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Rt66indierock

MQA is Vaporware

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1 hour ago, daverich4 said:

 

Paul is right though that since the thread started there has been lots of discussion about why MQA can’t sound good but almost no posts about what people actually HEAR wrong with it. I’ve posted a couple of times that I neither hear the claimed improvements nor anything wrong with it. That’s my experience, what is yours?

 

I’m pretty sure I discussed Dr Dog’s B Room and The Beach Boys Pet Sounds issues. 

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1 hour ago, Ishmael Slapowitz said:

Lee Scoggins Lite it seems. Shrug. Sigh. He is still with the passive aggressive "I don't care about MQA" baloney but posts ad nauseam and each post is a novel to boot. Oy Vey.

 

Lee kept trying to sell things with little or no truth to them. Don’t tell me HDTracks Streaming is coming any day when I know they are suing 7digital for failing to deliver the service. I had downloaded some of the case files long before I posted about it.

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3 hours ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

For the same reason MP3 files sound better to some people. They just do. 

For some people -- the SAME file sounds different.  Even for me, if not carefully done, the same material can sound different from play to play.   I cannot regulate my thinking, blood flow, etc well enough to determine whether or not something is the same or better without careful statstics.  I can hear serious faults, or certain faults that I have trained myself for -- but not reliable enough on single measurements to make strong declarations about superiority.

Of course, such limitations are just about me.  It might be that I recognize my limitations, and some others might not fully recognize their own.  And then, once-in-a-while, someone can reliably judge on a quick listen.

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2 hours ago, daverich4 said:

 

Paul is right though that since the thread started there has been lots of discussion about why MQA can’t sound good but almost no posts about what people actually HEAR wrong with it. I’ve posted a couple of times that I neither hear the claimed improvements nor anything wrong with it. That’s my experience, what is yours?

I disagree somewhat. I think there are many posts describing what is wrong with it. Personally, it creates a soundstage whole in the center, and bloats the mid bass. 

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22 minutes ago, Ishmael Slapowitz said:

I disagree somewhat. I think there are many posts describing what is wrong with it. Personally, it creates a soundstage whole in the center, and bloats the mid bass. 

 

I agree there are many posts describing what is technically wrong with it but still believe there aren’t many as descriptive as your post about what is wrong based on listening to it. A wide soundstage is something I especially value and I’ll go back to the two albums I have from the same master in 24/96 and MQA and concentrate on that. Thanks. 

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2 hours ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

A white gloved MQA album can sound spectacular.

 

I guess what I was after is what someone like you would hear as defective in the MQA version of the album compared to a pure PCM version? I’ve already stated that I don’t hear a difference but know that some people do. I’m just asking what that is and then perhaps I can listen for that characteristic to hear it for myself. 

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43 minutes ago, crenca said:

 

Add to that the out of phase-i-ness of the upper frequencies and (depending on the recording) a grain/"digititus" added as well. All subtle and somewhat tolerable if it was just a clever superMP3 without "end to end" designs through lock in and DRM...

Completely agree. 

 

I just compared the MQA and non MQA versions of Coldplay's Viva La Vida, and the Black Keys new album. The MQA versions far inferior to my ears.

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18 minutes ago, MikeyFresh said:

 

According to Stereophile it was actually the birth of a new world.

2130480549_ScreenShot2019-07-22at10_34_16PM.thumb.png.97bcab09d3ec426c99e1d3af5ce473b5.png

 

Yes, those were disingenuous acts at best...more like premeditated deceit, and the audio press went for it hook, line, and sinker (or were they just playing along?).

 

 

Thank you, PaulR can add that data point to his comprehensive survey, or perhaps you had already been interviewed in the Cheyenne area?

No? what about Salt Lake City?

"...or perhaps you had already been interviewed in the Cheyenne area? No? what about Salt Lake City?"

 

Now, that was so funny, I just spit out my Mannishevitz...😃

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10 hours ago, crenca said:

Thanks.  Audiophile descriptive language such as "clarity", "resolution", and the like (to say nothing of descriptors like "musicality") are so variable as to be almost useless. 

 

This is the language of a subjectivist fiction.

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6 hours ago, Rt66indierock said:

 

No it is real research project that PaulR can do or not do, his choice. 

 

And your correct there is nothing MQA does that can’t be done without it.

 

No - I am not the one with the avowed intention of driving MQA the company into the ground. Let's be clear here - that is your intention, not mine. 

 

There is an easy way to get Audiophiles to abandon MQA. Postulate MQA sounds worse than a high res PCM or DSD copy of the same music, preferably from the same master. Then prove it.  

 

Do that, MQA is dead in a month, because only audiophiles are interested in it, and pretty much audiophiles are only interested in what it sounds like. 

 

Shrug, but you need to do it. My music is either high res PCM, DSD, or redbook. And I doubt very seriously if I will be rebuying any of the thousands of albums in my collection. I don't even fall for the many of the new super deluxe remastered releases. 

 

It's your war, you fight it. Just don't lie to us audiophiles, or try to hide in the shadows and convince everyone how well connected you are. 

 

-Paul 

 


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

Robert A. Heinlein

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4 minutes ago, Paul R said:

 

No - I am not the one with the avowed intention of driving MQA the company into the ground. Let's be clear here - that is your intention, not mine. 

 

There is an easy way to get Audiophiles to abandon MQA. Postulate MQA sounds worse than a high res PCM or DSD copy of the same music, preferably from the same master. Then prove it.  

 

Do that, MQA is dead in a month, because only audiophiles are interested in it, and pretty much audiophiles are only interested in what it sounds like. 

 

Shrug, but you need to do it. My music is either high res PCM, DSD, or redbook. And I doubt very seriously if I will be rebuying any of the thousands of albums in my collection. I don't even fall for the many of the new super deluxe remastered releases. 

 

It's your war, you fight it. Just don't lie to us audiophiles, or try to hide in the shadows and convince everyone how well connected you are. 

 

-Paul 

 

Come on Paul.  Your request is ridiculous.  You can't get an MQA version except from MQA.  And then you have no way to verify the master is the same or any of it.  There are good reasons to think MQA, straight from how it works, is by definition worse than high res PCM or DSD.  MQA is at best lossy in the ultrasonics vs high res PCM.  It sure isn't going to be higher fidelity that way.  


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

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5 hours ago, firedog said:

Okay Paul, for the record (even though I posted this previously): I was an early adopter of an MQA Dac and compared dozens  of tracks on Tidal. Including many written about as sounding amazingly better via MQA and including some that I’m very familiar with b/c they are old favorites. I didn’t do proper ABX trials but did try to also do unsighted listening, meaning I didn’t know which track I was listening to in many cases. 

Result: “meh”. Meaning a few tracks sounded better, a few worse, and most not really different, just somewhat  different like any typical remaster, meaning it sounds a little different but still basically sounds the same. 

No track I compared sounded dramatically better to me. Comparison: some recent re-issues of old material like the Beatles and John Lennon do sound dramatically different (and yes, I know they are remixes) and that is something one can debate being worthwhile or worth paying for. Not MQA. 

 

Conclusion: no need for MQA in terms of SQ, and the non SQ related issues mean it really isn’t something I want as a player in the market. 

If it really had some consistent and clear SQ superiority, then many of us would be in a quandary over accepting/supporting it or not. Since it doesn’t, it’s easy to be against it for all those other reasons. 

 

I mostly agree with you. There are a few spectacular MQA tracks, but not so spectacular as to make me rebuy them, if they are for sale. Look on Bandcamp for some really spectacular MQA.

 

Want to buy a used Merdian Explorer 2, cheap? It's replacement is an iFi iDSD Micro BL, which makes just about everything sound fantastic, but has some annoying features. :/ 

 

I would say that I have spent some serious time working with people who were amazed by the MQA sound, only for them to realize that the MQA sound is a bit less amazing when compared to say, a good mastering in DSD or high resolution PCM. Of course, there are the people that say nothing can sound better than Redbook for whatever reason. 

 

I would say that, except it would generate such a spewing from the hide behind an anonymous handle idiots that it is not worth it.  Or from the few who are just mad dog crazy. IN any other subject thread, those types would have been ejected from here a long time ago. The unreasoned hatred of MQA seems to make them acceptable. 

 

I even, as much as I despise Tidal, paid several months of service with them to be sure I could access MQA files the other people were raving about. Still agree with you.

 

Shrug - there are too many nasty types in this forum thread to share much anymore. It is getting old hearing the hate, the rationalized justifications for the hate,  listening to people prate about how how well connected they are, and having Tom constantly raging at me for no discernible reason.*

 

When it comes down to it, the basic thing most audiophiles I know are concerned with is simple. How does the thingamajig make their music sound? 

 

Not much else counts.

 

When people do the work to counter the "Wow! It sounds Amazing!" comments instead of acting like a bunch of middle school juvie delinquents,  the MQA nonsense will fall apart. With luck,  this thread will self destruct, and maybe we can find more interesting and valuable things to talk about. What's the next great thing to come down the pike anyway? 

 

-Paul 

 

 

* (Just pulling your leg Tom, rage away if you want. I won't hold it against you! Lets go biking on the beach sometime and I'll buy the beer and cigars. :))


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

Robert A. Heinlein

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