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Tidal adds "Masters' to Android


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52 minutes ago, dmormerod said:

Being an iOS user I didn't know Masters weren't supported on Android

 

Given that the article you're referencing is about the Android TIDAL app, are you implying that the iOS TIDAL app already supports MQA Masters?

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3 hours ago, Cebolla said:

 

Given that the article you're referencing is about the Android TIDAL app, are you implying that the iOS TIDAL app already supports MQA Masters?

 

No, I just wasn't aware the Android didn't and until now it was only the Desktop app that did support Masters.

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Ok.

 

BTW, I believe there's currently only one player on both iOS & Android, that is licensed to stream TIDAL MQA Masters file tracks - mConnect Player app (free Lite version available). All other TIDAL supporting iOS & Android apps that attempt to play a TIDAL MQA file track will instead receive a 'doctored' stream, with the MQA track resampled to a CD resolution of 16/44.1kHz by TIDAL's online server. This corrupts some of the MQA data & therefore prevents MQA decoding. 

 

However, unlike the TIDAL Desktop app (and similarly Roon & Audirvana Plus), mConnect Player hasn't got the option to (software) decode MQA to the MQA Core (aka 'first unfold'). So a full MQA decoding DAC needs to be used (ie, not a DAC that is only an MQA renderer), if you require MQA decoding.

We will win because our NHS is the beating heart of this country. It is the best of this country. It is unconquerable. It is powered by love.

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-- Jo Cox

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I have a little ASUS Android tablet - ZenPad C 7.0 - and I used to use it to cast HiFi audio to a ChromeCast Audio device which is connected to the stereo receiver in our living room. The update that enabled Tidal Master playback on the tablet broke the casting functionality, that is, casting from the tablet to the CCA no longer works. Casting from my iPhone to the CCA still works - not Master quality of course - so it's not an issue with the CCA. I have opened a ticket with Tidal support and will report on the outcome.

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  • 3 weeks later...
10 hours ago, AMR/iFi audio said:

Folks, if anyone's interested, we just posted a handy MQA + Tidal tutorial on one of our own portable machines.

 

Are you saying that any Android device that can output audio via USB to the iFi xDSD DAC, can get the xDSD to bit perfectly receive the audio that has been decoded to the MQA Core (first unfold) by the official TIDAL Android app, when playing TIDAL's Masters MQA file tracks?

 

If not, can you list which Android devices are able to do this and/or what specification of Android device is required?

We will win because our NHS is the beating heart of this country. It is the best of this country. It is unconquerable. It is powered by love.

-- Boris Johnson

 

We are far more united and have far more in common with each other than things that divide us.

-- Jo Cox

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10 hours ago, Cebolla said:

 

Are you saying that any Android device that can output audio via USB to the iFi xDSD DAC, can get the xDSD to bit perfectly receive the audio that has been decoded to the MQA Core (first unfold) by the official TIDAL Android app, when playing TIDAL's Masters MQA file tracks?

 

If not, can you list which Android devices are able to do this and/or what specification of Android device is required?

 

It's a bit complicated due to Android smartphones vary in what they send out and we're not able to check each separately. As listed here:

 

http://support.ifi-audio.com/kb/faq.php?id=129

  • Android device that can run Android 4.1 or above.
  • USB host mode has been enabled by the Android manufacturer.
  • Android device running Android Open Accessory (AOA) protocol version 2.0.

...are all a solid start. Bitperfect data is a must as well. One of our crew has fairly new Samsung, which upsamples all audio internally, which is a problem. The man uses Audio Player Pro, which overrides this upsampling and he's dandy. 

Our PowerStation is here: click me!

 

Check out our Tidal MQA Set-up Guides below. 
Android (Renderer) Mobile
Desktop (Decoder) via USB
Desktop (Decoder) via SPDIF

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4 hours ago, AMR/iFi audio said:

 

It's a bit complicated due to Android smartphones vary in what they send out and we're not able to check each separately. As listed here:

 

http://support.ifi-audio.com/kb/faq.php?id=129

  • Android device that can run Android 4.1 or above.
  • USB host mode has been enabled by the Android manufacturer.
  • Android device running Android Open Accessory (AOA) protocol version 2.0.

...are all a solid start. Bitperfect data is a must as well. One of our crew has fairly new Samsung, which upsamples all audio internally, which is a problem. The man uses Audio Player Pro, which overrides this upsampling and he's dandy. 

 

The Tidal Android app does not send bit perfect data via USB (using a Samsung Galaxy S8; other apps on this phone do send bit perfect data).

The Tidal app is up-sampling all tracks (MQA and non-MQA to the highest output of the DAC connected to the phone. I tested this with 3 DACs:

(1) Dragonfly Red DAC (MQA renderer)

(2) Marantz HD-AMP1 amp/DAC (non-MQA)

(3) Mytek Brooklyn DAC+ (MQA decoder and renderer)

All tracks, MQA and non-MQA alike played at the following sample rates noted on the DACs:

(1) 96k

(2) 192k

(3) 192k*

*Strangely, the DAC is indicating 192k and 22 bit (not 24 bit).

I tried changing the streaming quality in the app (e.g. from Master to HiFi) and no matter what I set it at, the Mytek Brooklyn DAC+ indicates 192k and this includes when playing non-MQA material. Similar results on the other DACs. Further, the Mytek Brooklyn DAC+, which is an MQA decoder and renderer, is not detecting an MQA stream.

 

Unfortunately, there is no setting in the app to turn off MQA decoding and pass the bit perfect data through.

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I ended up buying an LG V30+ phone for Tidal/MQA when I heard about the updated Tidal app on Android a few weeks ago. It worked out cheaper than a midrange DAP, and I got a 'free' phone into the bargain. It sounds incredibly good, plus there are more and more tracks from the genre that I enjoy listening to being delivered in MQA. The UAPP app also detects the MQA-capable DAC in the V30+ and will send bit perfect MQA streams to it.

 

I know that Tidal and MQA isn't regarded well on this forum by some people, but since I took out my Tidal HiFi subscription a few months ago, my enjoyment of music has increased dramatically. I've found so many new artists and so many great new tracks. I have Tidal streaming music for 5-6 hours per day.

 

I've found streaming services to be 'better' than buying music. I have a large collection of ripped CDs in my iTunes library from the last couple of decades and I'm not listening to the older music much these days as there's so much great new music to discover and enjoy. For the cost of less than two HiRes albums per month, I can listen to dozens of albums every month and move on to new artists and songs over time.

 

Not for everyone obviously, but it works well for me and I'm more than a contented bunny.

 

By the way, the updated Tidal app on Android will also play MQA offline.

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19 hours ago, lucretius said:

 

The Tidal Android app does not send bit perfect data via USB (using a Samsung Galaxy S8; other apps on this phone do send bit perfect data).

The Tidal app is up-sampling all tracks (MQA and non-MQA to the highest output of the DAC connected to the phone. I tested this with 3 DACs:

(1) Dragonfly Red DAC (MQA renderer)

(2) Marantz HD-AMP1 amp/DAC (non-MQA)

(3) Mytek Brooklyn DAC+ (MQA decoder and renderer)

All tracks, MQA and non-MQA alike played at the following sample rates noted on the DACs:

(1) 96k

(2) 192k

(3) 192k*

*Strangely, the DAC is indicating 192k and 22 bit (not 24 bit).

I tried changing the streaming quality in the app (e.g. from Master to HiFi) and no matter what I set it at, the Mytek Brooklyn DAC+ indicates 192k and this includes when playing non-MQA material. Similar results on the other DACs. Further, the Mytek Brooklyn DAC+, which is an MQA decoder and renderer, is not detecting an MQA stream.

 

Unfortunately, there is no setting in the app to turn off MQA decoding and pass the bit perfect data through.

 

Have you seen this?

 

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.extreamsd.usbaudioplayerpro&hl=en_US

Our PowerStation is here: click me!

 

Check out our Tidal MQA Set-up Guides below. 
Android (Renderer) Mobile
Desktop (Decoder) via USB
Desktop (Decoder) via SPDIF

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That's the UAPP app already mentioned by @Taz777. The mConnect Player app is also worth trying if all you require for the USB DAC is the passthrough/undecoded MQA encoded signal.

We will win because our NHS is the beating heart of this country. It is the best of this country. It is unconquerable. It is powered by love.

-- Boris Johnson

 

We are far more united and have far more in common with each other than things that divide us.

-- Jo Cox

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On 1/31/2019 at 9:02 AM, Taz777 said:

The UAPP app also detects the MQA-capable DAC in the V30+ and will send bit perfect MQA streams to it.

 

I know that Tidal and MQA isn't regarded well on this forum by some people, but since I took out my Tidal HiFi subscription a few months ago, my enjoyment of music has increased dramatically. I've found so many new artists and so many great new tracks. I have Tidal streaming music for 5-6 hours per day.

 

You should be able to compare streaming TIDAL's MQA hi-res tracks with Qobuz's 'normal' lossless hi-res tracks quite easily for yourself, given that the UAPP app supports both online music services. The Qobuz Studio subscription (free one month trial available) gives you access to Qobuz's hi-res file tracks for streaming.

We will win because our NHS is the beating heart of this country. It is the best of this country. It is unconquerable. It is powered by love.

-- Boris Johnson

 

We are far more united and have far more in common with each other than things that divide us.

-- Jo Cox

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@Cebolla I tried Qobuz a few weeks ago and was left disappointed so I cancelled the free trial. Qobuz' HiRes seems be 48kHz/24-bit mostly, from what I could tell. Obviously that sounded a bit better than Tidal HiFi. I was expecting more from Qobuz HiRes. Qobuz support was virtually non-existent when I couldn't find most of the songs that I have in my Tidal playlists. So, I cancelled my free trial out of disappointment with the lack of songs that I like to listen to and the poor support. I also found issues with the Qobuz UI which wasn't nearly as slick as the Tidal desktop (also some French language translation issues here and there).

 

At the end of the day, sound quality is irrelevant if the songs don't exist.

 

UAPP is of limited benefit to me as I mainly listen to Tidal offline on my V30+ so at the moment that's only possible via the Tidal app. There is an issue with the Tidal HiFi stream being upsampled to 48kHz though, but the music sounds fantastic regardless. UAPP doesn't suffer from the this upsampling, but it's online only. The amount of ambient noise on a plane or a busy street would make the sonic imperfections of the Tidal apps upsampling imperceptible in those environments.

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On 1/31/2019 at 2:51 AM, lucretius said:

 

The Tidal Android app does not send bit perfect data via USB (using a Samsung Galaxy S8; other apps on this phone do send bit perfect data).

The Tidal app is up-sampling all tracks (MQA and non-MQA to the highest output of the DAC connected to the phone. I tested this with 3 DACs:

(1) Dragonfly Red DAC (MQA renderer)

(2) Marantz HD-AMP1 amp/DAC (non-MQA)

(3) Mytek Brooklyn DAC+ (MQA decoder and renderer)

All tracks, MQA and non-MQA alike played at the following sample rates noted on the DACs:

(1) 96k

(2) 192k

(3) 192k*

*Strangely, the DAC is indicating 192k and 22 bit (not 24 bit).

I tried changing the streaming quality in the app (e.g. from Master to HiFi) and no matter what I set it at, the Mytek Brooklyn DAC+ indicates 192k and this includes when playing non-MQA material. Similar results on the other DACs. Further, the Mytek Brooklyn DAC+, which is an MQA decoder and renderer, is not detecting an MQA stream.

 

Unfortunately, there is no setting in the app to turn off MQA decoding and pass the bit perfect data through.

 

We own several Android devices i.e. Huawei, Xaomi etc. All but the Samsung play MQA and Hi-Res just fine at the correct sampling rates. Samsung internally up-samples audio with its driver, its nothing related to TIDAL. If it was TIDAL, then all Androids would have the same issue, since MQA is required to have a bit-perfect stream.

 

You've used 3 DACs but the same Samsung, meaning its upsampling to the highest supported sampling rate of what said DACs can do.

 

USB Audio Player Pro overrides the internals of Samsung allowing to take control of the stream making it 'bit-perfect' - with the TIDAL plug in and MQA purchase you can still get MQA via Tidal with a Samsung.

 

For that sole reason we used an Huawei for our video demonstration, and using a Samsung for UAPP Tidal MQA video which is coming soon.

 

Here is a clip from UAPP app store:

 

"High quality media player supporting USB audio DACs and HiRes audio chips found in the latest phones. Play up to any resolution and sample rate that the DAC supports! All popular and less popular formats are supported, including wav, flac, mp3, m4a, MQA and DSD. This app is a must-have for every audiophile, bypassing all audio limits of Android. Whether you use our custom USB audio driver for USB DACs, our HiRes driver for internal audio chips or the standard Android driver, this app is one of the highest quality media players around."

 

We also wrote an article a few years back that highlights the same but on Sony phones - https://ifi-audio.com/licking-the-lollipop/ 

 

Sony are into their audio.

 

Our PowerStation is here: click me!

 

Check out our Tidal MQA Set-up Guides below. 
Android (Renderer) Mobile
Desktop (Decoder) via USB
Desktop (Decoder) via SPDIF

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