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PS Audio Ultimate Outlet Review

Rate this product:

  • 1. Waste of money (piggy bank panther)/Dangerous

    Votes: 245 96.8%
  • 2. Not terrible (postman panther)

    Votes: 2 0.8%
  • 3. Fine (happy panther)

    Votes: 1 0.4%
  • 4. Great (golfing panther)

    Votes: 5 2.0%

  • Total voters
    253

fpitas

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Is the hot case and ground pin an extra-cost option?
 

chesebert

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They look the same but internally different.
What does your unit look like on the inside? Do you have a picture?

1680704460773.jpeg

Mine looks similar to this, except the one in the picture has some extra pieces of pads on the lid (and what looked like resistors on the input… I don’t know what this person is doing). Wish there was a better picture.
 
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Cbdb2

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Some info on amplifier input power from: http://douglas-self.com/ampins/dipa/dipa.htm

3. THREE NON-EXISTENT DISTORTIONS. Audio engineering suffers from misinformation, disinformation, and downright lying more than most fields of endeavour. Here are three distortions which either do not exist in detectable quantities or are based on misunderstandings:
3.1 Distortion From The Supply Rails
This is often cited as a serious source of degradation. The only likely manifestations are Distortion 5 and 6, described below. Providing these two mechanisms have been suppressed (which is straightforward) and the amplifier has sufficient power-supply rejection to keep hum and ripple below the noise floor, then there should be no other way in which the power supply can degrade linearity.


In other words, a properly designed Amp dosnt care about your AC power, or any of these BS devices before the Amp, as long as there's enough voltage.
How can a manufacturer get away with selling a deadly device?
 

fpitas

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DMill

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I remember when people were dying to get audio tweaks like these. I will now go quietly of this thread and hang my head in shame for an accurate but particularly bad pun.
 

srkbear

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I admit that when I’m feeling particularly defeated, I often search for “PS Audio” on this forum just so I can enjoy some good ol’ self-serving schadenfreude. Today I actually read this entire thread, so you know I’m really plumbing the dankest depths of pettiness.

It wouldn’t be nearly as fun if there weren’t a few seagull attacks from PS Audio acolytes (zombies?) mixed in here coming to the defense of their captors, as there are on this one. You know there’s some serious brainwashing going on when somebody’s going to bat for a $400 electric chair in a box.

Personally, I don’t particularly care if Paul McGowan sells any worthwhile products, because I already know he sells one that has gazillions of gullible audio enthusiasts in thrall (including me, in spite of myself)—and it is so perversely vile in its wretched manipulation that it achieves levels of felonious tactics I never knew were possible.

It’s his most coveted invention, a triumphant combination of FOMO, despicable price gouging and promotion of pseudoscience all bundled up in one coup de grace—namely, his Perfectwave (formerly DirectStream) SACD transport. Pause for a moment of reverent silence. Note the word “transport”—it’s nothing more than an oft-unreliable optical drive in a sexy box, weighed down by what must be lead bricks because the damn thing doesn’t even have a DAC. But nobody cares about that, because what it does have is an arcane little digital output on its back, the technology around which McGowan has literally defined his brand. Once I mention it, go search for his insufferable number of videos on YouTube plugging a bunch of wildly specious claims about it.

To further validate my pettiness, my fundamental resentment towards this $7,000 juggernaut is the fact that I go through periodic fits where—despite the fact that I know better—I really want one. Why? Because it is, indisputably, the only SACD player that exists on Earth (search around and you’ll see) that through God knows what sort of dirty dealings is capable of passing the pure, unadulterated, native DSD digital stream to any DAC that has an input with the titular and now proprietary “PS Audio i2S pinout”. That’s right, that same i2S format that Paul stridently claims, in the complete absence of evidence, is the best “sounding” (!) digital transmission protocol ever invented.

The reason this admittedly innovative device is such a tantalizing concept, especially for those of us who for whatever reason have accumulated a large and expensive library of SACD discs, is because prior to the release of this thing, Sony’s DRM licensing regulations required that all audio outputs from SACD players, even their own, must be downsampled to a maximum 48khz/16 bit format—via the player’s own internal DDC converter of God knows what quality. The only exception to this is the HDMI audio output, which remains a closed system (note that such inputs are mysteriously absent from DACs). So other than some cheaply made and unreliable (trust me, I’ve tried them) HDMI to i2S de-embedders selling from the bowels of China on eBay, this device is literally the only way to play your SACD libraries through the DAC/amp of your choice.

Hence the FOMO. It costs $7,000. It’s not even about whether this particular method of listening to music sounds any good—it’s purely about wanting to see it work. Nobody anywhere has been able to hear this—so I for one am someone who periodically has a nervous breakdown because I can’t.

There’s all sorts of subterfuge from Paul’s lackeys on the PS Audio forums skirting around how they managed to pull this off—how it could only be accomplished (without unleashing Sony’s lawyers) by the use of that esoteric i2S connector, most significantly. That very same i2S connector, that per Herr McGowan, handily wipes the floor with USB or S/PDIF, of course. They’re basically outing Paul’s motivation for promoting the hell out of this otherwise inscrutable connector, and for his creation of a proprietary pinout (to sell more of his $7,000 DACs, of course), but none of his worshipers over there seem to notice, or even care. They think he’s created the most ingenious product ever to grace the audiophile market—this $7,000 hollow box with tumbleweeds rolling around inside the vast spaces between the crappy optical drive, power supply and i2S port.

Don’t believe me? Get a load of this, prominently displayed all over PS Audio’s website:

“Locked inside your CD and SACD collection is a wealth of music you've not yet heard. How do we know that? Because we, like you, know what to expect from our reference discs.
Golden-Ear-Award-2021-150x150.jpg
Imagine our surprise and delight as the first notes played on our new, galvanically isolated, PerfectWave SACD Transport. It was love at first listen. The PerfectWave SACD player is an engineering triumph—our finest achievement in musical reproduction and information retrieval from optical media. Breathe new life into your CD collection played through any DAC. Send the raw DSD layer of SACD into your I2S input DAC so you can hear, for the first time, what's long been unavailable to external DACs in these high-resolution discs. Winner of the 2021 Golden Ear Award from
The Absolute Sound”.

Yes, it’s a total ripoff. A sham. A ruse. Priced shamelessly. But you can’t really call it snake oil, because it does offer something that no other manufacturer can offer you, for reasons that remain undisclosed and uninvestigated—because all the corporate-funded audiophile websites are dazzled by it, no questions asked. Whoever owns the i2S patent must be deliriously happy that somebody found a use for it.

And yes, during moments of mystifying weakness, I occasionally want one, just because. Hence the schadenfreude. @amirm, please keep these PS Audio reviews coming—they’re the only thing keeping me from throwing 7 grand into the furnace. And if I ever do succumb to this unholy temptation, I could never show my face on this site again. Assuming I survive the electrocution…
 
Last edited:

respice finem

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I admit that when I’m feeling particularly defeated, I often search for “PS Audio” on this forum so I can enjoy some good ol’’ self-serving schadenfreude. Today I actually read this entire thread, so you know I’m really plumbing the dankest depths of pettiness.

It wouldn’t be nearly as fun if there weren’t a few seagull attacks from PS Audio acolytes (zombies?) mixed in here coming to the defense of their captors, as there are on this one. You know there’s some serious brainwashing going on when somebody’s going to bat for a $400 electric chair in a box.

Personally, I don’t particularly care if Paul McGowan sells any worthwhile products, because I already know he sells one that has gazillions of gullible audio enthusiasts in thrall (myself included, in spite of myself)—and it is so perversely vile in its wretched manipulation that it achieves levels of felonious tactics I never knew were possible.

It’s his most coveted invention, a triumphant combination of FOMO, despicable price gouging and promotion of fake science all bundled up in one coup de grace—namely, his Perfectwave (formerly DirectStream) SACD transport. Pause for a moment of reverent silence. Note the word “transport”—it’s nothing more than an oft-unreliable optical drive in a sexy box, weighed down by what must be lead bricks because the damn thing doesn’t even have a DAC. But nobody cares about that, because what it does have is an arcane little digital output on its back, the technology around which McGowan has literally defined his brand. Once I mention it, go search for his insufferable number of videos on YouTube plugging a bunch of wildly specious claims about it.

To further underscore my pettiness, my fundamental resentment towards this $7,000 juggernaut is the fact that I go through periodic fits where—despite the fact that I know better—I really want one. Why? Because it is, indisputably, the only SACD player that exists on Earth (search around and you’ll see) that through God knows what sort of dirty dealings is capable of passing the pure, unadulterated, native DSD digital stream to any DAC that has an input with the titular and now proprietary “PS Audio i2S pinout”. That’s right, that same i2S format that Paul stridently claims, in the complete absence of evidence, is the best “sounding” (!) digital transmission protocol ever invented.

The reason this admittedly innovative device is such a tantalizing concept, especially for those of us who for whatever reason accumulated a large and expensive library of SACD discs, is because prior to the release of this thing, Sony’s DRM licensing regulations required that all audio outputs from SACD players, even their own, must be downsampled to a maximum 48khz/16 bit format—via the player’s own internal DDC converter of God knows what quality. The only exception to this is the HDMI audio output, which remains a closed system (note that such inputs are mysteriously absent from DACs). So other than some cheaply made and unreliable (trust me, I’ve tried them) HDMI to i2S de-embedders selling from the bowels of China on eBay, this device is literally the only way to play your SACD libraries through the DAC/amp of your choice.

Hence the FOMO. It costs $7,000. It’s not even about whether this particular method of listening to music sounds any good—it’s purely about wanting to see it work. Nobody anywhere has been able to hear this—so I for one am someone who periodically has a nervous breakdown because I can’t.

There’s all sorts of subterfuge from Paul’s lackeys on the PS Audio forums skirting around how they managed to pull this off—how it could only be accomplished (without unleashing Sony’s lawyers) by the use of that esoteric i2S connector. That very same i2S that handily wipes the floor with USB or S/PDIF, of course. They’re basically outing Paul’s motivation for promoting the hell out of this otherwise inscrutable connector, and for his creation of a proprietary pinout (to sell more of his $7,000 DACs, of course), but none of his worshipers over there seem to notice, or even care. They think he’s created the most ingenious product ever to grace the audiophile market—this $7,000 hollow box with tumbleweeds inside rolling around the vast spaces between the crappy optical drive, power supply and i2S port.

Don’t believe me? Get a load of this, prominently displayed all over PS Audio’s website:

“Locked inside your CD and SACD collection is a wealth of music you've not yet heard. How do we know that? Because we, like you, know what to expect from our reference discs.
Golden-Ear-Award-2021-150x150.jpg
Imagine our surprise and delight as the first notes played on our new, galvanically isolated, PerfectWave SACD Transport. It was love at first listen. The PerfectWave SACD player is an engineering triumph—our finest achievement in musical reproduction and information retrieval from optical media. Breathe new life into your CD collection played through any DAC. Send the raw DSD layer of SACD into your I2S input DAC so you can hear, for the first time, what's long been unavailable to external DACs in these high-resolution discs. Winner of the 2021 Golden Ear Award from The Absolute Sound”.

Yes, it’s a total ripoff. A sham. A ruse. Priced shamelessly. But you can’t really call it snake oil, because it does offer something that no other manufacturer can offer you, for reasons that remain undisclosed and uninvestigated—because all the corporate-funded audiophile websites are dazzled by it, no questions asked. Whoever owns the i2S patent must be deliriously happy that somebody found a use for it.

And yes, during moments of mystifying weakness. I occasionally want one, just because. Hence the schadenfreude. @amirm, please keep these PS Audio reviews coming—they’re the only thing keeping me from throwing 7 grand into the furnace. And if I ever give in I could never show my face on this site again, assuming I survive the electrocution…
Such is the world of audiophool belief. Good rhetoric etc. are vital, real values are secondary. "Reality check" sites as ASR were not available in the "best" years of Hi-Fi, which probably contributed to them having been these "best" years. Lots of people have paid lots of money for bog standard tech, if they were lucky, or for piffle, if not.
 
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srkbear

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Me too - should be promoted to home page.

A friend once remarked that Richard Curtis is everything that's wrong with Britain encapsulated in one man.

Likewise PM is everything that is wrong with the hi-fi industry encapsulated in one man.
I fully agree, but listening to Rob Watts leaves me feeling like I’m being powdered with fleas as well. They’re a duumvirate of wrongness.
 
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