I have been using both single and dual Deqx systems for several years now. I recently upgraded to the HD3 series including the transformer balanced output boards.
I have learned several things along the way and wanted to share them with you. The following opinion(s) are mine and may not be that of others. If I am wrong in anything I state as fact...please feel free to correct me. I was wrong once before
First and foremost...never buy a modified Deqx without talking to their USA Distributor about the mod’s that were done! There are serious timing issues with different through-hole components being used on a surface mount PCB. Stacked op amps combined with exposed wire to connect them act like radio antennae introducing all kinds of hash into each channel. Let’s move on.
Although a believer in the Deqx technology, I find the company itself to be somewhat arrogant and self- serving. They seem to have a marginal sense of responsibility for after-sale service, the current manual is a joke. In no discernible way does it describe how to properly setup or use this valuable tool. It is the embodiment of a poorly written instruction manual. The arrogance is in the fact that they are aware of it's shortcomings but choose not to do anything about it.
Why is that? Read on...
The DIY Market....Not?
The Deqx was never intended to be a DIY product? I have been told they dislike that it is. It was designed by the same people who designed the Dolby Lake Contour. The two products are similar. The Dolby was for the Pro Sound Market and the Deqx for the OEM Speaker Manufacturing Market. It was designed by engineers for engineers. That being said, it would not surprise me if the DIY market has kept them solvent while they continue to court the OEM's. The company will sell to the DIY market, as evidenced by looking at their website, but appear to have minimal interest in supporting it. Hence, the self- serving comment. Common guys, commission someone to create a usable instruction manual. You owe it to us.
A company that will not fully support all customer(s), regardless of type will inevitably drop the ball with everyone. Perhaps that's the reason the couple of collaborations we have seen with Deqx and OEM's seem to have fizzled? Perhaps a corporate attitude is to blame? I am sure it’s not the product.
The product itself…
I and others on this forum have invested countless hours into tweaking a Deqx setup. I would bet most Deqx owners have never heard their system with the Deqx properly tuned? It's only in the last year that I met someone who has an intimate working knowledge of the Deqx Architecture and Software well enough to set it up properly. We setup an internet client so he could take over my pc remotely. I simply setup the microphone where I was told. In a few hours he had it sounding better than it ever had. I wish you could all be here to hear the difference.
I was so impressed with what he had done I arranged an audition of the HD3 system at Westlake Audio. Both of us met in LA and spent 2 days at Westlake Audio. To say the techs at Westlake were impressed is an understatement. For the demo a miss-matched pair of LC8.1’s combined with a Westlake custom subwoofer system were placed in the sound room. A series of measurements were taken and custom correction filters were created with the Deqx software. The correction filters had illiminated the miss-match problem. We then created a set of three room correction filters, each using slightly different crossover points. These were merged with the correction filters and stored in three different profiles. During the listening tests we could switch between the profiles by selecting each one with one click of the remote. The Westlake techs were astonished, stating the system was sounding as good as or better than anyone heard before. This is no small feat. Tuning a Westlake system normally takes several weeks with constant hardware tweaks being done to the passive internal networks. Dozens of man hours go into this process.
The fellow who did the setup understands the nuances of the Deqx software and interprets the resulting data “differently” than anyone else I have seen. The subsequent filters he builds are truly amazing and certainly show what this tool is capable of when used properly.
For those of you that have owned and already have disposed of a Deqx (I know there are many) it’s unfortunate.
For those that have not tried one....go for it....but only if you’re prepared to spend a few hundred bucks setting it up right. I promise you will not regret it.
I would be happy to share the gentleman's contact info on a person to person basis. I don't think I should be posting his name here.
In closing let me say, in spite of disappoint with the company’s seeming arrogance and apparent lack of support for an important segment of their customer base, I do have a great respect for what this little box does. The looks on the faces of the senior tech people at Westlake Audio spoke volumes. I believe Deqx will get yet another chance to work with a world class manufacturer. Will they be up to the task? I certainly hope so. What a collaboration that could be!
I hope this has been helpful to someone.