Denafrips Pontus II Clicks Or Static?

There have been some who have reported clicks or static occasionally with their Denafrips Pontus II DAC units.  And there is a test measurement review of the Pontus II 12th on the golden sound website talking about the following:

"When DACs oversample, they can sometimes encounter a situation where the reconstructed/interpolated waveform goes above 0dBfs (the maximum possible digital value)."

"The Pontus 2 is susceptible to intersample overs, and unfortunately, in a particularly bad way."

"The Pontus 2 does not clip, but instead when a sample value reaches above the maximum, it ‘wraps around’ to the minimum negative value, causing a huge sudden transient which will be very audible and may appear as crackling/popping."

Has anyone with a Pontus II encountered this anomaly when playing CDs?  If so, can you elaborate about that?  I am aware that the Pontus II can be firmware upgraded, so if this is an occasional issue, it could be eliminated with an upgrade.




I am very familiar with the issue, and it ultimately caused me to sell my Pontus II. I now use an admittedly much more expensive Aqua La Scala DAC, but would likely have continued with the Pontus were it not for that issue and the way that it has been handled by Denafrips.

This has now been a known issue for at least a couple of years, and no, as far as I know, there is no software/firmware fix. So I believe that the company made a calculated decision to engage in damage control, rather than offering a hardware fix, which would have been expensive, assuming that they have the knowledge to execute such a fix.

There was also what I consider to be an effort to obfuscate, or deflect blame, by floating the suggestion that it was only happening with certain transports. I had the issue with a Moon 260DT, which is a high-class machine, and in any case, the Pontus is responsible for the problem, as it should obviously work smoothly with all transports.



The review at goldensound talked about digital levels that went to or over the 0dB level causing problems with the Pontus. Regarding the clicks and pops; do they happen with certain disks, or just ANY disk (regardless of the level of recorded peaks)?  Can the clicks and pops be repeated using the same disks?  Are there disks where there are no clicks or pops?

This issue needs to be kept in the forefront of both Vinshine and Denafrips in the way of a firmware update that would eliminate or reduce the problem.  Alvin at Vinshine has mentioned a firmware update in one of his most recent videos.

Pops/ticks are present on all recordings and they are not repeatable.  The level does not appear to be correlated in my case.

I have been provided new firmware by Vinshine.  I will post my findings once that change is implemented and tested.

Alvin at Vinshine has mentioned a firmware update in one of his most recent videos.

As suggested above in my initial post, I do not believe that any firmware fix has resolved the problem. It may be possible that it has helped in some cases, but I am certain that if the problem had been fully resolved, Denafrips would be shouting it from the rooftops!

Given the length of time that this has been a known issue, I really do not understand how anyone could be optimistic that it might be fully resolved by other than a hardware fix.

So far, in researching this subject, it appears that it is a minority of people who are experiencing the pops & cracks.  The problem, when it exists, would have to be likely one of four basic things:

1.  Fundamental hardware problem (unlikely, since only a minority have the issue)

2.  Fundamental firmware problem (also unlikely with a minority issue)

3.  A Random occurrence based on manufacturing/component variables (possible)

4.  A random occurrence based on both hardware variables and firmware interactions with that. (possible)

Some people report NO pop & crack issues, some report occasional issues, some report regular issues, and some report that the issue goes away with a firmware update. Just about everyone likes to basic sound of the Pontus II.

Regardless of what is causing the issue, Denafrips and Vinshine need to get a handle on it.  If the problem goes onward, the word will get around, and there will be a drop in product sales.