Jump to content
Rt66indierock

MQA is Vaporware

Rate this topic

Recommended Posts

57 minutes ago, firedog said:

I understand that you are starting to see some of the issues: 

 

The fact that both are PCM compatible is irrelevant and means nothing. "PCM" is LPCM or Linear and a lossless  representation of what's on a CD. MQA isn't technically PCM (as I understand it) because it is a compressed lossy format. Just like mp3, which is also 16/44.1 compatible but is lossy and compressed. 

 

And BTW, it's well established that 0.2db volume differences are extemely difficult to detect but do change our perception of playback quality. 

If I understand correctly, MQA is lossy in that it discards bits. But as far as I know it is not lossy in the frequency domain.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
24 minutes ago, Brinkman Ship said:

If I understand correctly, MQA is lossy in that it discards bits. But as far as I know it is not lossy in the frequency domain.


Sorry to bust your bubble, but's it's lossy and not authentic to the master.
 

Here is 2L.no's 2L-053 demo track in the original studiomaster (blue plot) vs the first unfold (red plot) and second unfold (green plot):
 

image.thumb.png.7eb0a56482fd6b1373fb8a868be7f0cf.png

The first unfold actually is true to the original spectrum but in a band limited fashion, as it stops at 44.1 Khz nyquist. 2L.no files are all multiples of 44.1 Khz and edited as DXD.

The second unfold which upsamples + dithers the first unfold just creates a totally new response not in the original.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
27 minutes ago, Brinkman Ship said:

If I understand correctly, MQA is lossy in that it discards bits. But as far as I know it is not lossy in the frequency domain.

It throws away anything over 17bits and 48K. E.g., 24/192 files are turned into 17/96 files. When you play it back in full unfold, it is upsampled from 17/96 to 24.192. 


Main listening (small home office):

Surge protector +_iFi  AC iPurifiers >Isol-8 Mini sub Axis Power Conditioning+Isolation>CAPS IV Pipeline Server + Sonore 12V PS >SOtM Lan Isolator>Bricasti M5 Network Player >Kii Control>Kii Three >GIK Room Treatments.
 

Secondary Listening: CAPS Pipeline>IFi iOne DAC>Schiit Freya>Kii Three . Also an SBT and a RB Pi 3B+ running piCorePlayer as an SBT emulator. 

All absolute statements about audio are false :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 minutes ago, FredericV said:


Sorry to bust your bubble, but's it's lossy and not authentic to the master.
 

Here is 2L.no's 2L-053 demo track in the original studiomaster (blue plot) vs the first unfold (red plot) and second unfold (green plot):
 

image.thumb.png.7eb0a56482fd6b1373fb8a868be7f0cf.png

The first unfold actually is true to the original spectrum but in a band limited fashion, as it stops at 44.1 Khz nyquist. 2L.no files are all multiples of 44.1 Khz and edited as DXD.

The second unfold which upsamples + dithers the first unfold just creates a totally new response not in the original.

Hey your graph proves MQA is better than the original. There is more response in that second unfold than in the original DXD.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

No I don't really mean it.  :P


To paraphrase Rick James, "sighted listening is a helluva drug".

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 minutes ago, esldude said:

Hey your graph proves MQA is better than the original. There is more response in that second unfold than in the original DXD.  

...
No I don't really mean it.  :P

 

After seeing this response, my unfold for MQA's acronym is now Master Quack Audio.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Brinkman Ship said:

If I understand correctly, MQA is lossy in that it discards bits. But as far as I know it is not lossy in the frequency domain.

Are you even trying to make sense?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 minutes ago, mansr said:

Are you even trying to make sense?

 

Based on when he joined and the fact that all his posts have been limited to this thread, I'm guess that we're seeing Lee's replacement in action.


“All of humanity's problems stem from man's inability to sit quietly in a room alone listening to music.”

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 minutes ago, kumakuma said:

 

Based on when he joined and the fact that all his posts have been limited to this thread, I'm guess that we're seeing Lee's replacement in action.

Doesn't sound like Lee at all. And he seems to be listening to the comments here. 


Main listening (small home office):

Surge protector +_iFi  AC iPurifiers >Isol-8 Mini sub Axis Power Conditioning+Isolation>CAPS IV Pipeline Server + Sonore 12V PS >SOtM Lan Isolator>Bricasti M5 Network Player >Kii Control>Kii Three >GIK Room Treatments.
 

Secondary Listening: CAPS Pipeline>IFi iOne DAC>Schiit Freya>Kii Three . Also an SBT and a RB Pi 3B+ running piCorePlayer as an SBT emulator. 

All absolute statements about audio are false :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 minutes ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

Hi @Brinkman Ship, Welcome to CA. Or, should I say welcome back to CA or welcome to CA under a new name?

 

Based on your posts, your registered email address ([email protected]<domain>.com), and the fact you're obscuring your physical location pretty well (IP addresses from all over the world, just in the last few hours), I'm quite suspicious of you. It appears you have an agenda and/or something to hide. 

 

I don't mind anyone hiding his location or using an email address such as yours, but given the volatility of this topic, it seems you are hear for reasons other than to truly discuss MQA with the community.

 

Please be careful and follow the rules.

Oh this is too funny.  Or pathetic.  Or both.  

 

mqatruth..................that must be the mqa truth hit squad.  

 

Be careful Chris.  You might be on their hit list. 

 

 


To paraphrase Rick James, "sighted listening is a helluva drug".

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
27 minutes ago, kumakuma said:

 

Based on when he joined and the fact that all his posts have been limited to this thread, I'm guess that we're seeing Lee's replacement in action.

 

Members who joined in last few months with 85% +  of posts overtly anti-MQA and in this thread don't equally alert your suspicions...?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, Norton said:

 

Members who joined in last few months with 85% +  of posts overtly anti-MQA and in this thread don't equally alert your suspicions...?

 

Suspicions of what?


“All of humanity's problems stem from man's inability to sit quietly in a room alone listening to music.”

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 minutes ago, esldude said:

Oh this is too funny.  Or pathetic.  Or both.  

 

mqatruth..................that must be the mqa truth hit squad.  

 

Be careful Chris.  You might be on their hit list. 

 

 

 

I'm reminded of this old book/movie:

 

Gang-That-Couldnt-Shoot-ad.thumb.jpg.c4b1e15ff6227b4dcf7e0527e0cacfa9.jpg


“All of humanity's problems stem from man's inability to sit quietly in a room alone listening to music.”

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
13 minutes ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

Hi @Brinkman Ship, Welcome to CA. Or, should I say welcome back to CA or welcome to CA under a new name?

 

Based on your posts, your registered email address ([email protected]<domain>.com), and the fact you're obscuring your physical location pretty well (IP addresses from all over the world, just in the last few hours), I'm quite suspicious of you. It appears you have an agenda and/or something to hide.


He's probably using TOR or some VPN provider with different global exit points. In tor browser bundle, you can change your exit node by just clicking on some button.

Are TOR / VPN ip's allowed to post CA? Some fora filter those IP's, some admins already filter it in the webserver, so it does not reach the forum backend.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 1/29/2018 at 2:26 PM, knickerhawk said:

 

Please turn down your preach level (it's quite audible) and I'll turn down my sarcasm level and then maybe we can have a useful discussion about what I actually wrote regarding the range of sound level differences picked up by the crude methodology I used and the fact that, even when the non-MQA version is measurably louder, it didn't adversely affect my ability to identify (and prefer) the MQA version.

 

The preach level is entirely justified when it comes to the importance of precise level matching whenever subjective sound quality comparisons are performed.  People who don't do this are either ignorant or dishonest shysters.  This one factor goes back throughout the history of audio, in my case all the way back to the late 1950's when I started getting interested in hi-fi.

 

If you want to measure levels accurately between two formats where a proprietary decode process is bundled into a DAC you will have to conduct measurements at the analog output of the DAC.  You can do this by tapping into the analog output going to your preamplifier and sending it to high quality analog to digital converter running at a high sampling rate and bit resolution.   Then you can take the captured waveforms of both signals and process them with an audio editor and any other analysis software you want. 

 

If you wish to adjust the levels of the two signals, to a fraction of a dB that will be a different problem.  If one of the formats is straight 24 bit PCM you can make adjustments in level with an audio editor, but this will make a slight degradation of signal quality of this format due to reduction of signal to noise ratio and the addition of a second dither process.

 

There are other problems in comparing the formats when you are forced to work with analog circuitry in the loop, as would be the case with MQA DACs.  A small level change in the input may make a large change in distortion levels if the DAC circuitry clips digitally, or affect distortion of downstream analog buffers.  And level matching becomes an ambiguous concept if there are substantial differences in frequency response in the two signals being compared.  But these come into play at a secondary level.

 

You can hear the effect of a slight gain difference by taking a 24 bit PCM file and using an audio editor to change the gain by fractions of a dB and then compare sound quality.  You can also hear all of the various aspects of lower resolution PCM formats by starting with a high quality (e.g. 192/24 PCM) format and downsampling to lower resolution (e.g. 44/16) and then upconverting back to the original format.  Software such as iZotope RX allows for selection of many filter parameters and one can hear all kinds of tradeoffs between filter settings if one is sufficiently patient.  You can train your ear to hear these effects, but it will probably take hundreds of hours to become familiar with the effects, which also depend on the particular musical genres and recording techniques used.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, FredericV said:


He's probably using TOR or some VPN provider with different global exit points. In tor browser bundle, you can change your exit node by just clicking on some button.

Are TOR / VPN ip's allowed to post CA? Some fora filter those IP's, some admins already filter it in apache or webserver, so it does not reach the forum backend.

Yeah, with tor it’s simple. Even I use it sometimes. 

 

I prefer people don’t use tor or vpns or ad blockers, but trying to stop them is a fools errand. 


Founder of Audiophile Style and Superphonica

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
23 minutes ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

Hi @Brinkman Ship, Welcome to CA. Or, should I say welcome back to CA or welcome to CA under a new name?

 

Based on your posts, your registered email address ([email protected]<domain>.com), and the fact you're obscuring your physical location pretty well (IP addresses from all over the world, just in the last few hours), I'm quite suspicious of you. It appears you have an agenda and/or something to hide. 

 

I don't mind anyone hiding his location or using an email address such as yours, but given the volatility of this topic, it seems you are hear for reasons other than to truly discuss MQA with the community.

 

Please be careful and follow the rules.

Suspicious of what? I joined here to specifically participate in this thread.

 

I have my issues with MQA, but I am also trying to understand all the venom spewed towards it.

 

The email i created was so I could keep track of this forum and its posts. No malicious intent.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, Brinkman Ship said:

Suspicious of what? I joined here to specifically participate in this thread.

 

I have my issues with MQA, but I am also trying to understand all the venom spewed towards it.

 

The email i created was so I could keep track of this forum and its posts. No malicious intent.

Okay. I am no expert, but maybe can give a summary others can add to or correct.

 

MQA is lossy.  For quite awhile they pretended it wasn't or were vague. 

 

MQA purports to be better quality than hirez originals.  

 

MQA claimed to authenticate you were getting the master, and it does not. 

 

MQA claimed quite a bit of new innovative use of the digital medium fixing "blur".  Subsequent investigation uncovers it can't do anything over 96 khz, it simply oversamples.  It does unfold to 96 khz from 44 or 48 khz, but the extra stuff after the unfold is lossy in encoding. It uses filters that allow some aliasing.  

 

It appears to only have 17 bits of resolution. 

 

Unencoded it reduces quality of the track to maybe 13 bits.  

 

There are a few other issues. 

 

My main complaint is it can function as DRM.  And even if never used that way it prevents anyone from using digital room correction or speaker correction.  The latter is a big boon to performance.  Offset against a questionable improvement brought by MQA it makes MQA a non-starter for many.  

 

There is plenty more, but that should be a good start for you. 


To paraphrase Rick James, "sighted listening is a helluva drug".

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...