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MQA is Vaporware


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4 hours ago, Rt66indierock said:

 

Only on USB on a $30k DAC. Just a check the box feature for those want every format before they spent a large amount of money and a small crowded market.

 

As I mentioned earlier in the thread, this is probably similar to PS Audio DirectStream... Ted Smith didn't want MQA decoding/rendering code in his FPGA... MQA Ltd initially wanted the FPGA code.... Paul McGowan isn't for MQA either but due to customer requests (he says) they added it via the ConversDigital network card... they sent a unit to MQA Ltd and let them do the impulse response measurements and whatever else they do.

 

Ed has done similar and limited it to just USB input...

 

If one understands the work of Ted Smith and Ed Meitner (hint: DSP... both worked together at a point) then it's not hard to understand why they won't go 'all in' on MQA...

 

As I already mentioned a few posts back, there is apparently more customer/dealer demand 'offline' than we see online (forums etc), which is the only reason they would add this ... again thinking about their work...

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24 minutes ago, Em2016 said:

...there is apparently more customer/dealer demand 'offline' than we see online (forums etc), which is the only reason they would add this ... again thinking about their work... 

 

No doubt in the high-end bling space where Bob  S marketing has been most successful.  That and MQA must be given giving it away at this point...

Hey MQA, if it is not all $voodoo$, show us the math!

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28 minutes ago, Em2016 said:

 

Well this is what PSA have said on their (public) forum, so I'm not sure how you can say they are wrong... they have also been public (forum) in saying they are not for MQA and gave all their reasons publicly.

 

 

Be an issue in which way/s ?

 

You are looking in the wrong places. If there was actual demand RIAA would have reported a number of tracks available in hi-res far larger than 400,000 on May 6th. Not much point in making MQA files with CD quality or worse.  7digital announced on the same day if they don't get additional funding the will go out of business at the end of June. 7digital is the back room for among others Onkyo Music and was going power the HDTracks streaming service. Viacom dumped Rhapsody/Napster on their partner RealNetworks who are projecting losses for the second quarter of 2019.

 

So lets review. 400,000 tracks are less than 1% of total tracks and that is large increase over the numbers quoted me by label representatives in 2017. You can't run a hi-res tier on a streaming service without at least 4 million tracks. If 7digital is crippled or doesn't survive there goes one of the main ways to distribute MQA to consumers. And do you really think RealNetworks the other way  to distribute MQA files can grow its new subsidiary with MQA?

 

As for the North American demand issue  I just got notified of a fairly large symptom of falling demand. 

 

 

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43 minutes ago, Rt66indierock said:

You are looking in the wrong places. If there was actual demand RIAA would have reported a number of tracks available in hi-res far larger than 400,000 on May 6th.

 

Respectfully you are looking at the wrong place. When Paul talks about customer demand (for example) he is talking about offline requests from DirectStream owners and dealers... despite him not wanting it personally...

 

You can probably put Ed Meitner in the same boat, as I discussed previously...

 

This is absolutely not talking about global demand....

 

I don’t really understand how you are in a position to correct PSA on their comments about customer demand... keeping in mind PSA themselves don’t like MQA...

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55 minutes ago, Rt66indierock said:

As for the North American demand issue  I just got notified of a fairly large symptom of falling demand. 

 

Can you expand on this breaking news? It’s all rather vague ...

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3 hours ago, Em2016 said:

 

As I mentioned earlier in the thread, this is probably similar to PS Audio DirectStream... Ted Smith didn't want MQA decoding/rendering code in his FPGA... MQA Ltd initially wanted the FPGA code.... Paul McGowan isn't for MQA either but due to customer requests (he says) they added it via the ConversDigital network card... they sent a unit to MQA Ltd and let them do the impulse response measurements and whatever else they do.

 

Ed has done similar and limited it to just USB input...

 

If one understands the work of Ted Smith and Ed Meitner (hint: DSP... both worked together at a point) then it's not hard to understand why they won't go 'all in' on MQA...

 

As I already mentioned a few posts back, there is apparently more customer/dealer demand 'offline' than we see online (forums etc), which is the only reason they would add this ... again thinking about their work...

Often, the smart move is NOT giving the customer what they want. Being gutless to sell more boxes in another topic.

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20 minutes ago, Ishmael Slapowitz said:

Often, the smart move is NOT giving the customer what they want. Being gutless to sell more boxes in another topic.

 

I appreciated their transparency to be honest.. 

 

Quite a few DS DAC owners against MQA also appreciated the transparency, all on the PSA Forum... I saw no public backlash at the decision...

 

We have no idea what a “smart move” is without knowing before and after sales figures (to start with)...

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I don't have an MQA capable DAC and frankly MQA doesn't interest me but I have a question.  When you play MQA through Tidal for instance is there any kind of tag that shows who "authenticated" the files?  I would think that to be somewhat of a "purist" that only tracks authenticated by the original ARTIST are truly authenticated.  Anything else is somewhat of a bastardized version of "authentication".  Who cares if the the engineer or producer or custodian "authenticated" the track.

Jim

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8 hours ago, firedog said:

 I think these small audiophile businesses know their customer base a lot better than you or any other "armchair manager" do. 

That may be, but they also know what FEAR is. You can smell the stench of it. Unlike say, Schiit, Naim, Linn, Benchmark, Bryston, Playback Designs, McIntosh, Ayre, Exogal, Sonore, and many, many many more. 

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The reality is that many artists are not always in full control of their own music licensing.   It is the rights holders and the structure of the contracts/agreements between the artists and the rights holder that dictates which entity is providing approvals.  If the artists relinquished these rights to the music label, then it is the music label that speaks for the artist with regards to MQA authentication.

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16 hours ago, Em2016 said:

 

Respectfully you are looking at the wrong place. When Paul talks about customer demand (for example) he is talking about offline requests from DirectStream owners and dealers... despite him not wanting it personally...

 

You can probably put Ed Meitner in the same boat, as I discussed previously...

 

This is absolutely not talking about global demand....

 

I don’t really understand how you are in a position to correct PSA on their comments about customer demand... keeping in mind PSA themselves don’t like MQA...

 

Among other things I went to their forum typed MQA and sorted by most current. Then I looked at what Paul is talking about servo woofers and his book. That servo woofers cause audiophiles angst is just a bonus in my eyes.

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52 minutes ago, John_Atkinson said:

 

Exactly the case. With the Stereophile recordings, while I always get the artists' input and approval for the mix and balance, etc, as I am the one who has bankrolled every project other than the most recent, "Tight Lines," I make the final decision for every aspect of the recording.

 

John Atkinson

Technical Editor, Stereophile

Owner, Stereophile Recordings

Thanks John, I guess I'm not really sure of the value of MQA authentication then.  I'm sorry if this is getting very basic, I thought I understood the general idea of MQA, but what does "Authentication" actually mean?  Isn't there some sort of "authentication" going on with any master and subsequent vinyl pressing, CD, or streaming file already?

Jim

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1 hour ago, John_Atkinson said:

 

Exactly the case. With the Stereophile recordings, while I always get the artists' input and approval for the mix and balance, etc, as I am the one who has bankrolled every project other than the most recent, "Tight Lines," I make the final decision for every aspect of the recording.

 

John Atkinson

Technical Editor, Stereophile

Owner, Stereophile Recordings

Have Stereophile Recordings been MQA encoded?

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1 minute ago, Ishmael Slapowitz said:

Have Stereophile Recordings been MQA encoded?

 

Not for commercial release, only for my own comparisons between the hi-rez master and the MQA-encoded version.

 

John Atkinson

Technical Editor, Stereophile

Owner, Stereophile Recordings

 

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1 minute ago, John_Atkinson said:

 

Not for commercial release, only for my own comparisons between the hi-rez master and the MQA-encoded version.

 

John Atkinson

Technical Editor, Stereophile

Owner, Stereophile Recordings

 

Thanks for response. Given your full endorsement of MQA, I would have to ask, why not?

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Just now, firedog said:

 

Because like with most things, MQA obfuscates. Their marketing speak makes it sound as if the principals involved with the recordings are "authenticating" the masters. Obviously this isn't true, as some MQA material is old and the principals are all dead. No performing artist, producer, or engineer is around to authenticate. So someone at the rights holder is doing it. Could be someone with real knowledge of the music, or it could be some office flunky looking at a database on a computer screen. 
Clearly there are a few "white glove" MQA issues that have been authenticated by the artist or the producer, but these are the exception that prove the rule - that the "authentication" is mostly done by someone other than the artist or a central person in the production team. 

Well stated...and the the audio press continue to spread fantastical stories about MQA...

 

Example: Munich 2019 report:

 

When I questioned EMM Labs' Shahin al Rashid about using the NS1 to play PCM resolutions higher than 192, he noted that if the file is encoded in MQA, the NS1 can easily stream 384 PCM. This is because the Network Streamer sees the file as 44.1, and then unfolds it accordingly. Final rendering is performed by the DAC.


https://www.stereophile.com/content/emm-labs-ns1-network-streamer#M23BFOv65xj6rGSp.99

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