[Music] support for playing DSD/DSF audio files in MePo? (1 Viewer)

Do you have a DSD capable receiver?


  • Total voters
    6

F0nz0

Portal Member
October 7, 2014
12
2
Home Country
Netherlands Netherlands
The purpose of this thread is to gain interest in DSD/DSF audio formats and find out if playability can be implemented in future MediaPortal versions.

I have been using MePo for years as my main mediacenter software, mainly for its excellent Live-TV support. I also have a digital collection of Redbook 5.1 DTS-Audio CD's, which play without errors in MePo. My mediacenter PC was connected through Optical to a 12-year old Sony STR-DB780 ES receiver with a Sony DVP-905V SACD player.

I have several SACD's of which the audio quality is unprecedented. However, both lack modern HDMI connections and the SACD signal was sent to the Sony receiver by means of 5.1 analog interconnects. Future SACD players had HDMI output, but only a Sony PlayStation3 with the correct firmware was able to read and rip SACD content to a PC as .dsd or .dsf files.

Recently, I bought an Onkyo TS-NR636 receiver, which is capable of playing downloaded Direct Stream Digital (DSD) files. DSD is, more or less, the digital equivalent of the physical SACD. SACD was introduced in 1999 and, although superior in audio quality, never became mainstream. Mainly because it required costly special equipment and because content was and is still scarce and expensive. The majority of released albums are classical and jazz based.

With the introduction of DSD capable receivers, I expect this audio format will become more popular and more downloadable DSD content is to be expected in the coming years. Currectly, only JRiver Media Center and Foobar with SACD plugin are able to play these files. I have not tried this yet.

Some info about DSD as introduction:
DSD-guide.com.
What is DSD audio - A Simple Explanation.
DSD - The New Addiction by Andreas Koch.
Downloadable DSD tracks.

I could not find info about DSD in the MePo portal, other than this old thread:
https://forum.team-mediaportal.com/threads/better-sound-quality-with-wasapi.51650/

I'm able to play DSD files by accessing my PC's HDD from the Onkyo's wifi connection and through it's own on-screen menu structure. The DSD signal is sent to the receiver thru HDMI. It would be cool if playing of these files could be done in MePo itself. Has anyone looked into this, if this is possible?
 
Last edited:

Helios61

Retired Team Member
  • Premium Supporter
  • January 30, 2008
    4,587
    871
    60
    NRW
    Home Country
    Germany Germany
    Hi @F0nz0

    Oh yes, that would be great! But unfortunately i think at the moment DSD playback isn't possible because of limitations of the Bass Engine MP uses for playback. I convert the PS3 Rips to .flac. Playback of HiRes .flac works like a charm!

    Best regards
    Helios
     

    F0nz0

    Portal Member
    October 7, 2014
    12
    2
    Home Country
    Netherlands Netherlands
    Hi Helios,

    Thanks! I'm using WASAPI in MePo at the moment. Would this be capable of playing DSD or is it just a "subset" of the Bass Engine? ASIO might be an alternative as well? My onboard soundcard is not ASIO-compliant though, but I do use ASIO4ALL to hook up my electric quitar to USB to reduce audio latency.

    What is the bitrate of your .flac files and do they support multichannel?
     

    Helios61

    Retired Team Member
  • Premium Supporter
  • January 30, 2008
    4,587
    871
    60
    NRW
    Home Country
    Germany Germany
    or is it just a "subset" of the Bass Engine?
    Yes, ASIO and WASAPI are BASS Plugins!

    What is the bitrate of your .flac files and do they support multichannel?

    MultiChannel is working fine. Here is a mediainfo of one of my files ->
    Allgemein
    Vollständiger Name : \\SERVER-PC\Server Q\Musik\SACD Klassik\Arabella Steinbacher (2014) - Mozart · Violin Concertos Nos. 3, 4 & 5 (SACD 5.0-24bit-88.2kHz)\04 - Violin Concerto No. 4 in D, K. 218 - I. Allegro.flac
    Format : FLAC
    Format/Info : Free Lossless Audio Codec
    Dateigröße : 398 MiB
    Dauer : 9min 31s
    Modus der Gesamtbitrate : variabel
    Gesamte Bitrate : 5 838 Kbps
    Album : Mozart · Violin Concertos Nos. 3, 4 & 5
    Album/Künstler : Arabella Steinbacher / Lucerne Festival Orchestra / Daniel Dodds / Arabella Steinbacher / Lucerne Festival Orchestra / Daniel Dodds
    Teil : 01/01
    Track-Name : Violin Concerto No. 4 in D, K. 218 - I. Allegro
    Track-Name/Position : 04/09
    Track-Name/total : 09
    Künstler : Arabella Steinbacher / Lucerne Festival Orchestra / Daniel Dodds
    Komponist : Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Leiter : Daniel Dodds
    Genre : Klassik
    Aufnahmedatum : 2014
    Cover : Yes
    Cover-Typ : Cover (front)
    Cover-MIME : image/jpeg
    Kommentar : SACD 5.0-24bit-88,2KHz
    DYNAMIC RANGE : 14
    ALBUM DYNAMIC RANGE : 14
    CHANNELS : 5.0
    Source : SACD[PS3] - 24bit88.2kHz
    GROUPING : High Resolution Audio
    CONTENTGROUP : High Resolution Audio

    Audio
    Format : FLAC
    Format/Info : Free Lossless Audio Codec
    Dauer : 9min 31s
    Bitraten-Modus : variabel
    Bitrate : 5 836 Kbps
    Kanäle : 5 Kanäle
    Kanal-Positionen : Front: L C R, Back: L R
    Samplingrate : 88,2 KHz
    BitDepth/String : 24 bits
    Stream-Größe : 398 MiB (100%)
    verwendete Encoder-Bibliothek : libFLAC 1.2.1 (UTC 2007-09-17)
     

    F0nz0

    Portal Member
    October 7, 2014
    12
    2
    Home Country
    Netherlands Netherlands
    That's great news! I guess we have to wait for a future MePo version to have this .dll implemented?

    From what I've read in above thread is that DSD is converted to PCM and DSD data output is in the making by means of ASIO. DSD>PCM is how foobar2000 works as well with the correct plugins, my Onkyo shows "PCM" when playing .dsf./.dsd files. "DSD" is only shown when playing such files directly from the Onlyo's internal NET menu. And there is a noticable difference in sound quality when switching between both modes. DSD is far more dynamic, more depth, and more crystal than PCM in my setup. Where it gets difficult to distinguish is f.e. between Pink Floyd's DSOTM multichannel SACD disc and the DTS-HD equivolant in MePo Video.
     

    Helios61

    Retired Team Member
  • Premium Supporter
  • January 30, 2008
    4,587
    871
    60
    NRW
    Home Country
    Germany Germany
    @F0nz0

    .dsf playback is working fine in MP. For playback you have to copy the attached .dll to -> C:\Program Files (x86)\Team MediaPortal\MediaPortal\MusicPlayer\plugins\audio decoders. Then you have to add .dsf and .dff to music extensions.
    Currently tags aren't working and DSD will be converted to PCM 88,2kHz.

    Best regards
    Helios
     

    Attachments

    • bassdsd.rar
      5.3 KB

    F0nz0

    Portal Member
    October 7, 2014
    12
    2
    Home Country
    Netherlands Netherlands
    Great, adding the .dll and mentioned extensions in MePo works fine!

    I also tried the guide on foobar but it seems to require a proprietary ASIO driver, which my Onkyo lacks. Tried ASIO4ALL with several different settings in foobar, but was only able to output PCM and no DSD.
     

    F0nz0

    Portal Member
    October 7, 2014
    12
    2
    Home Country
    Netherlands Netherlands
    [..] DSD is far more dynamic, more depth, and more crystal than PCM in my setup. Where it gets difficult to distinguish is f.e. between Pink Floyd's DSOTM multichannel SACD disc and the DTS-HD equivolant in MePo Video. [..]


    Did some testing again and frankly speaking, I hardly hear any difference between DSD vs PCM. Must have been the receiver's listening modes interfering back then. Or smoked too much. I shouldn't be able to hear it at 42, but DSD seems slightly more crisp/dynamic but that's it. I hooked up a pair of JMlab speakers for this purpose, in stead of the KEF satellites. Should do a blindfold test. There was however a difference between DSD64 6.544kps/1-bit/2.822kHz vs FLAC 24-bit/88,2kHz. But I noted later on the PCM Volume in foobar was set at 6dB, according to the online guide. Decreased it, et voilà, no difference. So it was only a Loudness thing... :)
     
    Last edited:

    Users who are viewing this thread

    Similar threads

    Just wanted to clarify this, or perhaps muddy the waters further, but I cannot be sure if I ever ran my AVR with Win 7. Before I bought the AVR I had the HTPCs audio line out connected to an old stereo amp and I got the AVR in Nov. 2015. The Win 7-10 free upgrade was available from the Summer of 2015 and I know I did not switch the...
    Just wanted to clarify this, or perhaps muddy the waters further, but I cannot be sure if I ever ran my AVR with Win 7. Before I...
    I know this is a frequent issue, but I've never seen a post with a resolution. Perhaps someone can help direct me. Every HTPC...
    Replies
    11
    Views
    7K
    Updated with the guide to install an Intel HDMI audio Device that can stream 192kHz/24bit. If you have any question, feel free to reply here.
    Updated with the guide to install an Intel HDMI audio Device that can stream 192kHz/24bit. If you have any question, feel free to...
    I switched to MePo 2 with the release of MePo 2.1.1, and in the last months I focused on learning the program and fine tuning it...
    Replies
    8
    Views
    2K
    Hi Of course you can watch your photos to music from your playlists on the TV. You can use the built-in slideshow mode or run external screensaver. For example, PhotoScroll screensaver - looks like a screensaver from the Winds Media Center and works great with photos.
    Hi Of course you can watch your photos to music from your playlists on the TV. You can use the built-in slideshow mode or run...
    Sorry, but this is really confusing to me. I haven't installed MediaPortal yet because I'm not sure what I am doing... I have a PC...
    Replies
    5
    Views
    2K
    Because VLC decodes them, but not encodes in any 5.1 format, so - only PCM Stereo is transfering over HDMI. and please - install MediaInfo package and post here the output of it for the file you are trying to play BTW why have you disabled 32bit and 32bit float for output formats in LAV audio?
    Because VLC decodes them, but not encodes in any 5.1 format, so - only PCM Stereo is transfering over HDMI. and please - install...
    Hello everyone, I need some help getting DTS files to play. Currently I have video files that have DTS audio or DTS-HD. My HTPC...
    Replies
    3
    Views
    2K
    Awesome U rock MM !!! Yep those patch files did the job What a fantastic result. !!! I am here telling my kids someone from the other side of the world has helped sort my problem out in about 10 minutes Thank you SO MUCH !!! That's really wonderful support :-)
    Awesome U rock MM !!! Yep those patch files did the job What a fantastic result. !!! I am here telling my kids someone from the...
    MediaPortal Version: 1.12.0 Description After installing MP 1.12.0 - Turn on Panasonic TV and Onkyo Receiver (TX SR606) - so...
    Replies
    4
    Views
    3K
    Top Bottom