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Can we play genuine DSD Stream with PCs?, Moved (back) to Audio Hardware by request
Happy Water
post Feb 15 2012, 23:41
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Hi,

now ripping a SACD is possible and we can play SACD ISO with foobar2000.
But still, we must convert DSD stream to a PCM stream and then output it to the PC soundcard or
a DA/C through USB 1394 HDMI or SPIDF, etc..

I saw the autodetect ASIO Driver Mode in foo_input_sacd plugin Preferences page of foobar2000, but I don't know any Devices(both soundcard and DAC)
that supports it. Now I'm really looking forward to a scheme that can play genuine DSD Stream with PC...

Does anyone have any ideas or suggestions?

Thanks...
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Happy Water
post Feb 21 2012, 22:18
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Thanks for replies...

Actually, I am a senior student of Information Engineering. As a senior, I made those conclusions with confidence, but now it seems I am still quite young.

QUOTE (Arnold B. Krueger @ Feb 21 2012, 14:01) *
It is pretty well known among the more technically sophisticated members of the audio industry that DSD was invented by Sony for the purposes of IP protection, not better sound.


Now I think this should be the key word for me as I do originally thought that Sony invented DSD for better sound.

However, there is still one question confuses me.
How much loss is there when we convert DSD to PCM(especially 176.4KHz 24bit, by foo_input_sacd Plugin or AudioGate) for playing those Albums which are claimed recorded and mixed under Pure DSD Environment? (if any?)

BTW, I heard that only a few Music Albums are recorded under pure DSD environment while the others are converted from PCM tracks.
Is it true?
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Arnold B. Kruege...
post Feb 24 2012, 14:01
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QUOTE (Happy Water @ Feb 21 2012, 16:18) *
How much loss is there when we convert DSD to PCM(especially 176.4KHz 24bit, by foo_input_sacd Plugin or AudioGate) for playing those Albums which are claimed recorded and mixed under Pure DSD Environment? (if any?)


Very little to vanishing, depending on how the recording was sourced. I guess that DSD claims HF band pass to 100 KHz, while 24/192 has 4 KHz less band pass, only 96 KHz. ;-) Trust me, not even the most enthusiastic technically credible advocates of high sample rates would argue that any veils at all are lifted by increasing HF band pass from 96 KHz to 100 KHz. I'm sure that there are some from the lunatic fringe who would fight to the death for those 4 KHz above 96 KHz, but they are lunatics, right? ;-) So, this minuscule HF band pass difference is a draw in the minds of everyone with a mind.

That leaves us with dynamic range. 24/192 has a theoretical dynamic range of 144 KHz from full use of the 24 bits with a low uniform low noise floor up to 96 KHz. DSD has a higher noise floor below 20 KHz, which most authorities put in the range of about 120 dB. Above 20 KHz or so, the noise floor is allowed to rise significantly to as little as 50 or 60 dB. Now from a listening standpoint this is all very good performance, and gross overkill.

The big idea you need to understand is that from a theoretical dynamic range standpoint, 24 bit PCM walks all over DSD. If you transcribe a DVD recording to 192/24 there has not been any actual theoretical loss due to the 192/24 digital format.

The bottom line is that converting a SACD to 24/192 PC has no inherent theoretical losses with any merit, and anybody who says otherwise either does not know the relevant facts or is invoking some kind of voodoo theory of digital sound reproduction. A similar contemporary voodoo theory of digital sound reproduction is the idea that repeated FLAC compression (without a basic format change) causes audible changes or that the simple error-free move of a digital audio file from one area or kind of digital storage to another causes audible changes.

QUOTE
BTW, I heard that only a few Music Albums are recorded under pure DSD environment while the others are converted from PCM tracks.
Is it true?


Apparently all too true. An independent consultant who was hired by an online retailer of higher resolution recordings to transcribe DVD-A and SACD recordings reports that something like half of all the recordings he converted were apparently originally transcribed from appreciably lower resolution sources such as legacy digital files with 16 bit data and 48 KHz sample rates, or analog tape with even worse dynamic range and high frequency extension than the legacy digital recordings. Other reliable sources have reported similar findings based on analysis of smaller but representative samples of commercial recordings.

In their rush to build up a large catalog and profit again from reselling recordings that had already been sold to zillions of consumers once or twice before, the commercial advocates of so called high resolution recordings ended up cooking their own gooses! In my view they were just supporting what many of us already knew, which is that the so-called high resolution formats had nothing more in terms of listening enjoyment to offer to music lovers, other than perhaps a quick remastering job by various people, some unknown with questionable talent, experience, and credentials.

Interestingly enough it appears that there were few if any reviewers who listened to these so-called hi-res recordings and reported any differences among recordings depending whether they did or did not come from bandpass-limited sources.

Furthermore, the dynamic range of musical recordings is limited by other factors than the recording equipment, and in fact diligent searching finds none that actually tax the capabilities of the Redbook CD forma (16 bits). Furthermore there are just a tiny handful of microphones and loudspeakers that have anything like 50 KHz bandpass, let alone 100 KHz. Such response as they may have is generally limited to only sources and listeners who sit almost perfectly on-axis.

This post has been edited by Arnold B. Krueger: Feb 24 2012, 14:03
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