Roon Remote Audio Settings - DSD to PCM


I’m curious how these settings effect playback when playing DSD files (.DSF) via DOP to my DAC. The options I see are:

DSD to PCM Filter
DSD to PCM Gain boost:

Right now I have them set to the defaults which is 30kHz Low Pass and +6dB Gainboost.

If I pretend for a minute that I am playing music for my dog and he can hear beyond 30Khz and my speakers are capable up to 50Khz then would I want to keep the defaults? In my previous library management software there was no option to Low Pass DSD signals so I assume they were playing up to whatever Freq that the recording would allow for.

Is this setting killing of sounds and truncating bits that would otherwise be allowed to play thru my Hi-Fi? Also, what is this “Gain Boost” stuff? Is there any reason why I shouldn’t be concerned with the default setting of +6dB?

Being a audio purist, adding +6dB of gain to the playback signal kind of concerns me.

I would love to hear more about how these two features operate as I don’t see anything in the documentation that talks about them.


DSD has greater dynamic range than PCM and can reproduce levels above 0 dB Full Scale. Accordingly software typically applies a 6dB cut when converting DSD to PCM in order to ensure there is no clipping. The boost setting allows you to adjust that cut. Choose a setting that avoids clipping of the highest levels after conversion.

Converting DSD64 to PCM preserves the high frequency hash that DSD introduces from about about 25kHz. That is when you would want the conservative low pass filter setting. DSD128 and up shifts that noise further up spectrum, making 30kHz the reccomended lpf. I have no idea why anyone would want the permissive low pass filter, but it’s there if you want to play music for bats.


Thanks for your reply.

So is Roon a software that applies the 6dB cut by default that you mention when converting DSD to PCM? If I’m using “DOP” which packages DSD into a PCM frame does this default 6dB cut come into play at all?

If I wanted to hear all the ugliness found in the original recording which may include clipping does that mean while using Roon or other software that does this 6dB cut by default is it possible for anyone to ever hear things as they were originally on the recording?

I guess if someone can confirm Roon does indeed cut by 6dB as a default then choosing +6dB in the setting would be the ideal one to use. But, if the software is actually only cutting by 4dB then we would know to choose +4dB in the setting instead.

Can you tell me exactly which level of cut is taking place by default with Roon?


No. The cut is applied when mixing from a master to an SACD (see this KB page.)


I think the rest of your questions assume Roon is applying the cut, but it is done at mastering stage as set out above.