DSD output with sms-200ultra

I have just added an sms-200ultra to my system as a Roon endpoint. It seems being able to control volume from Roon and having DSD output in Roon’s sample rate conversion are mutually exclusive. If I set Roon to fixed volume in the sms-200ultra, DSD conversion and upsampling is available, but when I set it to software control it is not.

Is there a workaround for this, please?

I have a query about DSD settings for my SMS- 200 Neo. The player is capable of DSD256, but for some reason when I go to DSP the highest value I can select is DSD128. Anybody any idea how I can get DSP to show DSD256?

Thanks in advance

The settings are determined by the ongoing DAC that’s attached to the SMS. Does your DAC support higher? As the SMS uses Linux based operating system it’s at the mercy of the Linux kernel support for DSD via your DAC. Not all DACs support their highest rates via Linux so I would check up with them on what it supports.

Hi @CrystalGipsy thanks for reply.

I am pretty sure the DAC does support DSD256.

If I take the SMS 200 out the equation and run USB cable from my MacBook Air and use HQPlayer as output it plays back perfect.

Also on the front of my DAC I can see the value of 11.28mz, which as far as I am aware is the value you get at DSD256.

The reason for my initial question is because I am having problems with using HQPlayer with my SMS 200, it keeps popping and crackling at DSD256. So a poster asked me to see if I could achieve DSD256 with my SMS 200 using DSP on Roon, and also try to achieve DSD256 on Audirvana. Audirvana plays back DSD256 perfectly, but as I say DSP on Roon does not allow above DSD128 which is strange given that DSD256 with the SMS 200 is achievable in other scenarios. It’s a tangled web indeed. More often than not the SMS 200 seems to be the weak link in the chain with the various things I am testing out, the exception to that rule is Audirvana.

Interesting, I wasn’t aware of this on your other thread in the HQPlayer section :slight_smile:

That suggests an SMS 200 issue.

Can you show your HQPlayer settings when you have this working with direct USB cable to Macbook?

And in Roon, do you have DoP selected? To match HQPlayer settings?

This is what I was trying to allude to in the other thread, to make sure DoP is either selected on both or disabled on both - to make it closest to apples to apples.


Hi @dabassgoesboomboom, yes I’ve got posts all over the place ,and not just on Roon, trying to get to the bottom of this lol

I had already actually mentioned that it did not seem to be a problem using MBA rather than SMS 200, it is in post 108 in the other Roon thread that you have been helping me with - but I’ll paste it here to make it easier.

"I find that I am experiencing some crackling or pops while using the SMS 200 network player that I do not experience when just using my MacBook Air as Core Audio, and as such I have had to alter the bit rate value to prevent the crackles and pops on the SMS 200. So with the MBA I can achieve DSD256, but only DSD128 with the SMS 200"

No worries! As per my post above, is Roon also set to DoP?

I’m struggling to find Exclusive Mode to make the DoP selection. Can you point me to it, thanks

Roon Settings > Audio > right click the cog wheel for your USB DAC > Device Setup

Is it showing DoP already under DSD? See my screen above.

Sorry, I am getting a bit lost here. I thought I would be making the change to DSD playback strategy on the HQPlayer because that is the output device selected in Roon, which was why I had trouble finding what you were asking me to do as it was not an option to perform this change in Device Setup for HQPlayer.
So anyway, I have made the change to my D90 DAC as you asked,

Just because the mac supports DSD256 doesn’t mean the DAC will on the SMS as I said Linux support is different per DAC. What’s supported on Windows or Mac isn’t often on Linux. The SMS is Linux and reading up on Topping DACs they don’t seem to support native DSD in Linux well without a kernel patch. Found some thread on ASR.

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You mentioned Roon + HQPlayer had pops with SMS 200.

So yesterday Jussi suggested you set Roon to output DSD256 (with no HQP involved) to see if that had pops.

I can see HQP has DoP enabled and worked pop free with direct USB connection? So that suggests an issue with SMS 200.

But for completeness, to make it ‘apples to apples’ with Roon alone at DSD256, best to enable DoP in Roon, which you’ve now done.

Any pops with Roon alone outputting DSD256 with direct USB connection?

And what about Roon playing to SMS 200, with the SMS in Roon Ready mode - again no HQP involved.

Also double check DoP with your SMS 200 - try both enabled and disabled.

Other than trying different endpoint with your DAC, I’m out of ideas of things to try lol.

So no pops outputting DSD256 with direct USB connection, whether using HQP or Roon alone.

"And what about Roon playing to SMS 200, with the SMS in Roon Ready mode - again no HQP involved". That is just the way I normally play things on Roon. If you were wanting me to try DSD256, remember DSP limits the SMS 200 to DSD128. Sorry if I’ve got wrong end of stick with what you are asking me to do here.

No worries. I’m out of ideas of things to try. Sorry can’t be of more help on this one.

Maybe someone else will chime in with something that helps you.

So your saying that it will output DSD 256 on the SMS via Roon with no DSP just not with? Or it doesnt in any scenario with the SMS?

Hi @CrystalGipsy, I’ll summarise my findings.

I cant get the SMS to output DSD256 in any scenario on Roon. If I select it to output with HQP at DSD256 it crackles. Using the SMS with DSP it will not give me the chance to select DSD256, the highest selection allowed is DSD128.

Taking Roon out the equation I can get DSD256 with Audirvana. And I can get DSD256 using HQPlayer on Roon using my MBA connected to my DAC with USB.

So looks like the SMS 200 is the root of the problem.

Thanks for your efforts @dabassgoesboomboom, it is much appreciated.

Just as a matter of interest would you happen to know if many people use HQP without a network player, and just use direct USB connection from their computer to their DAC? With all the benefits that HQP brings would not having a network player in the equation result in a major loss of sound quality?

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Yes for one of my setups I have my server directly USB connected to DAC and don’t really notice any loss of sound quality at all.

The developer of HQPlayer has various types setups (as you would imagine) and one is direct USB connection to his powerful PC.

You have a very good DAC. The main issue is if you hear the PC fan noise inside the listening room. That’s a big no no for me personally.

But if you don’t hear the fan at your listening position, then I wouldn’t worry.

As long as you don’t have any fan noise the sound quality will be better than your current pops and crackling :grinning: So that’s an easy one !

At my office setup, I’m typing listening to HQPlayer now with close back headphones on my head. If I mute my headphone amp, it is dead silent so my Mac’s fan is completely inaudible for me. So not a concern at all for me.

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