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Topic: Is my setup capable of 192 kHz transmission through Toslink? (Read 1197 times) previous topic - next topic
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Is my setup capable of 192 kHz transmission through Toslink?

Hi. I've just started trying S/PDIF interface. I have ASUS Xonar Essence STX which reports support of up to 192 kHz through its S/PDIF and Denon X1600H AVR which is also compatible with 192 khz playback. Both of them have S/PDIF optical interface.
I started with buying a cheap optical cable (3$ chinese CableExpert) and I see that playback to my AVR works fine up to 96 kHz. On 176.4 and 192 kHz I get silence and my AVR does not report an acual frequency.
What do you think: should I try some better, expensive cable or I have no chance to get it working by changing the cable?
I just don't see the maximum supported sampling rate for optical input in my AVR's specification.

Thanks.

Re: Is my setup capable of 192 kHz transmission through Toslink?

Reply #1
I'd guess it's not the cable.    Do you have 192kHz audio files?   There's no audible benefit to these high sample rates so it shouldn't be a big deal unless you have files you can't play.

There is a bitrate limitation to S/PDIF but I don't remember what it is.   It's not fast enough to support all of the Blu-Ray formats.  Are you sure your AVR supports 196kHz for S/PDIF?   Maybe that's only for HDMI?

Re: Is my setup capable of 192 kHz transmission through Toslink?

Reply #2
S/PDIF doesn't have a specified bit rate limit, but not every device has the same maximums.

TOSLINK is limited to 125Mbit/s, which makes it useless for multichannel high-res audio formats like Dolby TrueHD, etc.

Re: Is my setup capable of 192 kHz transmission through Toslink?

Reply #3
Do you have 192kHz audio files?   There's no audible benefit to these high sample rates so it shouldn't be a big deal unless you have files you can't play.

I rather need 176.4 kHz to play DSD over PCM. Both 176.4 and 192 kHz give slilence.

  Are you sure your AVR supports 196kHz for S/PDIF?   Maybe that's only for HDMI?

Ii is not specified anywhere (for S/PDIF)

TOSLINK is limited to 125Mbit/s, which makes it useless for multichannel high-res audio formats like Dolby TrueHD, etc.

Are you sure it's 125 Mbit? 24 bit * 192 kHz * 6 ch = 27.648 Mbit





Re: Is my setup capable of 192 kHz transmission through Toslink?

Reply #4
Are you sure it's 125 Mbit? 24 bit * 192 kHz * 6 ch = 27.648 Mbit
Well, as it turns out, no I'm not sure.  Sheesh.  Should have fact-checked that one myself.

Here's where the bitrate limit comes from.  The optical cable itself is more than capable of 125Mbit/sec, which is way more than needed for 6 channels a 192k.  The actual cable limits are in the Ghz. 

However, the optical interface chips, modules, whatever they are, the bits that squirt light in one and and pick it up on the other,  are not all rated for that speed.  The initial Toslink spec was 3.1Mbit/sec, which is definitely not enough.  There are, apparently, some of those interfaces still around, and just because the spec changed to 125Mbit/sec doesn't mean each and every device followed suit. 

One would hope that what you buy today is probably capable of anything we'd throw at it, and what's out there in the stack of legacy gear may not be.  But each situation needs confirmation until the last 3.1Mbit hardware ends up six feet under. 





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Re: Is my setup capable of 192 kHz transmission through Toslink?

Reply #5
The Toslink standard says 2 channel 24 bit 96 kHz max.
Modern hardware can perform better indeed.
I could do 176 kHz from my iMac running Win to my DAC.
192 was static most of the time.
This when using WASAPI exclusive.
Using Win10 the max I can choose in the soundpanel is 96 kHz.

As you need > 96 for DSD, you can try a networked connection.
You need a UPnP server in the network e.g. your PC.
Probably Windows Media sharing can do this.
Beware of the limitations as mentioned here:
http://manuals.denon.com/AVRX1600H/EU/NL/GFNFSYelkngxze.php

TheWellTemperedComputer.com

Re: Is my setup capable of 192 kHz transmission through Toslink?

Reply #6
Do you want it because you expect it to noticeably improve audio quality, or there are other reasons?
some ANC'd headphones + AutoEq-based impulse + Meier Crossfeed (30%)

Re: Is my setup capable of 192 kHz transmission through Toslink?

Reply #7
You could try the coax connection.  Your video card has a coax/optical "combo port" and your AVR has a coax input.

Re: Is my setup capable of 192 kHz transmission through Toslink?

Reply #8
As you need > 96 for DSD, you can try a networked connection.
You need a UPnP server in the network e.g. your PC.

I tried using AVR as mediarenderer. I can't pass DSD native to it, foobar2000 SACD gives only DoP for some reason. Could you recommend some app to playback DSD without DoP conversion?
If I use foobar2000 as UPnPmedia server it converts DSD to plain PCM also, I can't get native DSD with any settings.

Do you want it because you expect it to noticeably improve audio quality, or there are other reasons?

I don't think it will be noticable. Just want to keep bitstream untouched (skip conversion to PCM) and decrease jitter.

You could try the coax connection.  Your video card has a coax/optical "combo port" and your AVR has a coax input.

My soundcard does, but AVR doesn't. You can check it here https://www.denon.com/ru-ru/shop/avreceiver/avrx1600h
Optical/Coaxial: 2/0

Re: Is my setup capable of 192 kHz transmission through Toslink?

Reply #9
I don't think it will be noticable. Just want to keep bitstream untouched (skip conversion to PCM) and decrease jitter.
..and this, in turn, is needed for what? :)
(I'm just suspecting that you're about to spend too much time on something that doesn't really matter.)
some ANC'd headphones + AutoEq-based impulse + Meier Crossfeed (30%)

Re: Is my setup capable of 192 kHz transmission through Toslink?

Reply #10
Quote
I don't think it will be noticable. Just want to keep bitstream untouched (skip conversion to PCM) and decrease jitter.
There are very few DACs that work without conversion to PCM and very few recordings that weren't PCM at some point in the process.   And probably most DSD recordings that were never PCM are were originally analog which is just another layer of silliness.

Jitter is NEVER an audible problem unless something is seriously broken.

And in the end, you've got analog which is "less accurate" or "less precise" than PCM or DSD (assuming reasonable resolution).  And yet, it can still be better than human hearing.

Re: Is my setup capable of 192 kHz transmission through Toslink?

Reply #11
Since DSD cannot be edited, and unless the recording is one big long live cut, it's been edited, and to do that it spend time as a PCM file.

There's a ton of mythology around DSD, pretty much every single claim has been refuted.  I don't have time to post the links, but google it.

The one reason you might want to play DSD is they sometimes are made via a different mastering path, which may be better or worse, but at least it's different.  Otherwise, just about every DSD has already been converted to PCM at some point.  No harm in doing it again.

Re: Is my setup capable of 192 kHz transmission through Toslink?

Reply #12
(I'm just suspecting that you're about to spend too much time on something that doesn't really matter.)

Exactly :D . Actually I'm just curious if I could get DSD working with my receiver. HDMI is not an option, no luck with DLNA, so I hope I'll get it working with S/PDIF.

So thanks guys, I understand that I'll get no audible changes if I'll get DSD working. It's more like a challenge :)


Re: Is my setup capable of 192 kHz transmission through Toslink?

Reply #13
As someone who's written a lot of unbiased and really useful material on audio on your website (in russian) I'm surprised you'd even bother to play around with smth as useless as this (192 kHz, what?). Just saying. ;)

Re: Is my setup capable of 192 kHz transmission through Toslink?

Reply #14
Could you recommend some app to playback DSD without DoP conversion?

Maybe this one: https://www.dbpoweramp.com/asset-upnp-dlna.htm
DSD and DFF compatibility, decode, send untouched or DSD DoP embed

As it is UPnP it takes 2 to tango so even if Asset can sent DSD (plain or as DOP), the receiver must be able to handle DSD or DOP as well.
TheWellTemperedComputer.com

Re: Is my setup capable of 192 kHz transmission through Toslink?

Reply #15
Maybe this one: https://www.dbpoweramp.com/asset-upnp-dlna.htm
DSD and DFF compatibility, decode, send untouched or DSD DoP embed

Cool. It works. It indicates "DSD - 2.8 MHz" . The files are uncompressed DSF. Only stereo plays

But this is quite inconvenient of course. If I'd get DSD passed to UPnP media renderer device in foobar2000 - that would be much better

As someone who's written a lot of unbiased and really useful material on audio on your website (in russian) I'm surprised you'd even bother to play around with smth as useless as this (192 kHz, what?). Just saying. ;)

Ha-ha. Perfectionism is a disease :)

Re: Is my setup capable of 192 kHz transmission through Toslink?

Reply #16
Yes, that was conenction problem. I bought ATCOM 1.8m cable for 7$ now and get 176.4 and 196 kHz working, but only from time to time and only in specific cable position :D I really like this interface...

Any advices how to get more stable connection?

BTW I found that receiver doesn't support DoP, it plays just a silent noise. So that's impossible to pass DSD by cable :(




Re: Is my setup capable of 192 kHz transmission through Toslink?

Reply #17
Any advices how to get more stable connection?

Having had similar experiences in the past, but not remembering what cable fixed it, I’d try yet another cheap six dollar cable like the one on Amazon with 45,000 positive reviews. Or you could try a $600 glass cable, but it might not work either.

Re: Is my setup capable of 192 kHz transmission through Toslink?

Reply #18
Why would anyone spend $600 on something useless anyway, though?
some ANC'd headphones + AutoEq-based impulse + Meier Crossfeed (30%)

Re: Is my setup capable of 192 kHz transmission through Toslink?

Reply #19
Quote
Or you could try a $600 glass cable, but it might not work either.

All right I slightly intrigued

$600 glass cables who sells them?



Re: Is my setup capable of 192 kHz transmission through Toslink?

Reply #20
$600 glass cables who sells them?
I couldn’t find the one I saw yesterday, but if you Google “most expensive toslink cable” you’ll find some that are more expensive than that.  But then others have glass cables for around $30.

Re: Is my setup capable of 192 kHz transmission through Toslink?

Reply #21
Must have been Audioquest: https://www.amazon.com/AudioQuest-Diamond-OptiLink-Optical-Audio/dp/B00717D3V8

Most of the time POF (Plastic Optical Fibre) is used. Over the decades the quality improved but a glass fibre still has a lower attenuation.
If the situation is critical, glass maybe helps.
Lifatec is often mentioned http://www.lifatec.com/toslink2.html



TheWellTemperedComputer.com


 

Re: Is my setup capable of 192 kHz transmission through Toslink?

Reply #23
Quote
pointless, expensive & also stupid

That is a good definition of an audiophile products  :)
TheWellTemperedComputer.com

 
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