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  1. #31
    Senior Member Julf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DanSmedra View Post
    I fully agree! John Darko makes an interesting point regarding the future.

    Q. I guess. But hi-res isn’t a panacea for a poor recording or master though, is it?

    Darko: No, it is not. A bad master cannot be corrected by MQA and a nicely mastered file streamed via good old Redbook will, all other things being equal, sound better than a dynamically compressed master streamed via MQA.

    The things is: all things are rarely equal. It’s highly probable that a Redbook file converted to analogue by an Aqua La Scala MKII ($6,000) will easily better the SQ of that same song MQA-d but converted to analogue by an AudioQuest DragonFly ($200-$300).

    Beware of those now kicking Redbook and CDs as a means to sell us on the benefits hi-res audio. Many consumers won’t have the hardware to resolve the improvements. Many more won’t even care.
    Can we please keep this thread focused on how to listen to MQA via Tidal on a Squeezebox Touch?

    Discussions about subjectively perceived sound quality really belong in the "audiophile" section.
    "To try to judge the real from the false will always be hard. In this fast-growing art of 'high fidelity' the quackery will bear a solid gilt edge that will fool many people" - Paul W Klipsch, 1953

  2. #32
    Senior Member DanSmedra's Avatar
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    A Detailed Yet Concise Explanation of MQA...

    ...for those wanting to look "under the hood."
    ________________________________

    http://www.computeraudiophile.com/co...mqa-civilians/

    Published on 02-05-2017 09:16 PM by Chris Connaker, Founder: Computer Audiophile

    "A PhD isn't required to enjoy MQA. This article is my attempt at explaining how decoding and rendering work, from a civilian perspective. Most of us have seen the music origami graphs and deep technical explanations, but have no idea what any of the information actually means for us, enjoying music at home or on the go. I want to help members of the CA community understand how to get the best sound quality out of MQA.

    "
    Enjoying MQA music isn't rocket science, but it takes a little education to make the right choices. Obtaining the best quality MQA playback requires either a combination of software decoding and hardware rendering or a full decoding DAC. Fortunately, I believe 90% of MQA's benefits can be realized by only using a software decoder, called core decoding. Now that some of our favorite music is available in MQA, it's time we listen for a while rather than talk over the music. Set your systems up right and press play."
    ________________________________

    "Software "core" decoding" would seem a feasible addition since the Squeezebox domain (e.g. Touch, LMS, etc.) allows for modification via software plugins. Your choice...of course.

    For skeptics and naysayers, here's a technical article by Benchmark audio...just down the road from me. Is MQA DOA? (Dead On Arrival). https://benchmarkmedia.com/blogs/app...855-is-mqa-doa
    Last edited by DanSmedra; 2017-02-07 at 21:06.
    Source: TIDAL HiFi, Pandora One > MySqueezebox.com using iPeng 9.6 app on iPhone6s/iPad
    Great Room: SB Touch(1) > AudioQuest TOS > PS Audio DL3 DAC > Audio Envy 10' cables > 200w powered Martin Logan (ML) Purity speakers, SB Touch(2) >JVC 110w amp > ML Motion 4 & AudioEngine 5.
    Garage: SB Touch(3) > CullenCoax > Wyred mINT > Cullen Cables > ML Motion 12
    Carry Anywhere: TIDAL >iPhone 6s > Bose Mini BT speaker.
    Streaming Media: https://www.facebook.com/groups/535747176592597/

  3. #33
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    photonblur vs. photonblur

    Quote Originally Posted by photonblur View Post
    Any chance the resident geniuses will enable
    MQA streaming from the Tidal touch app?
    The cinic in me has once again vanquished
    my more hopeful self.

    MQA whatever it's merits is being marketed
    to the hilt. There are MQA licensing fee
    agreements with legal protections that
    might discourage a benevolent guru from
    implementing and distributing a work
    around. If the market is there Tidal will
    enable decoding for it's apps. If the
    market will pay Tidal wil have a third
    payment tier, premium premium.

    caveat- I have no credentials whatsoever for
    anyone to treat my comments as anything
    other than a distraction........

  4. #34
    Senior Member Julf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DanSmedra View Post
    For skeptics and naysayers, here's a technical article by Benchmark audio...just down the road from me. Is MQA DOA? (Dead On Arrival). https://benchmarkmedia.com/blogs/app...855-is-mqa-doa
    Thanks - it does make some good points.

    "At the present time, I remain skeptical of the sonic advantages of MQA and even more skeptical of its commercial viability. There is no question that MQA degrades the quality of the audio for users who do not have an MQA decoder. The compatible portion of the MQA signal is equivalent to about 13 to 15 bits at a sample rate of 44.1 kHz or 48 kHz. The loss of resolution is due to down sampling, dither noise, and pseudo-random noise from the high-frequency compression channel which occupies the lower 8 to 11 bits. When fully decoded, the resolution of MQA is limited to 17 bits at 96 kHz. Miska has shown that an MQA file actually occupies more space than a lossless 96 kHz 18-bit PCM file! Why settle for 17 bits when you can have an 18-bit file in a smaller package? MQA may be promising a sonic benefit and file-size benefit that it cannot deliver!"

    and

    "Note that the original 24-bit signal is never recovered. MQA does not losslessly preserve the original 24-bit signal. For this reason MQA is not truly a lossless system. At best, the MQA system losslessly conveys 17-bits at 96 kHz. Unfortunately this very complicated process is less efficient than lossless FLAC compression of the 17-bit file. It is also only slightly smaller than a FLAC version of the original 24-bit signal. MQA does not make it easier to stream 96 kHz files. With a 96 kHz 18-bit input, FLAC compressed MQA requires higher data rates than FLAC compressed PCM while delivering lower quality than 18-bit losslessly compressed PCM. MQA also requires special mastering and special playback hardware. Conventional FLAC compression requires neither."
    "To try to judge the real from the false will always be hard. In this fast-growing art of 'high fidelity' the quackery will bear a solid gilt edge that will fool many people" - Paul W Klipsch, 1953

  5. #35
    Senior Member Mnyb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Julf View Post
    Thanks - it does make some good points.

    "At the present time, I remain skeptical of the sonic advantages of MQA and even more skeptical of its commercial viability. There is no question that MQA degrades the quality of the audio for users who do not have an MQA decoder. The compatible portion of the MQA signal is equivalent to about 13 to 15 bits at a sample rate of 44.1 kHz or 48 kHz. The loss of resolution is due to down sampling, dither noise, and pseudo-random noise from the high-frequency compression channel which occupies the lower 8 to 11 bits. When fully decoded, the resolution of MQA is limited to 17 bits at 96 kHz. Miska has shown that an MQA file actually occupies more space than a lossless 96 kHz 18-bit PCM file! Why settle for 17 bits when you can have an 18-bit file in a smaller package? MQA may be promising a sonic benefit and file-size benefit that it cannot deliver!"

    and

    "Note that the original 24-bit signal is never recovered. MQA does not losslessly preserve the original 24-bit signal. For this reason MQA is not truly a lossless system. At best, the MQA system losslessly conveys 17-bits at 96 kHz. Unfortunately this very complicated process is less efficient than lossless FLAC compression of the 17-bit file. It is also only slightly smaller than a FLAC version of the original 24-bit signal. MQA does not make it easier to stream 96 kHz files. With a 96 kHz 18-bit input, FLAC compressed MQA requires higher data rates than FLAC compressed PCM while delivering lower quality than 18-bit losslessly compressed PCM. MQA also requires special mastering and special playback hardware. Conventional FLAC compression requires neither."
    Yep thats the thing that vories me .

    So basically not having MQA with your Tidal HIFI acount may render some tracks with less fidelity than the good old 16/44.1 they used to deliver with the hifi version :/

    I was thinking about switching back to Tidal from Spotify again ? Wonder what's worse 320kBps ogg ( Spotify ) or an MQA file trough a non MQA system . Ogg is a good codec with psycholacoustics accounted for hmmm ?

    I "understand"( but not really ) the labels , they can yet again deliver in lossy proprietary licensed fashion not giving away the master . That arguments has so many holes in it but record labels likes it....

    So if we need MQA it's for the wrong reasons , just to stay compatible with yet another audio format ( like we needed yet another format ) bah .
    That's not a step forward only commercial sytems needs to apply
    --------------------------------------------------------------------
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    (spares Touch, SB3, reciever ,controller )
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  6. #36
    Senior Member Julf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mnyb View Post
    Yep thats the thing that vories me.
    I am not really worried. I am pretty sure that MQA either goes down the same avenue as DVD-Audio (that was supposed to be the next big thing in hifi back in the day, and was based on, erm..., Meridian Lossless Packing by Bob Stuart and friends), or becomes a niche format that takes a while to die, such as DSD.
    "To try to judge the real from the false will always be hard. In this fast-growing art of 'high fidelity' the quackery will bear a solid gilt edge that will fool many people" - Paul W Klipsch, 1953

  7. #37
    Senior Member Mnyb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Julf View Post
    I am not really worried. I am pretty sure that MQA either goes down the same avenue as DVD-Audio (that was supposed to be the next big thing in hifi back in the day, and was based on, erm..., Meridian Lossless Packing by Bob Stuart and friends), or becomes a niche format that takes a while to die, such as DSD.
    DVD audio I have shelves of them there is still a title or two made each year ( that format was better than SACD , which is based on useless DSD ). But finding supporting players can be an issue.

    MLP lives on as Dolby true HD the lossles audio,format for blue rays. That worked much better . They rebranded modified it a bit sells it truogh Dolby . Licencing parties has a hard time putting another brands name on their equipment and manuals .

    Spotify has bizarre account limitations even for premium so Tidal becomes more interesting again despite worse playlist handling and not very good recommendations . Spotifys personal playlist of the week really works .
    I may have to look at another music service altogether .

    No service can really replace a personal collection it can only act complementary and expose one to new stuff if it's good I buy a CD or lossles download .
    --------------------------------------------------------------------
    Main hifi: Rasbery PI digi+ MeridianG68J MeridianHD621 MeridianG98DH 2 x MeridianDSP5200 MeridianDSP5200HC 2 xMeridianDSP3100 +Rel Stadium 3 sub.
    Bedroom/Office: Boom
    Loggia: Raspi hifiberry dac + Adams
    Bathroom : Radio (with battery)
    iPad with iPengHD & SqueezePad
    (spares Touch, SB3, reciever ,controller )
    server Intel NUC Esxi VM Linux mint 18 LMS 7.9.2

    http://people.xiph.org/~xiphmont/demo/neil-young.html

  8. #38
    Senior Member Julf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mnyb View Post
    No service can really replace a personal collection it can only act complementary and expose one to new stuff if it's good I buy a CD or lossles download .
    That has pretty much been my philosophy too the last couple of years, but I do find myself buying less and less - I would buy more if buying online downloads was easier and the price reflected the real cost compared to CD.
    "To try to judge the real from the false will always be hard. In this fast-growing art of 'high fidelity' the quackery will bear a solid gilt edge that will fool many people" - Paul W Klipsch, 1953

  9. #39
    Senior Member DanSmedra's Avatar
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    Another Technical/Graphical Description and Subjective Appreciation of MQA

    http://audiophileheaven.blogspot.hu/...planation.html

    Note link to list/spreadsheet compiled by Roon users of 1,400 albums in TIDAL/Masters.
    Last edited by DanSmedra; 2017-02-09 at 10:50.
    Source: TIDAL HiFi, Pandora One > MySqueezebox.com using iPeng 9.6 app on iPhone6s/iPad
    Great Room: SB Touch(1) > AudioQuest TOS > PS Audio DL3 DAC > Audio Envy 10' cables > 200w powered Martin Logan (ML) Purity speakers, SB Touch(2) >JVC 110w amp > ML Motion 4 & AudioEngine 5.
    Garage: SB Touch(3) > CullenCoax > Wyred mINT > Cullen Cables > ML Motion 12
    Carry Anywhere: TIDAL >iPhone 6s > Bose Mini BT speaker.
    Streaming Media: https://www.facebook.com/groups/535747176592597/

  10. #40
    Senior Member Julf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DanSmedra View Post
    http://audiophileheaven.blogspot.hu/...planation.html

    Note link to list/spreadsheet compiled by Roon users of 1,400 albums in TIDAL/Masters.
    No, despite looking I couldn't find it. How about posting that link directly? That Hungarian page makes me wish I had whatever stuff those guys were smoking.
    "To try to judge the real from the false will always be hard. In this fast-growing art of 'high fidelity' the quackery will bear a solid gilt edge that will fool many people" - Paul W Klipsch, 1953

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