Some HQ Player basics

Continuing the discussion from Filter/Track discussion thread:

Rather than derail the “filter” thread perhaps I can ask a few most likely very basic questions.

First off the “settings” tab. Here is how I’ve set mine up.

Should I have any other’s ticked?

what is CUDA offload?
pipeline SDM?

What does auto do below?

Playing through HQ Player DSD the volume seems lower than Roon straight through. I presume to be bit perfect I need volume set to max on the “volume knob” on the main screen? Are there any other “volumes” I need to change or edit?

In Roon once I have the following, is it set up optimally?

Many Thanks


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I am just starting with DSD up sampling as well. I think I have altDSD checked and pipeline SDM checked. Not sure why think I read it elsewhere, actually pipeline SDM will use audio processing on idle cores of a multicore processor. I also set my DAC bits to what it’s max is rather than default, but really don’t know if it matters.

As to the loudness go into settings and click DSDiff/DSF settings, then in the upper right click the +6 DB box and this will add 6db to DSD which is usually 6dB lower. If you want to up sample lower res DSD then leave direct SDM unchecked, that way even dsd 64 will up sample to dsd 128 or the limit of your dac.

As to your question on auto, I am not sure, I set it as SDM since I want all music to up sample to DSD.

Since you use HQPlayer according to Jussi set the HQPlayer volume level to -3 as the max level to avoid clipping. The +6dB check box will raise the DSD output level.

Thats what I do.

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CUDA is a parallel computing protocol implemented on some nVidia GPUs that enables the GPU to share the processing load with the CPU. Leave it unchecked unless you have a CUDA capable graphics card and want to use it.

Pipeline SDM enables greater use of all cores when upsampling. There is a processing load associated with implementing it, hence the user selection. If you have a 4 core processor then check pipeline SDM. If you have a two core processor then look at a CPU monitor when upsampling, toggle it on and off and choose whichever setting results in lower CPU usage.

I’m not sure what altDSD is but Jussi has said to leave it unchecked unless your hardware specifically requires it. I leave it unchecked. It may be a renaming of the “2wire” option which was a way some DACs had of getting a higher sampling rate.

Bogi in this CA thread gave this useful summary of the various uses of “auto” in HQP:

‘Auto’ in the sample rate combo box has has effect only for filters which can do only integer multiple of sample rate. It avoids non integer multiples for these filters. For other filters it is ignored. See here HQ Player

‘Auto’ in the output mode combo box means “Output PCM as PCM, DSD as DSD”.
See also HQ Player

Checkbox ‘[x] Auto rate family’ is intended for filters, which can output any sample rate, but you want to avoid non integer multiples because of stuttering. It is similar as ‘Auto’ in the sample rate combo box but it has effect on all filters.

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Thanks @andybob.

As mentioned above I started playing this evening and have been unimpressed with PCM - DSD. A good bit of rummaging on the interweb came up with this:

This one does certainly seem to be doing something quite positive. I’ll have to give it a good going over for the next few days.



If you have trouble matching volumes between PCM and DSD sources, try the File->DSDIFF/DSF settings and check the 6dB gain. Also leave the DirectSDM unchecked to allow up-sampling or convolution on DSD sources. You may want to set max Volume to -3dB to prevent clipping.

In the link to CA forum, Jussi was responding to my question. I prefer DSD256 while playing through my iFi iDSD, but prefer 384K PCM through Hugo TT and 764K PCM through Mojo. It really depends on the DAC . Chord DACs convert DSD sources to PCM anyway, so I prefer that conversion is done on a PC with more resources rather than the DAC.

One reason why I like the Chord DACs with HQP is I get the best out of the DAC by converting to high PCM rates which is far less resource consuming when compared to DSD up conversion. I can play Roon->HQP->Mojo on my 2013 MacBookAir with 1,7GHz processor and no GPU and the fan will not come on as the CPU load remains below 40%! This is ideal when I am away from home playing through a headphone and you are concerned about battery life.

On your settings for PCM, you may also want to try NS5 for Dither and switch between poly-sync-shrt-mp or ply-sync-lin depending on the strengths of your transducer and the type of music. I prefer the linear version of the filters where I want a little better imaging but prefer the minimum-phase version if I am interested in transients (like clearly hearing the edge on plucking a guitar string).

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I hope you don’t mind me asking but I saw on CA that you have a min volume of -24 in one of your screenshots using HQP with a HUGO TT, mine defaults to -60, I was wondering the reason for you using the lower value?

Also wondering do you use a different filter for classical music or stick with poly-sinc-short-mp for all music?



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No not at all. To avoid any noise issues, I almost never play at low volumes at my source and control the volume at my amp. I almost always leave it at the highest -3dB position on HQP. The -24dB to -3dBrange gives me enough flexibility when I am switching between Headphones and want to level match or when I do not want to reach for my remote or volume Knob on the amp (marble on TT). The reduced range also also gives you finer control on the slider in Roon.

This depends both on the type of music and the headphone I am using (I understand this is not the use case for everyone). I use the linear version of filters for large and complex arrangements (orchestra, jazz) where I am interested a bit more in imaging.

I prefer the minimum phase filters for solo performances (violin, Cello) and simple arrangements (vocals + a guitar or piano) where I prefer the intimate presentation but enjoy the detail and I can clearly hear the transients and edges.

I also prefer the minimum phase version when I am using headphones that sound a bit soft but linear filters where I want the soundstage to improve.

That said, a majority of my listening is to simple arrangements and vocal Jazz, 90% of the time poly-sync-shrt-mp works for me.

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Hi John,

Would be interested to know what filters you’re still using with your Hugo TT. Just added a Hugo to my system and started a thread for Chord users who are utilising HQPlayer, but no further posts to topic yet. Hope your well and your Naim system looks bloody lovely!! Here’s a link to my thread if you want to get involved or involve anyone else…HQPlayer Settings For Chord DAC Users