Jump to content
Rt66indierock

MQA is Vaporware

Recommended Posts

@The Computer Audiophile maybe we need this as our theme song or need to stress - Don't drink the koolaid….

 


Current:  JRiver 24 on Win 10 PC (AMD Ryzen 5 2600 with 32 GB RAM) or Daphile on an I5-2500K with 16 GB RAM

DAC - TEAC UD-501 DAC 

Pre-amp - Audio Research SP-16

Amplification - PS Audio S300 - Kenwood L-07M's - Pioneer M-22

Speakers: Wharfedale Linton Heritage - KEF LS50 - ELAC unifi UB5's - Linn Tukans - others......

Cables:Tara Labs and DiMarzio Interconnects

Share this post


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

@Lee Scoggins like to use the term “at scale” quite a bit like high resolution audio files are some massive chunks of data the likes of which Netflix has never dealt with. 

WAIT - 4K video and 5.1 surround is less data than high res audio? WOW, I am not sure I want to see that 4K video. I realize @Lee Scoggins was trying for the WOW factor in size, but he failed, miserably.


Current:  JRiver 24 on Win 10 PC (AMD Ryzen 5 2600 with 32 GB RAM) or Daphile on an I5-2500K with 16 GB RAM

DAC - TEAC UD-501 DAC 

Pre-amp - Audio Research SP-16

Amplification - PS Audio S300 - Kenwood L-07M's - Pioneer M-22

Speakers: Wharfedale Linton Heritage - KEF LS50 - ELAC unifi UB5's - Linn Tukans - others......

Cables:Tara Labs and DiMarzio Interconnects

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
37 minutes ago, PeterSt said:

Hey Dirk - I think John announced not to know that.

 

From a Command Prompt:

 

mqascan inputfile

(inputfile can be a flac file)

 

Use your imagination at looking at the output. It's not difficult.

I guess a brief explanation is in order. As has been noted, there are three executables:

  • mqascan scans a file for MQA information and prints what it finds. With the "-1" flag only the first packet is printed. This includes the original sample rate, rendering options (filter, dither level), blue/green authentication level, and some fields with unknown meaning.
  • mqbscan is the same thing but for decoded MQA, what one would deliver to a renderer. Also accepts the "-1" flag.
  • mqbgen takes an existing input and adds rendering instructions. Useful for probing DACs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 minutes ago, ddetaey said:

In the mean time I have found out that dbPoweramp also is providing information on track level about MQA authentication

 

Yeah, but it isn't perfect.

 

MQA38.png.a8be5317632c6fe7fb4900d31d59764d.png


Lush^2      Blaxius^2      Ethernet^2     HDMI^2     XLR^2

XXHighEnd (developer)

Phasure NOS1 24/768 Async USB DAC (manufacturer)

Phasure Mach III Audio PC with Linear PSU (manufacturer)

Orelino & Orelo MKII Speakers (designer/supplier)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 minutes ago, ddetaey said:

The only problem I have is that dBPoweramp is stating an MQA encoded file has still perfect Audio Quality: Perfect (losless).

 

Apologies. You said so yourself. :eek:


Lush^2      Blaxius^2      Ethernet^2     HDMI^2     XLR^2

XXHighEnd (developer)

Phasure NOS1 24/768 Async USB DAC (manufacturer)

Phasure Mach III Audio PC with Linear PSU (manufacturer)

Orelino & Orelo MKII Speakers (designer/supplier)

Share this post


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

@The Computer Audiophile maybe we need this as our theme song or need to stress - Don't drink the koolaid….

 

 

Oh yes... ;)

 

One of my favorite songs from my teenage years when it was new:

 

Now just:

 

 

(sorry for the really bad quality live, couldn't find better quality, but album really worth listening!)


Signalyst - Developer of HQPlayer

Pulse & Fidelity - Software Defined Amplifiers

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
36 minutes ago, ddetaey said:

In the mean time I have found out that dbPoweramp also is providing information on track level about MQA authentication

 

image.png.e1a1be8c690b238dff49937303fb23bf.png

 

The only problem I have is that dBPoweramp is stating an MQA encoded file has still perfect Audio Quality: Perfect (losless).

That's just a dump of FLAC metadata tags. I doubt dBPoweramp pays any attention to the MQAENCODER tag. Besides, the presence or absence of that tag doesn't say for sure whether the file is MQA. My tool looks at the actual data and thus can't be fooled.

Share this post


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

That's just a dump of FLAC metadata tags. I doubt dBPoweramp pays any attention to the MQAENCODER tag. Besides, the presence or absence of that tag doesn't say for sure whether the file is MQA. My tool looks at the actual data and thus can't be fooled.

I fully agree, 

 

1) as dbPoweramp is integrated in the 'shell' of Windows File Manager , it is an easy 1st check and alert .

If MQA authentication is mentioned, it makes 100% sense to check in depth with your tool 🙂

My aim is is to build a list of albums and their production labels, such as 2L, that are misleading customers.  I hope my list will stop at 1 'music label' entry.

 

2) as dBPoweramp is indicating MQA identification, we better make sure not to make them spread the word that MQA is Perfect (Losless). There are probably more users using dbPoweramp, than readors of the MQA is Vaporware topic on the forum.

 

Dirk

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Ralf11 said:

 

They DO seem to have a very strong connection.

 

It is telling that one refuses to disavow any connection with MQA...  ...and whines that he is being "attacked" when asked about it.

 

Absolutely wrong, you know my terms for answering your question. You could easily have PM'ed me if you were really curious, and not trying to setup a sophomoric stunt.  

(shrug)

 

 


Anyone who considers protocol unimportant has never dealt with a cat DAC.

Robert A. Heinlein

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 minutes ago, Lee Scoggins said:

 

Paul, people who run streaming businesses are telling me that the smaller MQA file sizes matter from a business standpoint.  Since I don't know your or others expertise in this area, I tend to give those comments some credit.  These same people tell me that streaming businesses are extremely difficult to make profitable which further places emphasis of the bandwidth and storage issues.  Third, space on the phone is limited.  If we get people saving hirez files to the phone, then MQA has advantages there.

Nonsense. You are clearly at endgame with your meshugah phoney counterpoints. 

Share this post


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

 

The shelf life of MQA's compression benefit has almost expired, furthermore dithering flac to 18 bit gives a better compression benefit, while not having the crypto DRM, and being backwards compatible with most of the gear out there which supports flac.

MQA will have a hard time competing Nielsen's law:
https://www.nngroup.com/articles/law-of-bandwidth/

Spot on....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
20 minutes ago, Paul R said:

 

I have significant experience designing high speed and very high data load transfer networks and WANs as part of financial networks. And I have really extensive recent experience with providers like AWS, IBM, Oracle, and others. I have also been working with accountants - making any business profitable, much less sustainably profitable is anything but easy.  However, in terms of data transmission, so very little, if anything, will be saved by MQA vs ALAC or FLAC that it is completely a non-issue. Might feel a bit non-intuitive, but the cold hard engineering facts are immutable. This I have had to explain to unbelieving accounting and lawyer types many times, but the numbers always work out to say that a minor compression savings costs more in real dollars. The extra transmission cost, if any - and there is usually none at all - is negligible. 

 

In this case, I strongly suggest that this is a red herring, being used to distract you. 

 

Regardless of whether you believe me or not, it is easily shown that MQA formatted files do not appear to save much, if any, space over conventional ALAC or FLAC files, and that is before you take into account how compressible the files are for data transmission. (MQA may be more compressible than ALAC, depends upon just how random the "extra data" actually is. 

 

Go check with a non-MQA source and ask them to give you some actual figures. And, here is an example that may make it clearer - Amazon streams 4K videos to Prime Subscribers, as well as a tons of 1080 and 720 high def videos - free to Prime Subscribers every day. Do you really think that they are not completely covering the cost in the $129/year cost for prime? And that covers much more than just the video, it includes audio and free two day shipping on a ton of items. How much do you think the cost of streaming really counts in there? 

 

Now consider that AWS powers Amazon and thousands of other streaming companies. How much impact to you imagine that MQA can have in an environment like that? There will be a lot of zeros to the right of the decimal point before any significant numbers show up.  Any streaming company intending to survive has negotiated favorable deals with AWS or someone similar. They are NOT paying anything extra to stream FLAC vs MQA.

 

(If they are, they are foolish and should hire me immediately to come and get them out of the mayhem their foolishness has caused. :) )

 

Someone is feeding you a line mate. They are using this red herring to get you to buy off on points one and two, which make no sense technically unless you buy into point three, do they?  If there is no audible difference between ALAC and MQA, and no cost difference to stream them, then what sense to pay the MQA license fee? 

 

If MQA, regardless of whether it is lossless or not, sounds better, then there is some real justification. But will it sound better to the hordes of MP3 128kbs users out there?

 

I don't know, but it is a fair comparison. Lossy MP3 vs Lossy MQA. I think MQA would win that battle myself, I don't see how it could not. Lossy Sirus XM vs Lossy MQA XM?  Again, I think MQA would stand a great chance there. Problem of course, is that MQA is larger than 128kbs MP3. Much larger, I think. 

 

However, lossy MQA vs Lossless ALAC, based on some pie in the sky transmission savings? Not a chance in heck mate. Absolutely zero. As I said, you probably have access to other people that can easily verify this. Trust but verify is the motto in this case. 

 

P.S. Space on phones was limited.  Past Tense.

 

Most people stream all the time now, and save very few files actually on their phone.  You are thinking Audiophiles here, and audiophiles are anything but the best market segment for MQA. We tend to have lots of space on our phones anyways... 

 

 

Shortly, Mr Lee. will take your points, which seem to come from an informed technical position, and he will slather BS on to his MQA toast in response. Won't be long now. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Ishmael Slapowitz said:

Shortly, Mr Lee. will take your points, which seem to come from an informed technical position, and he will slather BS on to his MQA toast in response. Won't be long now. 

 

I doubt it - he may disagree, but I doubt he will respond with BS.   I do think someone is guilty of feeding him a bit of a line here. One thing I can assure you though, you do not want to be the target of an angry journalist who has been played. A whole lot of interesting byproducts ensue. 

 

Just my $0.02 - people should give the guy a little bit of a break. It's hard to (re-)examine your position when you are under attack you know. Pretty much everyone deserves a few "extra" second chances. 

 

-Paul

 


Anyone who considers protocol unimportant has never dealt with a cat DAC.

Robert A. Heinlein

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...