sony s380 as sacd player - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 17 Old 03-01-2012, 05:49 PM - Thread Starter
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Just got a great deal on open box unit as my fat PS3 died.... my receiver does not decode DSD so will be using PCM output. Can I use the coax or does it have to be HDMI?

If I have to do HDMI anyone have issues passing via ARC from TV to receiver? I ran out of inputs on my receiver so would have to pass through to TV.

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post #2 of 17 Old 03-01-2012, 09:59 PM
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For SACD you have to use HDMI or, if available, analogue outputs. Coax or optical will NOT carry SACD (either as a DSD signal or converted to PCM) on that player.
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post #3 of 17 Old 03-02-2012, 07:05 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ovation View Post

For SACD you have to use HDMI or, if available, analogue outputs. Coax or optical will NOT carry SACD (either as a DSD signal or converted to PCM) on that player.

Thanks, I suspected I need to use HDMI... should I be ok using ARC as mentioned?

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post #4 of 17 Old 03-02-2012, 07:50 AM
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^^^

i think it is very unlikely that your tv will even accept multichannel pcm, let alone pass it via arc...

check the owner's manual for your tv, as well as the thread in the display section...

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post #5 of 17 Old 03-02-2012, 05:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ovation View Post

For SACD you have to use HDMI or, if available, analogue outputs. Coax or optical will NOT carry SACD (either as a DSD signal or converted to PCM) on that player.

Are you 100% sure on this for the S380 because the previous year's line up x70s do pass SACD (tested with non-hybrid SACD) as 2.0 PCM (but downsampled to 44.1kHz) via SPDIF? I know 2CH is not what the OP wants but this 'no SACD via SPDIF' dogma just isn't always true.

Audiosceptics accept audio trials using 25 people. A recent Oxford study with over 353,000 patient records from 639 separate clinical trials shows for every 1,000 people taking diclofenac or ibuprofen there would be 3 additional heart attacks, 4 more cases of heart failure and 1 death every year.

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post #6 of 17 Old 03-02-2012, 06:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kilian.ca View Post

Are you 100% sure on this for the S380 because the previous year's line up x70s do pass SACD (tested with non-hybrid SACD) as 2.0 PCM (but downsampled to 44.1kHz) via SPDIF? I know 2CH is not what the OP wants but this 'no SACD via SPDIF' dogma just isn't always true.

I was not aware that Sony had players that did such a conversion. However, to anyone who wants a MCH output, the restriction still stands (HDMI or analogue--there is no FireWire output on these Sony players). Moreover, leaving aside the issue of audible differences, converting SACD output to 16bit/44.1 is a downconversion (actually, IIRC, anything less than 24bit/176.4 is a downconversion).

As you have a player that can send a converted SACD signal via SPDIF, I will amend my statement to say that it is ALMOST NEVER available via SPDIF for 2 channel and NEVER available via SPDIF for MCH.
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post #7 of 17 Old 03-02-2012, 07:22 PM - Thread Starter
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I do believe 2ch is possible but in my case a non issue as I really only listen in MCH.

I really liked my PS3 for SACD but it crapped out on me. Reason for getting the S380 cheap on ebay. Didn't want to drop bucks for an Oppo when I was already dropping money on a PS3 slim.

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post #8 of 17 Old 03-03-2012, 06:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ovation View Post

(actually, IIRC, anything less than 24bit/176.4 is a downconversion).

That's always been my view, one of the major reasons I don't buy the O brand.

Quote:
Originally Posted by upstate-avfan-da View Post

I do believe 2ch is possible but in my case a non issue as I really only listen in MCH.

I really liked my PS3 for SACD but it crapped out on me. Reason for getting the S380 cheap on ebay. Didn't want to drop bucks for an Oppo when I was already dropping money on a PS3 slim.

If you have a moment, could you verify the S380 2ch output for SACD just for my curiosity?

The S380 is a good and cheap replacement for SACD purpose, as it matches the PS3 for the ability to output PCM at 176.4kHz via HDMI. The PS3 I believe does not output SACD via SPDIF.

Audiosceptics accept audio trials using 25 people. A recent Oxford study with over 353,000 patient records from 639 separate clinical trials shows for every 1,000 people taking diclofenac or ibuprofen there would be 3 additional heart attacks, 4 more cases of heart failure and 1 death every year.

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post #9 of 17 Old 03-03-2012, 06:19 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kilian.ca View Post


That's always been my view, one of the major reasons I don't buy the O brand.

If you have a moment, could you verify the S380 2ch output for SACD just for my curiosity?

The S380 is a good and cheap replacement for SACD purpose, as it matches the PS3 for the ability to output PCM at 176.4kHz via HDMI. The PS3 I believe does not output SACD via SPDIF.

I will have it on Monday and can test it out. I got it for a steal on ebay (less than $30), display unit.

I can comment on the PS3 as it did do SACD for me using HDMI and optical. I preciously didn't have an AVR that had HDMI so all audio was passed using optical. Could be just on 1st gen fat PS3.

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post #10 of 17 Old 03-03-2012, 07:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kilian.ca View Post

That's always been my view, one of the major reasons I don't buy the O brand.

This article raises some interesting points about DSD to PCM conversion (though I doubt I could hear a difference).



Quote:
Originally Posted by upstate-avfan-da View Post


I can comment on the PS3 as it did do SACD for me using HDMI and optical. I preciously didn't have an AVR that had HDMI so all audio was passed using optical. Could be just on 1st gen fat PS3.

That is odd. I have an 80gb PS3 (fat) with SACD playback (the last model they made with SACD playback). Via optical (until January 2012, I did not have an HDMI equipped AVR), there was a brief moment when SACD was transformed to DTS MCH on the fly but subsequent firmware updates eliminated that. Outside that brief timespan, I was never able to get SACD to play via optical at all.
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post #11 of 17 Old 03-04-2012, 06:51 PM
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Regarding the above linked article (did he see some previous chat here? ), I'm very aware of the points raised but that's not really the real issue because noise can be filtered off and higher sample rate allows more gentle filtering. I understand in broad sense that is something similar in the common DAC design to have oversampling. If you read the DAC data sheets different incoming sample rates can be handled differently with different algorithms and clock, for example a 44.1kHz is 8x oversampled and a 192kHz is 2x oversampled. So the end result could be rather similar.

Charles Hansen did comment on filtering in the Ayre BDP thread and he concedes that 176.4kHz is preferable. The other point I've seen raised elsewhere is DSD is equivalent to about 100kHz in resolution - I can't remember where I read this or if this is correct. There is a graph done by someone showing DSD and 24/96 PCM have very similar waveforms on a test tone. Now you can argue 88 is close to 96 and 80 is close to 88 and you're on a slippery slope.

All in all, it is a safer bet to have higher rather than lower sample rates to start with. I'm not saying that's the only thing that matters. Even to this day AFAIK many AVRs/pre-pros can't process 196kHz. Sending DSD to AVR is a complete mystery because you just don't know what the AVR does to the PCM conversion.

Audiosceptics accept audio trials using 25 people. A recent Oxford study with over 353,000 patient records from 639 separate clinical trials shows for every 1,000 people taking diclofenac or ibuprofen there would be 3 additional heart attacks, 4 more cases of heart failure and 1 death every year.

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post #12 of 17 Old 03-04-2012, 07:48 PM - Thread Starter
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I do think at a certain point the human range is the biggest factor, but for my purpose I am happy with as good quality I can squeeze out of my budget system. I doubt I would be able to have upper end capability at this point but enjoy the sound over mainstream formats immensely.

My modest set up:
Denon 591
Polk Monitor 50 (L/R)
Polk TL2 (C)
Polk Monitor 30 (Surround)
Sony SA-W2500 (Sub)

This has let me see the light so to speak of hi-rez audio. If only I could stream FLAC :-)

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post #13 of 17 Old 03-05-2012, 08:39 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kilian.ca View Post


That's always been my view, one of the major reasons I don't buy the O brand.

If you have a moment, could you verify the S380 2ch output for SACD just for my curiosity?

The S380 is a good and cheap replacement for SACD purpose, as it matches the PS3 for the ability to output PCM at 176.4kHz via HDMI. The PS3 I believe does not output SACD via SPDIF.

I hooked it up tonight, digital coax on the 380 only outputs in 2ch. HDMI was good for MCH. Didn't see optical but I was rushing and could have just been blind.

Another note is that trying HDMI to TV and using HDMI ARC to AVR did not pass MCH.

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post #14 of 17 Old 03-06-2012, 10:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by upstate-avfan-da View Post

I doubt I would be able to have upper end capability at this point but enjoy the sound over mainstream formats immensely.

I hear you. The vast majority of my serious music listening is actually CD. Most of the artists I care for are not available in high res and I'm artist and music driven, not format.

Quote:
Originally Posted by upstate-avfan-da View Post

I hooked it up tonight, digital coax on the 380 only outputs in 2ch. HDMI was good for MCH.

Thanks, nobody expects coax to pass MCH PCM but the fact that it's passing something from SACD at all is significant.

Audiosceptics accept audio trials using 25 people. A recent Oxford study with over 353,000 patient records from 639 separate clinical trials shows for every 1,000 people taking diclofenac or ibuprofen there would be 3 additional heart attacks, 4 more cases of heart failure and 1 death every year.

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post #15 of 17 Old 03-07-2012, 03:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by upstate-avfan-da View Post


I hooked it up tonight, digital coax on the 380 only outputs in 2ch.

Are you positive that what it's sending via coax is data from SACD layer? Did you play a single-layer SACD?

I ask only because the Sony XA5400ES apparently passes ONLY CD layer data via digital coax.

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post #16 of 17 Old 03-07-2012, 05:46 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by mpedris View Post


Are you positive that what it's sending via coax is data from SACD layer? Did you play a single-layer SACD?

I ask only because the Sony XA5400ES apparently passes ONLY CD layer data via digital coax.

Prior to playing I set all the options to only play the SACD layer, confirmed during playback that it was the layer playing. Now I am not sure if it was picking up 2ch or MCH and then only using stereo to the AVR, but whatever was playing definitely had the same fidelity of the SACD layer playing via HDMI.

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post #17 of 17 Old 03-29-2012, 10:39 AM
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digital coax can transfer 2ch PCM, if you want to use 5.1ch, then have to be HDMI.
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