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DSD files [Where Are Free Downloads, Comparison 2021]

Audio Basis - articles about audio

yuri korzunovDSD files are audio files that contain high-resolution 1-bit audio data in Direct Stream Digital format. Read audio software developer Yuri Korzunov's article about formats and their comparison, sound quality, size compression, how does DSD works and others.

What is DSD file

DSD files are files, that contains audio or music data in Direct Stream Digital format.


DSD file comparison

Read the main article about DSD vs DSF vs DFF comparison >

DFF vs DSF vs SACD ISO comparison

DSD files - DFF vs DSF vs SACD ISO


Radial bands on DSD file format sector show their functionality.


Sound quality

The sound quality of different DSD audio file formats is the same. All these formats are lossless. I.e. they store an audio stream without losses.


How big is DSD file?

See DSD file size comparison for different sampling rates.

  DFF size (MBytes/min) DSF size (MBytes/min) SACD size (MBytes/min)
DSD64 stereo 20.5 20.5 20.5
DSD64 multichannel (5.1) 61.6 61.6 -
DSD128 stereo 41.1 41.1 -
DSD128 multichannel (5.1) 123.2 123.2 -
DSD256 stereo 82.1 82.1 -
DSD256 multichannel (5.1) 246.3 246.3 -
DSD512 stereo 164.2 164.2 -
DSD512 multichannel (5.1) 492.7 492.7 -
DSD1024 stereo 328.5 328.5 -
DSD1024 multichannel (5.1) 985.4 985.4 -

Size compression is implemented in DFF and SACD ISO format only (DST [Direct Stream Transfer] compression method). The compression quality is lossless.


How to DSD works

DSD is a format based on 1-bit sigma-delta modulation.

In short, DSD is the same PCM with bit depth reduced to 1.

But it causes a high level of quantization noise.

To reduce the level, noise shaping is used. It "pushes" the noise energy from the audible frequency range to ultrasound.

To "pushing ability" the total frequency band should provide reserve at ultrasound frequency range. It is achieved via a higher sample rate.

Noise shaper has feedback inside, which can cause broken stability of DSD modulator due to input overload.

Read details how to work DSD >


Free DSD downloads

Audio samples, DSD free music and test signal downloads:

  1. Demo tracks #1
  2. Demo tracks #2
  3. Test simple signals
  4. More DSD file downloads



How do I play DSD?

Various DSD audio player software can playback 1-bit audio 3 ways:

  • convert to PCM ("on fly");
  • native DSD playback;
  • both.

Can iPhone play DSD files?

Yes. There is iPhone software to play DSD files.

Read details and see player list here >


How do I convert DSD?

A converter software can support different formats, functionality and have various DSD processing quality.

Read details:


How do I edit DSD?

The author never knows about so-called "native DSD editing". There is no math base, that allowing summarize or multiply with two 1-bit values and put the result in 1-bit value. Thus, DSD altering may be provided in multibit math only. After the editing, DSD re-modulation is applied to return to 1-bit domain.

Losses by proper DSD editing are comparable with qualitative re-sampling. I.e. almost transparent for an user.

An editor software may support different formats, functionality and have various DSD processing quality.

Read details:


DSD streaming service


DSD audio files


Read more

What is DSD >

DSD vs DSF vs DFF comparison >

DSF file format >

DFF file format >


About DSD DAC >

Discussion of best sounding DSD albums

Other educational articles >


Read articles about audio issues
What is DSD Audio? Read Expert Explanation
DSD vs DSF vs DFF Files Audio. What is difference
Audiophile DFF DSF PCM audio converter
How to Convert ISO to FLAC on Mac OSX, Windows [Step-by-step Guide]
How to Convert ISO to DSF on Mac OS, Windows [Step-by-step Guide]
DFF to DSF Converters [Mac OS X, Windows, Linux]. 3 Conversion Ways

April 03, 2021 updated | since April 14, 2018


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