This paper studies a bidirectional dc-dc converter concept which is capable of achieving very high stepping ratios with MW level power transfers. The converter can find potential application in connecting high-power dc sources, interfacing to high-voltage dc transmission or to flexible ac transmission system elements. The converter is based on two resonant circuits which share a common ac capacitor. The topology is simple and utilizes thyristors with potentially all soft switchings. Complete analytical modelling is presented which enables systematic design procedure for the converter. The detailed digital simulation on PSCAD platform confirms satisfactory operation on a 5-MW test system, which connects 4-kV dc source to an 80-kV high voltage dc grid. The converter shows good responses to rapid changes in power magnitude/direction and it is concluded that robustness to terminal voltage disturbances is excellent. Since the highest-power phase-control thyristors are employed, the converter can potentially be used at much higher power levels. The passive components are of reasonable size.