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Using inexpensive DVD player as transport for an external DAC

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#21
So something is definitely wrong with the Samsung. I tried the old Pioneer DVD and it works great on either coax or optical. Just as good as the Cayin and maybe(?) a bit better. And definitely a cheap solution for high end performance - get a good DAC and a Pioneer DVD player. I'll try something other than the Marantz sometime soon - interested in the Cayin IDAC-6, Topping DX3Pro, or the RME ADI-2 Dac based on a lot of forum reading - but for now the Marantz sounds lovely.

Still no guess as to what could go wrong with the Samsung though.
 
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#23
Unfortunately I have no means of testing the Samsung. It may well be that this is a problem specific to this one unit, and I agree with you that it would be nice to remove any doubts. However, I am definitely inclined to assume that if a DVD player is not faulty it should not make a difference which one you use.
 
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#24
Unfortunately I have no means of testing the Samsung. It may well be that this is a problem specific to this one unit, and I agree with you that it would be nice to remove any doubts. However, I am definitely inclined to assume that if a DVD player is not faulty it should not make a difference which one you use.
Did you ever try @gvl 's suggestion to hook the Samsung to a tv to check the settings? What model is the player?
 

Z6U

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#26
I did not like the sound of my NAD T515 over spdif coax. Changed that unit out for a Toshiba SD-9200 which should not sound better but it does in particular on bass reproduction. Same L-5CFB cable with RCAP connectors. Both fed into a SMSL SU 8. The difference was apparent using the Loxjie P20 in balanced mode. The NAD seemed to be missing a bit of sub-bass that the Toshiba was willingly outputting.
 

JJB70

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#29
The Sony UDP X800 is heavily discounted now, in our market you can get them for £150 - 200 new. Not the cheapest but it is a very nicely made model that can play just about anything. No analogue out though.
 

Eirikur

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#33
And yet the conclusion seems to be this:
"This shows only, that jitter is measurable. Is it audible? Many modern DAC chips should have no problems with this kind of jitter. "
A digital optical link can only sound "terrible" when bit integrity is lost (clicks & pops), or non-correctable jitter is introduced. The receiving side (in bold above) may also share some of the blame, depending on how well it rejects the short-term jitter.
Always remember, all manufacturers will cheap out on any component if they think they can get away with it.
My HDMI board for example would also have functioned correctly, had Onkyo taken the trouble of spending 50 cents more on 105degC capacitors in stead of using 85degC, and placing them just above a cooking heat sink! A lethal compromise of barely acceptable components and poor layout.
 

Frank Dernie

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#34
Goldmund used Pioneer DV-300. Try to find DV-300, DV-393, or little better one DV-610 (has coax and optical out).
About 20 years ago a friend of mine thought about going into manufacture of hifi at the high end and thought the Goldmund high end stuff had the nicest enclosure because it was made from nicely finished ally plate bolted together rather than a cheap box with fancy faceplate. I have a Goldmund Mimesis preamp and got our machine shop to quote to make the case in a batch of 25.
The estimate was £7,500 each case. It may be cheaper now but there are a lot of expensive bits because of blind threaded holes.
Goldmund also put effort into mechanical grounding and their AC-Curator mains filtering circuit both of which will almost certainly be incorporated.
Now I would not expect the casing quality or, probably, mechanical grounding to effect performance. Mains filtering may but should be included anyway.
The Pioneer players had state of the art performance anyway so whilst Lampizator feigns outrage and it is not worth the extra for the casing in terms of sound or vision at least I can see where the money went, which is more than can be said for any of Lampizator's products!
 

Krunok

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#35
A digital optical link can only sound "terrible" when bit integrity is lost (clicks & pops), or non-correctable jitter is introduced. The receiving side (in bold above) may also share some of the blame, depending on how well it rejects the short-term jitter.
Sure, and yet it occurs so rarely with new ESS and AKM DAC chips. In fact I can't even remember someone reporting jitter related problem with even the cheapest CD/DVD devices used as transport to drive modern DACs over SPDIF. In that context I see your statement ("might be that you get massive jitter on the optical out") as overcautious.
 
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rwortman

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#36
I did not like the sound of my NAD T515 over spdif coax. Changed that unit out for a Toshiba SD-9200 which should not sound better but it does in particular on bass reproduction. Same L-5CFB cable with RCAP connectors. Both fed into a SMSL SU 8. The difference was apparent using the Loxjie P20 in balanced mode. The NAD seemed to be missing a bit of sub-bass that the Toshiba was willingly outputting.
Why would NAD add digital processing to remove bass? Its specified frequency response starts at 4hz.
 

Eirikur

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#37
Sure, and yet it occurs so rarely with new ESS and AKM DAC chips. In fact I can't even remember someone reporting jitter related problem with even the cheapest CD/DVD devices used as transport to drive modern DACs over SPDIF. In that context I ssee your statement ("might be that you get massive jitter on the optical out") as overcautious.
It probably is overcautious, I'm just stating proven sources of possible distortion.
@orangejello tells us his unit sounds "terrible" on both digital outputs - that's all.
 
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#38
After getting the RME ADI-2 DAC, I have been speculating as to a technical explanation regarding my observation that the Marantz HD-DAC1 sounded better (or should I just say, "different") playing back USB Spotify Premium (upsampled to 192/24) than when playing back CDs through either optical or coax. My speculation does not have to do with the sample rate per se, or the difference between SPDIF -vs- USB. It has only to do how digital filters and sample rates interact.

With DACs like the Marantz that do not allow a user to choose a filter (and if necessary, a PEQ fix for the rolloff that some filters induce), the designers picks a filter for you. If they pick a slow filter, the 44.1 input will be rolled off. But with a 192k sample rate, the slow filter (if I understand the guys at RME correctly) will show very little roll off in the audible spectrum. If, on the other hand, they pick a fast filter, the frequency response for the 44.1 input will be flat but the output will have a different impulse response. Either way, the 44.1 output will be different than the upsampled 192k output. For example, if a super slow filters is chosen, the 44.1k signal will begin rolling off at 5k and will be down 3 dB at 20k. I am pretty sure this is AB/X audible for someone like Amir who is trained in discerning these differences. Whether the significant impulse response differences are detectable via AB/X I don't know. I just know that after playing around with these filters for CD playback, I definitely have my preferences.

Does this make sense to you guys that are well-versed in signal processing?

I would also suppose that it is possible for the DAC implementation to be smart and use a different filter for lower sample rates than for higher sample rates. But I don't know if this is typically done.

As an aside, RME actually does use two different filters by default. At or below a sample rate of 192k the users-configured filter is applied (with Short Delay Fast being the default.) Above 192k RME overides the user configuration and applies a Slow filter. I found this out in a discussion with the RME MC. I pointed out that they did not document this. He took note and said that they will eventually get around to documenting the behavior.
 

Krunok

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#39
It probably is overcautious, I'm just stating proven sources of possible distortion.
@orangejello tells us his unit sounds "terrible" on both digital outputs - that's all.
Link you provided doesn't prove it. I would like to see a case where non-broken SPDIF interfae caused audible jitter issues with any modern DAC.
 

Krunok

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#40
After getting the RME ADI-2 DAC, I have been speculating as to a technical explanation regarding my observation that the Marantz HD-DAC1 sounded better (or should I just say, "different") playing back USB Spotify Premium (upsampled to 192/24) than when playing back CDs through either optical or coax. My speculation does not have to do with the sample rate per se, or the difference between SPDIF -vs- USB. It has only to do how digital filters and sample rates interact.
Unless done through a proper blind test your observations about those DACs sounding different are not reliable.
 

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