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Archimago

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  1. Compared to some of the losses in other Dot-Com ventures, MQA is a relative lightweight. Just a few million here and there... 😱 I agree, they expect substantial cash flow... Is the consumer so silly to fork over cash for something with no actual value? I don't think so. They can hype up all they want, claim whatever, value MQA to investors as anything they wish. I just think it's too late in the game and all that's left is for the fat lady to sing. Terribly conceived from start to bitter end, IMO. At least the SPARS code was cool back in the day when music lovers kept an eye out for new DDD releases because it was new, there was genuine excitement, and digital actually could deliver on the promise of better resolution (even if ultimately not essential for good sound). Maybe the companies made a few bucks. Why would anyone care about the MQA designation now? There is no genuine excitement (if anything consistent opposition) and it cannot deliver on its factitious promises. BTW: Anyone know if Universal Music Japan's release of MQA-CD's resulted in gangbuster sales??? 🤑 Did the Japanese even buy the stuff?
  2. Wow. We had a break from MQA discussions from November 3rd until today November 18th. That's 2 weeks of peace :-)! Must be close to a record since this thread started. LOL. Let's think about this provenance / authentication claim with a hypothetical example... Say in 2020 there's an MQA release of Kind Of Blue, authenticated by "Jim Bob the Archiver of Jazz" working at Sony/Columbia as the truly "authentic", final "analogue" sound. Cool. "Jim Bob" used the best original tapes baked "just right", made the transfer with perfectly aligned reel-to-reel player, all the bells and whistles transferred to 24/384 digital. Top class, sound to die for, "white glove" and all of course. Presumably, Sony will make some money stamping LPs. Probably a CD release. If we're lucky maybe a 24/96 download that's not "authenticated" to buy, and perhaps the same one distributed to Amazon and Qobuz for streaming. Sadly, "only" 24/96 and more "family jewels" than "crown jewels" quality 😀. And Tidal gets 24/48 MQA, "authenticated" file for their streaming. (Yes, I know, MQA fans must be salivating over this prospect as the DAC will no doubt also say decoded/upsampled to "24/384".) When Roon plays the Qobuz version, perhaps in the album title, it says "Kind of Blue, 61st Anniversary Edition" to indicate which album/master is used. When playing off the Tidal MQA, there's not only a blue light 😉, and not only does the album title say "Kind of Blue, 61st Anniversary", we now also have "Authenticated to be THE ONE TRUE ANALOG SOUND by Jim Bob of Sony/Columbia, January 25, 2020"!!! (I can see MQA fans fainting at the prospect of this awesome knowledge right about now!) Is that valuable? If so, to whom other than MQA and said fans? Audiophiles? Completist digital audio collectors? (Of course, few places to download these MQA files.) Miles Davis is long dead so did his estate ask for this and would they even know what the artist intended? We already know from FredericV that the blue light doesn't ensure "bit perfect" even, so there is no assurance that Tidal didn't get a bad copy or perhaps error happened during streaming. And finally, does anyone really care if "Jim Bob", Sony, or Columbia markets this version as the definitive "analog sound"? Surely there will be the even-more-authentic "66th Anniversary Edition" in 2025, right?! What am I missing here? What's the fuss?
  3. 🙂 Looks like you've been to a few too many audiophile shows Chris... As per other aspects of human cognition and perception, once we start looking at the extremes, deviating from the "neurotypical", we are bound to find a few cases here and there of remarkable abilities. I suspect most of us would not necessarily desire to have such abilities if there is a price to pay like being able to enjoy the music and experience how it was meant to be heard! YMMV.
  4. Yeah, this was RMAF in September when we spoke, @The Computer Audiophile... Based on my online bind tests over the years with MP3 vs. lossless and MQA vs. Hi-Res Lossless particularly, I reached out to some of my "golden ears" folks who were able to consistently hear differences. What I noticed was that there was a distinct group of folks who seemed to hear the difference probably because they had abnormal hearing. For example, one fellow admitted that he had hearing damage from previous injury so he's missing certain frequencies and so could tell the difference between what would normally be very similar sounding material to most of us. Another fellow found that a certain signal consistently made his tinnitus worse so could differentiate them (this could have been MQA 🙂). This discussion happened with Mark Waldrep at his booth and I encouraged Mark to follow-up on this. Maybe he can specifically followup with the folks in his blind test who perform exceptionally well and see if there is a similar finding... Yup. Probably this kind of phenomenon happening in some of the folks I talked to as well. Of course, being long distance blind tests, I had no way to examine what kind of hearing anomalies these individuals had. What this has taught me is that even if someone claims to be a "golden ear" audiophile and in fact can differentiate clearly between MP3 vs. lossless, or hi-res, it's important NOT to feel envious or think that one can or should aspire to this... It might in fact be the complete opposite and you really do not want that guy's hearing ability! 😉
  5. Agreed Kal... Unfocused article and full of errors. Perhaps predictably, no comments section for readership to set him straight. Reads like bad science fiction/fantasy especially the last sections.
  6. Well, we all die in the end... The question is whether one dies as a hero. 😎 As for the quote about Denney = Iron Man. It came from here: https://www.synergisticresearch.com/isolation/accessories/ect/ See Raymond's review at the bottom!
  7. You shouldn't be giving away ideas like that to Ted Denney III (aka "Tony Stark of the audio world"). You should be selling that idea and getting a royalty! Oh well. Can't be unsaid now. Just watch those ideas get incorporated into his next generation of "world reference" SRX Infinity Interconnects with Evolved UEF Folding utilizing Tuned Electro-Magneto-Quantum Active Shielding with Cylindrical Missing Link Grapheme Nano-Particle Matrix SuperActive Ground Plane protected by Blue Quantum Mono-Crystal Alloy Fuses lined by Atmospheric Electronic Circuit Transducers operating at Schumann Resonance with ULF Field Generated Active EM Ground Block SE (of course) all housed in a Carbon Fiber Tesseract. And this will be all handmade by virgins in their California factory! The paradigmatic Audio Singularity is near and @esldude just gave it away to Synergistic Research for free on a forum. 😞
  8. Thanks John! "Ear opening" example. Enjoyed this old pop song but the recording always sounded terrible. Very nice decoded conversion...
  9. Silly product but could be fun novelty for some. I wonder though how this sounds like (need a YouTube video). Would be impressed if the cut 10" disks eve n halfway sounds decent... I don't think they said how much for each blank disk.
  10. LOL. Ben's working hard! He would have been even more convincing had he used words the word "jitter" in this advert :-).
  11. That would be very interesting @Currawong! Not just about MQA but also thoughts about the cultural differences among audiophiles. With streaming becoming (or is already) a majority chunk of music consumption the disparity with physical content purchasing especially as we've heard in Japan is interesting... Enjoy the Tokyo Show and hope you let us know what's going on in that part of the world!
  12. Did the dealer indicate how well those MQA-CD releases are selling? I bet the blue light shining would be much more reassuring than just a label on the box saying XRCD, UHQCD, Blu-Spec...!
  13. What's the meaning of this @Rt66indierock? Is it mandatory? Is there a firm deadline?
  14. Well said. Certainly no argument from me that we all have our own "agenda / ego / philosophy" whether consciously or subconsciously expressed. 🙂 Agree or not with the other person's opinion, I think internal consistency of one's philosophy and clarity of communication are essentials when debating. In this regard, I'm not sure I understand where Amir is coming from or why he feels the way he does about MQA...
  15. Well... Leaving AES aside :-)... I remember the first time I heard about Amir was when he was debating the late Arny Kruger about hi-res audio. It's been awhile since I've seen that thread but in general I agree with this Audio Investigations entry. No doubt Amir is a smart guy, I can't help but feel there's some ego there that I'm uncomfortable with. I enjoy reading his measurement reports (like recently the PS Audio DAC and the much-ballyhooed-by-various-audiophiles Totaldac - no surprise there are issues with these devices) nonetheless.
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