The new Sony UHP-H1 plays everything - Blu-ray, SACD, CD, even DVD-Audio

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by back2vinyl, May 20, 2016.

  1. back2vinyl

    back2vinyl Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    London, UK
    I know this new Sony audio and video player has been talked about in other threads but I thought we might give it its own thread now it’s hitting the stores. It’s just become available in the UK (at Sevenoaks Sound & Vision) for £399 so it’s a relatively inexpensive way of picking up a machine that will play almost anything circular except a cookie, or biscuit as we say in the UK.


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    I already have a very fine Sony SACD player, the SCD-XA5400ES. But these days I only really use it as a transport because I take the digital stereo SACD feed out of the HDMI output and rip it to the music library on my PC via an HDMI de-embedder. So it’s a bit of a waste of space having this large machine just to act as a transport – and I have no way at all of playing any Blu-ray or DVD-A discs. My idea is to pick up the Sony UHP-H1 to use it as an all-in-one transport for all kinds of discs. The icing on the cake is that I can also hook up one of its HDMI outputs to the TV so anyone else in the household can use it for video playing or streaming.

    Here is the manual for the UHP-H1 so you can see what it does. Note that there seem to be two manuals available, one a shortened version of the other, so you need this long one to see the full spec:

    Full Sony UHP-H1 operating instructions - UK version

    It seems to play everything at high resolution but it doesn’t say in the spec whether the SACD LPCM output is 88.2 kHz or 176.4 kHz. I don’t think I care much either way but I’ve sent off a question to Sony anyway. I might even go out and buy one tomorrow so I’ll be able to answer some questions, though it could be a few days before I have time to install it.

    Anyone else planning to get one of these?
     
    Mike6565, tootull, Laibach and 3 others like this.
  2. riddlemay

    riddlemay Active Member

    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    I'll be looking forward to your sonic impressions.
     
  3. Breeze 1

    Breeze 1 Member

    Location:
    LA
    Looks like Sony is following in the foot steps of Ayre.
    Wasn't Sony going to stop supporting SACD.
     
    tmsorosk likes this.
  4. Tony Plachy

    Tony Plachy Forum Resident

    Location:
    Pleasantville, NY
    When you take the HD output of the 5400 when you plat an SACD are you ripping the DSD data stream or the redbook data stream from the CD layer on a hybrid SACD?
     
  5. PNeski@aol.com

    PNeski@aol.com Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York
    does not play 4k discs
     
  6. bmoregnr

    bmoregnr Forum Resident

    Location:
    1060 W.Addison
    I am curious what does Ayre have as I am not seeing anything? The only thing I know of is Oppo but I admit I have not looked too hard.
     
  7. back2vinyl

    back2vinyl Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    London, UK
    Neither! I'm ripping the SACD layer but it's the LPCM stream, which is converted from DSD to LPCM at a sampling rate of 176.4 kHz. This LPCM stream comes out of the HDMI output of the SACD player. I can't plug it straight into a PC because no PC in the world has an HDMI input so it goes through a little adaptor called an HDMI de-embedder which has an HDMI input and a S/PDIF output (optical and co-ax), The S/PDIF output goes to the PC (actually, in my case, to an outboard DAC/ADC.)

    I would use the same technique with the UHP-H1, so you can see why I only need it as a transport - I'd never be using its internal DAC or its analogue section.

    The operating instructions say that when playing an SACD, you can choose whether to output DSD or LPCM over HDMI. It doesn't state whether the sampling frequency is 176.4 kHz, as with the Sony SCD-XA5400ES, or 88.2 kHz, which is preferred by Oppo, but I don't mind which it is.

    S/PDIF can't handle DSD or multi-channel and that's why this technique can only be used for 2-channel and LPCM.

    Apologies if you know all this - I think you probably do.
     
  8. billnunan

    billnunan Forum Resident

    Location:
    Cleveland, Ohio
    Instead of going into your DAC, can you send that LPCM stream into the PC and into iTunes or JRiver and play it from either of those?
     
  9. back2vinyl

    back2vinyl Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    London, UK
    The weird thing is, I've never actually tried that - I've only ever used this setup for ripping. But just thinking out loud:

    I can't see any reason why it wouldn't work in theory, but in practice, let's say you're using JRiver. You've have to tell JRiver to switch from your existing source to the new source, so the first question is, would the UHP-H1 show up as source in Tools - Options - Audio - Audio Devices when connected in this way? I feel confident the input would show up, but I'm less confident that the UHP-H1 would be clearly identified.

    The second question is, would JRiver be able to read the disc and know what to play? Hmmm.

    There's only one way to find out. I'll have to try it and let you know!

    Here's another scenario, though.

    Next month, NAD's revolutionary all-digital integrated amplifier will hit the streets - the NAD Masters Series M32. That amplifier comes with an optional module with three HDMI inputs and one HDMI output. I'm planning to be one of the first customers for this amp and as soon as I have one, I'll be able to connect the HDMI output from the UHP-H1 directly into the amp and play back all kinds of discs, including SACDs, directly through the amp without any need for a PC or anything else. It will be just UHP-H1 - NAD M32 - speakers. That's one of the main reasons I'm so keen to get the UHP-H1, in readiness for the arrival of the NAD M32. It's also why I only need the UHP-H1 as a transport - the digital feed will be going straight into the M32 so I won't need all the bells and whistles that go with an Oppo.
     
    bluemooze, billnunan and robertzombie like this.
  10. Tony Plachy

    Tony Plachy Forum Resident

    Location:
    Pleasantville, NY
    So the NAD M32 will play the native DSD assuming the UHP-H1 will send the native DSD over the HDMI connection?
     
  11. harby

    harby Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Portland, OR, USA
    According to the manual:

    Discs that cannot be played
    • BDs with cartridge
    • BDXLs
    • DVD-RAMs
    • HD DVDs
    • PHOTO CDs
    • Data part of CD-Extras
    • Super VCDs
    • Audio material side on DualDiscs



    CD+G? DivX (original Circuit City or MPEG4?)? CD-i? Also not mentioned in "everything".
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2016
  12. back2vinyl

    back2vinyl Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    London, UK
    Good question. Theoretically it could, since as you say it has the option of an HDMI input. However, my understanding is that it will use the same HDMI module as the one already available for other NAD models, and that module maxes out at 192 kHz. So that means it will tell the UHP-H1 to stream LPCM rather than DSD. That doesn't bother me one way or the other but I can see it would be a disappointment to DSD mavens.
     
  13. back2vinyl

    back2vinyl Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    London, UK
    Yes, you're right to pick me up on that. When I said "everything" in the thread title, I was just using it as shorthand for every widely-accepted audio format that forum members were likely to encounter. With hindsight, I should have said "nearly everything."

    But if you think my thread title's bad, you should see Sony's claim for the All-In-One Box Of Wonder: "Play and stream anything you can imagine..."

    Link to Sony UK's web page for the UHP-H1
     
    Stallings likes this.
  14. Tony Plachy

    Tony Plachy Forum Resident

    Location:
    Pleasantville, NY
    First, Please let me apologize for all of the repeated post by me in this thread. :o :o :o Something went very wrong when I tried to post, I have reported it to the Gorts, hopefully they can clean it up.

    The point of SACD is to listen to the native DSD, but you can still do that with the UHP-H1 by simply taking its analog outputs to your amp.
     
    art likes this.
  15. robertzombie

    robertzombie Forum Resident

    Location:
    London, UK
    Sounds awesome! Looking forward to reading your impressions, @back2vinyl
     
    back2vinyl likes this.
  16. back2vinyl

    back2vinyl Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    London, UK
    Yes, but then you'd be converting it to analogue, so you still wouldn't be listening to the native DSD! And are we sure SACD players don't convert the signal from DSD to LPCM before feeding it to their internal DACs, anyway? I'm no expert on this but I'm sure I remember reading that a lot of them do.

    For me, and this is just my own personal preference, it's more a case of looking at the whole chain and deciding what will give you the best end result. For example, if I had an all-digital NAD M32 amplifier, I 'd have two options:

    1. Let the UHP-H1 convert the DSD to LPCM. Take the LPCM stream via HDMI to the NAD M32 and keep it in the digital domain right through the amplifier to the speaker terminals where it passes through a filter that converts it to analogue for the speakers.

    2. Let the UHP-P1 use its internal DAC to convert the DSD to analogue. Take the analogue stream from the UHP-H1's RCA phono outputs to an A/DC (analogue-to-digital converter) to convert it back into digital again. Take the A/DC's digital output and send it to the S/PDIF inputs of the NAD M32. Keep it in the digital domain right through the amplifier to the speaker terminals where it passes through a filter that converts it back to analogue again for the speakers.

    I think number 1 looks a much better option in that particular case. On the other hand, if you can arrange things such that there's only ever one digital-to-analogue conversion in the chain, and if you can be certain that the digital signal going into that conversion really is pure DSD, I can easily see how that could be a very attractive option, especially for those who have a preference for DSD.
     
  17. Bellowe

    Bellowe Member

    This setup has nothing to do with ripping. You are doing a laser drop.
     
  18. There really aren't any 4K discs, and there are no "real" 4K displays yet. It's a mish-mosh of incompatible formats and technologies that mostly just upsample 1080p content to 4k.
     
  19. Almost all sigma-delta DAC's convert DSD to PCM at the DAC chip's input and then do the conversion in a PWM form similar to DSD. It's a weird mathematical dance once the signal is inside the chip.

    Just about the only way to convert DSD straight to analog, primarily through merely utilizing a low pass filter, is via a Lampizator DSD DAC.
     
    back2vinyl likes this.
  20. PNeski@aol.com

    PNeski@aol.com Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York
    if you mean the dumb downed the 4k spec ,yes for home use but its close,there are plenty of these (type) of 4k displays ,and its not at all a "mish-mosh of incompatible formats and technologies " While its true the 4k discs that came out are mostly
    2k up converts ,there are a few real 4k titles and I am sure more are to come
     
  21. back2vinyl

    back2vinyl Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    London, UK
    Well, I've bought one. It was £399 from Sevenoaks Sound and Vision in London. It's a very nice, neat black box, well made, and incredibly silent-running when playing an SACD compared to my old Sony SCD-XA5400ES which sounds like a rusty steamroller.

    I haven't had time to use it yet but I did do two quick tests which revealed the following:

    1. If you opt for SACD playback in PCM mode rather than DSD, it delivers at a sample rate of 176.4 kHz via HDMI. I was pleasantly surprised - most SACD players only offer 88.2 kHz in this mode, although I think in the Oppo's case that's a deliberate preference on the part of the manufacturer.

    2. I now realise I was talking complete rubbish in my previous reply to this question from billnunan:
    I tried sending the PCM output to JRiver on my PC and immediately realised that playing around with Tools - Options - Audio - Audio Devices in JRiver was a waste of time because that's for changing the output from JRiver, not the input into JRiver. I then started looking for a way of hooking up JRiver to the UHP-H1. The UHP-H1 is DLNA compliant and sure enough, JRiver sees it all right, listing it under Playing Now as a device on the network. But that's as far as I can get. I can't immediately see a way of accessing whatever's playing on the UHP-H1 and playing it back via JRiver. I suspect it's not possible because JRiver can only connect with other devices that are also loaded with JRiver and obviously the UHP-H1 isn't. But we really need a JRiver expert to tell us for sure.

    I won't be able to do any more tests on it today, but so far, so good.
     
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  22. TarnishedEars

    TarnishedEars Forum Resident

    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    Why would anyone want to do this? If you want to rip the PCM stream from your de-embedder, you would use some recording software package to do this, not a playback-specific package such as JRiver.
     
  23. Tony Plachy

    Tony Plachy Forum Resident

    Location:
    Pleasantville, NY
    Eric, I certainly can't speak for all of the DAC's out there but the PS Audio Directstream DAC (designed by Tim Smith actually converts everything to 10xDSD (a true PDM data stream) and then coverts to analog. At $6K its not cheap but sounds wonderful. I am pretty sure Ed Meitners latest that is reported to convert everything to 16xDSD does true PDM to analog (at $25K it is not aimed at the mass market) and interestingly enough the renowned dCS does not do true PDM, but coverts everything to 4.65 bit PCM at the DSD sampling rate of 2.8224 MS.p.s. (if you buy the Vivaldi stack we are talking $100K+ so obviously this is only for a select few). :winkgrin:
     
  24. detroit muscle

    detroit muscle Forum Resident

    This is interesting as far as I'm aware Sony never supported DVD-A before. Wish they'd done it (much) earlier.
     
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  25. back2vinyl

    back2vinyl Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    London, UK
    Sorry, it's not at all clear but there are two separate things going on here.

    First, I said in my OP that at present I was really only using my existing SACD player to rip the PCM stream to my PC through the de-embedder. Sure enough, although I didn't mention it, I was using Adobe Audition to record the rip. All very straightforward.

    Then billnunan asked if it was possible to play the PCM stream through JRiver instead. I thought he meant play it back live, in real time, instead of recording it - but maybe I misunderstood him. Anyway, I think the answer's no.
     
  26. TarnishedEars

    TarnishedEars Forum Resident

    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    In that case, I'm guessing that if he didn't want to rip the PCM stream, he might be interested in playing the transcoded PCM (from DSD) stream from his SACD player in real-time through his DAC. This is possible with many DACs by simply connecting the De-Embedder SP/DIF output directly to the DAC.

    But this this is not a completely lossless process (even though it is theoretically very low loss). Although whether this matters to a given person is going to vary substantially depending upon the person.
     
  27. LWF

    LWF New Member

    Location:
    Edmonton Canada
    I agree 1000% that the point of DSD is to hear it natively. I would expect most of us also want to hear SACD as native DSD also.

    The question of whether the UHP-H1, or for that matter other units, operate internally on native DSD or not is a question that really needs definitive answering. With the UHP-H1, we can't even be sure it's analog outputs are being fed DSD, or instead some down conversion. (One would hope of course those analog outputs are worth listening to in the first place).

    I for one would like to know the answers to both of these questions:
    Native DSD internally or converted ?
    Analog outputs fed native DSD or a down converted version.
     
    Last edited: May 22, 2016
  28. I think what's more important than the math done inside the player is how it sounds. Has anybody heard the thing?
     
  29. Sure it is. For example, some 4k displays support 4k/60p, some do not. There are no "real" 4k displays out yet--at least none that will work properly with UHD players. Wait until next year for UHDTV's.
     
    Last edited: May 22, 2016
  30. warp2600

    warp2600 Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Budapest, Hungary
    The new DAC from the German T+A named DAC 8 DSD does true 1-bit chipless conversion of a DSD stream into analog without converting to PCM.

    Also, multibit chips utilised in some DSD DACs do not convert to PCM, as I understand it.

    I myself play SACDs through HDMI connection to my A/V receiver (MARANTZ SR7001) in form of a DSD stream and in PURE Direct mode the manual says the DSD stream is converted directly to analog without going through a PCM conversion.
     
    Last edited: May 22, 2016
    Jim in Houston likes this.
  31. warp2600

    warp2600 Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Budapest, Hungary
    In DLNA you have a controller, a server and a renderer. The controller tells the server to send the file to the renderer to play it. Now, AFAIK, Jriver may be a server or a controller in DLNA but not a renderer. A player like the UHP-H1 may be a player and a controller but not a server. That is why you cannot 'play' something coming from the UHP in the JRiver app.
     
  32. missan

    missan Forum Resident

    Location:
    Stockholm
    Will be interesting what You think of it when You have tested it. It looks very interesting to me. How is SQ from analog out e.g.
     
  33. PNeski@aol.com

    PNeski@aol.com Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York
    I don't think your right ,If you have many of the new models,you don't have to wait to buy a newer model ,But newer models are always coming out
     
  34. KeithH

    KeithH Success With Honor...then and now

    Location:
    Beaver Stadium
    I am intrigued by the UHP-H1 and am wondering if would be an audio upgrade to the Sony BDP-S770 that I bought about five years ago.

    According to sony.com, the new player cannot be purchased online, but they imply that Best Buy stores in my area have it. It is $350 USD. Checking bestbuy.com, it is available for pre-order. Store pick-up is listed as "Coming Soon". When I placed it in my cart on bestbuy.com, it showed the release date as June 1st. Hmm...
     
  35. stereoguy

    stereoguy Forum Resident

    Location:
    Brooklyn
    It seems do a lot for an $350 player. I wonder how it sounds on Redbook Cd?
     
  36. That's not correct. 4k TV's right now are like the wild west. They each have their own proprietary processing formats, some of which support certain UHD protocols but not all of them. They have massive HDMI handshake problems and most HDMI cables will not work. None of them right now are able to play 4k content from the one available UHD player in pure 4k mode. How do I know this? I have been privy to some internal discussions.

    You can get some of the gory details if you read AVS forum threads on the subject, too. 4k TV's are not yet ready for prime time, as some early adopters have found. The 4k sets will play 1080p content fine, so it's not as if you wasted your money buying a 4k set. However, they are not ready for 4k media.
     
  37. PNeski@aol.com

    PNeski@aol.com Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York

    well the guy on Blu-Ray.com had some problems with Handshake problems ,but that was it Robert Harris has reviewed many titles ,and didn't have problems ,and Sound and Vision had no trouble ,Not sure which products work the best
    with each other ,and these are the early days ,with only one model Player even available here in the US ,but from what I read even the up converted 2k discs are better than there Blue Ray Counterparts
     

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