Direct Stream Digital Audio

Customer's Helpful Tips to Test Your Mac for Playing DSD

Customer's Helpful Tips to Test Your Mac for Playing DSD

From a Letter to Blue Coast Music

Hi Folks,

Someone has done “the right thing” in my life, and since this could be a benefit for your community, and especially other macOS-based lovers of high-res audio, I wanted to let you know.

Rewind a couple of years ago. I only had the internal DAC on my then-computer, and that went up to “album quality.” So I went to the app store, but all I was looking for at that time was just a nice player for FLAC audio.

So I got Colibri, which said it could play DSD as well, but at the time I had no external DAC. Later, when I got my DAC, I could not get DSD to play “right.” I could play the music, thankfully - I knew Colibri was reading the files. But the output seemed capped in PCM rates.

This led to a long-ish seeming intellectual journey for the me that just wanted to play the music. The folks at my DAC company assigned my question to a rep who knew PCs, and it later seemed he was learning about Apple Core Audio and DoP along with me. No offense to them at all - I like my DAC and documentation happens later most everywhere. But I remained confused.

Who came through for me was the then college student who had written Colibri. He did not have a DAC from my vendor for testing. But he listened, he helped me understand and ultimately, after working with others of his users who had my brand of DAC, he sent me test builds of a one-track, stripped-down tester from Colibriʼs internals to try.

It has been a couple of decades since I personally worked with software developers, but I think I may still be able to spot one who cares about his or her craft. And this one, in my experience, does!

The latest release of Colibri, which is available in the Apple App store (desktop, not iOS yet), plays all the DSD files I have gotten from you and auto-switches the Midi automatically for WAV-FLAC-DSD to match the recording rate of the music being played. And the developer has also placed the single-track tester, which he made into a free app, in the App Store so people can download it and test music with their DACs!

It is, for me, a dream come true to be able to play my DSD with Colibri, know from the tester which DoP works with my DAC, and have Colibri switch the Midi for

music so I can just listen. And I suspect a lot of other music lovers would like it too, which is why I wanted you guys to know. It is just, IMHO, a very nice player.

So, anyway, I wanted to go out of my way to let you folks know about my positive experience. Colibri is not a well-known brand, and the guy showed up for me and for it.

I was personally incredibly reluctant to take a “trial and error” approach to learning about DSD and understanding how to play it. (“What is DoP and do I need to use that? I did not know, and did not want to risk computer or DAC trying to find out!) And now thereʼs the tester, and there are instructions for it in the app store. And Colibri itself plays all my music, easily!

So - here is some more knowledge to add to your database of “whatʼs out there.” I hope itʼs useful! :-)

Take good care everybody,