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Why DSD is a terrible idea in 2013 (Read 881 times)
orangecrush
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Why DSD is a terrible idea in 2013
10/01/13 at 01:34:28
 
Good explanation here on the Linn forum:

http://forums.linn.co.uk/bb/showthread.php?tid=23096

Fantastic interview here with John Siau of Benchmark media about the limitations of DSD and why PCM is superior.

http://www.realhd-audio.com/?p=74

Favourite quotes:

JS: ...With 4-bit delta-sigma converters we can now achieve a 130 dB SNR. This is a full 10 dB better than the channel capacity of 64x DSD. A 1-bit system simply doesn’t have enough room in the format for both dither noise and the audio signal. DSD is limited to a 120 dB SNR over the audio band. You can pass an audio signal that’s partially dithered or an audio signal that has no dither but there’s not enough room to pass a fully dithered audio signal. You need more than 1-bit in order to be able to do that.

JS: I actually had a SONY engineer say to me one time and this is quite few years ago…he said, “we realized after we got a ways down the road that DSD was kind of a mistake but we had too much invested in it”.

MW: Wasn’t archiving their whole reason for coming up with it in the first place? It was going to be used to take their analog masters in their vault and putting in a format that they thought would preserve the most fidelity, right?

JS: Yeah. And conceptually it looked like a simple approach. And, DSD significantly outperformed the 16-bit PCM systems that were common at the time. As a distribution format, DSD is definitely a big step above 44/16 CDs, and we want to give people the best possible playback of the wonderful DSD recordings that already exist.

MW: And they tried to put in the successor to the CD and that’s where we got a format war.

JS: Yep. Moving forward, we should focus on 24/96, and 24/192 downloads as these formats offer the best quality available.
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« Last Edit: 10/01/13 at 03:31:11 by orangecrush »  
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Lonely Raven
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Re: Why DSD is a terrible idea in 2013
Reply #1 - 10/01/13 at 14:56:49
 
Quote:
JS: I actually had a SONY engineer say to me one time and this is quite few years ago…he said, “we realized after we got a ways down the road that DSD was kind of a mistake but we had too much invested in it”.


This pretty much sums up about half of Sony technologies. Great idea, without a lot of forward planning/thinking.

Unless they really thought they could have us constantly upgrading every time a new technology came out...that might work for some things, but not for archival of music.

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kana813
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Re: Why DSD is a terrible idea in 2013
Reply #2 - 10/01/13 at 18:26:30
 
If John Siau of Benchmark media thinks DSD is so limited, why is he now selling a DSD DAC the DAC2 HGC?

The list of DSD DACs grows ever month:

http://www.audiostream.com/content/dsd-resources-dsd-dac-list

So does the list of DSD download sites:

http://www.audiostream.com/content/dsd-resources-dsd-download-sites

I don't own many DSD recordings or a DSD DAC, but I'm lucky that my current DAC will have a DSD upgrade if I want to try it.
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« Last Edit: 10/02/13 at 03:04:44 by kana813 »  
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orangecrush
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Re: Why DSD is a terrible idea in 2013
Reply #3 - 10/02/13 at 02:19:59
 
He explains why in the interview...

There are cheap external options as well.
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« Last Edit: 10/02/13 at 02:20:42 by orangecrush »  
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