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Author Topic: Tidal + MQA  (Read 6701 times)
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Tore
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« on: January 06, 2017, 09:40:45 am »

Tidal + MQA : http://tidal.com/no/masters?utm_source=vero&utm_medium=email&utm_content=control&utm_campaign=MQA%20Churn


Peter, what do you think about this?

Tore
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« Reply #1 on: January 06, 2017, 10:33:13 am »

Hi Tore,

First a very general response (probably too general) :

Doing it this way will only degrade SQ.
Btw on a side note I can not interpret "through the desktop application only". Maybe it means that we can not get it through the API (how XXHighEnd does it). But this is not really crucial as of now because :

The other day I asked P.B. (you know) and it was the 4th time in a row that he just did not respond. Maybe he does not like me any more for some reason. I also had questions about where the API description had gone, because it has gone. All implies two major problems :

1. I won't be able to make any decoding for MQA because I just don't know how to;
2. Without knowing the proper calls to the API I wouldn't be able to get to those albums (in that format).

Otoh, you asked my what I think about this. Well, this and I think like this for several months by now. I just don't know where to go to.

Best regards,
Peter
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« Reply #2 on: January 06, 2017, 12:30:06 pm »

Hmm ... I just looked again for the API page(s) and see that they are back now (but all different). So, good ...
But at this time I see nothing about MQA. I will search further for it ...

Peter
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Tore
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« Reply #3 on: January 06, 2017, 12:56:47 pm »

OK, thanks

I will test MQA on my Rega dac later


Tore
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« Reply #4 on: January 07, 2017, 04:57:07 pm »

FYI :

XXHighEnd just plays those MQA albums, which Tidal calls "Masters". But I did not find a way yet to search for them via the program. If you want to try them, look for them first in the Tidal Desktop Application (not the player in Browser version !) under What's New and then in the ALbums section under Masters.

For those who can't easily install the Desktop Application, here's one you can search through XXHighEnd and find the right one unambiguously when you type this in Album Name :

The Division Bell*

The one you see below is the one you need and notice that this comes forward as a 16/44.1 because it requires an MQA decoder to make it "hi res".

Regards,
Peter


* Tidal27.png (67.34 KB, 847x461 - viewed 365 times.)

* Tidal28.png (94.93 KB, 263x307 - viewed 357 times.)
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GerardA
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« Reply #5 on: January 11, 2017, 11:47:45 pm »

Would this help:?

For implementation manufacturers, we have two potential routes to market for supporting MQA on your products: (1) by you supporting the MQA engineering team and getting them up-and-running with your development platform. This way, they can port the technology themselves (minimising engineering costs on your side) and generate object code to supply to product manufacturers; or (2) by becoming an Implementation Licensee, which would give you access to MQA source code. You would then port the MQA technology to your platform in-house, and distribute the MQA technology as firmware at the point of sale. For more information about getting MQA implemented on your platform, please contact us.
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« Reply #6 on: January 12, 2017, 09:13:15 am »

Hi Gerard,

Yes, I know. Now wait until I tell you the fees for this fun. If you read the document (which you apparently did) then you've seen GBP 5000 - 20000 to be expected. The latter will be the first situation mentioned and the former possibly this last situation. Now let's wonder who is going to pay this. 100 of you for 50GBP per person ? I wonder. Maybe it is 10 ad 500 the person. And because of that it is zero persons.

Maybe others can help out, but it looks like that the whole idea of "adopts to the ADC used" story has disappeared from the encoding. In the past I read about this; today nothing any more (but this doesn't necessarily tell all). So what will MQA be then ?
Hires !!!
Yahoooo

Uhm, ... but I already have those and I don't like it.
So if MQA will only be about smaller sized Hires which even has been manipulated (and things surely do NOT look good at this moment) and all what people shout about is that it sounds different while everybody says it sounds better (we know us), then nobody will even like to have it for free.

Please notice that for the time being I can still say things about this. But this will end today or tomorrow because of being under NDA (I already am) and will receive non-public information soon.

Best regards,
Peter
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« Reply #7 on: January 25, 2017, 09:52:24 am »

A small update on MQA :

To be honest, from the start of hearing about it, I have been excited already. However, it seems it has been difficult to get this going, which also is related to a sort of chicken-egg thing because MQA was non-existent. This latter now changed recently and people (can) go two directions with it :

1. Without any real knowlegde of technicalities have some judgement and because of no knowledge debunk it (as a kind of MP3);

2. With clearly in mind what the deep purpose is, understand what issues theoretically can be solved which never could be solved before.

Ad 1.
This is what we see happening at this moment all around us (other forums etc.).

Ad 2.
This is why forums are controlled by what we may call "idiots" (between quotes) with only the hope that me and all of you of this "community" stay with both feet on the ground - and how forums may kill good initiatives in advance.

On a side note I have tried to remain neutral, however, the sheer fact that I asked many months ago (via Tidal, August 2016) and did not receive an answer (for actually the 4th time in a row) is, well, poor marketing. I too started to be biased because I did not run into any force against that.

This all now changed;
At this moment, what counts for me, is how we can unleash the forces of MQA via XXHighEnd and beyond, knowing that there is one and one only software player which suits 100% exactly what's MQA's goal : no ringing with the Arc Prediction filtering which thus exists nowhere else. If this is combined with the inherent vehicle that drives MQA, you will indeed see that the result will be unheard. whistle
The path to it is a tough one, because we can only know the result after all has been developed. And well, good that music playback is my own hobby, so I can always think I am doing it for myself, right ? Anyway, this makes me 10x more enthusiastic than DSD, to name something.

Now we have to wait until I receive the necessary tools ... (with no idea yet how much work will be involved to get something going)

If anyone has questions, just shoot. But please keep in mind that I can only "unveil" things which have been unveiled before by MQA themselves. This is different from understanding it all, and your questions can easily be about that and I can try to explain.

Peter
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XXHighEnd Mach II Stealth LPS PC -> Xeon E5 2640v4 with Hyperthreading On (20 cores) @~720MHz, 32GB, Windows 10 Pro 64 bit build 14393.0 from RAM, music on LAN / Engine#4 Adaptive Mode / Q1/-/3/4/5 = *30*/-/*1*/*1*/*1*/ Q1Factor = *40* / Dev.Buffer = 4096 / ClockRes = *15ms* / Memory = Straight Contiguous / Include Garbage Collect / SFS = *0.90*  (max 120) / not Invert / Phase Alignment Off / Playerprio = Low / ThreadPrio = Realtime / Scheme = Core 3-5 / Not Switch Processors during Playback = Off/ Playback Drive none (see OS from RAM) / UnAttended (Just Start) / Always Copy to XX Drive (see OS from RAM) / Stop Desktop, Remaining, WASAPI and W10 services / Use Remote Desktop / Keep LAN - Not Persist / WallPaper On / *OSD Off* / Running Time Off / Minimize OS / XTweaks : Balanced Load = 43 / Nervous Rate = 100 / Cool when Idle = n.a / Provide Stable Power = 0 / Utilize Cores always = 1 / Time Performance Index = Optimal / Time Stability = Stable / *Custom Filtering Highest for 705600* / Always Clear Proxy before Playbck = On -> USB3 from MoBo -> Lush USB 1m00 -> Phisolator 24/768 Phasure NOS1a/G3 75B (BNC Out) async USB DAC, Driver v1.0.4b (*8ms*) -> B'ASS Current Amplifier -> Blaxius Interlink -> Orelo MKII Active Open Baffle Horn Speakers.
Removed Switching Supplies from everywhere (also from the PC).

For a general PC :
W10-10586.0 - May 2016 (2.05+)
*XXHighEnd PC -> I7 3930k with Hyperthreading On (12 cores)* @~500MHz, 16GB, Windows 10 Pro 64 bit build 10586.0 from RAM, music on LAN / Engine#4 Adaptive Mode / Q1/-/3/4/5 = 14/-/1/1/1 / Q1Factor = 1 / Dev.Buffer = 4096 / ClockRes = 1ms / Memory = Straight Contiguous / Include Garbage Collect / SFS = 0.10  (max 60) / not Invert / Phase Alignment Off / Playerprio = Low / ThreadPrio = Realtime / Scheme = Core 3-5 / Not Switch Processors during Playback = Off/ Playback Drive none (see OS from RAM) / UnAttended (Just Start) / Always Copy to XX Drive (see OS from RAM) / All Services Off / Keep LAN - Not Persist / WallPaper On / OSD On / Running Time Off / Minimize OS / XTweaks : Balanced Load = *43* / Nervous Rate = 1 / Cool when Idle = 1 / Provide Stable Power = 1 / Utilize Cores always = 1 / Time Performance Index = *Optimal* / Time Stability = *Stable* / Custom Filter *Low* 705600 / -> USB3 *from MoBo* -> Clairixa USB 15cm -> Intona Isolator -> Clairixa USB 1m80 -> 24/768 Phasure NOS1a 75B (BNC Out) async USB DAC, Driver v1.0.4b (4ms) -> Blaxius BNC interlink *-> B'ASS Current Amplifier /w Level4 -> Blaxius Interlink* -> Orelo MKII Active Open Baffle Horn Speakers.
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« Reply #8 on: January 25, 2017, 10:29:44 am »

OK Peter, here are a couple of really simple questions (for my simple mind!):

1. If an MQA file has been derived from a digital 24/192 master, can it sound even better than the master on replay?

2. Apart from DSD, is there such a thing as a non-ringing ADC?

Mani.
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« Reply #9 on: January 25, 2017, 11:33:55 am »

Mani,

1. Yes. Notice this addition : even right in the studio but not to the extent of many of us with our NOS1 DAC.

2. I suppose not, but the question is (sort of) irrelevant IMO.

Notice that the ringing subject is "dangerous field" because, mind you, "we" with our Arc Prediction zero ringing filter are a. spoiled and b. have totally accepted the phenomenon. This, while a whole other world does not accept it at all, just because they don't like the plots coming from it and next don't listen as well. This means that :
MQA commercially expresses the very same as I (and we) do, with the small notice that we were long gone first.

If we now totally accept what "we" are doing and like, for us -and only for us !- things counter (is that English ?) and what "we" can gain is the frequency domain. Ha !
So for those who like the Custom Filtering (to whatever degree) over Arc Prediction on its own, already know that they like a bit of better supported frequency domain for the better. So the gain is in the exact different corner from what you might expect at first glance, while the whole of the other world has no clue.
As a bonus we should have even less ringing which is what you hint at with #2.

As you know, I operate almost fully theoretically, which as far as I can tell always works out (never mind some times theories nobody can follow). In rare occasions the theories follow practice because something happens which is at first not understood or thought to be irrelevant;
In the MQA case it is to be noticed that I never listened to it, but that I also notice that without exception that I have seen, everybody likes it for the way better. Watch out, because I am not talking about today's "Tidal trials" and whatever happened in the Tidal Desktop App which could be wrong or half or whatever, but which is not hardware and most certainly not under my own control. Point now is, when all is done properly, people gain on the ringing just because they used different software and DAC from what we mosty use. So envision : ringing is deminished (to some degree) while the DAC used rings as much as it ever did.

Do you now have an idea of the #2 real answer ? It is only that we both can not guess by far what happens when both are brought together in decent fashion (like NOS1a and MQA and Arc Prediction somewhere in the chain as well). Now my theory : you will drop dead, assumed you like XXHighEnd over anything else for the same reason but which really can apply only half of it all : non-ringing during playback.

Peter
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« Reply #10 on: January 25, 2017, 04:45:57 pm »

http://audiophilereview.com/cd-dac-digital/mqa-master-streaming-on-tidal-rules.html
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« Reply #11 on: January 25, 2017, 09:50:10 pm »

Peter,

To date I have been a bit "meh" about the MQA stuff in general, but if you are suddenly excited by the possibilities then I will be as well. 

If the result is access to "the best masters" of the recordings plus with XXHE we will end up with a mix of fabulous time and frequency domain then that does sound very nice to me.

Cheers,

Anthony
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« Reply #12 on: January 26, 2017, 10:14:41 am »

The other day I asked P.B. (you know) and it was the 4th time in a row that he just did not respond. Maybe he does not like me any more for some reason.

Hmm ... I just learnt that he left Tidal close to a year ago. That explains all ...

Peter
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« Reply #13 on: February 07, 2017, 12:06:46 pm »

All,

Suppose that you have been trying that Division Bell album and thought "hmm, not much difference to what I am used to !" ... then this was correct; After quite some days of "fighting" and puzzling what could be wrong (because things did not look as expected), it was just found out that the internal Tidal ID of Phasure was not MQA enabled. heat

So if you *now* want to listen to the undecoded MQA version you can retry and you'll have the real thing.
Remember : UNdecoded is not good in itself, but it could tell how bad it really is (I did not listen yet).

If you look below ... things change regularly and the one named "24/96 download" or whatever it was, does not exist any more (or I don't see it any more). You'll want the right one (mind the left one which shows red whatever between the mouths and which is just 16/44.1. So if you get the other one it should show 24/48 (with the notice that it will be something like 16/48 "net" (without MQA decoding) but that's another story).

Peter

PS: Don't mind the {} number you see below; this is new in XXHighEnd.


* MQA09.png (89.03 KB, 454x275 - viewed 213 times.)
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« Reply #14 on: February 07, 2017, 12:40:37 pm »

Here's a nice example of what just that tad of extra resolution can do, assumed the (re)master is not flawed.

This is Led Zeppeling III, track 01, "Immigrant Song". If you look at second ~88 and 120 you see that something wants to happen :


While the above is Redbook (16/44.1) with a sharp roll off filter, you can see below what actually wanted to happen (so to speak) :


This is the (software) decoded MQA version in 24/96, with the notice that this probably is a re-recording in 24/96 from analog because of the high noise you see. It can be taken that this noise has been there right from the start in 1970.
OK, wait, here :


So yes. And what we also nicely can see is why we like to avoid Remasters, because it is easy to see how the previous both versions are completely "overblown"; about all ends up at the maximum level of mind you (!) frequency. Thus the Redbook version has more variation in frequency (level per tone). Nice eh ?

Peter
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XXHighEnd Mach II Stealth LPS PC -> Xeon E5 2640v4 with Hyperthreading On (20 cores) @~720MHz, 32GB, Windows 10 Pro 64 bit build 14393.0 from RAM, music on LAN / Engine#4 Adaptive Mode / Q1/-/3/4/5 = *30*/-/*1*/*1*/*1*/ Q1Factor = *40* / Dev.Buffer = 4096 / ClockRes = *15ms* / Memory = Straight Contiguous / Include Garbage Collect / SFS = *0.90*  (max 120) / not Invert / Phase Alignment Off / Playerprio = Low / ThreadPrio = Realtime / Scheme = Core 3-5 / Not Switch Processors during Playback = Off/ Playback Drive none (see OS from RAM) / UnAttended (Just Start) / Always Copy to XX Drive (see OS from RAM) / Stop Desktop, Remaining, WASAPI and W10 services / Use Remote Desktop / Keep LAN - Not Persist / WallPaper On / *OSD Off* / Running Time Off / Minimize OS / XTweaks : Balanced Load = 43 / Nervous Rate = 100 / Cool when Idle = n.a / Provide Stable Power = 0 / Utilize Cores always = 1 / Time Performance Index = Optimal / Time Stability = Stable / *Custom Filtering Highest for 705600* / Always Clear Proxy before Playbck = On -> USB3 from MoBo -> Lush USB 1m00 -> Phisolator 24/768 Phasure NOS1a/G3 75B (BNC Out) async USB DAC, Driver v1.0.4b (*8ms*) -> B'ASS Current Amplifier -> Blaxius Interlink -> Orelo MKII Active Open Baffle Horn Speakers.
Removed Switching Supplies from everywhere (also from the PC).

For a general PC :
W10-10586.0 - May 2016 (2.05+)
*XXHighEnd PC -> I7 3930k with Hyperthreading On (12 cores)* @~500MHz, 16GB, Windows 10 Pro 64 bit build 10586.0 from RAM, music on LAN / Engine#4 Adaptive Mode / Q1/-/3/4/5 = 14/-/1/1/1 / Q1Factor = 1 / Dev.Buffer = 4096 / ClockRes = 1ms / Memory = Straight Contiguous / Include Garbage Collect / SFS = 0.10  (max 60) / not Invert / Phase Alignment Off / Playerprio = Low / ThreadPrio = Realtime / Scheme = Core 3-5 / Not Switch Processors during Playback = Off/ Playback Drive none (see OS from RAM) / UnAttended (Just Start) / Always Copy to XX Drive (see OS from RAM) / All Services Off / Keep LAN - Not Persist / WallPaper On / OSD On / Running Time Off / Minimize OS / XTweaks : Balanced Load = *43* / Nervous Rate = 1 / Cool when Idle = 1 / Provide Stable Power = 1 / Utilize Cores always = 1 / Time Performance Index = *Optimal* / Time Stability = *Stable* / Custom Filter *Low* 705600 / -> USB3 *from MoBo* -> Clairixa USB 15cm -> Intona Isolator -> Clairixa USB 1m80 -> 24/768 Phasure NOS1a 75B (BNC Out) async USB DAC, Driver v1.0.4b (4ms) -> Blaxius BNC interlink *-> B'ASS Current Amplifier /w Level4 -> Blaxius Interlink* -> Orelo MKII Active Open Baffle Horn Speakers.
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