Goldensound’s view on MQA

So watch and discuss.


Doubt he’ll convince people who want it anyway. Ditto here. However, if you hear it through to the end then I thought some of it was very convincing and other bits much less so. Thought his tone was excellent and well balanced throughout.

Ultimately MQA appeals to people who believe higher definition is everything but don’t want to look behind the facade.

The MQA I’ve heard has been odd; absolutely not streets ahead on anything and like SACD I suspect it’ll trundle on for a few years but ultimately peter out regardless of whether it is subjectively or objectively better. It’s an overly complex proprietary solution to a problem that has yet to be defined.

Well it is a format that does try to exert undue control over the distribution chain.


I found this video fascinating.

I would be concerned at any supplier that suppressed the truth and additionally put pressure upon Tidal and the music publisher to remove the test samples when no rules have been breached. What have they got to hide? The fact that their technology cannot be tested suggests that they have much to hide.

The role of Tidal in this matter is of concern and users cannot now trust the validity and authenticity of the music that you are streaming. This must be a dent to their reputation. You are no longer listening to the original and it impacts CD quality tracks too.

Some manufacturers have come out against MQA and others have provided it because customers wanted it even if they see no benefit in it.

There is a cost to audiophiles in this solution looking for a problem.

Marketing and snake-oil?


Not about to disagree.


Or solution too late for the problem - I assume it started development way back when bandwidth was a significant limitation.


That applies to a lot of audiophile devices sold and worshipped on here that supposedly fix a problem that is also undefined or unproven to actually be a problem in the first place.


I am sure that maybe true but in some cases it is possible to test them. And you can easily avoid them too.

The problem with MQA is that it affects other people. I will not subscribe to Tidal because of MQA. There is no non-MQA Tidal option.


I don’t understand the more technical aspects of the video but the message does make a persuasive impact. Perhaps he’s preaching to the converted with me but the argument that we should retain the option of non-MQA hi-res alongside MQA is hard to refute…


I thought one of the comments posted on the Youtube video page was telling:-

“As a mastering engineer, the essential thing to me is that FLAC can represent the data absolutely exactly as I have set it for the master, in a format that is about 65% the file size compared to the uncompressed PCM, and is taggable, streamable, multi-channel ready and capable of being fully hi-res - AND open source and license free. And I have been able to prove to myself numerous times via conversion round trips and null tests that it is truly lossless in its encoding/decoding”.


I have been listening to MQA through Room. For me it is definitely more Hi Fi and very impressive. But it is not more music! It is wrong. On some tracks I sort fell nauseous after listening. Something is not right but I can’t figure out what it is. It is so impressive but subconsciously it feels wrong. Yet I can’t figureout what is wrong!

The principle issue is that its now a solution trying to find a problem. The internet caught up and I am listening to Pink Floy in 192 direct for quboz, so whats the point of MQA?

A cash grab is what.


Excellent video and very informative, thanks for posting that.

Just FYI in case you haven’t seen it, readers of this thread will be interested in this post by Steve (and the previous one) in a parallel Tidal thread:

1 Like

Indeed - unlike MQA…

Hope you have read the complete answer of MQA and , if interested in detail, the answers in Audio Science Review forum, where his “measurements” have been debunked. The originator of this video has been removed in several fori for his strange style. And by the way: No one MUST hear MQA, there is always a possibility to switch back to HiFi/ or CD only.

1 Like

I have spend considerable time, listening to MQA encoded versions of tracks stored locally and via Tidal compared to both locally stored PCM and DSD versions of the same music.
All my MQA based playback was unfolded by Roon, to a max of 24/96 and played back through my NDS through a SonoreUPnP Bridge.
I have not tried to compare encoded MQA without any unfolding.

I have not heard any of the artefacts referenced in this video.
I have heard equivalent presentation of the music, in terms of soundstage, timing, scale and presentation.
I have heard improvements in MQA versions over the Redbook 16/44.1 rips I had of the music previously.
When I have HiRes FLAC I will play this, as a preference over the equivalent MQA version, particularly if the HiRes FLAC is 24/192 or 24/176.
I am undecided over MQA vs DSD versions, but then that is the same with DSD vs HiRes FLAC. However, I will play the DSD over Redbook 16/44.1
When I have just MQA versions of music, it is still enjoyable and interesting to listen to, and a pleasant experience.
Am I looking for further MQA processing in my playback chain, NO, as I rate my NDS in terms of SQ and when combined with Roon, it provides an interface to find, select, explore my collection, leverage internet sources, manage playback in multiple zones (only one having Naim equipment), and the NDS/555DR is superb IMO.


Why not switch forward to TRUE hires with PCM/DSD.

1 Like

Thank-you. That is not a very good choice and typical of the MQA impact. Why only CD quality? Can I not have hi-res? Obviously not with Tidal! So I subscribe to Qobuz hi-res.

And if it is so good why the MQA censorship? I would be concerned at any supplier that suppressed the truth and additionally put pressure upon Tidal and the music publisher to remove the test samples.

What have they got to hide? The fact that their technology cannot be tested suggests that they have much to hide.

Perhaps you can post the links you refer to.

The main critique by Nimar I saw in ASR prefaced their comments with
“I don’t believe MQA is manna from heaven, or the answer to audiophile dreams. More likely it’s a way for the record industry to have tighter controls over the release of hi res music, while still holding on to the originals. Fine.”
Secondly in regards to proving MQA claims and MQA testing he/she suggests other developments are not tested - this may be true but is hardly proof or a MQA endorsement.


No smoke without fire. MQA/Tidal reaction is disappointing enough for me to move away to Qobuz.

Rather than be transparent and engage in the debate and discuss the findings which are detailed enough to warrant a response, there’s (what appears to be) an attempt to discredit Goldensound and to shut down and prevent any testing of MQA on the platform.

Independently verify the claims vs MQA if there’s nothing to hide.

Neil Young’s comments are also interesting in they challenge the value of MQA, and what it does to his music (Goldensound’s point), and therefore the hifi subscription (family hifi in my case)

While I may not notice the difference, I don’t want to feel ‘ripped’ off or made to feel lossy, about it :joy::joy: