Must have DSD Demo Tracks? Ted, what's your favorite?

This is more a question for Ted, for obvious reasons - but it’s open to everyone.

I’m looking for some really stunning DSD tracks/albums to help demo what the DirectStream can do with DSD.

It’s been commented on when I demo the DS to friends, family, and other audiophiles who stumble into my listening room; they’ve all noticed that only one track on my demo tunes folder is a DSD - the rest is PCM, most CD rips. I, and others have seen reviews where the DS seems to be great for PCM, but seems so-so for DSD. The fact that my Demo folder is full of PCM is happenstance…but I’d really like to add some more DSD that really shows off what the DS can do.

Any suggestions? Any favorites?

As I said, I have one DSD demo file, though I have several albums from Blue Coast, and a couple from Opus3. But the DSD tracks seem a little flat when compared to PCM tracks. Not sure if that’s mixing or whatnot. The one track I do have in my Demo folder is Cyndee Peters – “House of the Rising Sun” off Opus3 DSD Showcase.

Go to the NativeDSD site, join, and every day they release a free track for download. They also have good stuff for sale. Not sure for how long they’ll be doing the free track thing.

I don’t know how available it is but any track from Duke Ellington & His Orchestra’s “Blues in Orbit” is great, also Stevie Ray Vaughan’s “Tin Pan Alley”…

Personally I like the Pentatone Mari Kodama piano recordings, they are available on line - they are recorded on a darker piano than some people are used to, but if you know your pianos, you know that they are well recorded. has a new free DSD recording every day, many of them are great. [Edit, Tony typed faster than I did :)]

I’m teleported to another place with “The Film Music of Jerry Goldsmith” by Jerry Goldsmith / London Symphony Orchestra from Telarc (recorded by the folks at Polyhemia, edited by Gus Skinas) - It’s perhaps not as great if your system can’t do full orchestra at a pretty good volume level.

Also a lot of people think that the Michael Tilson Thomas / San Francisco Symphony Mahler Symphonies are excellent. Some were recorded as pure DSD, others took a less direct route to SACDs - The folks at Blue Coast Records/Download NOW! have them with a 20% rebate.

Even some simple things like the Carpenters “Singles 1969-1981” sound incredible on SACD.

Awesome list, Ted!

I have SRV Tin Pan Alley - being a guitar player it’s one of my favs, but I didn’t thing there was an SACD/DSD version around. I’ll have to see if I can find that!

I’m going to start researching the rest of the list - thanks!


P.S. Totally forgot about the NativeDSD - I was remembering to grab those once or twice a week. Back to it!

I posted this on the PentaTone thread in the Music forum, but I meant to put it here:

I just got the 9 disc set of Beethoven Piano Sonatas by Mari Kodama – a single 33Gig zip file download :)

I have a few of her SACDs and always have enjoyed them. There are some tracks of her playing on various PentaTone samplers including the PentaTone Limited Vol.I The best of PentaTone sampler that’s available on the site.

When we were having our piano tuned the tuner heard her playing and asked me to turn it up. He turned it way up, was smiling and said he’d never heard a recording of that piano that sounded just like the real thing before. He started pointing out various noises from the action, etc. :)

If you aren’t familiar with her playing there are some reviews at (e.g. and most certainly elsewhere.

I can just say that I enjoy her playing immensely.

If you join PentaTones’s “club” you get the 20% off of anything you buy which in this case is certainly worth it.

Obviously I’m not done listening to all of it yet, but I’ve been enjoying it continuously since for the last seven hours, three more to go…

Thanks Ted - I purchased that sampler the same day you mentioned her, but I’ve not had time to listen through it or go more deeply into their library.

33GB music download!? It’s amazing what we can do with technology these days, isn’t it?

+1 for Mari Kodama.

I have the SACD and the DSD as well. I tried to compare them sonically but drift off into the music every time so I forget to compare. There is just a little freshness in her stance that a rigid music professor might frown at but not when he is home alone and listening.

I’d suggest a listen to the newly released edition of “Jazz at the Pawnshop” - transferred from the Analog Master Tapes to Double Rate DSD (DSD-128) by Naxos. Just excellent at twice the SACD resolution level.

On prices, it’s $45 at Acoustic Sounds and Pro Studio Masters and $30 at Native DSD. So it pays to shop… :)

Lonely Raven said Totally forgot about the NativeDSD - I was remembering to grab those once or twice a week. Back to it!
Native DSD just posted a new Free DSD track - trumpeter Eric Vloeimans with a Baroque Orchestra. An intriguing crossover track there.

Based on what I’ve read on the Hoffman Music forums, the different HR versions of JATP seem really to have been digitized one by one. Here’s a snippet of the info:

“192kHz was done using Ayre QA9pro
DSD was done using dCS 905 and dCS Vivaldi
DXD 352.8kHz was done using dCS 905 and dCS
Vivaldi clock
DSD2 was done using Ayre QA9pro”

That’s pretty nice, but isn’t the ADC in the QA9pro a multibit delta-sigma converter? How “real” does that make the DSD2 version?

I’ve just bought few tracks from JATP (Jazz at the Pawnshop) on NativeDSD in DSD 128 format. Excellent in DSD.

My PCM version (16bits 44) sounds so boring now :-s Even if I suspect the level in DSD slightly higher than the PCM version, i didn’t expected such a difference in term of details, imaging and presence of the musicians.

I just relistened to Tiny Island (Opus 3) in 44.1k, 88.2k, DSD and double rate DSD. I was amazed at the added detail and clarity of double rate DSD over even single rate DSD. So I checked out some of my favorite Eric Bibb cuts and the double rate DSD was a clear winner there too.

I’m not sure that I have a lot of other music that I know well in both single and double rate DSD: tho I have a lot of test tracks from Blue Coast, etc. they aren’t music I’ve listened to for years…