Which PS3 do you have? My PS3 (slim) does do 7.1 DTS at all times, even for a 3D BluRay disc, but will not do TrueHD 7.1 and 3D simultaneously (been a while since I posted here, refined that discovery).. What 11.1 encoded discs? I have trouble finding 5.1 or 7.1 recordings (for music); from what I know 9ch and 11ch at this time are not from sources but rather matrixed from 5.1 or 7.1 sources but I really don't know as am not too interested at this time.
Volume matching isn't the same thing as gain matching on the inputs in any case.....there are dynamic range settings in the PS3, too (in the video menu, BD/DVD-Dynamic Range Control).
As to not having digital output and rather use a player's DAC with analog output, I think that's an exercise in futility for the most part....what receiver do you have?