Misleading signal path indicator

Not a big deal but I find misleading the overall blue shining light while the entire path is purple with exception of an in between step allegedly blue. In my understanding, information cannot be created from scratch, hence the overall color should always indicate the same quality or worse than that of the source. In my example, I’d expect to see a purple overall indicator.

Add then insult to injury with the fact than MQA is not even lossless so eventually even degrading my source. With MQA in between, probably an overall green indicator would be more honest.


I’m confused by that.
I think the overall signal should equal the worst stage.

Why is MQA full decoder deemed better than Authentication?
Why is BS Node & Output less than enhanced using RAAT?

I don’t understand that at all.

You bring a good point here: should bit-perfectness be relative to the played source, or to the assumed original recording? The former is better defined, and even MP3 could be considered bit-perfect in that case, since in theory, there is only one correct way to decode it to a given bit depth. The latter is a bit fuzzy. If an artist released only lossy formats, then that would be the best quality available when correctly decoded, and it would be a shame to consider that inferior.

I agree, but let’s hope the MQA reference won’t derail the thread.

The blue light indicates an enhanced signal path (in this case, MQA decoding), while the purple indicates lossless. It’s not so much about quality, but about what was done, or not done, to the signal. Nothing done that has any effect on bit-perfect transmission, purple. Something done (e.g. sample rate conversion, convolution), blue.

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Just read Roon‘s reasoning about it here.

It‘s like with threads about changes in the UI - one can never please everyone…

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There’s nothing untoward with the signal path.

Source to the Roon logo are delivered to the Bluesound NODE bit perfect. Everything else is reported by the NODE. The MQA render stage, as with other DSP, is shown as enhanced.

The path shows each step so it is clear what is happening. In the same way, if something changes, it will tell you where it happened and how it affects everything else.


MQA decoding/rendering changes the source file and applies extra upsampling and filtering and is a black box as to what it upsamples to as its wholly dac dependant. Hence it’s enhanced as it’s messing with the original signal. MQA authentication is just authenticating the provenance it’s not changing anything so that is lossless.

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The signal path layout will change further should you use Roon to authenticate/decode and the BS Node to render only.

Enhancing indicates improvement, is that really happening during the MQA decoding phase in this signal demonstrated?

MQA biases aside, it’s changing it from 16bit 44.1 to 16bit 44.1 isn’t it?

If it were unfolding to 88.2 I could understand it.

MQA decoding and rendering is assumed to enhance SQ by Roon, regardless.

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If the Tidal version of a song is shown similar to below it’ll render at a higher rate (dependant on DAC specs)

But you do get some that are, as shown in the OPs signal path

Either will show as enhanced

MQA’s claims are not just about the folding but about their supposed special filter correction magic as well, so going by the claims it’s enhanced even without unfolding, I guess. One could argue that people who don’t think MQA is an enhancement shouldn’t be using it, but of course many don’t have a choice if they have no Qobuz access.

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No MQA renders at what ever they set in the device, the first decode is always 2x the encapsulated rate, then the rendering can be anything up to 16x its wholly DAC dependant. If you think you get what it ever says you have misunderstood what it is doing. The rates shown for MQA are encapsulated rate and ORF’s (Original Sample Rate used to create the MQA file) ORFs doesnt mean thats what you get. My DAPS decode/render to the MAX rate the dac supports for PCM based on 44.1 or 48 and you can see the proper readout. Most MQA DACs just show the ORFS rate that isnt what its doing under the hood.

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That’s a matter of opinion … I think it means to amend or augment. Cosmetic surgery, trout pout, anyone? :smile:

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Turn off the mqa decoder in the Bluesound…

No it’s not opinion, an enhancement is an improvement.

Whether an enhancement improves something is a matter of opinion. Indeed, this forum is full of debates about software enhancements.

We can say that the value of Roon is enhanced by adding DSP. Likewise, for some, AirPlay enhances the utility of Roon. But using DSP doesn’t always improve the sound. If you don’t use it correctly, it might make things worse.

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