Maybe this is the ‘thin end of the wedge’?
After all, if all the labels decide to supply MQA files for streaming in the future, then Qobuz would become, by default, an MQA-delivery service/vehicle, just like Tidal.
I’m not quite sure how I feel about such a prospect…?
I suppose my ‘head’ says that this may be the natural ‘evolution’ of the streaming market. But equally, I enjoy streaming Hi-Res from Qobuz.
A situation to ‘watch’, me thinks…
Yes, most (if not all) 2L albums on Qobuz are this way, which surprised Qobuz. When asked, 2L said it had been supplying such files in MQA CD to Quboz, MQA CD to Tidal Lossy/HiFi, but, that the true 24 bit MQA is available on Tidal Masters.
It’s slightly (!?) worrying that Qobuz weren’t aware of this themselves, and no mention is made of MQA on their website. Also worrying that Qobuz still label these files as 24/192 in their catalogue, when they are in fact MQA streams.
Could this be ‘MQA by stealth’?
I fail to see how an ‘unfolded’ 16/44.1 MQA file can be equated to a 352.8khz PCM file? I thought the sampling rate was just ‘doubled’ on unfolding, which would make it the equivalent of 88.2khz? Or am I missing something?
But anyway, considerations of how MQA actually ‘works’, and as I Qobuz subscriber, I am mildly annoyed by this discovery. It’s like buying a bottle of red wine, only to discover that it’s white wine that comes out of the bottle. NOT good!
I subscribe to Tidal too, and I expect the choice of MQA through their Masters.
Qobuz need to make this public, if only to ensure that subscribers do indeed get what they have paid for.
To be clearer Chris, this is from the ‘soundonsound’ website on MQA:
The sample rate of an MQA file is always based on that of its source material, so original material at 88.2, 176.4 or 352.8 kHz would be encoded as a 44.1 kHz MQA file, whereas material starting out with 96, 192 or 384 kHz sample rates would be encoded as an MQA file at 48kHz.
So it would appear that it’s the source material that dictates 352.8khz, rather than the maximum sampling rate ability of the decoding DAC. And yes, that wud explain the 44.1khz file ID in this case too.
I’m not saying the hardware MQA renderer isn’t producing the source sample rate when possible. As well I’m not saying that the upsampling doesn’t play part in the sound you like, I’ve heard the slight differences in different filtering techniques.
Second unfold is a much more marketable term vs upsampling. Similar to how they use deblur to describe the effect of mp filters which meridian has been using for years.