DSD upsampling vs original PCM... and the bass output!

I’ve been upsampling to DSD for a while now… I think DSD sounds incredible and extremely organic: the voices really stand out and are extremely realistic. There is also a lot of air in the high frequencies, making DSD output crystal clear and very detailed. The sound stage is much sharper with a clearly defined edge and image around each instrument. But… Yes, there is a but! I also noticed that the bass is really dull, thin and softer, not as loud and deep as it should be. It lacks the presence, slap and impact that the PCM format offers. This is very annoying and I’m trying to figure out why the bass is so light and lacking. Is there a setting I should modify? Is DSD too good to be true? Why is there such a difference? Maybe I should fiddle with the DSD filter settings? I have experienced that problem when playing both native DSD files and PCM recordings upsampled to DSD. I’d love to have other listeners’ feedback on this matter.

Oh, and by the way, is there a setting to prevent upsampling to DSD if the audio files played are already native DSD files (or is it done automatically by Audirvana)?

Best regards

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No feedback on the differences between PCM and DSD sound quality output ? Am I the only one hearing a difference ?

I don’t use upsampling. Too easy to screw good sound from my dac :grinning:

Audirvana does not upsample dsd files, just pcm.


I just did a few audio tests between 24/192 and DSD256 format, because I am new and I don’t know anything about the audio formats. So I wanted to test a few songs with upscaling in 24/192 or DSD 256…no doubt, the 24/192 is much more dynamic, detailled, live…I was thinking that DSD256 would be better and I am also surprised, the difference is huge and in no way I will use upscaling in DSD256 in these conditions, the upscaling in 24/192 is perfect ! but I would be happy to understand the reason too. Note that my DAC is compatbel with 24/192 and DSD256 (furthermore I have a lot of interferences in DSD256, it seems the files are much bigger to download?)

Hi guys

the answer may lay in your DAC. Most consumer-DAC reconvert DSD to PCM to reconvert them again to the analogue output. This may result in different sounds

Only some DACs use the pure DSD signal to amplify the signal without passing a transformation.

Also, the quality of the clock in the DAC seems more important when playing DSD.

Another point is the quality of the audio driver and algorythms used for generating the DSD file, and the filters applied in your DAC.

When you open the settings of the audio driver, you can test a lot of different settings

Another suggestion would be to try DSD128. I tried 256 and had problems that just don’t exist with 128 and 128 just sounded better. There is something about DSD256 that I never found right, and upsampling to it doesn’t solve the problem.

i feel the same way. I’ve been searching for the awnser and i did no find any at all