[Music] HiFi Quality: Master Quality Authenticated Lossless Streaming (MQA)

I'm a proud Spotify Premium subscriber. Also a proud audiophile with a sound system to die for. Please Spotify, Please Please Please give the world lossless streaming through your vast catalogue and music-loving community service. The MQA (Master Quality Authenticated) idea is an option the world should have. It has the potential to stream high-quality audio without hiccups or burps to everyone! Please Please Please make the audio world a better place!

Updated on 2018-12-12

Hey folks,



 

Thanks for coming to the Community, and adding your vote to this idea!



 

We're setting this idea to 'Not Right Now', as this isn't something we have any immediate plans to implement. We appreciate you sharing your thoughts.

 

If we do have any new info to share, rest assured we'll check back in here with a new status.

 



Thanks.

Comments
Gig Goer

@Adoteq

I'm sorry, but that is just absolute hogwash, completely and utterly unsupportable by any credible science or evidence. But the placebo effect is very strong. In a double blind test, you would be utterly unable to distinguish between the formats you mentioned. That shows that the difference is not in the audio perceived by your ears, it exists only in your head, because of placebo.

 

A higher sample rate only gives you very limited benefits. It gives you frequency response way beyond human hearing, and it gives you slightly lower latency when recording and editing. Both of these are completely irrelevant for audio playback, however.

Rock Star 16
Rock Star 16

I love reading these lossless audio conversations.

 

Anyway. I am sitting on a Focusrite Scarlett interface with K712 being my headphones. I am sure there are better setups, but I love where I am at. Best audio I have had so far.

Spotify sounds way better than any hq Youtube videos.
I don't really hear any difference between Spotify Premium and my local library (mostly .wav and other lossless formats). Except when you accidentally blast yourself with very loud music because you listened to something that was very quiet. Lossless sounds mindblowingly pure. On Spotify it's a little less exciting to accidentally blast yourself.

 

I have decided to obtain lossless media for artists I love. I don't want to stream lossless. Do you have any idea how much bandwidth it takes?
I mean, for those on limitless connection it's no biggie, but I used to be on a package that was 30gb/month. It went so fast with Youtube I almost stopped using that service (I downloaded Amon Tobin interviews as these took most of YT time.. lol).

I can't deny there's some inherent purity with .wav, .aiff and such formats when compared to lossy media, but I reserve the excitement to music purchases. (besides 'how will it sound like?' I also have the 'what bit depth are these files coming in?')
I have no experience with MQA. Reading the Reddit thread and seeing Schiit has spoken out against it, I don't want it either. Schiit the company is something I'd trust.
I detect no audible difference between 16 and 24bits. I even have 2 files in 32bit float (thanks...). It's nice to have them though 😉

Newbie

We will always have somebody like HenrikStevn above to tell us what we can hear and not.  But he's right the difference is tiny and for many most negliable.  Digital audio reproduction is very dependent on DAC quality and implementation and of course quality of the amplifiers and speakers.  Most people have never heard music played through high quality hifi audio so they won't be able to differentiate becasue their equipment is lacklusture. 

 

I took part in recording an album few years ago where everything was recorded 24/192.  We (the musicians) could easily hear the difference between the original 24/192 and downsampled 16/44.  Not that the 16/44 sounded bad it just didn't sound as "airy".  The high-res version sounded more like someone was actually playing live in front of you.  And the difference was quite obvious since the recording engineer didn't tell us when he played the downsampled version and we instantly asked if somehting was wrong, felt like the the music had been put into a box.

 

Schiit does not like MQA because of the licencing model and not the least having to pay a fee to one of their competitors Meridian to be able to offer MQA.  Quote: "..supporting MQA means handing over the entire recording industry to an external standards organization."   Schiit is not against high res audio just MQA.

 

Like I said it depends on the DAC, amps, speakers and listening experience wether you can detect the subtle  difference.  But it's there.  

Gig Goer

Placebo is truly powerful self-delusion.

 

No, you are not special. You are not blessed with science-defying superhuman hearing.

Newbie

@HenrikStevn wrote:

Placebo is truly powerful self-delusion.

 

No, you are not special. You are not blessed with science-defying superhuman hearing.


Well you're right I'm not special, not even close.  None of us (in the recording studio) had much technical knowledge of digital audio so the egineer had to tell us why it sounded different.  It's just that we had been listening for the same songs over and over again with the exact same equipment while recording, so it was quite easy hearing the loss of detail.  However if listening out of context, say in a different room with different equipment I could not say with confidence if a recording is 16/44 or 24/192.  It is a sublte thing, but does not need "science-defying superhuman hearing" like you call it.  We all do precieve things differently.  You might be color blind and and might be able  scientifically prove that all colors are brown.  Many of us have taken tests on the internet to see how our eyes are sensitive to different shades of colors.  The results are not the same for all.  Does not make some of us have "superhuman" color sight.  We are diverse and some have through experience ability to hear how instrument timbre flattens out with too little digital resolution.  

 

The only thing I can assume from you agenda is that you're either a Spotify employee defending the business oriented desision to limit audio resolution  ...or you're trolling. 😉

Gig Goer
There could be many factors at play here. The engineer could be an audiophile True Believer in "hi-res audio", and thus able to convincingly fool you into believing you heard a difference. I would wager that the test was not blind at all, and that you knew at all times which version you were listening to. Even a simple suggestion such as "here's the hi-res version, try listening to the cymbals in this one" is enough to convince you that you heard a difference. The human mind is extremely open to suggestion, especially when the impressions being compared are somewhat separated in time, simply because human memory is extremely prone to only remembering very broad strokes. I am absolutely not employed by Spotify, nor am I trolling, and I very strongly resent the implications you're making.
Newbie

Well maybe you should take a look at yourself before feeling insulted.


@HenrikStevn wrote:

Placebo is truly powerful self-delusion.

 

No, you are not special. You are not blessed with science-defying superhuman hearing.


I can assure you the engineer is not an audiophile but a fellow musician. He did not expect us to hear any difference. He had just downsampled to 16/44 (probably through Pro Tools) and played the music through DAT tape deck. It is possible we might just have heard a different DAC for the playback, we will never know.  

 

It's so easy to label almost anythingin high-end audio as snake oil.  Most people would not either be able to hear any difference between a $1 phone DAC and a high-end $5000 DAC.  That does not mean there isn't any difference.  Often you need extensive listening to "hear" the difference or it might even be just less fatique after listening for longer periods.  

 

There is also one other thing you need to consider with regards to high-res audio.  A higher resolution audio file will allow the dac/digital amplifier to alter the medium without ruining the file.  This might be useful for room calibration or simple volume control.  Like in photography resolution usually does not hurt.

 

 

Newbie
I have read the very first page and the last two and have no comment about what you couple commenting to each other... The bottom line is that I am not happy with this Spotify 50-50 % sound quality content, but I have nowhere else to go. Tried Gmusic as well and there and back between S and GM for a year. Going to lossless streaming again doesn't giving me a selection/volume, english is not my native language neither my first preference in music/language ... so for now I stuck here with you. I don't care what conversion Spotify is using but my best bet is a 50% only that I can load to my audio system (a bit upscale) without needing to adjust things. Now, I can understand the other folks as well not feeling any difference, at work ocasionaly me to plug in my earbuds ($150) into my cellphone (S9+ have some its called DAC amp) and listening my own same library I cannot hear a s***t difference. Tried my colleque's iPhone...and that is just a big piece of junk... sorry apply guys.
Newbie

Rediculous how Tidal is a much higher quality then Spotify.

While i pay €10 every month.

I've bought a new AV-reciever with new speakers. The quality is really noticable.

A shame that Spotify doesn't support high end quality.

Regular

Hey everyone, instead of begging Spotify for this and getting a 'not right now' bull**** non-answer, subscribe to Tidal. They have HiFi and Master lossless audio that blows the doors off of Spotify. I have used it for months now and if you care about music quality, you will too.