Sony UBP-x800 - DSD Question

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by dkmonroe, Nov 14, 2017.

  1. dkmonroe

    dkmonroe A completely self-taught idiot Thread Starter

    Location:
    Atlanta
    I just got a Sony UBP-x800 and it's fantastic except for one niggling problem, and I'd like to know if it's really a defect in the player or just a lack in my system. It won't output any sound when I set it to play DSD and not convert to PCM. My previous Sony Blu-ray player did appear to output DSD with no problem.

    Here's the gear involved:

    Current disc player: Sony UBP-x800, natch. Outputs stereo and multichannel SACD only when PCM option is selected.

    Current receiver: Onkyo HT-R290.

    Former Blu-ray player: Sony BDP-s5100. Outputs SACD in DSD, apparently.

    Connection is HDMI.

    When I would play SACD with the BDP-s5100, my receiver would display DSD as the format and it would play OK. Having hooked up the UDP-x800 and set it to output DSD, my receiver displays DSD as the format but there's no sound. If I change the player to convert to PCM, it plays perfectly.

    So, what's the culprit here? Does this particular UDP-x800 have a glitch which prevents DSD output, or is my receiver perhaps not a true DSD receiver?
     
  2. Apesbrain

    Apesbrain Forum Resident

    Location:
    East Coast, USA
    Well, it's interesting. The specs for the Sony imply that it can play DSD over HDMI only at 2.8MHz (single-rate DSD); double- and quad-rate files are converted to LPCM. Could this be the problem?

    Sony UBP-X800 Spec Sheet - Page 6

    Although, if the "DSD Output Mode" is set to "Auto" it should figure this out on its own. Note this description in the manual:

    [Auto]: Outputs DSD signal from HDMI OUT jack when playing Super Audio CD & DSD format file (if the connected device also supports DSD).

    "if the connected device also supports DSD" implies the Onkyo is communicating back to to the Sony its capabilities. They may not be "handshaking" properly. Try a different HDMI cable/input; otherwise, it will be difficult to remedy without a firmware update on the incompatible device. Or, you have LPCM as a fallback.
     
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2017
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  3. tootull

    tootull John Norman

    Location:
    Canada
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2017
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  4. dkmonroe

    dkmonroe A completely self-taught idiot Thread Starter

    Location:
    Atlanta
    Yeah, that's the weird thing - you'd think with the "Auto" setting that it'd play something either way. It is actually playing the disc but there's no sound.

    I have noticed that the receiver's HDMI light blinks on and off a bunch of times before the disc starts playing, or "playing" in this case. When it's set to PCM it blinks once.

    SACD converted to PCM sounds fantastic on this player so if I'm stuck with it I'm OK, but I'm really concerned if the DSD feature on the player is actually defective because that could indicate other future problems with this particular player.

    I've already updated the Sony. I don't know if there is a firmware update for the receiver but I'll check it out. Thanks!
     
  5. tootull

    tootull John Norman

    Location:
    Canada
    Digital audio output set to auto is the key. If this is set to PCM, DSD does not decode & reads as PCM.
     
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  6. tootull

    tootull John Norman

    Location:
    Canada
    Yeah, DSD auto is silent through a non compatible DSD receiver, checked on a Harman Kardon receiver
     
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  7. dkmonroe

    dkmonroe A completely self-taught idiot Thread Starter

    Location:
    Atlanta
    Thanks! I think this is the likely culprit. My Onkyo is a separate from a home theater system and it says that it supports DSD but it may be one of those things where it expects the player to do the work.
     
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  8. caupina

    caupina Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Santiago, Chile
    A quick read of the Onkyo manual says that is DSD capable via HDMI as bistream so make sure the Sony is doing that.
     
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  9. PTgraphics

    PTgraphics Forum Resident

    I’ll have to check this on my Integra 40.5. I was told the Integra will do DSD but not so sure. I juts got the x800 over the weekend but haven’t opened it up yet.
     
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  10. dkmonroe

    dkmonroe A completely self-taught idiot Thread Starter

    Location:
    Atlanta
    Problem SOLVED! I took @Apesbrain 's advice and switched my HDMI cable from the "Video/Audio" output to the "Audio" output on the player and I've got DSD! Thanks to everyone for the help!

    What a load off my mind - I was really dreading having to exchange this one, it's a minor hassle but I can do without it. :D

    This is a GREAT player. I've been listening to just CD's most of the day and they have never sounded this good. Truly an amazing upgrade from what I had before.
     
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  11. dougotte

    dougotte Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Washington, DC
    I've been reading this thread with interest as I just ordered this machine, too.

    I'm glad you resolved your issue. But, I want to point out that, if the player is streaming DSD to the AVR, then the AVR DACs are converting to analog. So, it's your AVR that sounds good, not the player.
     
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  12. dkmonroe

    dkmonroe A completely self-taught idiot Thread Starter

    Location:
    Atlanta
    Well, then the AVR sounds much better converting the signal from this player than it did with the last two players. :D
     
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  13. tootull

    tootull John Norman

    Location:
    Canada
    I know this is supposed to be fact and I would love to agree with this. But, I have this Sony & a new Yamaha 681 player both connected by HDMI to the receiver that I mentioned above. I definitely prefer the sound of the Yamaha. ??
     
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