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MQA is Vaporware


Rt66indierock

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3 minutes ago, mansr said:

Undecoded MQA has to be worse than CD since it has at most 15 bits of accessible data compared CD's 16.

 

Noted.

 

But it's worse in the same way that a 16bit 44kHz CD is worse than the 24bit 44kHz Hi-Res master it was made from (as an example)?

 

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16 minutes ago, Lee Scoggins said:

 

I would love to interview him.  I may not have 5 hours though and neither might he. 

 

@mansr are you game?

 

 

The only reasons I bring up the suggestion:

 

1. I personally have no issues with someones website or publication gaining traffic and making money (why would I) with all this MQA discussion. But if both sides and in this case, the opposing side's arguments are properly conveyed, and the opposing sides arguments get a little more publicity than being buried in a computer audiophile forum, I think  it's win win for all, no?

 

Unless MQA detractors would prefer the discussion stays on the CA forum and comments sections on MQA articles elsehwere?

 

2. I think Mans mentioned he's only been contacted once by a publication/website. So this might be the 2nd time he gets asked for comments/opinions/interview (if he's interested?)

 

Cheers!

 

 

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2 minutes ago, mansr said:

I'm willing to answer some questions by email provided I get to preview and veto anything you intend to publish attributed to me.

 

Sounds like a fair request.

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6 minutes ago, mansr said:

Or any other question. Whatever he is asked, he replies with a complete non sequitur.

 

I'm guessing the proposed idea for an interview to be published on his website, has fizzled?

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1 hour ago, psjug said:

Maybe, but I wonder if Deezer is backing off.  They haven't said anything about it since September.  Here is what they say on the Deezer Community forum:

 

I can't share any info just yet and we don't know for sure if and when MQA will be available with Deezer tracks

 

True. Like everything to do with MQA, we'll have to wait and see how it all unfolds. Especially over the next year and two.

 

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26 minutes ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

If people see a light come on and that means it’s supposed to be better, they’ll have to have it and companies will push it. Don’t even think about lossless, high resolution, lossy or other terms that require consumer education. 

 

Like Dolby.

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2 hours ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

SABRE DACs from ESS Technology to Integrate MQA Rendering, Studio-Quality Sound Made Simple

ESS Technology’s legendary SABRE DACs will feature integrated MQA rendering that allows for easy implementation of MQA sound into a wide variety of applications

 

MILPITAS, Calif., May 07, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- ESS Technology, the industry leader in audio and analog design, announced today that they will introduce versions of their SABRE® audio DACs that feature integrated MQA rendering.

MQA technology is becoming widely accepted as a standard for distributing ultra-high-quality music across a variety of platforms.  The encoding process folds extra information into the signal that can be recovered later.  The resulting signal sounds great on its own and improves with systems that unfold the extra data and take advantage of the full range and dynamics of the master file created in the studio.

This “unfolding” process takes place in two steps: the first unfold, called Core Decoding, can be done on most DSP systems, and system designers looking to implement this can take advantage of standard code.  In fact, this process is already included in many existing PC software music applications such as Tidal, Roon, Amarra and Audirvana.  Core Decoding is also available in dedicated portable devices such as Onkyo and Pioneer players as well as several smartphones.

The final step in the unfolding, called rendering, needs to be done in tight cooperation with the DAC.  The quality of the rendering depends on the DAC output filters and this has typically involved hand tuning each design.  But the agreement between ESS and MQA will make that a whole lot easier!

ESS will soon introduce SABRE Mobile DACs and Headphone Systems with integrated MQA rendering.  Integrating the renderer as a hardware block coupled to the DAC achieves several advantages including ease-of-design, improved performance, and lower power.

At the heart of this solution is the legendary SABRE® DAC, which provides amazing sound quality with a stable image and immersive sound-stage.  The HyperStream® II modulator and QUAD DAC™ Technology allow users to hear every nuanced detail.  The SABRE brand is widely recognized as providing the best sounding DACs on the market and is the choice of leading audiophile brands. 

Combining the MQA rendering with the DAC will eliminate all the manual tuning and software integration that is required when using a separate DSP and stand-alone DACs.  The system designer won’t need to worry about the implementation at all.  Automatic rendering will allow the system to instantly detect a Core MQA stream and configure the custom filter settings to give the optimal-quality output.  The combined hardware blocks allow for the solution to be implemented without a DSP, saving power as well as size and cost.

These small and lower power solutions will be ideal for active headphones that can offer MQA whenever a software decoder is active on the device.  They also offer compelling value to table-top or portable players that want to offer great sounding DACs with a full MQA solution. Wherever you are, you can enjoy a supreme listening experience with SABRE DACs from ESS Technologies.

About ESS Technology
For more than three decades, ESS Technology has been on the cutting edge of audio technology. A privately-held fabless semiconductor company, ESS Technology designs and markets high-performance analog and HiFi audio devices for mobile, consumer, automotive, and professional audiophile systems. The company was founded in 1984 and today ESS Technology is best known for its SABRE series of high-performance audio products. For more information, visit http://www.esstech.com.

About MQA
Using pioneering scientific research into how people hear, the MQA team has created a technology that captures the sound of the original studio performance. The master MQA file is fully authenticated and is small enough to stream, while also being backward compatible, so you can play MQA music on any device. MQA’s award-winning technology is licensed by labels, music services and hardware manufacturers worldwide and is certified by the RIAA. MQA is a UK-based private company.
For more information visit www.mqa.co.uk
Follow MQA on: Facebook  Twitter  You Tube

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at http://resource.globenewswire.com/Resource/Download/8c024be1-4265-483d-b93c-530c2059d592

 

Contact: 
Shawn Scarlett 
408-643-8982

This message was distributed by Nasdaq's GlobeNewswire.
(165 Broadway, New York, NY, 10006, USA+1.212.401.8700www.nasdaq.com
On behalf of ESS Technology  237 South Hillview Drive, Milpitas, CA 95035 US http://www.esstech.com/
This message was sent to [email protected]
If you wish to no longer receive these messages you can unsubscribe.

 

Hi Chris

 

Is this related to your post about a very wealthy and very large company planning to give MQA to it's customer base of 10's of millions?


Or is that still something different?

 

 

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Just now, The Computer Audiophile said:

Something different 

 

Hmmm. From what you've heard, it's coming in 2018 or no timeline?

 

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3 minutes ago, Brinkman Ship said:

..Pandora is the rumour du jour...but then again they announced "support" for HiRez 2 years ago.

 

He emphasised very large and very wealthy company. That probably means one of Amazon, Apple, Google, Samsung... I can't imagine Apple though but stranger things have happened.

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24 minutes ago, FredericV said:

I have owned several ESS based DAC's and they all sound different to me

 

Per the well regarded late Charles Hansen of Ayre Acoustics, there are more important factors in how a DAC will sound, than DAC chip used, mainly the overall power supply and analogue sections:

 

 

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7 hours ago, Brinkman Ship said:

I am no saying there is not a forth-coming announcement, I was just under the impression Munich would be the venue.

 

Chris said he's heard something about a very large and very wealthy company.

 

Such a company wouldn't/couldn't care less about Munich (and the 1% like us that follow Munich announcements).

 

To be honest, if MQA Ltd have their sights on massive contracts like the one Chris has heard may come, they will probably stop reading and caring about this thread and similar, to focus on 'securing the bag'.

 

https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=secure the bag

 

 

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5 hours ago, esldude said:

From the MQA home page. Quoting a Warner music exec.  Then from same page Michael Nash of Universal Music Group. 

 

“Music fans will love it when they hear it, and WMG is thrilled to be partnering with MQA to take the next step in bringing hi-resolution music to consumers across the globe.”

 

“With MQA, we are working with a partner whose technology is among the best solutions for streaming Hi-Res Audio, and one that doesn't ask music fans to compromise on sound quality for convenience.”

 

 

 

Regarding your bold parts (and I would honestly prefer MQA would just go away) but if you compare the 1st unfold (I'm only talking the 1st unfold and nothing beyond that) to the same master that can be purchased, they are essentially the same. It's easy to verify if you're able to capture and analyze the streams and purchases on your computer.

 

You can test with the album MAGNIFICAT on Tidal (353kHz) and purchase the 24/96 version and DXD master. The 1st unfold on Tidal stream and the 24/96kHz purchase will look identical. 

 

Again I'd prefer MQA go away. Again, I'm only talking about the 1st unfold. 

 

@Archimago said similar....

 

"Objectively with the songs I examined, the software decoder works well to reconstruct what looks like the equivalent 24/96 download."

 

and

 

"Bottom line: TIDAL/MQA streaming does sound like the equivalent 24/96 downloads based on what I have heard and the test results"

 

https://archimago.blogspot.hk/2017/01/comparison-tidal-mqa-music-high.html

 

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17 minutes ago, adamdea said:

Sure there is a sound point underlying the MQA triangle- there is very little information on any recording which couldn’t be captured with noise shaped 16/96. 

Unfortunately BS is not interested in distributing noise shaped 16/96, which could be packed in 24/96 with the bottom 8 digits frozen and packed in a similar size flac container to MQA. 

It would have the same information content as pretty much any 24/96 file (and  pretty much any 24/192 either).

 

Noted and agreed. Just thought I'd mention it because I've seen lots of comments across various forums about people not liking the 1st unfold on Tidal.

 

In reality they're not liking the master... because the 1st unfold is essentially equivalent to the HiRes master that can be purchased (if it can be purchased).

 

Again, I'm not talking about anything beyond the 1st unfold. There's been enough said and analysed there hehe.

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5 hours ago, esldude said:

If you play back the 1st unfold does it not engage the rather lax filtering of MQA?

 

Again, per Archimago:

 

"Objectively with the songs I examined, the software decoder works well to reconstruct what looks like the equivalent 24/96 download."

 

and

 

"Bottom line: TIDAL/MQA streaming does sound like the equivalent 24/96 downloads based on what I have heard and the test results"

 

https://archimago.blogspot.hk/2017/01/comparison-tidal-mqa-music-high.html

 

It's very easy to confirm yourself too. I used an audio capture app on Mac and Spek analyzer, for the Tidal album Magnificat, and purchased the album in 24/96 and DXD (all come from the DXD master).

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59 minutes ago, esldude said:

Well I don't have Tidal.  My meager internet connection would be near saturated by Tidal streaming at least half of every day.  Part of the other half when I get higher speeds unfortunately is when I (and apparently everyone else in the area) is asleep.  

 

Noted. A 1st unfold on Tidal would be the same as a 1st unfold anywhere else, in an apples to apples comparison, so when I mentioned 1st unfold, it's not limited to Tidal.

 

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8 minutes ago, Brinkman Ship said:

Jack White predicts the future is going to be streaming

 

Predicts? The future? That prediction would make sense in 2015. Things have moved quickly since then... driven by the 99% who don't care about anything we (the 1%) discuss here.

 

"In 2016, the music industry made more than half of its revenue from streaming for the first time, and that growth continued into 2017. Last year, nearly two-thirds of all revenue — over $5.7 billion — came from streaming, an increase of 43 percent."

 

https://www.theverge.com/2018/3/22/17152120/digital-downloads-cd-vinyl-riaa-2017-report

 

 

 

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6 hours ago, Brinkman Ship said:

Basically the premise is that CDs and downloads will no longer be a purchase option.

 

Not hard to work out from this trend. I love Jack White but I don’t need more info about his prediction to connect the dots.

 

“In 2016, the music industry made more than half of its revenue from streaming for the first time, and that growth continued into 2017. Last year, nearly two-thirds of all revenue — over $5.7 billion — came from streaming, an increase of 43 percent."

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On 6/15/2018 at 3:49 AM, Brinkman Ship said:

I am going to be doing a direct comparison between a CD Rip of:

 

 

51AA0ovY1HL._SY355_.jpg

 

and the 24/44.1 MQA version

 

Please not again. Remember that time you started a thread? And the Brinkman Ship suffered the same fate of the Titanic? ?

 

 

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2 hours ago, FredericV said:

Auralic is using sox filters to emulate MQA's "time domain" filter, this was discovered by analyzing their firmware image and it was also confirmed to me personally. They use libsox, we use soxr.

We did something similar in our 432 EVO music server (and came independently to the same solution), but personally I don't like the MQA alike filter, and prefer the Archimago intermediate phase filters, which is also one of the 10 filters to choose from.

 

Just for my background info, do Auralic pay the people behind sox to use their filter? Or is it completely freeware/open source?

 

And @Archimago filters? Open source or a source of income?

 

I ask respectfully and genuinely - not to hint at anything .

 

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7 minutes ago, mansr said:

Sox is free to use under the terms of LGPL.

 

Thanks mansr!

 

Is that the same with you contribution to Audirvana?

 

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