HDCD & Digital Pre-amps

I just acquired a Sony TA-E9000ES preamp to make a combined music/HT system. It is an all-digital preamp, no analog bypass. All analog signals are digitized. Sony doesn't currently support HDCD. I have an Audio Alchemy front end (DTI/DDE3/I2S)that does HDCD and CD Sound thru analog outputs very well. If I run the digital out from the Audio Alchemy into the Sony digital in do I still get benefits of HDCD sound or is it extra boxes, extra cables? Theoretically I belive it's better to keep everything digital than to use the analog out of the Audio Alchemy into an analog in on the Sony and have the Sony do A/D conversion (since it's an all digital processor) and then D/A conversion. A friend of mine intoned that HDCD is only available from a players analog outputs. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
IF you have a minute, www.hdcd.com good information there on this topic.
I would suggest going from the transport to the digital in on the Sony. Personally I don't think the E9000ES is very good when it comes to 2 channel reproduction and hence even if the analog outs were better the A/D + preamp section would convert most any signal to two channel mediocrity. Of course if your transport has more than one digital out...you can hook up an analog and digital connection and A/B it for yourself using two of the E9000ES's inputs.