Chip less DSD bypass


is it possible to bypass the up sampling concept for DSd and do a simple filter as some dacs do for DSd only. ???

As some feel pcm is very good and DSd is nice but can still be improved upon.

The dacs I have heard do DSd the best are what is called chip less. Now I do not claim to know what that even means other than the sound it produces is really good DSd.

As your always looking for new ideas to improve the DS dac is this a possibility ?


I am not sure what chipless means either but my guess is they are referring, as we do, to the lack of off-the-shelf DAC chips. Or, they could be referring to the notion you can take the output of a DSD stream and decode it without chips in the path. Ted would have to answer the upsampling bypass question, but I can tell you that it cannot be bypassed in DirectStream.

Ok thanks for the reply Paul.

Hope all is well


The output stage of the DirectStream DAC is physically built around DSD128 at ~5.6MHz switching, with a passive low-pass filter optimised for the kinds of noise shaping you can do with that much frequency headroom. I wouldn’t assume that it’d produce a good result with DSD64 that has a whole octave less to play with.

Hypothetically perhaps the FPGA could take a DSD128 input signal, buffer and re-clock it, then pass it directly to the output stage. You’d be at 100% volume all the time of course, so a pre-amplifier would be required in most cases.

It’d be an interesting exercise but I’m not convinced it’d be worth having as a standard feature.

I am not claiming to know how it’s done , but I Di know what I hear and like. As th DS is very good at PCM , it’s DSd is just as great as its PCM. I have another Fpga dac that sounds the same as PCM is better than its DSd. But for me the DS is far better at both. The best I have is the so called chip less for DSd .its the best for me in DSd. Hence the question of chip less or Fpga less for DSd .


Al, do you find that DSD is more or less affected by the source than PCM? In other words, PCM, on a “busy” computer does not sound as good as on a tricked-out server. Do you find this true of DSD as well?

Great question.
Early on in this hobby for me about two years back I was clueless to what part a source had on the sound.
Meaning the computer used. This was not good and made me feel left out of better understanding of audio.
Since then I have learned plenty about our source components.
Now pcm verses dsd.
Pcm in my view is much less sensitive to source. Although in benefits from a better computer too. But even a good I5 is fine for pcm. Where dsd is far more demanding to sound like dsd.
For me an I7 min does dsd a server is better of course in any situation. But dsd is where it all matters period for me.
Any laptop is sub per to a desk top setup but of course a really fast laptop like my I 7 running win 10 is pet try good.
For me I think many have not heard how great dsd is of the system from cpu to dac is optimal. Now this does not mean no one here or elsewhere does hear the improvement of dsd over let’s say great pcm. Dsd is about getting close to analog but dsd for me is better than any analog even real to real if done from dsd directly
Now I also feel dsd is great for analog tape and proves itself as good as the tape and in some ways better.
But great pcm is still greet music

Also one more thought. The DS is not as dependent as others dacs I own. It’s fine on many setups. It’s sound stage and imaging improve with better computers.

Also lets keep in mind any server or setup not just using windows is now affection the sound weather it fidlizer or HQ PLAYER j play or AO. they all greatly effect our sound what ever ted did makes the DS far less sensitive.

Lets take the MyTek a nice dac. But the setup matters far more. And only in win SER 2012 and AO in core mode does it sound it’s best. But still not like the DS does woth far less effort. This Ted has done a great job with.

Yes, the reason that I asked is that I was comparing DSD from my i7 MacBook Pro (stock, JRiver) to PCM from my usual server (minim server, fidelizer pro, BIOS mods, Bridge II) and was surprised at how good the DSD sounded. I will eventually play DSD from my PC server, but I was surprised at the quality from the Mac. Thanks.

May I ask what the CPU is on the server you use now ???