A question about MQA A question about MQA
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  1. #1
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    A question about MQA

    Hey there. Hope you are fine during these crazy times. I have a question about MQA that I did not have a chance to ask before.
    Let’s say we have a MQA album FLAC 24b 48k and completely unfolding it will deliver 96k like for example the last Tony Allen album on Tidal “Rejoice” (amazing album by the way, I completely encourage you to listen to it).
    I understand that core decoding of MQA will deliver 96k anyway right? So what would bring the 3rd unfold for these albums MQA encoded in 48k or 44k and expected to deliver 88k or 96k?
    On the other hand I understand an MQA file encoded in order to deliver 192k for example cannot deliver these 192k without an MQA renderer.

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  3. #2
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    Re: A question about MQA

    Another remark
    What’s the purpose of MQAing in 48k FLAC files in 24b and 48k?
    Isn’t the purpose of MQA of showing downsampled files and upsampling them with the different degrees of unfolding?

  4. #3
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    Re: A question about MQA

    I’m still trying to figure out why the digital audio world needs MQA. It’s a lossy format plain and simple with a confusing array of musical laundry that needs to be unfolded. Some people love them some MQA so I guess that’s all that matters.
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  5. #4
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    Re: A question about MQA

    From what I understood, MQA’s goal was to provide the listener with “hi-resolution” tracks without using too much bandwidth.

    But consumers soon realized that MQA is not bit-perfect (it is lossy) plus it is possible to stream bit-perfect high resolution files (think Qobuz, Amazon Music HD, etc.).

    MQA could be useful when streaming for someone who lives in a place where there is limited bandwidth or internet speed.

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  7. #5
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    Re: A question about MQA

    Hi there. Are u sure MQA is lossy after unfold? When I play MQA with Roon, the Roon signal says it is lossless

  8. #6
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    Re: A question about MQA

    Quote Originally Posted by skbe View Post
    Another remark
    What’s the purpose of MQAing in 48k FLAC files in 24b and 48k?
    Isn’t the purpose of MQA of showing downsampled files and upsamjpling them with the different degrees of unfolding?


    Is the badge HiRes on files dispatched by music streaming companies payable? I mean Qobuz has to pay something to the company owner of HiRes certificate?

    Maybe Tidal has not HiRes certification so its files even in Flac 24b 48k cannot show the HiRes badge

    Instead Tidal has MQA franchise so its files FLAC 24b 48k MQAed in 48k can show the MQA badge. And after all, for a file encoded in 24b 48k, it is better to show a badge (eg MQA here) rather than no badge at all

    Pure speculation and deductions from me. Nothing is proven in what I say

  9. #7
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    Re: A question about MQA

    Quote Originally Posted by skbe View Post
    Hi there. Are u sure MQA is lossy after unfold? When I play MQA with Roon, the Roon signal says it is lossless
    Once lossy, always lossy. It doesn't matter how many times you unfold the laundry.
    Micro Seiki SX-8000 air bearing table, SME 312s arm, SME 3012R arn, Dynavector XV-1s cartridge, Lyra Etna SL cartridge, ARC Ref 3 phono stage, Otari MX-55 2 track R2R, Ampex 350 tape repros, Roon Nucleus Plus music server, PS Audio DSJ DAC, ARC Ref 6, ARC Ref 75 with KT-150s, JBL 4345 speakers, Viero Equilibro Level 3 speaker cables, and Definitive Technology Ref subs.

  10. #8
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    Re: A question about MQA

    Quote Originally Posted by mep View Post
    Once lossy, always lossy. It doesn't matter how many times you unfold the laundry.
    Why Roon says lossless then?
    Roon claims to be totally transparent about audio signal
    They didn’t grant airplay to be lossless (maybe because of clocking issues) although it is commonly believed to deliver ALAC 16b 44k audio

  11. #9
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    Re: A question about MQA

    Quote Originally Posted by mep View Post
    Once lossy, always lossy. It doesn't matter how many times you unfold the laundry.
    Mep, you are incorrect.

    Nothing is removed in MQA encoding, some parts of the signal are just taken out from the inaudible band and added to the signal footer to save bandwidth.

    Same data, different place. All transported in full.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
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  13. #10
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    Re: A question about MQA

    Quote Originally Posted by Kuoppis View Post
    Mep, you are incorrect.

    Nothing is removed in MQA encoding, some parts of the signal are just taken out from the inaudible band and added to the signal footer to save bandwidth.

    Same data, different place. All transported in full.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
    We can do verbal jujitsu, but MQA is classified as a lossy format. From Wikipedia: "In an interview for online publication Positive Feedback, engineer Andreas Koch is critical of MQA due to its lossy algorithms and compression, along with its licensing requirements; also saying that a format such as this "does not solve any problem that the world currently has."[19] Koch was involved in the creation of the Super Audio CD, the development of the Direct Stream Digital codec, and is co-founder of audio product manufacturer Playback Designs."

    Why in the world do we need a lossy digital format to complicate the playback of formally lossless digital music? I think Andreas Koch summed it up quite nicely when he said MQA does not solve any problem the world currently has.
    Micro Seiki SX-8000 air bearing table, SME 312s arm, SME 3012R arn, Dynavector XV-1s cartridge, Lyra Etna SL cartridge, ARC Ref 3 phono stage, Otari MX-55 2 track R2R, Ampex 350 tape repros, Roon Nucleus Plus music server, PS Audio DSJ DAC, ARC Ref 6, ARC Ref 75 with KT-150s, JBL 4345 speakers, Viero Equilibro Level 3 speaker cables, and Definitive Technology Ref subs.

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