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  1. #1
    Senior Member Archimago's Avatar
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    Meridian's MQA - a few thoughts, possible concerns...

    Hey guys, I just posted a few thoughts on this Meridian MQA "thingy". I do have a few concerns based on what I've read. I guess there's no way the mainstream audiophile press would ever say anything else but "everything is awesome!" when you throw a party on the 69th floor of the Shard in London!

    Ahhhh, the benefits of being an "insider", right Ralph?

    http://archimago.blogspot.com/2015/0...-encoding.html
    Archimago's Musings: (archimago.blogspot.com) A 'more objective' audiophile blog.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Mnyb's Avatar
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    A solution in search for a problem ?

    What I think the world does not need yet another proprietary licensed format or any new music format , music files and steaming are already to confusing for the avarage joe . I would rather like to reduce the format count .

    Mores law will fix any data rate problem pretty soon , maybe not for mobile phones and cars , but there there is simply no need for ultra high quality . So even if successful MQA will be obsolete in a couple of years anyway .

    What they really want . Meridian has some sucess with MLP for DVDA it's now rebranded as Dolby true HD with some upgrades for the blueray carrier .

    So preevious moderate bussiness sucess with developing licensed formats , have made them take another stab at it now for the streaming market . This decoding tech would reside in DAC's HT recievers phones and all .

    Ok can you sell it , the deciding factor would be content as usual is there anything to listen to in this newfangled format or not .
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  3. #3
    Senior Member Wombat's Avatar
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    MQA is a lowpassed lossywav alike lossy encoder using some supercharged lowpass filter even better for marketing as the apodizing filter.
    There were people preferring mp3 over the original, so did others with Digital Compact Cassette.
    I also see no point in MQA for me as buyable download. Maybe some Spotify on steroids but even that does not interest me. All this High Bitrate scam out there cured me already.
    http://wiki.hydrogenaud.io/index.php?title=LossyWAV
    ,
    Edit: of course MQA does even more with being able to restore some info but if i had suggested lossywav to anyone i'd be called a deaf piece of wood but now that Bob Stuart says so...
    Or just remember the complaints when Weiss used a 25kHz lowpass going from dsd to PCM and now because of being Meridian it is a positive thing?
    Edit2: can't find it but i remember i saw some diagram of MQA in action and i don't think it keeps even 16bit all the time. Down to 13bit is enough for many recordings especialy when noiseshaped but this will make it even more lossy. This is against many audiophile believes that argue even sounds in the 24th bit make sound
    Last edited by Wombat; 2015-01-16 at 07:16.

  4. #4
    Senior Member ralphpnj's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Archimago View Post
    Hey guys, I just posted a few thoughts on this Meridian MQA "thingy". I do have a few concerns based on what I've read. I guess there's no way the mainstream audiophile press would ever say anything else but "everything is awesome!" when you throw a party on the 69th floor of the Shard in London!

    Ahhhh, the benefits of being an "insider", right Ralph?

    http://archimago.blogspot.com/2015/0...-encoding.html
    Nice blog post. I took your advice and read the "As We See It" editorial in the February 2015 issue of Stereophile, which I agree, is a worthwhile piece. However speaking of "the benefits of being an 'insider'" it was your warning about "Synergistic Research bull droppings" that not only showed how silly audio reviewers can get at times but how unaware of their actual insider status most audio reviewers are, as evidenced by this little quote from Fremer's article: "...I wanted to hear some of this stuff in my own space. A few months ago, Denny and Scott Walker arrived with some products that fall under the umbrella of Synergistic's uniform Energy Field (UEF) Technology." With "Denny" being Synergistic's owner Ted Denney and Scott Walker being the owner of Scott Walker Audio.
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  5. #5
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    I don't like the idea. A new format, for what, to combine higher sampling rates (IME useless) with lossy encoding (IME harmful)? Streaming 16/44 from Tidal or Qobuz is quite good enough and efficient enough already.
    Check it, add to it! http://www.dr.loudness-war.info/

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  6. #6
    Senior Member ralphpnj's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by darrenyeats View Post
    I don't like the idea. A new format, for what, to combine higher sampling rates (IME useless) with lossy encoding (IME harmful)? Streaming 16/44 from Tidal or Qobuz is quite good enough and efficient enough already.
    You are quite right, however this new format/technology is less about providing improved sound and much more about providing Meridian with a new revenue stream via licensing. Only thing is that the clowns in the high end audio press are NEVER going to say anything like that, they will just still to the script and say that it's all about improved sound.
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  7. #7
    Senior Member Archimago's Avatar
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    Desperation?

    As others have noted about a "solution in search of a problem", I think there's another angle here. I suspect the recording houses in their heart do not like the availability of the true "studio masters" going out the door. And I think they're realizing that the "HRA" angle isn't selling.

    Other than yet "moar loud" or EQ'ed remaster, a good quality "studio master" is the end of the revenue stream; they must keep the door open for potential re-buying of the album and MQA allows another step in that. It's "high resolution" in that it's potentially better than CD (Wombat, I'd love to see if there is indeed evidence that it could be <16-bits) - at least 48kHz is better than 44kHz, right? But it's not true 24-bits nor true 96/192kHz. Call me conspiratorial if you like but I think there's a big DRM/copy protection issue here as well. Of course, we can bet this will be hacked pretty quickly just like all that have come before. If I am correct, the big labels will get on board with the idea of DRM capabilities and provide backing in a way that something like Pono would never have. They of course need another way to sell this to a public wary of copy-protection already and that's why we keep seeing these fluffy comments about "connecting" the studio/artist to the consumer, or the "analogue front end to the back end" or even the use of the term "Authenticated" (through some indicator light). I think we're in for an interesting ride in terms of how they will continue to market and push this "format".

    BTW: I find Bob Stuart's "sales job" interesting... Here's a smart man with technical experience talking ad-speak putting himself out there like this as a mouthpiece. Unlike Neil Young who is clearly out of his depth with Pono, we've got a smart fellow trying to get the public to buy into his scheme. The responses appear scripted and vague by design. I smell desperation.

    Another implication of this suspicion is that over time, the big names will start deprecating HDTracks and Pono as it plays favourites with MQA. Death to the "studio master", long live the almighty MQA? We shall see :-).
    Last edited by Archimago; 2015-01-16 at 16:10.
    Archimago's Musings: (archimago.blogspot.com) A 'more objective' audiophile blog.

  8. #8
    Senior Member ralphpnj's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Archimago View Post
    As others have noted about a "solution in search of a problem", I think there's another angle here. I suspect the recording houses in their heart do not like the availability of the true "studio masters" going out the door. And I think they're realizing that the "HRA" angle isn't selling.

    Other than yet "moar loud" or EQ'ed remaster, a good quality "studio master" is the end of the revenue stream; they must keep the door open for potential re-buying of the album and MQA allows another step in that. It's "high resolution" in that it's potentially better than CD (Wombat, I'd love to see if there is indeed evidence that it could be <16-bits) - at least 48kHz is better than 44kHz, right? But it's not true 24-bits nor true 96/192kHz. Call me conspiratorial if you like but I think there's a big DRM/copy protection issue here as well. Of course, we can bet this will be hacked pretty quickly just like all that have come before. If I am correct, the big labels will get on board with the idea of DRM capabilities and provide backing in a way that something like Pono would never have. They of course need another way to sell this to a public wary of copy-protection already and that's why we keep seeing these fluffy comments about "connecting" the studio/artist to the consumer, or the "analogue front end to the back end" or even the use of the term "Authenticated" (through some indicator light). I think we're in for an interesting ride in terms of how they will continue to market and push this "format".

    BTW: I find Bob Stuart's "sales job" interesting... Here's a smart man with technical experience talking ad-speak putting himself out there like this as a mouthpiece. Unlike Neil Young who is clearly out of his depth with Pono, we've got a smart fellow trying to get the public to buy into his scheme. The responses appear scripted and vague by design. I smell desperation.

    Another implication of this suspicion is that over time, the big names will start deprecating HDTracks and Pono as it plays favourites with MQA. Death to the "studio master", long live the almighty MQA? We shall see :-).
    Wow! And I thought that I was bit paranoid.
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  9. #9
    Senior Member Wombat's Avatar
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    @Archimago
    I did no indeep reading leave alone understanding of that patent so i may be wrong.
    A blind quote that may not describe how the realworld implementation works:
    " The listener with access to all 24 bits may use the decoder of figure 5B to enjoy full bandwidth lossless reproduction of the 13-bit signal at point "A", i.e. with a resolution of 17 or 18 bits in the critical frequency range 0-7 kHz as a result of the 96kHz shaper."
    Thanks to esldude finding this

    http://patentscope.wipo.int/search/e...PCTDescription
    Last edited by Wombat; 2015-01-16 at 16:31.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Archimago's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ralphpnj View Post
    Wow! And I thought that I was bit paranoid.
    Paranoid, maybe :-)

    Let's see how this plays out. Might as well throw out a theory... Would be fun if even parts of it turns out to be true!
    Archimago's Musings: (archimago.blogspot.com) A 'more objective' audiophile blog.

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