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Success story: FiiO K3 with DSD on Linux

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Post time 2019-9-5 12:02:55 |Show all posts |
Edited by moretti at 2019-10-15 16:23

Hi,
I just wanted to share that I found a very easy way to play DSD files on the K3 without converting them.

What I've see on Linux forums is that most people get the K3 to play DSD by directly sending a DOP stream using dsf2flac, using MPD or simply converting them to PCM, but there is an easier way.

1) Install "Cantata"(*) and configure the "First-start wizard" for your single user so it starts it's own MPD server.
2) Edit this file ~/.local/share/cantata/mpd/mpd.conf and replace the audio_output that tries to use pulseaudio, with this configuration:

  1. audio_output {
  2.         type            "alsa"
  3.         name            "FiiO K3"
  4.         device          "plughw:CARD=K3,DEV=0"
  5.         auto_resample   "no"
  6.         auto_channels   "no"
  7.         auto_format     "no"
  8.         dop             "yes"
  9. }
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Optionally you can disable mpd from running as a daemon (sudo systemctl disable mpd), since we will use the mpd instance started from Cantata's user interface.

3) Restart Cantata from the command line using pasuspender and play a DSD file. (Pausing PulseAudio is required so Cantata gets exclusive access to the hardware)
  1. pasuspender -- cantata
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Blue or yellow lights mean it's converting them before playing and you don't want that! make sure you followed all steps correctly.
A green light on the FiiO K3 indicates it's correctly playing a DSD file and handling it on the DAC, without any previous conversion.

Good luck!

(*) Cantata is a nice user interface to control MPD, and has the ability to start its own MPD server instead of using the one in the system. As a result, it acts as a standalone music player. To install it, simply install cantata and mpd packages in your favorite Linux distribution.

Issues:
* It can play up to DSD128. I was not able to play DSD256 with a green led indicator. It always shows a yellow light, indicating there was some conversion needed in order to play.
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Post time 2019-9-5 17:15:01 |Show all posts |

Dear friend,

Thanks for sharing~~

Best regards
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Post time 2019-9-5 21:15:13 |Show all posts |
Edited by moretti at 2019-9-7 11:05

I'm glad to help.

I was NOT able to play DSD256. I can only play DSD128 on Linux.

Here are some usage examples:

DSD128 works fine
  1. dsf2flac -d -i 02_Welcome-to-NativeDSD-Sampler_NativeDSD-Presents_NDSD012_2ch128.dsf -o - 2>/dev/null | ffmpeg -i - -c pcm_s32le  -f alsa plughw:CARD=K3,DEV=0
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DSD256 doesn't work
  1. dsf2flac -d -i 07_Welcome-to-NativeDSD-Sampler_NativeDSD-Presents_NDSD012_2ch256.dsf -o - 2>/dev/null | ffmpeg -i - -c pcm_s32le  -f alsa plughw:CARD=K3,DEV=0
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If you run dsf2flac command alone you will find that DSD256 has a higher sample rate than supported over DOP.
The error is:
  1. ERROR: sample rate not supported by DoP
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==========================
UPDATE
On Windows I can use the FiiO ASIO native DSD driver with MusicBee to play DSD256.
On Linux I can't use Native DSD because it's not supported, and I need to use DOP to package the DSD stream, so DSD128 is the best quality you can play there.

Good luck
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Post time 2019-9-10 02:17:28 |Show all posts |
Thanks for sharing!
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