Roon DSP volume vs HQPlayer

If you do DSD output to your DAC, it is best to leave the DAC’s volume control at 0 dBFS and control volume either with pre-amp, or as part of DSD upsampling.

If you want to optimize analog plus digital volume control combination and assure safety from surprises, this is the best recipe:

  1. Set your preamp volume to minimum.
  2. (bypass DAC volume or set it to maximum)
  3. Set software control to maximum, preferably never higher than -3 dBFS (headroom for inter-sample overs)
  4. Play some music
  5. Turn your preamp volume to highest level you would ever want to listen
  6. Now lower the software volume control to comfortable listening volume and control the listening volume using sofware
  7. Done

So for DSD the dac volume should be zero and for everything else the Dac should be full volume?

0 dBFS = full volume

If it doesn’t have a fixed output level option.

Ok I get it.

For 200M you can turn off volume (set to fixed) I do not remember the combination of buttons, you turn it off then long press a button maybe the source one. You can find online the procedure

Quite many DACs work with native DSD on Linux. There’s a pretty much defacto standard for it. Some may need some additional patching but can be made work. So there are not so many out there anymore that would be native DSD only on Windows.

So either;

  1. Dac fixed volume, roon fixed volume, control with preamp.


  1. Dac fixed volume, preamp full volume, control with roon dsp. (and get the stupid blue dot)

*I mean green.

This is what I understood from the 200M threads. But sound a little scary and I would need a new NAA as Zen Stream does only 256. So better wait and upgrade the dac first. Now I’m back on zen dac with BB for a while

:slight_smile: Green

I do control with the preamp. Until I’ll find out that it is not a good preamp :slight_smile:

Thx. Ya green. Hate that thing.

I know. In living roon I have some Yamaha, only Airplay, so green

Living roon. I see what you did there lol.

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How is dsp volume control different than if the dac was roon ready and it just did regular volume control without dsp?

what? No I did not. It is for real. Have 3 end points. Studio, Living room, Kitchen. And 2 more for the kids, each with his own user (useless because they use Spotify)

I use roon volume with Yamaha. But I do not understand how it works :slight_smile: In rest always used Dac volume (knob) until I did bought a preamp (WITH remote)

If your DAC or amplifier is doing DSP volume control, it doesn’t affect the color coding or labeling in Roon. So don’t get too much emphasis on such.

Or use both software (Roon and/or HQPlayer) in the optimized way I described. You minimize the noise and distortion from the preamp, with convenience of Roon controlled volume and without risk of accidental full volume surprises.

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I’m not worried about using the preamp volume or dac volume. I just don’t like using the roon dsp volume because I thought it was the worst option in terms of quality due to the green dot. But you were saying earlier that roon dsp volume was better than using dac or preamp volume. Or did I read that wrong?

He pops up every few months to go on an anti-DSD crusade :grin:

And the old discussions come up again and go round and round in circles

And my point is that colors of these dots are not indicative of final output quality.

You could also have some nice shiny dot color with MQA content going to the DAC, while getting all lossy mid-fi content.

It doesn’t take into account things happening outside of Roon. It cannot even know what kind of volume control you are having outside.

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DSD is 1-bit PCM. That’s what makes it possible to do DSP in native DSD.