Dethonray Pegasus SG1 Review

Sound Quality

The Dethonray Pegasus SG1 is a very smooth and neutral-sounding device with good technicalities for a Bluetooth DAC. The sound quality you get from this wireless solution is impressive.  It’s mostly linear with a mid-range emphasis and slight warmth, but it sounds very natural, musical and lively at the same time. It has that certain musical quality with very good tonality.

It’s dynamic and crisp for a wireless DAC. This is the first time a wireless device impressed me with its sound quality overall. Sure, it has its drawbacks and it’s by no means a DAP replacement. But if you like to stream music from several platforms and if you’re usually on the move, you can get a very impressive sound from the SG1.

Bass

The bass has moderate impact and rumble. It has good resolution with a good kick to make you tap your feet, but the bass is nowhere near a rumbling and hard-hitting one. It does have good warmth in terms of midbass. Yet, it brings a certain flatness to the music and that creates a neutral-like listening experience. There’s not much colouration here, unexpected from a BT DAC. Also, the bass is not quite super tight as some other higher-end USB DAC/Amps, possibly because of the wireless connection.

So you can hear the bass but you can’t really feel it, there’s a certain emptiness or hollowness in the lower region with certain recordings. This happens with lots of Bluetooth DACs so I’m not that surprised. The good thing about the SG1 is that the bass is not splashy at all. It doesn’t overshadow anything or get in the way. It’s tight and controlled.

It doesn’t sound boomy whatsoever, but it’s not as super tight as good USB DAC/Amps. So there’s a compromise here for sure. It certainly doesn’t wow you with the texture and impact, as well as the body, but it has good resolution and definition.

Mids

The mid-range is the best part of the Pegasus SG1. It’s clean, resolving, and a bit forward with great tonality and fullness. The SG1 pushes the vocals forward, so if you enjoy vocal-oriented music you’ll like it.  The transparency is quite remarkable for a wireless DAC. The instrument separation is also nice. It surely has a good resolution in this part, although again not on the same level as wired DACs or DAPs. The mids have a heart-touching timbre tough, and overall the vocals and the instruments are lively with an organic and warm approach. I found the vocals especially good.

The mids are also a bit close and they’re in front of the stage. Mids also have a good body and they’re full sounding. There’s good musicality with a breathy instrument presentation. The mids are also quite dynamic and lively. If you like to have your mid-range with a certain focus and definition, the SG1 is a very good DAC. You shouldn’t expect a great detail level, resolution and transparency here. There are better DACs out there for those technicalities, but in its own terms, the SG1 does a good job.

Treble

The treble is nicely attenuated and extended, without being harsh and aggressive. I’m impressed by the treble performance from the SG1, as most BT solutions suffer from roll-off or veil in this particular range. However, SG1 does not suffer in that department. When you listen to a good recording with the LDAC codec, the treble is clean, extended and well-articulated for a wireless DAC.

The transparency is quite good, and the detail level is satisfying. This is a very smooth yet detailed treble, which is very pleasing, particularly with mid-fi gear. The SG1 has good micro detail performance and this is mostly felt in the treble region. Overall, the treble performance is very good. Once you start to listen to it over long periods, you appreciate this treble performance even more thanks to its consistency, transparency, and definition.

Technical Performance

The great thing about the Honey SG1 is that it doesn’t have the drawbacks of other wireless portable DACs. The background is relatively dark, and the instruments sound with good texture, dynamism, and transparency. The tonality is very realistic and the mid-range transparency is surprisingly good for a BT DAC. The overall definition and dynamism are nicely done. The bass texture and quickness could be better, but it’s still very good and most importantly it’s tight enough to give good space and air to the mid-range.

The soundstage is not very wide with the SG1. This is not the widest-sounding equipment and I recommend pairing it with wide-sounding IEMs and headphones if you put great emphasis on staging. It is by no means mediocre, and actually, it’s quite good. But the width is not as impressive as the other aspects of its sound. I found the stage depth to be fairly good though, as it has a good layering performance.

One of the most surprising things about the SG1 is the instrument separation. It manages to showcase a level of separation that you can find with wired USB DAC/Amps.

Power-wise this is not the Honey H1 or other powerful DAC/Amps. Even with the High Gain, it struggles to give the juice to full-sized headphones. So I suggest not getting it with your full-size headphone unless it’s very easy to drive. And on another note; I think the device sounds better overall with the High Gain.

Page 1: About Dethonray & Pegasus SG1, Design, Build, User Experience
Page 3: Comparison and Overall Thoughts
4.2/5 - (116 votes)

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A keen audiophile and hobby photographer, Berkhan is after absolute perfection. Whether it is a full-frame camera or a custom in-ear, his standpoint persists. He tries to keep his photography enthusiasm at the same level as audio. Sometimes photography wins, sometimes his love for music takes over and he puts that camera aside. Simplistic expressions of sound in his reviews are the way to go for him. He enjoys a fine single malt along with his favourite Jazz recordings.

2 Comments

  • Reply November 4, 2022

    Scott

    No-one else a Stargate fan?

    SG1 and Pegasus…. C’mon!!!

  • Reply November 5, 2022

    Vadym

    Detonray claims two different firmwares for this device that provide two different sound signatures. Why is this important detail not included in the review?

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