Jump to content
IGNORED

MQA is Vaporware


Recommended Posts

10 minutes ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

MQA is 17 bits maximum and 96 kHz maximum. 
 

17 bits per sample x 96,000 samples per second = 1,632,000 bits per second x 2 channels = 3,264,,000 (3264 kbps) bits per second of stereo.

 

Oh, I was not aware MQA was limited to 17 bits and 96k?  I thought that only applied to non-MQA devices.
 

Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, David Wiblin said:

 

Oh, I was not aware MQA was limited to 17 bits and 96k?  I thought that only applied to non-MQA devices.
 

No, MQA removes data to decrease file size. The encoded file just tells the DAC to upsample the audio to 192 or whatever high rate was the original. No data is expanded or gotten back. Given that 99% of DACs upsample internally to much higher rates than that, it’s kind of comical. 

Founder of Audiophile Style

Announcing The Audiophile Style Podcast

Link to post
Share on other sites

Just saw this! Although not entirely surprised by Whathifi magazine's position regarding Tidal and MQA, but still, it's just plain silly to put Tidal at #1 with 5 stars and Qobuz at #7 with 3 stars. Apparently, the rivals offer better hi-res streaming quality than Qobuz, I wonder which rival(s) they are referring to? LoL
I wonder why many users, including me, are switching from Tidal to Qobuz. I am personally more than happy to be using Qobuz.

https://www.whathifi.com/us/best-buys/streaming/best-music-streaming-services
 

Audirvana+3.0 / Qobuz Studio / Mac Mini (256GB SSD - 16GB RAM)

Lindemann Musicbook: 20 DSD, ATC EL 150ASL

Link to post
Share on other sites

The What Hifi article is open for comments, if anyone fancies putting the record straight.

Windows 10 PC, Roon, HQPlayer, SOtM sMS-200Ultra, tX-USBultra, Paul Hynes SR4 (x2), Mutec REF10, Mutec MC3+USB, Devialet 1000Pro, KEF Blade.  Plus Pro-Ject Signature 12 TT for playing my 'legacy' vinyl collection.

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

Just saw this! Although not entirely surprised by Whathifi magazine's position regarding Tidal and MQA, but still, it's just plain silly to put Tidal at #1 with 5 stars and Qobuz at #7 with 3 stars. Apparently, the rivals offer better hi-res streaming quality than Qobuz, I wonder which rival(s) they are referring to? LoL
I wonder why many users, including me, are switching from Tidal to Qobuz. I am personally more than happy to be using Qobuz.

https://www.whathifi.com/us/best-buys/streaming/best-music-streaming-services
 


I switched over too from Tidal to Qobuz recently because of SQ. 
And what’s also strange is that the others are also above Qobuz.

It’s maybe a Tidal sponsored review.

Meitner ma1 v2 dac,  Sovereign preamp and power amp,

DIY speakers with scan speak illuminator drivers.

Raal SR1a

Under development:

NUC7i7dnbe, Euphony Stylus, Qobuz.

Modded Buffalo-fiber-EtherRegen, DC3- Isoregen, Lush^2

Link to post
Share on other sites

Two things from the Spotify announcement. One good, one equivocal. 

 

 

Equivocal - "Beginning later this year, Premium subscribers in select markets will be able to upgrade their sound quality to Spotify HiFi and listen to their favorite songs the way artists intended (emphasis mine)."

 

Good - "Spotify HiFi will deliver music in CD-quality(emphasis mine), lossless audio format to your device and Spotify Connect-enabled speakers, which means fans will be able to experience more depth and clarity while enjoying their favorite tracks."

 

 

Founder of Audiophile Style

Announcing The Audiophile Style Podcast

Link to post
Share on other sites
29 minutes ago, Fast and Bulbous said:

Hi all

 

There is a very asymmetric thing going on here. On the MQA side there is money, organisation, communications expertise, strategy expertise, vested interests and relationships, press reliant on advertising revenues, the labels, (some) hardware manufacturers, and and and... I don't know quite how to evaluate the financial size and agency of all of that combined. But it is a lot more than the other side of the asymmetry... Which seems to me to be a much smaller group of technically very well informed indiviudals who can address and disprove the claims by MQA, point by point. And one or two high profile individuals, like Neil Young (is anyone like Neil?), who will stand up and be counted.

 

It seems to me to be a question of variety and its amplification. MQA has a relatively simple (low variety) message which it amplifies, not least by sounding authoritative and clear about why MQA is soooo good and is the future. Only individuals who have higher variety than MQA can argue with their messaging. And they don't have a way of amplifying their counter messaging. Advertising, PR, channels to market (TIDAL, hardware manufacturers...), interviews, recommendations by the press, online pundits and so on all amplify the low variety message of MQA. The much higher variety arguments against MQA are not easy to absorb unless you also have high variety. As an example, Archimago's articles on MQA are really great, if you can get through them and understand them. Whilst we might, I suspect that few can.

 

All of us here know the core of the arguments against MQA. We recount them over and over. But they are not being amplified.

 

The recent clever, IMHO, move by Warner / MQA to attach to an environmental position is I suspect important. In the UK we have had documentaries on TV about the environmental cost of streaming. Is enormous. Not least because a lot of the locations of the vast server farms in the US are powered by power stations that use fossil fuels. So anything that reduces that impact is a "good thing". Very shrewd move by MQA - "Attack us? We're the good guys, what are our competitors doing eh? Answer me that". Where are the counter arguments against this stance? The clear argument is that MQA is unnecessary, it would be good to see an evaluation of the carbon cost of streaming MQA against not using MQA.

 

Am also conscious that we don't have the committed focused resources of MQA, but we have more than enough variety to counter MQA's arguments. More than enough. If we focus and as part of that focus figure out how to distill and amplify it then we might influence the overall situation. We are starting to talk about a video. That would be good. Will need a lot more than that though. Would need some high profile pundits to endorse our position, publicly and with agency to affect decision makers who care about music. We are raised and taught in a capitalist system that teaches systems gaming as a valued and rewarded skill, with ethics second. Am more for systems improving, with ethics at the core. The suggestion to take out advertising is a good one. We coudl only be low variety / low amplification. And would any outlet that depends on its revenue on MQA and its related channels do such a thing. Hmmm??

 

Variety and amplication. Is at the heart of it for me.

I understand your argument that the honest side of the debate has no strong marketing/sales ability.

On the other hand (begging the question), for the matter of 'saving bits'/environment -- it is best NOT to use MQA, because simply it is a loss of quality.   One might think of it a little as using the bits as a 'scale factor', but starting with 14bits of quality, and needing to use extra HW (power) over and over again to effectively access the actual purchased and desired 44.1k/16bits of quality seems a net-loss.  It is a net-loss even when played locally, because MQA is often implemented in the DACs, decoding over and over again.   Those who are captive to streaming are also  incurring the additional cost against the environment anyway -- better to locally store often listened to materials.

 

Again, I agree that the honest people who understand what MQA represents, have no 'amplfication', but also the various arguments about 'environment' are specious -- streaming is a bad environmental choice anyway.   Locally cache often-listened to materials (hide in a local licensed-data server if they want to play IP games), but playing the environment card is at best an even tradeoff, most likely worse for what MQA represents.

 

True 44.1k/16bit quality relative to the actual recording created during mixing is uncommon to find anyway.   Simply eliminate all of the ecologically costly damage to the recordings, mitigate the motivation by people who care about sound to correct the recordings (improve the damaged sound), wasting time playing with their set-ups.  Simply good quality recordings without damage, the undamaged versions already exist and use the least power to create (no other specious use of energy for further processing damage), the pure approach is the most ecologically friendly.

 

(Sorry if I am a little muddled -- I hope that I am making sense -- basically MQA doesn't fix anything, and damage can be mitigated in the future by removing wasteful damaging steps in the processing, therefor decrease the need for any 'processing' to recover from the damage.  People spend LOTS of money on their systems, hopefully improving the quality of a recording that is already needlessly and wastefully damaged almost beyond recovery.)   It is more efficient to make the quality pipeline through distribution technically more transparent.

 

Too bad we have no marketing -- and I do believe that the travesty is inevitable.   I have my own windmill  that I have been tilting about damaged recordings, and that damage started happening a LONG TIME AGO.   The industry doesn't are AT ALL about product quality, but it does care simply about the 'Benjamins'.

 

 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, mevdinc said:

Just saw this! Although not entirely surprised by Whathifi magazine's position regarding Tidal and MQA, but still, it's just plain silly to put Tidal at #1 with 5 stars and Qobuz at #7 with 3 stars. Apparently, the rivals offer better hi-res streaming quality than Qobuz, I wonder which rival(s) they are referring to? LoL
I wonder why many users, including me, are switching from Tidal to Qobuz. I am personally more than happy to be using Qobuz.

https://www.whathifi.com/us/best-buys/streaming/best-music-streaming-services
 

 

I am one happy customer w/ Tidal mainly because Tidal offers "major" 40% discounts with monthly subscription services for military service. 
If you're military just a point ya might want to factor in. 

 

In my case Qobuz offered nothing mainly because I was utilizing room correction by Dirac Live. Such processors limit  maximum sampling anyhoot. 

Anyways, I like Tidal's apps etc much better than Qobuz. 

Bluesound Node 2i

Sony 65 inch OLED A8G, Sony 4k Blue Ray X700

Parasound Halo A31 Amplifier

Tekton Ulfberht L + C + R Speakers [4 ohms ea.]
Two Tekton Active [300 watts rms] 4-10 Subwoofers

Link to post
Share on other sites
30 minutes ago, Don Blas De Lezo said:

 If Tidal offered to pay me 50 bucks cash monthly to use it and Qobuz doubled their price , I would still stick with Qobuz easily .  I'll put sound quality and morals above saving a few bucks any day. 

 

Well you definitely live in the wrong time. 

There used to be a time when contradictions were indicators of illogic, irrationality, or hypocrisy. However, nobody really cares anymore. Welcome to the new norm. 

 

Anyhoot, I do understand your point ..... but in my case Dirac Live limiting processors and less than desirable apps as well as major discount offered by Tidal made it more desirable in my eyes. 

 

Enjoy!

Bluesound Node 2i

Sony 65 inch OLED A8G, Sony 4k Blue Ray X700

Parasound Halo A31 Amplifier

Tekton Ulfberht L + C + R Speakers [4 ohms ea.]
Two Tekton Active [300 watts rms] 4-10 Subwoofers

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...