Direct Stream questions

I currently have a direct stream DAC. hooked directly to BHK250. Oppo 103 for transport
Speakers revel f228be

Question about Dac
What is better to keep DS on when powering BKH250. Dac level L or H?
DAC Phase?

Can’t play my SACD anymore when hooked DS
Only CD?

when I download music to my aurender music streamer/server which is the best format to download and play DXD DSD? what can DS HANDLE? Streamer hooked up with usb to DAC. THANKS GUYS.

That’s correct, the SACD DSD layer won’t transmit to the DAC form the Oppo. It should present a PCM signal though that is higher than Redbook. A streamer should work via one of the inputs that are shared.

As far as Phase most should be “In” but you may find some discs that sound correct “Out”–experiment. Depending on your speakers’ efficiency the higher or lower output will work beset.

So I can’t play SACD with the DS? Or I have to change a setting in the oppo?

The DS will only play the DSD layer of the SACD when partnered with either the DirectStream Memory Player or the Perfectwave SACD Transport. . . it has to do with copyright protection managed by SONY. The DS will downsample the DSD info coming in to a hi-res PCM.

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Oh okay. Yea cause I have no sound coming out

No, the DS doesn’t down sample. The Oppo does. There is no support for copy protection or digital rights management in the DS (except for MQA on the bridge.) Copy protection, etc. happen on the source.

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Question about Directstream DAC playback of .dsf files (Sony format, ripped SACD files on NAS).
Why is the DAC showing DoP (DSD over PCM) for these files? I am using ROON to play these from my NAS.
If I was playing these from a separate Streamer via USB into the DirectStream, would it still convert these?

It’s not something to worry about.

The DAC is displaying DoP because that’s what is being fed to it. When it displays DoP it is not converting to DoP, it was given DoP.

On the other hand, DoP is exactly the original DSD bits in an “envelope” of PCM - a PCM wrapper which allows smuggling DSD thru a pathway designed for 24 bit PCM. In DoP the top 8 bits of a 24 bit PCM sample are a flag byte (which, if played as PCM would be very quiet) and then the bottom 16 bits of the 24 bit PCM sample are 16 DSD bits. Going to DoP and back to DSD is lossless.

All of the DS’s inputs except for the Bridge and USB are standard PCM inputs designed for 24 bits so any connection except USB or the Bridge can only receive DSD as DoP and your source needs to wrap DSD in DoP to send it to the DAC. In principle USB can support Native DSD which is the high sample rate single bit samples of DSD, but the PS Audio USB driver only supports DoP.

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Thanks for responding, Ted.
All this is exactly inline with my understanding of this subject. I have already been around and around with Synology and QNAP on this subject and they ‘assure’ me that they are sending ‘native’ DSD files in their DLNA software. Obviously not…
So, one of my goals here is to determine if it is even possible to ingest Native DSD into my DS, either via the Bridge II or via USB.
Your final comment did confuse me (easily done, I am a simple aeronautical engineer, not an audio engineer).
You said, “In principle USB can support Native DSD…but the PS Audio USB driver only supports DoP”.
So, basically, there IS no support for Native DSD on the DS USB. OK, a surprise, but I’m clear on that.
How about the Bridge II? Is there any way to get Native DSD into that, even at a basic DSD x64?
Thanks for your time. I always learn something from your writings.

I’m not an expert on the Bridge and I’m not set up to run tests on it to check things before I post them so I defer all Bridge questions.

I misspoke: the I2S (HDMI connectors) do allow native DSD. There are a lot of devices that are PS Audio I2S compatible and many of the also do DSD (tho some have DSD channels swapped compared to PS Audio.)

There are USB devices that convert “USB” to I2S and support Native DSD, the one I have that I can recommend because I’ve used it is:
Matrix Audio - X-SPDIF 2 (
But there are many other capable devices.

RE DoP here’s the authority:
DoP open Standard |
I think you’ll find it readable and understandable. After you get it, it’s not hard to remember.

But IMO getting Native DSD into the DS isn’t a goal worth buying new hardware or changing your favorite software. The DS uses DoP on the inside so technically sending it Native DSD doesn’t save anything over sending it DoP. On some hardware you might hear an audible difference sending Native DSD vs DoP to an external device (including the DS), but on the DS that difference is system dependent and personal preference and not guaranteed to favor Native DSD.


Some people think DSD still sound better than DoP. The only thing I can think of is some playback equipment may produce more or different noise patterns when packaging DSD into DoP than outputting straight DSD

Exactly - Also some equipment runs with less (or more) noise at a 2.8224MHz sample rate than at a 176.4kHz sample rate.