Is Roon supporting MQA? What are the pros and cons of MQA?

You can do MQA via Roon now with explorer2 USB3 Camera Kit and IPad Pro.

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Stream the studio UMG presentation from CES. The irony is, the audio quality is dreadful.


Is it watermarked? :wink:


The Dragonfly is a MQA renderer only and requires a software unfold which isn’t available on any iOS apps or at least not until Roon makes it available.

If MQA unfolding is on a per Zone switch (seems sensible) then the unfolding will be done in the Core before being sent to an Output. An iOS device can pass a hi res signal to a connected DAC or Roon can be set up to downsample in Device Settings if you want to use the internal speakers.

No doubt about that. Digital room correction and such that can be done with convolution has very notable sonic impact. I wouldn’t want to listen to my speaker system without it, bass region is too bumpy without it.

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Yes. I have full MQA capability in my Meridian gear, but I sacrifice it for room correction without a moment’s hesitation.

A post was split to a new topic: Digital room correction only for say the <300Hz region, or full scale?

I was wondering Roon will allow up-sampling when playing back MQA. I guess the up-sampling DSP will be disabled when playing back MQA?

Which is another reason for wanting software unfolding. My understanding is that we could stream from Tidal, unfold in software, THEN apply DSP within Roon and/or our downstream hardware.
Sure, we don’t get that final filter that MQA is applying, but we should still get the initial filter and the “unfolded”, semi-lossless 24 bit file.

I’ve not try connecting an external DAC to my iPad, will Roon automatically detect it and set the required DAC parameters?

My understanding was the issue with the MQA noise was an anomaly meaning not normal and that later it was confirmed the issue was with the specific encoders used for that production. Once the right encoders were developed and used the problem was fixed. That’s not an “inherent limitation of the format.” This is really a dependency on the right encoding available in production.

The noise I’m referring is aliasing because MQA uses a ‘leaky’ filter in order to achieve a better impulse response. This is inherent design of their filters. The aliasing get reflected back to the audio range causing distortion. You can take a look at Stereophile review on MQA and Aurender music streamer. The technical data tells a lot what is going on.

Bit slow on the uptake here, but if Roon provides an MQA unfold does it mean I will get MQA through my legacy Meridian kit? Ms200’s, dsp3100’s etc?

You will get the first unfold, the additional rendering will not occur as the kit you have listed is not able to do it.

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Cheers Ratbert. Would it be feasible to think there may come a time when both unfolds are performed at the source?

It is probably possible but the bigger issue is whether MQA allow it?

Would hope for either of 2 options:

  1. Roon automatically in the background turns off/on DSP when MQA file is being played (DSP off for MQA file, back on again for non-MQA files)
  2. Roon unfolds MQA file, and then apply Convolution Filter prior to sending music to DAC

My preference would be option 2. above, but if option 1 then that’s still a nice bonus.

Not sure what is possible or on Roadmap - the Roon guys will do the best they can (either MQA the Company restrict what Roon are allowed to do, or the changes are too vast/difficult to complete).

Option 2 Would be my preference as well. Roon could use this as a selling point from competing products as others can also unfold MQA

This is not due to leaky filters.

As for the A10 it seems the problem is a misapplication of MQA filters to non-MQA files.

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