Tidal’s new hi-res FLAC option couldn’t be more annoying

FYI Tidal’s new hi-res FLAC option couldn’t be more annoying


Tidal MAX setting based on the descriptions I read, although I’m not able to test it, makes sense to me.

What the author asked for, a HiRes FLAC without MQA setting, I guess, is not even practical at this point because so much of the catalogue is MQA sourced. It has taken Tidal years to build up its MQA catalogue. There is a public official post from Tidal that says they will [Edit:] replace the MQA sourced 16/44.1 by FLAC source gradually - this clearly takes time.

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Did he say in the article how he had his external dac hooked up? Reading in Reddit, seems most are in true lossless now when dac is hooked up directly. The issue with this early access is we don’t have Tidal Connect or roon updated with the Max setting yet. However it would have been nice for Tidal app itself to actually list the file type and hires level.

I was able to get into early access to decided not pay for a subscription yet because didn’t want to go thru the trouble of directly hooking my iPhone or iPad to my dac. Just going to wait until roon is updated first and then can get all version info that way. Was hoping to see this update in the roon early access soon.

So they took lossless 16/44, converted it to lossy MQA, and now they are going to convert the lossy MQA back to 16/44 flac and call it lossless?

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He said he used an external DAC to verify MQA presence with MAX setting. I believe the only way to hook up an iOS device to a DAC directly is to use a suitable cable, depending on whether it’s lightning or USB-C.

Only direct connection can be used for MAX testing because HiRes FLAC only works on Tidal iOS beta app at this moment, and Tidal Connect does not support HiRes FLAC yet.

Well technically you can say your using an external dac and be using Tidal Connect to do that. I guess depending on the dac, you can see its output.

I don’t think Tidal is doing any converting. They are getting the lossless files from the labels, just like Qobuz does. I think for MQA, it was also the labels supplying this, not Tidal.

The one thing that might have been questionable was the High quality setting. If the label only supplied MQA, I believe Tidal was sending out a limited 16/44 MQA version. So going forward it will either send a 16/44 lossless file that the label supplies it. Or a downsampled hires file like what happens in Qobuz if restrict level.


Hrm - will wait a bit more before getting Tidal. I did write to them tell them the FLAC option is the way forward, support the change and that I would become a subscriber once MQA disappears from the face of the earth… or at least from Tidal! :smiley: Who cares, I know ( call Ja-Rule! ) :smiley: but they need to know


My plan it to at least compare it against Quobuz for a month once everything is sorted out in roon and can play true hires and avoid MQA.

And just to see if Apple made any headway I downloaded ios17 and pretty sure it’s still 256ac thru Airplay. Still doesn’t sound as good as Qobuz. The issue is ios17 is now the Tidal app keeps crashing. All other apps seem fine.

Why is anyone still bothering with Tidal? Switch to Qobuz and be done with it.


There is stuff on Tidal that isn’t on Qobuz. And conversely Tidal is missing some albums that are on Qobuz.


I still find random indie albums missing from Qobuz. It’s gotten much better but still missing stuff. So that’s why I’d like to test it out. I know Apple Music usually has those missing random ones.

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And there are users from countries from where Tidal is supported but not Qobuz.


As I said, it’s not possible to use Tidal Connect to get Hi-Res FLAC right now - technically.

In the business sense, not the technical sense. I edited my post to use the word replace.

No Qobuz in Romania.


Interesting - this person signed up for a beta, then gets annoyed.


What about the rest of the world that doesn’t hav Qobuz (yet)

A somewhat selfish attitude methinks


All this because people want hi-res, although properly mastered CD sounds just as good. If one wants or needs Tidal, HiFi tier is the way to go.


Not just that, the hifi tier still has a lot of MQA 16bit stuff.

Well that’s why I questioning the article. He said he wasn’t seeing any hires but I’ve seen several posts from users with early access that have dac hardwired and they are seeing most now in hires. The article was kind of vague. And I don’t think Tidal made it very clear that Tidal Connect isn’t working yet. And even more shocking not already working with the vendors to have it released by the time Max comes out of a beta.