MPD – from Micromega MyDac to Teac UD-501 DSD

/* EDIT Jan 03, 2016 */
Moved to UD-503
/* /EDIT */

Some weeks ago, i tuned my office setup with a micromega MyZic (headphone amp) for my AKG K701.
I looked for a new dac… and decided not to buy a new MyDac but to move my home MyDac to it (great combo – bitperfect at work).

The problem was i needed a new dac…
So i bought the promising new Teac UD-501 (DSD – Direct Stream Digital).

After one week of “burn in” and testing, i’m quite impressed.
I’m not an audio reviewer, more an audio enthusiast.
The Teac is far from the price range (x3) of the MyDac and i couldn’t say the difference with flac 192 (the max managed) is huge… but there’s some. A bit more transparent and lower bass are huge and well defined.
It’s a nice upgrade.
On my personal scale, i put back the MyDac as the best dac under $800 😉

The PCM filter (slow or sharp) makes really small changes. Nearly useless, i leave it off.
Activating internal upsample adds a bit more space on small resolution flac.
There’s no change between the rca and xlr outputs.

But the Teac is more: more resolution, more formats.

From my tuned bit perfect Mele and linux, the usb interface works out of the box.

– Mele a2000 – 512Mo
– Teac UD-501
– nuforce P8-S
– dBTechnologies ASX-18
– 2x RCF ayra 10 sub
– 2x Klein-Hummel O300d

– My ubuntu armhf
– MPD 0.17.4

I have only tested the usb interface.

Working perfectly:
– Flac PCM up to 24/192kHz
– DSD 64 2.8224Mbit/s

Not completely working:
– DXD up to 24/352.8kHz (wav) and DSD 128 5.6448Mbit/s – i get a really small sync glitch every minute. Perhaps a mpd problem? a mele usb problem? It doesn’t seem to be related to the SoC Allwinner A10, load is always low.

Not working:
– The teac hardware mixer. I can access to it but it’s not working. Perhaps it’s only changing with the headphone output… i didn’t check it.
– The software mixer with DSD. MPD is not managing it. You need to disable the mixer_type to play with dsd_usb. It will work with pcm also but you will lose the volume control from mpd.

I have two mpd output possible config from now.

The MPD with volume control and without DSD:

audio_output {
	type		"alsa"
	device		"hw:2,0"
	name		"UD501"
	auto_resample 	"no"
	auto_channels	"no"
	auto_format	"no"
	use_mmap	"yes"
	mixer_type	"software"

The MPD without volume control and with DSD:

audio_output {
	type		"alsa"
	device		"hw:2,0"
	name		"UD501"
	auto_resample 	"no"
	auto_channels	"no"
	auto_format	"no"
	use_mmap	"yes"
	dsd_usb		"yes"
	mixer_type	"disabled"

The asound.conf:

pcm.!default { type hw card UD501 }
ctl.!default { type hw card UD501 }

To sum up:

The Teac UD-501 rocks. You can get nearly all from it without any work.
It’s transparent, detailled and handling the future: DSD.
Long life to the UD-501, the Mele, the A10 and my ears.

6 thoughts on “MPD – from Micromega MyDac to Teac UD-501 DSD

    • My default is the hw:2,0.

      With alsamixer on the device UD501, i’m getting the “Digital In” volume control and nothing is changing on the output when you’re lowering the volume.
      For mpd, it is well connected to the same mixer…

      I’ve checked the headphone output and it’s the same. No volume change.

      # amixer scontrols
      Simple mixer control 'Digital In',0
      # amixer controls
      numid=1,iface=MIXER,name='Digital In Playback Switch'
      numid=2,iface=MIXER,name='Digital In Playback Volume'

      # amixer cget "numid=2,iface=MIXER,name='Digital In Playback Volume'"
      numid=2,iface=MIXER,name='Digital In Playback Volume'
      ; type=INTEGER,access=rw---R--,values=2,min=0,max=254,step=0
      : values=254,254
      | dBminmax-min=-127.00dB,max=0.00dB

      Same volume as:

      # amixer cget "numid=2,iface=MIXER,name='Digital In Playback Volume'"
      numid=2,iface=MIXER,name='Digital In Playback Volume'
      ; type=INTEGER,access=rw---R--,values=2,min=0,max=254,step=0
      : values=0,0
      | dBminmax-min=-127.00dB,max=0.00dB

      Useless hardware mixer so far. I’m starting to think it’s an inactive hardware mixer.

  • Wow, so the Teac UD-501 DSD works with your Linux kernel, out of the box? I have been searching everywhere on the ‘net and most people are saying it doesn’t quite conform to UAC2 standards and doesn’t work for them. I understand you’re running it with a kernel built with “everything that compiles,” so I don’t suppose you know what makes it work for you?

    I would like to have the Teac UD-501 working with a Wandboard hosting Freescale i.MX6 Duallite Cortex-A9 Dual core SoC.

    • Hi,

      It’s not linked to the kernel with “everything that compiles”.
      snd_usb_audio is enough, that’s all.
      I used the Teac with my debian laptop (vanilla 3.0.2 amd64) – working also.

      PCM (any rate) is flawless and bit perfect with mpd.
      Like i wrote, upper than DSD 64 2.8224Mbit/s is clumsy.
      In fact, the number of tracks available is so small it don’t matter to me.

      Nice for the wandboard, i have order a Wandboard quad too 😉
      waiting for delivery. It will work with it. It’s not a RaspPi.

  • Thanks man! I finally got my TEAC beast working in DSD mode, on a Ubuntu machine with MPD, using your templates for audio_output
    Pure magic!

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