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bertbb
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Native DSD decoding in surround processors

I currently have Marantz 8802a processor and Sony ES1100 Blu Ray in my Theater Room. I have several 5.1 SACD's and understood that Marantz can decode native DSD passed from the HDMI directly to analog. The Marantz plate displays "DSD" when playing these discs. I was looking to upgrade my Theater Room surround processor, and it appears many do not decode native DSD, so Sony player will send PCM signal through HDMI. The A/V manufacturer has said it won't matter as the signal has to be converted from DSD to PCM before analog somewhere along the way. I tested it by setting output to PCM in Sony player and doing A/B comparison with PCM and auto(DSD) output setting in Sony menu to the Marantz. There was a difference, the auto setting sounded fuller with more bass than PCM. Sony has said this is because DSD signal is being repacketed to PCM vs straight DSD to analog when the processor's DAC can't decode DSD Just trying to understand process - Thanks

Kal Rubinson
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I am surprised that a modern

I am surprised that a modern pre-pro will not decode DSD. What models are you considering?
Also, conversion from DSD to PCM is (1) obligatory in many AVRs and pre-pros and (2) necessary for any DSP processing in any AVR or pre-pro.

bertbb
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The McIntosh MX-123 which I

The McIntosh MX-123 which I believe does and the Lyngdorf MP-40 which does not. With the Lyngdorf, I have been told the Sony will recognize that and convert to PCM before signal is sent through HDMI. I am not sure I understand 1) and 2) in your reply. With my current Marantz, is the DSD signal received being converted to PCM or straight to analog? This is what I cant seem to get a straight answer on, and does it matter. I could hear difference when I sent PCM from Sony vs having it go out DSD

Kal Rubinson
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Quote:
Quote:

With my current Marantz, is the DSD signal received being converted to PCM or straight to analog?

Depends. I no longer have an 8802, so I do not know if it can convert straight to analog even in direct mode but I do know that, if you use Audyssey or bass management or any other processes that require DSP, then the signals must be converted to PCM.

Quote:

..................and does it matter.

Depends. I cannot advise you on this. Purely as a matter of logic, elimination of an unneeded conversion is a virtue. OTOH, many DAC chips will make the conversion beyond our control and there are cases where the conversion is desirable in order to enable other functions.

mtymous1
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Homework
bertbb wrote:

I currently have Marantz 8802a processor and Sony ES1100 Blu Ray in my Theater Room.

That 8802a supports DSD up to 2.8 MHz via HDMI. The UBP-X1100ES does DSD at 2.8/5.8/11.2MHz and can output via analog. Recommend you establish an RCA analog connection from the Sony to your Marantz for anything above 2.8 MHZ - obviously, this will only work for 2-channel. I would also check and confirm the sampling rates of your 5.1 SACDs.

bertbb wrote:

Just trying to understand process - Thanks

Two links for your homework:

https://www.ap-linux.com/articles/dsd-jewels-concealed-behind-the-scarlet-book/

https://help.nativedsd.com/en/articles/94899-multichannel-and-surround-dsd-listening

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