Okay. So it's a format for the way the music is stored and played back; that's what I was reading too. I'm just not sure what that really means.
For example, FLAC, MP3 or CDDA are formats for storage of an audio file. Fine. Is DSD in the same family?
DSD can be a format for storage on a SACD (I don't know if it is, but let's just go with it for arguments sake); meaning that the audio files stored on an SACD are in 'DSD' format. Fine.
When a SACD player plays a SACD, it reads the file (in DSD format) and converts that data into PCM and sends it out over a SPDIF connection (to, say, an external DAC). The DAC at that point is going to treat the data the way it's going to treat it, regardless of what/where it came from. IE, if the file was an MP3 and then run though USB, into an OffRamp and out though Coax or from a SACD player out through Coax, provided the bit rate and frequency are the same, the DAC sound be treating the data the same. I guess my point it, once it hits the DAC, the original storage method is irrelevant (and probably unknown) from a processing stand point.
So, if DSD is a storage format, that should change what format our audio files are, not how out DAC behaves. And we know that's not the case, so all that is false. So that means DSD is a different animal than FLAC, MP3 or CDDA and not in the same family.
So, then, I would guess that DSD is more akin to PCM (so I guess it is kind of like CDDA above, but not like MP3 or the likes). I don't know how USB sends an audio signal (is it like PCM, is it more packet based, burst based, or...?) but it would be something standardized.
(Sorry for the long post, but I am getting to my point...)
So if DSD is like (from what I can tell) the next generation of PCM, but for USB applications (according to Wiki, that's how it started) would using something like an Offramp on a DSD device negate the need for DSD? Or, is DSD used over something like SPDIF as well? And finally, if both cases are true, and one used a current Offramp (non DSD capable) you would negate the benefit of having DSD... Right? Finally, does any of this matter?
Or is DSD completely different than anything I've said above?
(And that's why I don't like DAC's.)