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Article: At Long Last! Listen To Your (Physical) SACDs Through an Outboard DAC


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5 hours ago, Daveyu said:

I purchased the Chinese box, I have a Pontus and old Sony bdp-4100, I could not get it to work with SACDs and

I have set DSD over hdmi in the Audio settings

 

I have also read that someone could not get their Perfectwave SACD transport to work with the Pontus

 

 

Did you read the linked article in Post #1 ?.

You need to adjust the I2S settings in your Pontus to match these........

 

 

Converter box I2S pin settings.jpg

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12 hours ago, linger63 said:

 

Did you read the linked article in Post #1 ?.

You need to adjust the I2S settings in your Pontus to match these........

 

 

Converter box I2S pin settings.jpg

I used the method in video to set pin configuration 

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On 2/3/2021 at 5:37 PM, linger63 said:

 

Did you read the linked article in Post #1 ?.

You need to adjust the I2S settings in your Pontus to match these........

 

 

Converter box I2S pin settings.jpg

The Chinese I2S box and the Pontus were on the same I2S interface, IE, the default interface, and no adjustment of the Pontus I2S connection should be necessary. As far as I can make out, the player used as the SACD transport has nothing to do with the I2S/Pontus interface. If your player isn’t working, I suggest you try another. I’ve yet to find  blu-ray player which will support SACD that doesn’t work with this set-up.

George

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5 hours ago, gmgraves said:

The Chinese I2S box and the Pontus were on the same I2S interface, IE, the default interface, and no adjustment of the Pontus I2S connection should be necessary. As far as I can make out, the player used as the SACD transport has nothing to do with the I2S/Pontus interface. If your player isn’t working, I suggest you try another. I’ve yet to find  blu-ray player which will support SACD that doesn’t work with this set-up.

Not sure its the player as when I connect it to my AV amp and play a SACD it says DSD playing, think it must be the box, there are so many on eBay now

Can you say which was the one you actually purchased or who the seller was ?

Do you know what setting IS2 setting (xxx) you have on the Pontus

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10 minutes ago, Daveyu said:

Not sure its the player as when I connect it to my AV amp and play a SACD it says DSD playing, think it must be the box, there are so many on eBay now

Can you say which was the one you actually purchased or who the seller was ?

Do you know what setting IS2 setting (xxx) you have on the Pontus

I set my Pontus to    010

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4 hours ago, Daveyu said:

Not sure its the player as when I connect it to my AV amp and play a SACD it says DSD playing, think it must be the box, there are so many on eBay now

Can you say which was the one you actually purchased or who the seller was ?

Do you know what setting IS2 setting (xxx) you have on the Pontus

As I wrote the above, it occurred to me that maybe, just because all of these I2S boxes LOOK the same, doesn’t necessarily mean that they ARE the same. Did I merely luck-out? Still, one should be able to find the proper pin-out by following the instructions provided by Denifrips in the You-tube video.

 

George

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On 2/5/2021 at 11:41 AM, gmgraves said:

“My ad hoc search yielded a series of circuit boards and complete units that took an HDMI output from video sources and output I2S over HDMI as well as coaxial and optical SPDIF!“

 

George, apologies if you addressed this elsewhere.  Does the Chinese box output DSD over the coax and/or optical outputs?   Have you tried either to your D’frips DAC?  I just don’t know I2S well enough and whether the only SACD playback option from this Chinese box will be over the hdmi output.   I have one of these boxes coming in a few days and will try with an Oppo 95 and a few older DACs lying around.  The GeerFab people tell me the Oppo 95 works well with their DBOB converter.

Regards,

Jim

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1 hour ago, jxo said:

George, apologies if you addressed this elsewhere.  Does the Chinese box output DSD over the coax and/or optical outputs?   Have you tried either to your D’frips DAC?  I just don’t know I2S well enough and whether the only SACD playback option from this Chinese box will be over the hdmi output.   I have one of these boxes coming in a few days and will try with an Oppo 95 and a few older DACs lying around.  The GeerFab people tell me the Oppo 95 works well with their DBOB converter.

It does . It outputs from I2S from SPDIF, both optical (Toslink) and coaxial, and it outputs also from HDMI and pure I2S over what seems to be a Molex-type I2S connector. Since my understanding is that the Denafrips Pontus only accepts I2S over HDMI, I am unable to test the efficacy of I2S over the SPDIF interconnects.

George

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On 2/6/2021 at 7:53 PM, gmgraves said:

It does . It outputs from I2S from SPDIF, both optical (Toslink) and coaxial, and it outputs also from HDMI and pure I2S over what seems to be a Molex-type I2S connector. Since my understanding is that the Denafrips Pontus only accepts I2S over HDMI, I am unable to test the efficacy of I2S over the SPDIF interconnects.

I tried SPDIF (coax and optical) into the Pontus DAC from the Chinese Box and it work perfectly. I did not noticed any difference vs connecting with HDMI-I2S. The SQ of the DSD appears identical over the three connections. Hence, I think the box is truly sending the DSD64 over the three types of interfaces to the Pontus. The Pontus manual says that DSD64 is available over all inputs.

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2 hours ago, hgaggioni said:

I tried SPDIF (coax and optical) into the Pontus DAC from the Chinese Box and it work perfectly. I did not noticed any difference vs connecting with HDMI-I2S. The SQ of the DSD appears identical over the three connections. Hence, I think the box is truly sending the DSD64 over the three types of interfaces to the Pontus. The Pontus manual says that DSD64 is available over all inputs.

Do you still need the box, or can go direct from player to DAC? 

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2 hours ago, hgaggioni said:

I tried SPDIF (coax and optical) into the Pontus DAC from the Chinese Box and it work perfectly. I did not noticed any difference vs connecting with HDMI-I2S. The SQ of the DSD appears identical over the three connections. Hence, I think the box is truly sending the DSD64 over the three types of interfaces to the Pontus. The Pontus manual says that DSD64 is available over all inputs.

Good to know. I didn’t try it because from what I gathered from an Internet article I read, it wasn’t supposed to work. BTW, did you notice any difference between the performance of optical vs coax? This clears up a connection dilemma that I have now that I’ve employed the new Denafrips Hermes DTD box into the system (it wants HDMI too!). Thanks for the clarification and the correction. Much appreciated!

George

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41 minutes ago, Rexp said:

Do you still need the box, or can go direct from player to DAC? 

I wouldn’t think so. The only place the DSD signal exists out of any Blu-ray player that supports SACD is over HDMI. The DSD data does not, AFAIK, appear on the “digital out” of any player as it’s not allowed by the SACD protocol specification. The HDMI output of any player have the audio stripped from the HDMI connector and output as a I2S signal before the Pontus sees it as DSD.

George

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5 hours ago, gmgraves said:

Good to know. I didn’t try it because from what I gathered from an Internet article I read, it wasn’t supposed to work. BTW, did you notice any difference between the performance of optical vs coax? This clears up a connection dilemma that I have now that I’ve employed the new Denafrips Hermes DTD box into the system (it wants HDMI too!). Thanks for the clarification and the correction. Much appreciated!

It was not a thorough investigation, but I tried a number of CDs and SCADs and kept switching between the three connection types. I could not detect any difference listening with speakers. I did not tried listening with headphones (our of the Pontus though an external headphone amp) to do a closer examination.

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12 hours ago, hgaggioni said:

It was not a thorough investigation, but I tried a number of CDs and SCADs and kept switching between the three connection types. I could not detect any difference listening with speakers. I did not tried listening with headphones (our of the Pontus though an external headphone amp) to do a closer examination.

This may have been referenced previously, but on point:

https://www.audio “science” review/forum/index.php?threads/study-is-i²s-interface-better-for-dacs-than-s-pdif-or-usb.7105/

Regards,

Jim

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16 hours ago, hgaggioni said:

It was not a thorough investigation, but I tried a number of CDs and SCADs and kept switching between the three connection types. I could not detect any difference listening with speakers. I did not tried listening with headphones (our of the Pontus though an external headphone amp) to do a closer examination.

After your last post, I tried both optical and coax connections from the I2S “box“. I could get my Pontus to recognize neither one of them. It simply did not work. I’m beginning to wonder if there aren’t differences between these boxes bought through different vendors (???!!!).

George

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6 hours ago, gmgraves said:

After your last post, I tried both optical and coax connections from the I2S “box“. I could get my Pontus to recognize neither one of them. It simply did not work. I’m beginning to wonder if there aren’t differences between these boxes bought through different vendors (???!!!).

It seems like this is likely the case.  Just to provide more details : I am connecting the Sony's XA5400 HDMI o/p to the box. The XA5400 explicitly indicates the selection of HDMI as an o/p (disabling its SPIDF and Toslink o/p) and further selection between multi-channel or stereo over HDMI. Then the box outputs HDMI-IIS, SPIDF and Toslink to the Pontus - all of them working correctly.  I only tried an UBP-X1100ES into the box over HDMI, with the o/p of the box's IIS to the Pontus and it worked. I will try sometime, in the next couple of days, the SPIDF and Toslink of the box into the Pontus and will report to this forum. Cheers...

 

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This box worked for me, I use a Sony Bluray and a Audiolab M-Dac+ and can now hear full fat SACD audio. Initially the box didn't seem to work until I plugged in a 5v Power supply, and then it kicked  in. I am so happy, thanks for the tip.

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1 hour ago, Bitsnsounds said:

This box worked for me, I use a Sony Bluray and a Audiolab M-Dac+ and can now hear full fat SACD audio. Initially the box didn't seem to work until I plugged in a 5v Power supply, and then it kicked  in. I am so happy, thanks for the tip.

Are you able to say which of these "boxes" you actually purchased ?

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22 hours ago, Daveyu said:

Are you able to say which of these "boxes" you actually purchased ?

Made some  progress by using an external 5v power supply, thanks to Bitsnsounds, now the DSD light on the Pontus lights up, unfortunately I'm not getting any sound from speakers and I have checked all the cabling

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On 2/9/2021 at 2:14 PM, Bitsnsounds said:

This box worked for me, I use a Sony Bluray and a Audiolab M-Dac+ and can now hear full fat SACD audio. Initially the box didn't seem to work until I plugged in a 5v Power supply, and then it kicked  in. I am so happy, thanks for the tip.

Which input did you use on the M-Dac+ ?

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On 2/9/2021 at 9:14 AM, Bitsnsounds said:

This box worked for me, I use a Sony Bluray and a Audiolab M-Dac+ and can now hear full fat SACD audio. Initially the box didn't seem to work until I plugged in a 5v Power supply, and then it kicked  in. I am so happy, thanks for the tip.

can you post a link to the 5v PS you used?   thanks much.

Regards,

Jim

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