DSD Stream From Auralic Aries Comes Through As PCM On DS With Noise & Static


I’ve been experiencing this issue occasionally.

When I start playing DSF files, both per se or transitioning from playing a PCM file previously, the stream on Lightning DS for the Auralic Aries to the Direct Stream Sr via USB says DSD. However, the DoP signal doesn’t come on at the Direct Stream Sr (it says PCM) and I get loud hisses and crackles which is probably potentially speaker damaging until I turn the volume down.

Restarting both the Auralic Aries and the Direct Stream Sr will solve things. Sometimes I just need to restart it once, other times more than once. This is annoying.

I also use an Uptone ISO Regen powered buy an LPS 1. At first i thought it may be that so I disconnected and reconnected both the power from the LPS 1, as well as the ISO Regen, separately. However, the stream was still noise and read PCM on the DS Sr display.

Has anyone also experienced this issue?

I presume when this is happening the DS reads PCM 176.4 24. Does the Auralic Aries have any kind of volume control or other DSP functions? Any DSP can corrupt the DoP flags and cause (low level) noise. If you can, the next time something goes wrong, play the bitperfect test files to see if something is interfering with the signal between the Aries and the DS.

The Aries does have 4 filters of which I have selected the one supposedly most accurate to the source material. It also has a volume control which I have defeated just as I have the one for the DS Sr as I have a preamp.

I think the DS reads PCM at a higher bitrate but I can’t be sure.

I’ll try playing the bitperfect test files next time. They are PCM right? I don;t really want to damage my speakers if I turn the sound up.

I cannot recall this happening until Recloud but that may be a case of bad memory on my part.

I assume those filters are only used for PCM, in that case the selection doesn’t matter. If they are upsampling the DoP then that’s a big problem. Just verify that the volume control is still defeated when/if the problem happens again.

The bit perfect files are 24/96 PCM (or 24/192 PCM)

As far as I know there isn’t, nor has there been, a bug that causes the DS to not recognize DoP properly if the bit perfect test passes and none of the PCM vs DSD detection code has changed in many releases.


Yes, I presume so too.

There is a DoP marker set at default to 0x05/FA (which it says is accepted by most devices). The other option is 0xAA.

Yes, the volume control is permanently defeated.

When it happened again, the bit rate on the DS Sr display says 88.2k 16 bit. The streamer interface says 2.8224 MHz, 1 bit, 5.6448 Mbps DSF. The images are attached below.

I played the Bit Perfect FLAC track and got the green tick.

After I did that and played another DSF track, the DoP transmitted correctly - i did not have to restart the Auralic Aries or DS Sr. I have not included the DS Sr display screen image with the green tick as the track was over too quickly before I could take a picture.

Can you tell me what could be the issue?

Also, just some feedback - the Bit Perfect FLAC track has no ID tags so it is difficult for a streamer index it as part of the library and for me to locate it. I had to browse by folder location to play it back.


Just to check the green mark should be there from approximately one second or so after the test track starts until it ends. If it flickers there’s a problem.

Just to rule out the USB connection can you try some other Aries outputs to the DS?

I’ve never known the DS’s display of sample rate and bit depth to be wrong and there’s no configuration of the DS that can affect them, so there’s nothing on the DS’s side which can be misconfigured to give these symptoms. The 16 bits is curious, that means that there are no bits low order bits that are changing which is clearly not DoP (or corrupted DoP) and 88.2k is too slow (by half) for single rate DSD DoP. The good news is that it’s not a volume (or other DSP processing) issue.

If it’s only particular .DSF tracks I’d suspect them, if a given track works sometimes and not others it has to be a misconfiguration of the Aries (or less likely, a bug in it).

Yes, the green mark is consistent and doesn’t flicker.

There was an instance when I couldn’t queue the Bit Perfect FLAC track to play on the Aries but I suspect that doesn’t really mean anything and is just a track sequencing issue there.

What outputs should I try? SPDIF Coaxial or Toslink - can both play DSD?

It’s actually all .DSF tracks that don’t play when it happens. I have tried playing others when a single track exhibits the noise and they are all the same.

S/PDIF and AES3 can both do single rate DSD (DSD64), depending on your components and cables TOSLink can often as well. I just want to check that it’s not some weird USB thing that’s causing your issues. All of S/PDIF, AES3 and TOSLink are much simpler than USB on both ends.

I suspected it was all .DSF files, but I wanted to check :slight_smile:


This just happened again. It’s the first time it’s happened since I last posted here in early Oct. DoP played again as PCM 88.2k as before with the loud static noise.

There isn’t a way for me to check the digital outputs of the Aries and inputs of the DS when it happens. This is because to switch the Aries output from USB to the others like SPDIF, TOSLink and AES, it saves the settings and then restarts the Aries before the newly selected inputs/ outputs work.

I presume then that all the outputs/ inputs are reset when that happens.

In any case, after that restart, DoP is correctly read and played via all inputs/ outputs.

What else can you suggest? This time the volume was pretty high and the resulting noise very loud. I am concerned about speaker damage when this happens.

The noise that comes from mistaking DoP as PCM is down at least 48dB from full scale audio so it can’t hurt the rest of your system. Both since the sample rate is being displayed as 88.2k and because the noise level is too high for slightly corrupted DoP makes me think that it’s not some simple processing going wrong. I’m still reasonably sure it can’t be software on the DS’s side, spontaneously going to 88.2k PCM from DoP isn’t a failure mode that I’ve ever experienced and there’s no single point failure in the software where this could happen. (But I’m pretty sure that Auralic feels the same way about their side.) I can’t think of a hardware failure mode in the DS that could cause this - the XMOS USB chip doesn’t seem to be failing this way for anyone else. I’m not sure what else to suggest.


I guess to be on the safe side, I’ll just turn the volume down when transitioning to or playing DSD tracks.

It’s just a hassle