Issues 'upgrading' to MQA files

With the release of 1.5 and the ‘Alternate Versions’ functionality I’ve noticed that there are many more MQA versions of tracks that are in my library now available. That’s excellent. However, trying to upgrade to MQA versions from ‘regular’ versions has turned into an absolute nightmare for me.

I’d like to use REM’s Automatic For The People as an example. To back up for a second, I don’t add entire albums to my library - I only add the tracks I like. So in the case of Automatic For The People, there are seven tracks that I like. In trying to upgrade those seven tracks to MQA, I now have FOUR album versions of Automatic For The People showing in my library.

Version one: Track 10 & Track 12 in MQA 192kHz
Version two: Track 1 & 12 in MQA 192kHz
Version three: Tracks 7 & 8 in regular 44.1kHz
Version four: Tracks 2, 9, and 10 in MQA 48kHz

This isn’t limited to just Automatic For The People. Virtually every single time I try to ‘upgrade’ to MQA versions, I end up with duplicate versions of albums.

Yes, I have tried “Merge Albums”. And yes, I have tried “Group Alternate Versions”. Not only does this not help, it tends to inexplicably add more versions of the album to my library. I’ve even tried going directly into Tidal, and “unfavoriting” the non-MQA versions while favoriting the MQA versions. And it looks fine in Tidal (one album version will have favorites, the others will not), but it refuses to update accordingly in Roon.

And yes, I have tried closing Roon and re-opening it, and yes, I have tried logging out of Tidal and logging back in.

I’ve run into this repeatedly over the last two days - with pretty much every R.E.M. album, Fleetwood Mac, Soundgarden. Stubbornly I’ve tried to solve this on my own (and lost playcounts and tags in the process) but I’m out of patience.

So, I have two questions: is there an easy way to fix this? And, what is the best way to ‘upgrade’ album tracks to MQA without having multiple multiple multiple versions of albums added to your library?

Hi Chris,

Let’s flag @mike to help here because it may be that Roon is not acting as expected as regards Tracks and Albums in this case.

I understand that each Track in Roon is tied to an Album, even if the Album only consists of one track.

Accordingly If I added tracks across multiple versions of an album I would expect Roon to create different versions for that Album, each including only the tracks that I had added from that version. Ultimately I would expect to be able to merge those Albums using Merge Albums/Fix Track Grouping, but that would not be my idea of fun.

As I say, if Roon is doing something different here, then I am sure Mike would like to know, but it may be that instead of trying to create an Album containing only your favourite Tracks from several versions (if I have understood correctly), you might find a Bookmark a better vehicle to achieve what you want. For example you could:

Add the various versions of an Album that contain Tracks you prefer
Favorite (Heart) the tracks you prefer
In the Track Browser, select the Heart button to filter by Favorites.
Bookmark the Filter for one click access to Favorite Tracks.

You can then Shuffle your Favorite tracks, filter with other Focus tools or construct a Queue or Playlist.

To change to MQA versions of your Favorites using the above method, I would:

Add the MQA version you like and make it Primary (Roon may do so by default);
Heart your Favorite tracks again;
Delete any Tidal versions of the Album that don’t have tracks you want to use (keep local versions of course).

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Hey Chris – thanks for the feedback here.

We had a similar report recently that leads me to believe we may have a bug here. I suspect the common factor is this:

This is completely reasonable, but it’s a bit different from how we generally expect people to use the app, and I’m guessing that’s why you’re seeing this bug.

As background, Roon’s logic for grouping versions works at the album level, and in part is based on different versions of the same album having the same number of tracks. Since TIDAL content takes up no space on disk, our expectation has generally been that people would click the big “Add To Library” button, add the entire album, and favorite the tracks they like.

I suspect there are some bad assumptions at play here that are causing issues here related to “loose” tracks whose albums don’t have the same number of tracks we’re expecting them to have.

The detailed report you’ve provided here @Chris_Ferneyhough should help QA reproduce the problem, and then we’ll have some feedback for you.

Thanks again!

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Hi Mike,

This makes a lot of sense. To resolve the issue myself manually I have been deleting my version of ‘albums’ (i.e. just the tracks I like), then adding back in the complete album, then hiding the tracks I don’t care for and this seems to be working smoothly. There have been instances where I have had to delete my version of an album 3 or 4 times before it finally disappeared from my library. But I can appreciate that my unique way of adding tracks rather than albums has caused the issue.

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Hey @Chris_Ferneyhough,

I wanted to touch base with some good news, which is that our technical team has been able to reproduce this behavior and we’ve opened up a bug report with our developers.

While I can’t say for certain when this bug will be fixed, getting things reproduced in-house is a critical first step, and I will keep this thread up to date as the team passes along feedback and work begins to get this resolved. Thanks again for the report!