of the dial.

- Unclear if any components other than the WiFi module are hardware upgradeable. Most audio components remain pretty much as is hardware wise for their lifetime. In fact, even software updates are unusual and in this way, the D-Premier is advanced in its ability to be pretty extensively upgraded and customized via software. I'd like to see the configurator be available via RS-232 and/or IP control vs. SD card, but that's nitpicking. The hardware limitations go back to the permanently merged nature of the DAC and Amp because it's quite possible that a user might outgrow one side or the other and thus have no option but to move on from the unit entirely.


These are the things that strike me, but there are quite a few more benefits that I think the D-Premier offers. As such, I'm still very interested in it and am pursuing an audition. I was just curious as to what others think about the unit in general and specifically, the issues raised above.

Jeff

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post #2 of 17 Old 03-29-2011, 03:35 PM
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There is a long discussion here including some people who have heard it: http://www.whatsbestforum.com/showth...light=Devialet

We are getting a sample in a week or so . I will be putting it through its paces although as you mentioned, a number of functionality is not yet working. So I will be evaluating its general audio performance.

One thing is for sure: this is one unique device. Nothing else has the type of connectivity it has including HDMI and such.

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post #3 of 17 Old 03-29-2011, 06:16 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by amirm View Post

There is a long discussion here including some people who have heard it: http://www.whatsbestforum.com/showth...light=Devialet

Wow! That is indeed quite a lengthy discussion. I did some Googling and searches on various forums but missed that one. I'll take some time and read through it.

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Originally Posted by amirm View Post

as you mentioned, a number of functionality is not yet working.

Just to make it clear to folks who are not familiar with the unit, these are the free software and hardware upgrades that Devialet says are coming:

- RS-232 port - Hardware is there but is not yet active in software
- HDMI port - Hardware is there but is not yet active in software
- WiFi - Antenna is present but WiFi plug-in module is coming
- Multi-amplifier mode (control multiple D-Premier units from a single remote for bi-amped configurations, etc) - Coming via software upgrade
- Crossover settings for sub integration - Coming via software upgrade
- Configurator software used to easily adjust settings like maximum output power, incoming A/D sample rate, I/O port configuration, etc - Software coming but various example configurations are available for download now to use with the D-Premier

If I left anything out, let me know and I'll add it here.

Jeff

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post #4 of 17 Old 03-29-2011, 06:37 PM
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That looks like a pretty comprehensive list. BTW, one of their people is on WBF posting in that thread.

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post #5 of 17 Old 03-30-2011, 09:27 AM
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I wonder how it compares to an M2?
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post #6 of 17 Old 03-30-2011, 09:59 AM
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Hi-Fi News magazine in the UK did a full review + lab report on this product. They more or less gave it a product of the year award. The editor of the magazine (Paul Miller - highly respected within his filed) gave it his highest praise.
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post #7 of 17 Old 03-31-2011, 11:51 PM
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For it's price range and what it offers, it has no peers. Is it the greatest ever and now? No. A Porche 2011 911 tt, is one of the best sports cars under $125K. Does that mean it is the best sports car period? Of course not. Perspective people, perspective.
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post #8 of 17 Old 04-06-2011, 05:31 PM
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As I promised, the results of my listening tests are posted here: http://www.whatsbestforum.com/showth...ll=1#post46396. I compared it to three other amps we had on hand, ranging from $3K to $50K .

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post #9 of 17 Old 08-15-2012, 09:27 PM
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It seems that the level of interest about the D-Premier is fairly low at AVS Forum.

I just thought I would provide a quick update of the progress done by Devialet recently in terms of wireless streaming. The unit does now support natively 24 bits/96 Khz and will also handle 24/192 through on the fly downsampling. they have also released an iphone app that replaces the remote control of the amp and has been working flawlessly. The wifi connection from my Mac Mini through a dedicated Apple Airport Extreme has been working flawlessly also, with only two 2-3 seconds interruption in the course of 2 months of listening with 24/192 files. This being said, the amp is now also able to generate its own ad-hoc wifi network which removes the need to an external wifi router.

I have retired by excellent Weiss Int202 Firewire -> aes/ebu converter and my wireworld platinium XLR digital cable is about to go on sales... less boxes and better sound with the wifi air streaming.

Last but not least, the amp does now offer the possibility to affect tone curve and balance in the digital domain to fine tune the match with the speakers/room.

I have been using the D-Premier with a pair of Wilson Benesch Vector and the high res wireless support of the D-Premier brings this combo to an extremely high level of performance. It really is a match made in heaven really (no idea with the WB Vector is not getting more coverage, it is up there with the very best). I know it will come accross as an exageration, but transparency and clarity is simply the best I have heard from any system (think Wilson Audio/Focal/...), bass is powerful and clean (but the amount is of course less compared to larger woofered systems). Accuracy remains the name of the game though, so those liking the somewhat artificial but pleasant warmth provided by tubes may find the D-Premier a bit too objective.

A nice aspect also is that this level of excellence is provided by a single 14 lb box with only 3 cables connected: main and the 2 speaker cables. The speakers themselves are pretty compact and reasonably light at around 55 lb each.

I am totally unrelated to Devialet, but would urge anyone looking for the best to consider the D-Premier these days.

Cheers,
Bernard
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post #10 of 17 Old 12-13-2012, 12:02 AM
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Some may be interested in knowing that Stereophile will be publishing their test report of the Devialet in their January 2013 edition.

The rumor has it that it is extremely favorable, John Atkinson would be calling it "the most extraordinary product he has ever reviewed"...

Cheers,
Bernard
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post #11 of 17 Old 03-13-2013, 12:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bernardlang View PostSome may be interested in knowing that Stereophile will be publishing their test report of the Devialet in their January 2013 edition. The rumor has it that it is extremely favorable, John Atkinson would be calling it "the most extraordinary product he has ever reviewed"... Cheers, Bernard

So it seems

 

http://www.6moons.com/audioreviews/devialet4/1.html

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post #12 of 17 Old 09-29-2013, 12:05 AM
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I will be ordering a Devialet 170 to demo to my clients in the LA area. Its definetly the future of hifi audio. There was a review posted on the Devialet site about the D170 and the reviewer said despite the power deficit the cheaper D170 is even better then the original D-Premier!
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post #13 of 17 Old 05-12-2014, 08:28 PM
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Just read this on a forum in regards to Devialet!

"I am testing now USB cable Transparent Audio Premium - 600 USD pp. It sounds very natural, smooth and midrange is very good. Bass is very well controlled. What are Yours preffered USB cables? Anyone compared this Transparent USB cable with any high price USB cables (Audioquest Diamond)?"

Now I under stand why no one here is interested biggrin.gif
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post #14 of 17 Old 05-12-2014, 08:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wse View Post

Just read this on a forum in regards to Devialet!

"I am testing now USB cable Transparent Audio Premium - 600 USD pp. It sounds very natural, smooth and midrange is very good. Bass is very well controlled. What are Yours preffered USB cables? Anyone compared this Transparent USB cable with any high price USB cables (Audioquest Diamond)?"

Now I under stand why no one here is interested biggrin.gif

I've used the Crystal USB Diamond with great results.Not only is the audio full and rich but the cable matches the aesthetic of the Devialet. Which model Devialet do you have? Have you upgraded it to the 7.0 Firmware beta?
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post #15 of 17 Old 05-12-2014, 08:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Jon Martin View Post

I've used the Crystal USB Diamond with great results.Not only is the audio full and rich but the cable matches the aesthetic of the Devialet. Which model Devialet do you have? Have you upgraded it to the 7.0 Firmware beta?

Sure what ever, I have a degree in EE and I always laugh when I see the BS that goes on with audiophiles and cables ...

I think Devialet is overpriced and the company to unstable for my taste!
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post #16 of 17 Old 05-12-2014, 09:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wse View Post

Sure what ever, I have a degree in EE and I always laugh when I see the BS that goes on with audiophiles and cables ...

I think Devialet is overpriced and the company to unstable for my taste!
So you dug up a old thread just to post that ? the things people do with their time. What are your thoughts on global warming?
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post #17 of 17 Old 05-14-2014, 02:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon Martin View PostSo you dug up a old thread just to post that ? the things people do with their time. What are your thoughts on global warming?

Nope just curious why there is no activity here since this is supposed to be the motherload?

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