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Review Of The Next Generation Klimax DSM A/V

Moomintroll

Fictional Character - not to be taken literally
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May 20, 2014
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Mine will have the surround module transferred from my 2020 system hub.  It was brilliant that iI did not have to buy a surround module for the new hub.
Yes, I was puzzled by @Nrwatson saying they came fitted. According to the Key Features list on the website - 

Surround Sound Processing available with upgrade - AV variant only

‘troll

 
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Paulssurround

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Klimax DSM Organik Review With Non-Linn Speakers Using the Organik DAC’s 

I have just returned home after auditioning the new Klimax DSM A/V with the Organik DAC’s, and have good news to report about my impressions of the new Organik DAC’s in a non-Exakt system

Just to refresh your memory, I listened to this same DSM in my system, but as a Klimax Hub, as my speakers already have the Katalyst DACs inside them, so I was not able to audition the Organik DAC’s with my Linn Exakt speakers.

‘Yesterday, I helped setup the Klimax DSM at my friend’s place that uses PMC Fact 8 Signature speakers, powered by a pair of Klimax Solos and an Akurate DSM/3 with Katalyst. After a few connectivity issues, swapping DSM’s and not finding the room, we got that sorted by removing Kazoo from my friend’s iPad and then reloading it through the App Store 

‘We had an extensive playlist and started playing many of our reference songs, but it turns out that this DSM had not been used with non-Exakt speakers, and therefore had no burn-in time on the Organik DAC’s. Sound quality was fair but a bit harsh on the top end. We played a couple more hours of music, and decided to let it play music continuously, until I return back to his home this morning. He phoned me last night, after about 5 hours, and he said sound quality started to improve, but still had some harshness in the highs, but the music was smoothing out, with more dynamic presentation 

‘Fast forward to this morning, and the DSM now has about 20 hours of burn-in time. It was a significant improvement compared to what I heard the afternoon before, by streaming music continuously since yesterday afternoon. As the hours went by, the music became smoother and easier to listen to.

His Linn system with the Akurate DSM/3 Katalyst is normally very detailed and highly engaging, with a sound quality I could easily live with. However, the Klimax DSM with Organik DAC’s takes that up many levels

We played many of the same reference tunes that we had heard on his system the day before, but added some exceptional sound quality tracks, which really revealed the capabilities of his system. I can highly recommend the following music if you want to show off your system:

‘Jesse Cook’s album Gravity, playing track 3 “Gravity“

Tsuyoshi Yamamoto Trio album Midnight Sugar, playing track 2 “Midnight Sugar”

Comparing the Akurate DSM/3 with Klimax DSM Organik DAC, the Organik music had much more presence and dynamic presentation, with a greater sense of being at the concert. The music seemed more immediate with the musicians performing right in front of you. The detail was exceptional and a whole soundscape unfolded in front of us that filled the room like I have rarely heard before. The DAC’s were still not fully burned in, and their was a faint touch of treble brightness on a few of the tracks. I expect that this will disappear with more playing time and burn-in.

Steely Dan’s Hey Nineteen was vibrant and alive, with brilliant rhythm and pace, every musician right there and upfront.

Boz Scaggs Dig album had King of El Paso with exceptional insight into the music. For example, the tambourine had such presence and dimensionality, you could hear it moving up and down, back and forth with crystal clear detail.

Some of the tracks felt like intimate performances, with the musicians right there. This was especially true of the Jesse Cook and Tsuyoshi Yamamoto Trio tracks. 

Jesse Cook,  Gravity has guitar and drumming that is incredibly fast, detailed and musical. It is hard to imagine how anyone could play the instruments with such speed and precision, and yet every note was clear and concise. It was an extravagance for the ears, and absolutely staggering. I thought to myself, this is why I became an audiophile and music lover, to hear music like this. 

Tsuyoshi Yokohama Trio, Midnight Sugar starts off gently, with drums, bass and piano, but takes you on a journey that feels like you are floating along on a boat on a river, moving as the waves move the boat gently up and down. The sound quality is exceptional in every aspect. Drumming is so detailed and precise, and you can hear every beat of the drum sticks and bass drum as if you were standing next to the drums. Every pluck on the bass strings is taunt and jumps out at you. The piano is unreal, with the tinkle of the piano keys in the upper register exactly the way you would expect if you were playing the piano yourself. The leading edge of each note has immediacy and presence.

‘Linn has really delivered with Organik and the new Klimax DSM/3 AV

I have heard many different brands of music streamers, speakers and amplification. What I have been hearing with the new Klimax DSM is the best of the best, and am absolutely astonished at the sound quality that Linn has been able to achieve with this new Klimax DSM.

‘I found exceptional improvements in sound and picture quality, whether I was streaming music in stereo or 5.1, watching TV or movies, spinning 5.1 DVD-Audio, SACD’s or BluRay discs. Linn has really accomplished something astonishing and well worth a listen. 

‘I highly recommend an audition at your dealers or an in-home demo. 

 

Eldarboy

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Thanks for all the work to provide such a comprehensive review for us. Are you still planning to sell your car to buy one? 😂

After this discussion, I am looking for as large a cardboard box as possible to live in for the next five years so I can afford one.🥺😂🎼🎶🎶🎵🎶🎶🕺🏻

 
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Suffolkboy

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Apr 19, 2020
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Klimax DSM Organik Review With Non-Linn Speakers Using the Organik DAC’s 

I have just returned home after auditioning the new Klimax DSM A/V with the Organik DAC’s, and have good news to report about my impressions of the new Organik DAC’s in a non-Exakt system

Just to refresh your memory, I listened to this same DSM in my system, but as a Klimax Hub, as my speakers already have the Katalyst DACs inside them, so I was not able to audition the Organik DAC’s with my Linn Exakt speakers.

‘Yesterday, I helped setup the Klimax DSM at my friend’s place that uses PMC Fact 8 Signature speakers, powered by a pair of Klimax Solos and an Akurate DSM/3 with Katalyst. After a few connectivity issues, swapping DSM’s and not finding the room, we got that sorted by removing Kazoo from my friend’s iPad and then reloading it through the App Store 

‘We had an extensive playlist and started playing many of our reference songs, but it turns out that this DSM had not been used with non-Exakt speakers, and therefore had no burn-in time on the Organik DAC’s. Sound quality was fair but a bit harsh on the top end. We played a couple more hours of music, and decided to let it play music continuously, until I return back to his home this morning. He phoned me last night, after about 5 hours, and he said sound quality started to improve, but still had some harshness in the highs, but the music was smoothing out, with more dynamic presentation 

‘Fast forward to this morning, and the DSM now has about 20 hours of burn-in time. It was a significant improvement compared to what I heard the afternoon before, by streaming music continuously since yesterday afternoon. As the hours went by, the music became smoother and easier to listen to.

His Linn system with the Akurate DSM/3 Katalyst is normally very detailed and highly engaging, with a sound quality I could easily live with. However, the Klimax DSM with Organik DAC’s takes that up many levels

We played many of the same reference tunes that we had heard on his system the day before, but added some exceptional sound quality tracks, which really revealed the capabilities of his system. I can highly recommend the following music if you want to show off your system:

‘Jesse Cook’s album Gravity, playing track 3 “Gravity“

Tsuyoshi Yamamoto Trio album Midnight Sugar, playing track 2 “Midnight Sugar”

Comparing the Akurate DSM/3 with Klimax DSM Organik DAC, the Organik music had much more presence and dynamic presentation, with a greater sense of being at the concert. The music seemed more immediate with the musicians performing right in front of you. The detail was exceptional and a whole soundscape unfolded in front of us that filled the room like I have rarely heard before. The DAC’s were still not fully burned in, and their was a faint touch of treble brightness on a few of the tracks. I expect that this will disappear with more playing time and burn-in.

Steely Dan’s Hey Nineteen was vibrant and alive, with brilliant rhythm and pace, every musician right there and upfront.

Boz Scaggs Dig album had King of El Paso with exceptional insight into the music. For example, the tambourine had such presence and dimensionality, you could hear it moving up and down, back and forth with crystal clear detail.

Some of the tracks felt like intimate performances, with the musicians right there. This was especially true of the Jesse Cook and Tsuyoshi Yamamoto Trio tracks. 

Jesse Cook,  Gravity has guitar and drumming that is incredibly fast, detailed and musical. It is hard to imagine how anyone could play the instruments with such speed and precision, and yet every note was clear and concise. It was an extravagance for the ears, and absolutely staggering. I thought to myself, this is why I became an audiophile and music lover, to hear music like this. 

Tsuyoshi Yokohama Trio, Midnight Sugar starts off gently, with drums, bass and piano, but takes you on a journey that feels like you are floating along on a boat on a river, moving as the waves move the boat gently up and down. The sound quality is exceptional in every aspect. Drumming is so detailed and precise, and you can hear every beat of the drum sticks and bass drum as if you were standing next to the drums. Every pluck on the bass strings is taunt and jumps out at you. The piano is unreal, with the tinkle of the piano keys in the upper register exactly the way you would expect if you were playing the piano yourself. The leading edge of each note has immediacy and presence.

‘Linn has really delivered with Organik and the new Klimax DSM/3 AV

I have heard many different brands of music streamers, speakers and amplification. What I have been hearing with the new Klimax DSM is the best of the best, and am absolutely astonished at the sound quality that Linn has been able to achieve with this new Klimax DSM.

‘I found exceptional improvements in sound and picture quality, whether I was streaming music in stereo or 5.1, watching TV or movies, spinning 5.1 DVD-Audio, SACD’s or BluRay discs. Linn has really accomplished something astonishing and well worth a listen. 

‘I highly recommend an audition at your dealers or an in-home demo. 
Out of interest, every setting is, by default, set to on.  I turned off HDMI, Bluetooth, wi fi, and the 2 outputs I don't use.  It could be a placebo, but considered it to sound much better.

 

Tyke

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Chris
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Agree that it sounds harsh when not burned-in, initially my old DS sounded better. I reckon at least 100 hours before it really showed what it could do. 

 
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berni

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Berni
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Thanks again for another great review Paul!

Sorry but I have to ask. Which did you prefer, your friend's system with the NGKDSM or your Katalyst Akubariks with the thing acting as NGKSH? I know it's apples and oranges but still...

 
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Moomintroll

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@Paulssurroundthank you again for taking the time to do this (although I know you love it). You echo my experience with the NGKDSM into a passive system. It simply made the current KDSM sound sluggish and out of tune - an incredible achievement by Linn. I was played tracks that were unfamiliar and that I really didn’t want to listen to on the current model, but found compelling on the new one. We played a couple of tracks by our friend Grayson Capps and both said “that really does sound like him in the flesh” It’s going to be a long 10 weeks, although the 350 DACs should be here this month. I’m currently listening to Little Feat Waiting For Columbus and find it hard to imagine how much it will improve.

’troll

 

Paulssurround

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Paul
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Out of interest, every setting is, by default, set to on.  I turned off HDMI, Bluetooth, wi fi, and the 2 outputs I don't use.  It could be a placebo, but considered it to sound much better.
Thank you for reminding me about that

I did not turn off any inputs during my audition of the Klimax DSM, but have turned off all unnecessary inputs on my own Linn system

Agree that it sounds harsh when not burned-in, initially my old DS sounded better. I reckon at least 100 hours before it really showed what it could do. 
Yes, the first couple of hours were a bit rough, but did smooth out over time.

‘I will have to hear it again after it has more burn in time at the dealers.

‘I plan to listen to the Klimax DSM with passive YG speakers and the new Classé monoblocks, which will give me another opportunity to hear the Organik DAC’s in action

Thanks again for another great review Paul!

Sorry but I have to ask. Which did you prefer, your friend's system with the NGKDSM or your Katalyst Akubariks with the thing acting as NGKSH? I know it's apples and oranges but still...
That is a bit of a difficult question, as they sound signature is different for both.

‘I preferred my Katalyst Akubariks with the Klimax acting as a NGKSH, as I was able to do stereo and surround, audio and video. At this point, my system sounds better overall, to my ears, but would be interested to hear the Organik DAC’s once they have a lot more burn-in time.

@Paulssurroundthank you again for taking the time to do this (although I know you love it). You echo my experience with the NGKDSM into a passive system. It simply made the current KDSM sound sluggish and out of tune - an incredible achievement by Linn. I was played tracks that were unfamiliar and that I really didn’t want to listen to on the current model, but found compelling on the new one. We played a couple of tracks by our friend Grayson Capps and both said “that really does sound like him in the flesh” It’s going to be a long 10 weeks, although the 350 DACs should be here this month. I’m currently listening to Little Feat Waiting For Columbus and find it hard to imagine how much it will improve.

’troll
Thanks ‘troll.

‘Exciting to know you have the Organik DAC’ modules on the way for your 350’s. I would love to hear that, with your new Klimax Hub. I think you are going to be astonished 

‘My Linn dealer says that his Organik DAC modules have been shipped from Linn and are in transit to the shop.

Looks like there will be another review coming up….

 

berni

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Berni
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Thank you for the excellect review @sunbeamgls! It's great that you put so much effort into setting up the two test scenarios, incl. figuring out how to "misuse" the Exakt Boxes as passive DACs. Sorry but I have to ask you the sam(ish) question as @Paulssurround:

Which system setup did you prefer overall, the Exakt Katalyst active setup with NGKDSM acting as system hub, or the passive setup with NGKDSM using the Organik DACs? It may be that you stated that in the final paragraph of the review ("...a huge uplift from Akurate level Katalyst..."), but it could also refer only to the direct comparison of the different sources that you made. It's not easy to get my head around all this...

Sorry if I am splitting hairs here, but I'm really interested. Again, I find it fascinating that the upgraded System Hub makes such a difference, which has now been reported coherently several times.

 
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sunbeamgls

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Thank you for the excellect review @sunbeamgls! It's great that you put so much effort into setting up the two test scenarios, incl. figuring out how to "misuse" the Exakt Boxes as passive DACs. Sorry but I have to ask you the sam(ish) question as @Paulssurround:

Which system setup did you prefer overall, the Exakt Katalyst active setup with NGKDSM acting as system hub, or the passive setup with NGKDSM using the Organik DACs? It may be that you stated that in the final paragraph of the review ("...a huge uplift from Akurate level Katalyst..."), but it could also refer only to the direct comparison of the different sources that you made. It's not easy to get my head around all this...

Sorry if I am splitting hairs here, but I'm really interested. Again, I find it fascinating that the upgraded System Hub makes such a difference, which has now been reported coherently several times.
From the review berni:

" a passive Klimax level source sounds better than an Akurate Exakt Katalyst source"

:)

 

Fitter Stoke

De de de DUUURRRR!
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David
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Excellent review, Neil - thanks.  I doubt I’ll ever be able to afford the new KDSM but I’d still love to hear one in a head-to-head comparison with my KDS/3.  I’d also like to know if the Music version outperforms the identically priced AV model that both Paul and yourself have auditioned.