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Why We Don’t Need MQA

Page 2 - Seeking answers? Join the What HiFi community: the world's leading independent guide to buying and owning hi-fi and home entertainment products.

shadders

Well-known member
Nov 19, 2009
152
88
18,670
manicm said:
shadders said:
manicm said:
Shadders, no I don't, but I suspecting you're twisting the piece to suit your belief. I ask you again to extract a piece or two from the absolutesound piece to back up your claim, or at least the page - there are only 4 pages.

That can't be too hard, can it?
Hi,

Page 3 states that the temporal blur is the issue, and that this is caused by filters, where they reference 8 filters in the entire audio chain. For an existing album, they need to reverse this effect, hence they cannot record the album again, they will have to know which filters have been used so as to reverse the smearing effect.

Regards,

Shadders.
So you're assuming then, according to your logic, where it doesn't really back up your claim. One of the Linn posters provided the white paper, where MQA actually applies dithering to the encoding process. So you're still guessing...

'MQA addresses this disparity by losslessly (or virtually) dividing the audio into octave-wide sub-bands, conceptually coding each with a lower sampling rate than the ensemble. MQA is truly hierarchical, and although the example here is 192kHz, sample rates of 384, 768, or higher are accommodated. In fact, the mathematics includes infinite sampling (analog) since that is the real target.'

I've read page 3 again, and it still doesn't back up your claim. They may be removing that blur, but the HOW doesn't equate to any form of 'reversal', or reverse engineering of the audio in the strictest sense.
Hi,

Not assuming. I asked you whether you understood DSP etc., to determine how I should respond. The only way to remove temporal blur by the stated 8 filters is to code an inverse function, which will in essence be an approximation.

You keep on referring to Linn, which I have not seen in regards to this aspect.

Your have copied the coding aspect. There are in essence two aspects to this - the processing of the existing recording, and the coding of the resultant bitstream. I am referring to the processing of the existing recording.

Please provide the link to the referenced white paper. Thanks.

Regards,

Shadders.
 

insider9

Well-known member
Sep 20, 2016
740
301
5,270
davidf said:
shadders said:
davidf said:
This is a general recommendation - just have a listen... :)
Hi,

Did you compare to a high resolution download or a DSD of the same album?

Regards,

Shadders.
I've compared a few different ones to either the non MQA stream, the CD, or hi-res file. Some don't even need comparison to another format.
+1

I've also found this and that's to non MQA dac. Tidal PC app doing one part of decoding.

Just listened to Kashmir 24/96 Physical Graffiti (Deluxe Edition) vs Tidal Masters version. MQA version sounds cleaner for the lack of better word. Each instrument is easier to pick out. There's more air surrounding Robert Plant's vocal. The reverb feels more pronounced. This adds to the depth of soundstage. The phaser (some claim flanger) is more prominent on drums.

Yes, without attentive listening the differences aren't night and day. But if you're not listening attentively and only want background music then surely mp3 320kbps is ebough.
 

shadders

Well-known member
Nov 19, 2009
152
88
18,670
insider9 said:
davidf said:
shadders said:
davidf said:
This is a general recommendation - just have a listen... :)
Hi,

Did you compare to a high resolution download or a DSD of the same album?

Regards,

Shadders.
I've compared a few different ones to either the non MQA stream, the CD, or hi-res file. Some don't even need comparison to another format.
+1

I've also found this and that's to non MQA dac. Tidal PC app doing one part of decoding.

Just listened to Kashmir 24/96 Physical Graffiti (Deluxe Edition) vs Tidal Masters version. MQA version sounds cleaner for the lack of better word. Each instrument is easier to pick out. There's more air surrounding Robert Plant's vocal. The reverb feels more pronounced. This adds to the depth of soundstage. The phaser (some claim flanger) is more prominent on drums.

Yes, without attentive listening the differences aren't night and day. But if you're not listening attentively and only want background music then surely mp3 320kbps is ebough.
Hi,

Thanks for the replies. I did not know the details of Tidal, but if you can play the output to any DAC, then this means you don't have to upgrade to new equipment.

Regards,

Shadders.
 

manicm

Well-known member
May 1, 2008
596
66
18,970
shadders said:
manicm said:
shadders said:
manicm said:
Shadders, no I don't, but I suspecting you're twisting the piece to suit your belief. I ask you again to extract a piece or two from the absolutesound piece to back up your claim, or at least the page - there are only 4 pages.

That can't be too hard, can it?
Hi,

Page 3 states that the temporal blur is the issue, and that this is caused by filters, where they reference 8 filters in the entire audio chain. For an existing album, they need to reverse this effect, hence they cannot record the album again, they will have to know which filters have been used so as to reverse the smearing effect.

Regards,

Shadders.
So you're assuming then, according to your logic, where it doesn't really back up your claim. One of the Linn posters provided the white paper, where MQA actually applies dithering to the encoding process. So you're still guessing...

'MQA addresses this disparity by losslessly (or virtually) dividing the audio into octave-wide sub-bands, conceptually coding each with a lower sampling rate than the ensemble. MQA is truly hierarchical, and although the example here is 192kHz, sample rates of 384, 768, or higher are accommodated. In fact, the mathematics includes infinite sampling (analog) since that is the real target.'

I've read page 3 again, and it still doesn't back up your claim. They may be removing that blur, but the HOW doesn't equate to any form of 'reversal', or reverse engineering of the audio in the strictest sense.
Hi,

Not assuming. I asked you whether you understood DSP etc., to determine how I should respond. The only way to remove temporal blur by the stated 8 filters is to code an inverse function, which will in essence be an approximation.

You keep on referring to Linn, which I have not seen in regards to this aspect.

Your have copied the coding aspect. There are in essence two aspects to this - the processing of the existing recording, and the coding of the resultant bitstream. I am referring to the processing of the existing recording.

Please provide the link to the referenced white paper. Thanks.

Regards,

Shadders.
Shadders you're using your knowledge to deduce that it's a reversal when in fact you may actually be wrong. I still read nothing in page 3 to back up your claim. Here's the link https://meridianaudio.sharefile.com/d/s42fc5e54e804f90a
 

insider9

Well-known member
Sep 20, 2016
740
301
5,270
Shadders, that was really my point of backwards compatibility. As long as you have a DAC that will play up to 24/96 you can play any MQA file on it. That will not give you the full benefit as MQA DAC would, but still sounds better to my ears.

I'm planning on getting a Bluesound Node 2 in the near future. I wanted to wait for more MQA material but WHF review made me realise that Tidal already has 30,000 tracks in MQA. Only 400 or so albums are easy to find at the minute via Windows app but the rest is still there. Clearly, Tidal needs some work on the interface some albums pop up 5-6 times with their Deluxe, Remastered and other editions.
 

manicm

Well-known member
May 1, 2008
596
66
18,970
shadders said:
insider9 said:
davidf said:
shadders said:
davidf said:
This is a general recommendation - just have a listen... :)
Hi,

Did you compare to a high resolution download or a DSD of the same album?

Regards,

Shadders.
I've compared a few different ones to either the non MQA stream, the CD, or hi-res file. Some don't even need comparison to another format.
+1

I've also found this and that's to non MQA dac. Tidal PC app doing one part of decoding.

Just listened to Kashmir 24/96 Physical Graffiti (Deluxe Edition) vs Tidal Masters version. MQA version sounds cleaner for the lack of better word. Each instrument is easier to pick out. There's more air surrounding Robert Plant's vocal. The reverb feels more pronounced. This adds to the depth of soundstage. The phaser (some claim flanger) is more prominent on drums.

Yes, without attentive listening the differences aren't night and day. But if you're not listening attentively and only want background music then surely mp3 320kbps is ebough.
Hi,

Thanks for the replies. I did not know the details of Tidal, but if you can play the output to any DAC, then this means you don't have to upgrade to new equipment.

Regards,

Shadders.
MQA can be played on any equipment, but you'd be playing it at lower resolution than with a MQA equipped DAC. Tidal themselves have stated that their desktop app only does half the 'unfolding' of MQA, as opposed to using passthrough to a MQA equipped DAC.
 

insider9

Well-known member
Sep 20, 2016
740
301
5,270
manicm said:
shadders said:
insider9 said:
davidf said:
shadders said:
davidf said:
This is a general recommendation - just have a listen... :)
Hi,

Did you compare to a high resolution download or a DSD of the same album?

Regards,

Shadders.
I've compared a few different ones to either the non MQA stream, the CD, or hi-res file. Some don't even need comparison to another format.
+1

I've also found this and that's to non MQA dac. Tidal PC app doing one part of decoding.

Just listened to Kashmir 24/96 Physical Graffiti (Deluxe Edition) vs Tidal Masters version. MQA version sounds cleaner for the lack of better word. Each instrument is easier to pick out. There's more air surrounding Robert Plant's vocal. The reverb feels more pronounced. This adds to the depth of soundstage. The phaser (some claim flanger) is more prominent on drums.

Yes, without attentive listening the differences aren't night and day. But if you're not listening attentively and only want background music then surely mp3 320kbps is ebough.
Hi,

Thanks for the replies. I did not know the details of Tidal, but if you can play the output to any DAC, then this means you don't have to upgrade to new equipment.

Regards,

Shadders.
MQA can be played on any equipment, but you'd be playing it at lower resolution than with a MQA equipped DAC. Tidal themselves have stated that although their desktop app only does half the 'unfolding' of MQA, as opposed to using passthrough to a MQA equipped DAC.
That's correct. I belive the same will happen when Audioquest updates their Dragonfly DACs. When playing MQA on my Yamaha it shows as 96kHz (one unfold) as opposed to when I click passthrough MQA it only does 48kHz which is no unfolding at all.
 

manicm

Well-known member
May 1, 2008
596
66
18,970
shadders said:
manicm said:
insider9 said:
I'm a big fan of MQA. That doesn't mean I would support hifi enthusiast being robbed blind for the privilege.

In my opinion MQA has a bright future. That is unless something better overshadows it but there's nothing that could compete at this point. The fact it is backwards compatible is the first reason why I believe it will do well. Having listened on a non MQA DAC I can tell differences are significant and in favour of MQA.

But for me the promise of authentication is the biggest benefit. As long as the recording has been done once there can only be one MQA file. Not millions of remasters, deluxe editions, 24 bit high res files that are up sampled from CD and all other nonsense. It's like having the first pressing as a comparison to vinyl but because it's digital it can never wear off.

This until the actual masters are made available (which is probably never) is as close as we're going to get to what was heard in a studio.
Apart from the possibility of the authentication bit being used as real DRM, I do like the idea, especially since HD Tracks has proved to be dodgy sometimes.
Hi,

That is all that MQA guarantee, that the album has been put through the MQA process.

What if they get it wrong? You will still get the light indicating it is MQA.

What if they miss the most important element in the recording/mastering chain that has the most effect? You will still get the light on saying MQA.

What if they don't know the entire recording/mastering chain, and they have to estimate what equipment was used? You still get the light on stating it is MQA.

MQA only guarantees the process, not the quality. It may sound different to high resolution, but does that make it better? Or just different?

Will you always believe MQA is better because you have been told so?

Regards,

Shadders.
MQA have stated they get the artist/label to give signoff, then and only then does the authentication get implemented.

So yes, there is still subjectivity involved, but it's still better than buying blind on HD Tracks.

The artist must also agree. For example Linn has tried convincing The Blue Nile to give it rights to release high res versions of their first two albums, and have failed. Paul Buchanan apparently is indifferent. Their first two albums were recorded under Linn's then new label, but this changed later on.
 

shadders

Well-known member
Nov 19, 2009
152
88
18,670
manicm said:
shadders said:
manicm said:
shadders said:
manicm said:
Shadders, no I don't, but I suspecting you're twisting the piece to suit your belief. I ask you again to extract a piece or two from the absolutesound piece to back up your claim, or at least the page - there are only 4 pages.

That can't be too hard, can it?
Hi,

Page 3 states that the temporal blur is the issue, and that this is caused by filters, where they reference 8 filters in the entire audio chain. For an existing album, they need to reverse this effect, hence they cannot record the album again, they will have to know which filters have been used so as to reverse the smearing effect.

Regards,

Shadders.
So you're assuming then, according to your logic, where it doesn't really back up your claim. One of the Linn posters provided the white paper, where MQA actually applies dithering to the encoding process. So you're still guessing...

'MQA addresses this disparity by losslessly (or virtually) dividing the audio into octave-wide sub-bands, conceptually coding each with a lower sampling rate than the ensemble. MQA is truly hierarchical, and although the example here is 192kHz, sample rates of 384, 768, or higher are accommodated. In fact, the mathematics includes infinite sampling (analog) since that is the real target.'

I've read page 3 again, and it still doesn't back up your claim. They may be removing that blur, but the HOW doesn't equate to any form of 'reversal', or reverse engineering of the audio in the strictest sense.
Hi,

Not assuming. I asked you whether you understood DSP etc., to determine how I should respond. The only way to remove temporal blur by the stated 8 filters is to code an inverse function, which will in essence be an approximation.

You keep on referring to Linn, which I have not seen in regards to this aspect.

Your have copied the coding aspect. There are in essence two aspects to this - the processing of the existing recording, and the coding of the resultant bitstream. I am referring to the processing of the existing recording.

Please provide the link to the referenced white paper. Thanks.

Regards,

Shadders.
Shadders you're using your knowledge to deduce that it's a reversal when in fact you may actually be wrong. I still read nothing in page 3 to back up your claim. Here's the link https://meridianaudio.sharefile.com/d/s42fc5e54e804f90a
Hi,

I had a quick read of the paper, and essentially it is a resampling the exisiting sample with a different filter - to remove the temporal blurring. It does need further study, but it is still the processing of the exsiting audio file data to reverse the effects of the initial sampling, and recode using their own kernel. Again, this is my first pass of the paper, so I need to confirm. My statements previously still seem to be valid.

Regards,

Shadders.
 

shadders

Well-known member
Nov 19, 2009
152
88
18,670
manicm said:
shadders said:
manicm said:
insider9 said:
I'm a big fan of MQA. That doesn't mean I would support hifi enthusiast being robbed blind for the privilege.

In my opinion MQA has a bright future. That is unless something better overshadows it but there's nothing that could compete at this point. The fact it is backwards compatible is the first reason why I believe it will do well. Having listened on a non MQA DAC I can tell differences are significant and in favour of MQA.

But for me the promise of authentication is the biggest benefit. As long as the recording has been done once there can only be one MQA file. Not millions of remasters, deluxe editions, 24 bit high res files that are up sampled from CD and all other nonsense. It's like having the first pressing as a comparison to vinyl but because it's digital it can never wear off.

This until the actual masters are made available (which is probably never) is as close as we're going to get to what was heard in a studio.
Apart from the possibility of the authentication bit being used as real DRM, I do like the idea, especially since HD Tracks has proved to be dodgy sometimes.
Hi,

That is all that MQA guarantee, that the album has been put through the MQA process.

What if they get it wrong? You will still get the light indicating it is MQA.

What if they miss the most important element in the recording/mastering chain that has the most effect? You will still get the light on saying MQA.

What if they don't know the entire recording/mastering chain, and they have to estimate what equipment was used? You still get the light on stating it is MQA.

MQA only guarantees the process, not the quality. It may sound different to high resolution, but does that make it better? Or just different?

Will you always believe MQA is better because you have been told so?

Regards,

Shadders.
MQA have stated they get the artist/label to give signoff, then and only then does the authentication get implemented.

So yes, there is still subjectivity involved, but it's still better than buying blind on HD Tracks.

The artist must also agree. For example Linn has tried convincing The Blue Nile to give it rights to release high res versions of their first two albums, and have failed. Paul Buchanan apparently is indifferent. Their first two albums were recorded under Linn's then new label, but this changed later on.
Hi,

Yes, that was the purpose of Pure Audio. They just did not release sufficient number of albums.

With MQA, it is another approach, and we still don't know if it is any better that existing high resolution.

Regards,

Shadders.
 

Al ears

Moderator
shadders said:
manicm said:
shadders said:
manicm said:
insider9 said:
I'm a big fan of MQA. That doesn't mean I would support hifi enthusiast being robbed blind for the privilege.

In my opinion MQA has a bright future. That is unless something better overshadows it but there's nothing that could compete at this point. The fact it is backwards compatible is the first reason why I believe it will do well. Having listened on a non MQA DAC I can tell differences are significant and in favour of MQA.

But for me the promise of authentication is the biggest benefit. As long as the recording has been done once there can only be one MQA file. Not millions of remasters, deluxe editions, 24 bit high res files that are up sampled from CD and all other nonsense. It's like having the first pressing as a comparison to vinyl but because it's digital it can never wear off.

This until the actual masters are made available (which is probably never) is as close as we're going to get to what was heard in a studio.
Apart from the possibility of the authentication bit being used as real DRM, I do like the idea, especially since HD Tracks has proved to be dodgy sometimes.
Hi,

That is all that MQA guarantee, that the album has been put through the MQA process.

What if they get it wrong? You will still get the light indicating it is MQA.

What if they miss the most important element in the recording/mastering chain that has the most effect? You will still get the light on saying MQA.

What if they don't know the entire recording/mastering chain, and they have to estimate what equipment was used? You still get the light on stating it is MQA.

MQA only guarantees the process, not the quality. It may sound different to high resolution, but does that make it better? Or just different?

Will you always believe MQA is better because you have been told so?

Regards,

Shadders.
MQA have stated they get the artist/label to give signoff, then and only then does the authentication get implemented.

So yes, there is still subjectivity involved, but it's still better than buying blind on HD Tracks.

The artist must also agree. For example Linn has tried convincing The Blue Nile to give it rights to release high res versions of their first two albums, and have failed. Paul Buchanan apparently is indifferent. Their first two albums were recorded under Linn's then new label, but this changed later on.
Hi,

Yes, that was the purpose of Pure Audio. They just did not release sufficient number of albums.

With MQA, it is another approach, and we still don't know if it is any better that existing high resolution.

Regards,

Shadders.
By it's own definition it cannot be better than a DSD download, but then that's not what MQA is about I feel.
 

shadders

Well-known member
Nov 19, 2009
152
88
18,670
Al ears said:
shadders said:
manicm said:
shadders said:
manicm said:
insider9 said:
I'm a big fan of MQA. That doesn't mean I would support hifi enthusiast being robbed blind for the privilege.

In my opinion MQA has a bright future. That is unless something better overshadows it but there's nothing that could compete at this point. The fact it is backwards compatible is the first reason why I believe it will do well. Having listened on a non MQA DAC I can tell differences are significant and in favour of MQA.

But for me the promise of authentication is the biggest benefit. As long as the recording has been done once there can only be one MQA file. Not millions of remasters, deluxe editions, 24 bit high res files that are up sampled from CD and all other nonsense. It's like having the first pressing as a comparison to vinyl but because it's digital it can never wear off.

This until the actual masters are made available (which is probably never) is as close as we're going to get to what was heard in a studio.
Apart from the possibility of the authentication bit being used as real DRM, I do like the idea, especially since HD Tracks has proved to be dodgy sometimes.
Hi,

That is all that MQA guarantee, that the album has been put through the MQA process.

What if they get it wrong? You will still get the light indicating it is MQA.

What if they miss the most important element in the recording/mastering chain that has the most effect? You will still get the light on saying MQA.

What if they don't know the entire recording/mastering chain, and they have to estimate what equipment was used? You still get the light on stating it is MQA.

MQA only guarantees the process, not the quality. It may sound different to high resolution, but does that make it better? Or just different?

Will you always believe MQA is better because you have been told so?

Regards,

Shadders.
MQA have stated they get the artist/label to give signoff, then and only then does the authentication get implemented.

So yes, there is still subjectivity involved, but it's still better than buying blind on HD Tracks.

The artist must also agree. For example Linn has tried convincing The Blue Nile to give it rights to release high res versions of their first two albums, and have failed. Paul Buchanan apparently is indifferent. Their first two albums were recorded under Linn's then new label, but this changed later on.
Hi,

Yes, that was the purpose of Pure Audio. They just did not release sufficient number of albums.

With MQA, it is another approach, and we still don't know if it is any better that existing high resolution.

Regards,

Shadders.
By it's own definition it cannot be better than a DSD download, but then that's not what MQA is about I feel.
Hi,

It depends on your viewpoint on which processing is superior, but in essence, they are very similar in terms of superiority over red book CD.

For there to be 30,000 albums MQA encoded, then, they must have processed 30,000 albums that have ALREADY been recorded. So previous recording techniques are ok, and it is just the modification of the mastering that has occurred. MQA takes what we already have, processes, and recodes differently to CD PCM coding, that is all.

It would be very unfortunate if the MQA streams from Tidal are just the different packing of 96kHz 24bit recordings, making you think you have the benefit of the new system.......

Regards,

Shadders.
 

manicm

Well-known member
May 1, 2008
596
66
18,970
shadders said:
manicm said:
shadders said:
manicm said:
shadders said:
manicm said:
Shadders, no I don't, but I suspecting you're twisting the piece to suit your belief. I ask you again to extract a piece or two from the absolutesound piece to back up your claim, or at least the page - there are only 4 pages.

That can't be too hard, can it?
Hi,

Page 3 states that the temporal blur is the issue, and that this is caused by filters, where they reference 8 filters in the entire audio chain. For an existing album, they need to reverse this effect, hence they cannot record the album again, they will have to know which filters have been used so as to reverse the smearing effect.

Regards,

Shadders.
So you're assuming then, according to your logic, where it doesn't really back up your claim. One of the Linn posters provided the white paper, where MQA actually applies dithering to the encoding process. So you're still guessing...

'MQA addresses this disparity by losslessly (or virtually) dividing the audio into octave-wide sub-bands, conceptually coding each with a lower sampling rate than the ensemble. MQA is truly hierarchical, and although the example here is 192kHz, sample rates of 384, 768, or higher are accommodated. In fact, the mathematics includes infinite sampling (analog) since that is the real target.'

I've read page 3 again, and it still doesn't back up your claim. They may be removing that blur, but the HOW doesn't equate to any form of 'reversal', or reverse engineering of the audio in the strictest sense.
Hi,

Not assuming. I asked you whether you understood DSP etc., to determine how I should respond. The only way to remove temporal blur by the stated 8 filters is to code an inverse function, which will in essence be an approximation.

You keep on referring to Linn, which I have not seen in regards to this aspect.

Your have copied the coding aspect. There are in essence two aspects to this - the processing of the existing recording, and the coding of the resultant bitstream. I am referring to the processing of the existing recording.

Please provide the link to the referenced white paper. Thanks.

Regards,

Shadders.
Shadders you're using your knowledge to deduce that it's a reversal when in fact you may actually be wrong. I still read nothing in page 3 to back up your claim. Here's the link https://meridianaudio.sharefile.com/d/s42fc5e54e804f90a
Hi,

I had a quick read of the paper, and essentially it is a resampling the exisiting sample with a different filter - to remove the temporal blurring. It does need further study, but it is still the processing of the exsiting audio file data to reverse the effects of the initial sampling, and recode using their own kernel. Again, this is my first pass of the paper, so I need to confirm. My statements previously still seem to be valid.

Regards,

Shadders.
That's fine, but reversing the effects does not mean 3rd parties can achieve the same without that kernel or knowledge of MQA's process. And even if they could how would they market it? They cannot use the noun MQA!
 

shadders

Well-known member
Nov 19, 2009
152
88
18,670
manicm said:
shadders said:
manicm said:
shadders said:
manicm said:
shadders said:
manicm said:
Shadders, no I don't, but I suspecting you're twisting the piece to suit your belief. I ask you again to extract a piece or two from the absolutesound piece to back up your claim, or at least the page - there are only 4 pages.

That can't be too hard, can it?
Hi,

Page 3 states that the temporal blur is the issue, and that this is caused by filters, where they reference 8 filters in the entire audio chain. For an existing album, they need to reverse this effect, hence they cannot record the album again, they will have to know which filters have been used so as to reverse the smearing effect.

Regards,

Shadders.
So you're assuming then, according to your logic, where it doesn't really back up your claim. One of the Linn posters provided the white paper, where MQA actually applies dithering to the encoding process. So you're still guessing...

'MQA addresses this disparity by losslessly (or virtually) dividing the audio into octave-wide sub-bands, conceptually coding each with a lower sampling rate than the ensemble. MQA is truly hierarchical, and although the example here is 192kHz, sample rates of 384, 768, or higher are accommodated. In fact, the mathematics includes infinite sampling (analog) since that is the real target.'

I've read page 3 again, and it still doesn't back up your claim. They may be removing that blur, but the HOW doesn't equate to any form of 'reversal', or reverse engineering of the audio in the strictest sense.
Hi,

Not assuming. I asked you whether you understood DSP etc., to determine how I should respond. The only way to remove temporal blur by the stated 8 filters is to code an inverse function, which will in essence be an approximation.

You keep on referring to Linn, which I have not seen in regards to this aspect.

Your have copied the coding aspect. There are in essence two aspects to this - the processing of the existing recording, and the coding of the resultant bitstream. I am referring to the processing of the existing recording.

Please provide the link to the referenced white paper. Thanks.

Regards,

Shadders.
Shadders you're using your knowledge to deduce that it's a reversal when in fact you may actually be wrong. I still read nothing in page 3 to back up your claim. Here's the link https://meridianaudio.sharefile.com/d/s42fc5e54e804f90a
Hi,

I had a quick read of the paper, and essentially it is a resampling the exisiting sample with a different filter - to remove the temporal blurring. It does need further study, but it is still the processing of the exsiting audio file data to reverse the effects of the initial sampling, and recode using their own kernel. Again, this is my first pass of the paper, so I need to confirm. My statements previously still seem to be valid.

Regards,

Shadders.
That's fine, but reversing the effects does not mean 3rd parties can achieve the same without that kernel or knowledge of MQA's process. And even if they could how would they market it? They cannot use the noun MQA!
Hi,

Anyone can achieve the same as MQA with the relevant software. The white paper does not state explicitly how an existing recording is converted, but it can be determined with a bit of experimenting

Any system that has a secret, will eventually be broken, as this is what some people do, for fun, or to test their capability. Every coding system has a fully explained set using a standard or other. If MQA do not publish the process details, then, are they packaging something that has already been done, and charging people for the privilege?

So, anyone can then implement the same, free of charge, with slight modification to avoid patent infringement. This assumes a patent has been granted on a true innovation, and there is no error in patent award, or the patent adviser who granted the patent, does know the area in sufficient detail.

There should be no patent awarded for the mathematics in reversing the effects of a system response, or applying a new one, as anyone can do this if they use the right numbers.

You have referred to the Linn response and the anti-MQA approach in some areas, but this may be based on sufficient foundations to apply a critical eye on what is happening.

Regards,

Shadders.
 

Al ears

Moderator
shadders said:
Al ears said:
shadders said:
manicm said:
shadders said:
manicm said:
insider9 said:
I'm a big fan of MQA. That doesn't mean I would support hifi enthusiast being robbed blind for the privilege.

In my opinion MQA has a bright future. That is unless something better overshadows it but there's nothing that could compete at this point. The fact it is backwards compatible is the first reason why I believe it will do well. Having listened on a non MQA DAC I can tell differences are significant and in favour of MQA.

But for me the promise of authentication is the biggest benefit. As long as the recording has been done once there can only be one MQA file. Not millions of remasters, deluxe editions, 24 bit high res files that are up sampled from CD and all other nonsense. It's like having the first pressing as a comparison to vinyl but because it's digital it can never wear off.

This until the actual masters are made available (which is probably never) is as close as we're going to get to what was heard in a studio.
Apart from the possibility of the authentication bit being used as real DRM, I do like the idea, especially since HD Tracks has proved to be dodgy sometimes.
Hi,

That is all that MQA guarantee, that the album has been put through the MQA process.

What if they get it wrong? You will still get the light indicating it is MQA.

What if they miss the most important element in the recording/mastering chain that has the most effect? You will still get the light on saying MQA.

What if they don't know the entire recording/mastering chain, and they have to estimate what equipment was used? You still get the light on stating it is MQA.

MQA only guarantees the process, not the quality. It may sound different to high resolution, but does that make it better? Or just different?

Will you always believe MQA is better because you have been told so?

Regards,

Shadders.
MQA have stated they get the artist/label to give signoff, then and only then does the authentication get implemented.

So yes, there is still subjectivity involved, but it's still better than buying blind on HD Tracks.

The artist must also agree. For example Linn has tried convincing The Blue Nile to give it rights to release high res versions of their first two albums, and have failed. Paul Buchanan apparently is indifferent. Their first two albums were recorded under Linn's then new label, but this changed later on.
Hi,

Yes, that was the purpose of Pure Audio. They just did not release sufficient number of albums.

With MQA, it is another approach, and we still don't know if it is any better that existing high resolution.

Regards,

Shadders.
By it's own definition it cannot be better than a DSD download, but then that's not what MQA is about I feel.
Hi,

It depends on your viewpoint on which processing is superior, but in essence, they are very similar in terms of superiority over red book CD.

For there to be 30,000 albums MQA encoded, then, they must have processed 30,000 albums that have ALREADY been recorded. So previous recording techniques are ok, and it is just the modification of the mastering that has occurred. MQA takes what we already have, processes, and recodes differently to CD PCM coding, that is all.

It would be very unfortunate if the MQA streams from Tidal are just the different packing of 96kHz 24bit recordings, making you think you have the benefit of the new system.......

Regards,

Shadders.
It would indeed but MQA is still a compressed format and the idea has been around for years but seems to be stabbing itself in its own foot when it comes to convincing producers etc to employ it. It's just another format that may benefit some.
 

shadders

Well-known member
Nov 19, 2009
152
88
18,670
Al ears said:
shadders said:
Al ears said:
shadders said:
manicm said:
shadders said:
manicm said:
insider9 said:
I'm a big fan of MQA. That doesn't mean I would support hifi enthusiast being robbed blind for the privilege.

In my opinion MQA has a bright future. That is unless something better overshadows it but there's nothing that could compete at this point. The fact it is backwards compatible is the first reason why I believe it will do well. Having listened on a non MQA DAC I can tell differences are significant and in favour of MQA.

But for me the promise of authentication is the biggest benefit. As long as the recording has been done once there can only be one MQA file. Not millions of remasters, deluxe editions, 24 bit high res files that are up sampled from CD and all other nonsense. It's like having the first pressing as a comparison to vinyl but because it's digital it can never wear off.

This until the actual masters are made available (which is probably never) is as close as we're going to get to what was heard in a studio.
Apart from the possibility of the authentication bit being used as real DRM, I do like the idea, especially since HD Tracks has proved to be dodgy sometimes.
Hi,

That is all that MQA guarantee, that the album has been put through the MQA process.

What if they get it wrong? You will still get the light indicating it is MQA.

What if they miss the most important element in the recording/mastering chain that has the most effect? You will still get the light on saying MQA.

What if they don't know the entire recording/mastering chain, and they have to estimate what equipment was used? You still get the light on stating it is MQA.

MQA only guarantees the process, not the quality. It may sound different to high resolution, but does that make it better? Or just different?

Will you always believe MQA is better because you have been told so?

Regards,

Shadders.
MQA have stated they get the artist/label to give signoff, then and only then does the authentication get implemented.

So yes, there is still subjectivity involved, but it's still better than buying blind on HD Tracks.

The artist must also agree. For example Linn has tried convincing The Blue Nile to give it rights to release high res versions of their first two albums, and have failed. Paul Buchanan apparently is indifferent. Their first two albums were recorded under Linn's then new label, but this changed later on.
Hi,

Yes, that was the purpose of Pure Audio. They just did not release sufficient number of albums.

With MQA, it is another approach, and we still don't know if it is any better that existing high resolution.

Regards,

Shadders.
By it's own definition it cannot be better than a DSD download, but then that's not what MQA is about I feel.
Hi,

It depends on your viewpoint on which processing is superior, but in essence, they are very similar in terms of superiority over red book CD.

For there to be 30,000 albums MQA encoded, then, they must have processed 30,000 albums that have ALREADY been recorded. So previous recording techniques are ok, and it is just the modification of the mastering that has occurred. MQA takes what we already have, processes, and recodes differently to CD PCM coding, that is all.

It would be very unfortunate if the MQA streams from Tidal are just the different packing of 96kHz 24bit recordings, making you think you have the benefit of the new system.......

Regards,

Shadders.
It would indeed but MQA is still a compressed format and the idea has been around for years but seems to be stabbing itself in its own foot when it comes to convincing producers etc to employ it. It's just another format that may benefit some.
Hi,

I have worked on standards which are reviewed and created by many people and vendors across the globe. Every vendor wants what they want from the system, and will try and guide the final document to meet their needs, sometimes to the detriment to other vendors.

So MQA Ltd have their paper, where the review panel of the system hear favourable changes in sound, and they have then presented it. It would be rather silly if the review panel heard unfavourable changes, and the paper was still presented.

So, I expect some producers, and others in general, will be questioning whether they want a system that requires the entire audio chain to be changed, from recording all the way through to the DAC. Then there is the sale of physical media.

I would be asking myself, do we really need this change, and if the key aspects of the change/improvement in sound is just a bit of processing which does not fall under the patent, then we may as well implement that processing ourselves, on standard recordings, so people get all the benefits, and no need for new equipment.

Regards,

Shadders.
 

manicm

Well-known member
May 1, 2008
596
66
18,970
Shadders I still respectfully disagree that anyone can reverse engineer what MQA are doing, maybe approximate it at best.

If it was so simple, ALAC could have been decoded long before Apple made it open source. But licensing issues... And remember ALAC is just a variation of FLAC.

But let's assume they crack it, legally they won't be able to claim products being MQA compatible. And thus a hard sell to the customer.
 

shadders

Well-known member
Nov 19, 2009
152
88
18,670
manicm said:
Shadders I still respectfully disagree that anyone can reverse engineer what MQA are doing, maybe approximate it at best.

If it was so simple, ALAC could have been decoded long before Apple made it open source. But licensing issues... And remember ALAC is just a variation of FLAC.

But let's assume they crack it, legally they won't be able to claim products being MQA compatible. And thus a hard sell to the customer.
Hi,

Reverse engineering of MQA is possible if you read the patent and papers. If there is a secret, which is not divulged, then this is just another proprietary system that we don't need. How can the scientific community assess the system if it is secret? This leads to the issue and proposals that we are told it is better, so we hear it is better. Without scientific community review and testing, we are just accepting what we are told.

My reverse engineering aspect was mainly referring to the reversal of the effects of temporal blur. This is the central argument stated by MQA Ltd that causes the problem with existing recordings. If you know the recording chain equipment and processes applied in mastering, anyone can implement the approximation of the reversal of these effects. The absolutesound article refers to filters cascaded. If one knows which filters, a bit of mathematics, and anyone with the capability, can implement the same process as MQA Ltd, in regards to reversing temporal blurring.

Don't forget, there are 30,000 MQA downloads already on Tidal. They have taken the existing high sample rate recordings, and processed them. This means that the current recording techniques are sufficient, and all that has happened is that the existing data has been processed. People are reporting that MQA is an improvement over the same high resolution file that they have. Is this expectation bias, or is it just different?

There are plugins for Audacity that process audio files for specific effects, or stated improvements. The MQA process may be specific for each album, but there is nothing to stop anyone else reviewing the audio chain and providing such a plugin for someone to do it themselves.

Regards,

Shadders.
 

cheeseboy

New member
Jul 17, 2012
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manicm said:
If it was so simple, ALAC could have been decoded long before Apple made it open source.
erm, it was. Just under a year after apple released it https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apple_Lossless#History
 

shadders

Well-known member
Nov 19, 2009
152
88
18,670
manicm said:
Shadders I disagree still, because MQA IS a proprietary system/ encoding, just like ALAC was albeit based on FLAC.
Hi,

The key aspect that MQA Ltd is that it reverses the effects of filters that cause temporal blurring. The absolutesound reports states that the cumulative filters are the problem.

So, if a recording, however many bits or however high the sample rate, exists, MQA Ltd are not re-recording the album, they are processing the existing file.

So, if temporal blurring is the issue, how do MQA Ltd, then remove this temporal blurring on existing recordings ?

They use mathematics, which is essentially an inverse function of the original filters. Anyone can do this. Inverse filter functions have been used for decades by many technological areas, and you cannot patent this.

Regards,

Shadders.
 

ellisdj

New member
Dec 11, 2008
377
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0
I think MQA is going to be the answer for getting mainstream music out to people at higher bitrates and quality than CD. If you chose to listen to it

So its not the limited few that like classical music or jazz music that get high res music it will be higher quality music for all styles and for everyone. If that is via tidal then hey ho people get it cheap.

If they are able to do it then we should all be behind it and if they makes loads of money from it, which I very much doubt then thats fair play to them as well.

I think this is more about the people from Meridian caring more about music quality than purely making money.

If they wanted to make pure money they are smart enough people to shift their business model, trade off the name and sell tons of cheap stuff and dilute the name. They have done the opposite actually.
 

manicm

Well-known member
May 1, 2008
596
66
18,970
Shadders, all digital audio involves mathematics obviously, but MQA have patented the dithering application in the encoding, and other pending patents in the processing/encoding, so let's disagree and I'll stop here.
 

shadders

Well-known member
Nov 19, 2009
152
88
18,670
manicm said:
Shadders, all digital audio involves mathematics obviously, but MQA have patented the dithering application in the encoding, and other pending patents in the processing/encoding, so let's disagree and I'll stop here.
Hi,

The dithering is for the implementation of MQA on 16bit CD physical media, or download. That is the coding aspect of MQA.

MQA also provides the reversal of temporal blurring. This is what you CANNOT patent, since this mathematical process is used in many other engineering disciplines. As such, if you know the recording equipment used etc., YOU can do the same as MQA without patent infringement.

You don't need MQA.

Regards,

Shadders.
 

ellisdj

New member
Dec 11, 2008
377
1
0
Shadders maybe you don't and maybe people can bootleg that section.

Mqa can bring higher quality sound to more people. More people want it easy than not.

So more people do need mqa for that
 

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