Need alternatives to XLD forconverting flac PCM to DSD


In my reading on digital file formats I have found that some have recommended upsampling PCM flac files to DSD128 to improve sound quality. For example PS Audio DACs do this on the fly as a matter of course. The improvements have nothing to do with the encoded music signal (upsampling doesn't add any new information obviously) and those who pooh-pooh upsampling are mistaken in thinking this is the reason it's being done. The theory is the very act of sampling the source data stream produces a digital noise band that gets imprinted on the encoded file. Proponents claim that Redbook encoding produces a noise band in the 1kHz region right in the middle of the human voice range we are particularly sensitive to which accounts for the unpleasant sound so many associate with CDs when compared to vinyl. The higher the sampling rate the higher the digital noise band frequency ends up being and this is a large part of the reason higher rez file sound better as much as there being more actual sound information in the file.

The claim is that DSD128 encoding shifts digital the noise signature produced by encoding out of the audio band into the ultrasonic range above 40kHz and is better sounding for this reason than even regular DSD64. After doing some experiments with converting various sampling rate files of flac PCM from Redbook to 24/192 and others I've found the results to be overwhelmingly positive–though the odd file seems to end up with slightly softened dynamics. From my background in digital photography I know that adding digital noise to a blurry image can make it appear sharper. Perhaps something analogous is going on here. Overall the improvement in sound quality can be quite significant and, to me at least, worth the increase in file size.

So what's the problem? I have been using the latest version of the X Lossless Decoder (XLD) to make my conversions and although the results sound great for the most part the converted files are consistently having the last second or so of audio chopped off. I've poked around on the net a bit and can't seem to find a solution or even a mention of the problem. Has anyone else experienced this issue? Are there other converters you could recommend for the Mac OS?

For reference the only adjustment I've made to the default settings in XLD is to set the DSD Noise Shaping Order filter to the maximum (8 - Better in-band SNR) and I am running El Capitan on an older iMac.

Any advice would be appreciated.
C9493f79 dfd2 4b98 b04e a0015c428fe4corscorpius
you can try dbpoweramp
iOS? No.     
If you’re aiming for PS Audio sound ask Ted.
Have a look at Sox... It is free and does a good job of up/down sampling and format conversion... And of course, Roon can do this on-the-fly... And down the HQPlayer rabbit hole you go...  And then there is the opposing view of Rob Watts with his transient aligned filter...
I'm running an Antipodes player into a Hegel H360 integrated. I've never actually heard PS audio gear so I can't say I'm aiming for their sound. All I know is that I've tried converting a bunch of flac PCM files from redbook to 24 bit with all the usual sampling rates and almost all of them sound significantly better once converted to DSD128. If it wasn't for XLD chopping the end off of every file I'd be in heaven.

It's always been my experience that the less your player is doing while serving the file the less electrical noise is being produced and the better the sound quality will be. I'm skeptical of the idea of doing this sort of intensive data crunching not affecting the sound. I have a buddy who had a Roon setup and although he thought the user experience was pretty cool there was nothing about the sound that made me want to run out and get one. After a couple months he sold it.

I just tried dbpoweramp and it works as advertised. I have to say I am a bit shocked just how different the converted files sound from XLD. Much fuller in the bottom end which is great, but the trade off is some loss in detail, instrument separation and sound stage clarity which is not so great.

I'll check out Sox. Thanks. Anyone else have any suggestions?

If you use Squeezebox Server on your Antipodes the C3PO plugin will upsample flac to DSD on the fly. The plugin uses SOX.