Help … But do you think there are differences between Tidal master and Qobuz Hires songs?
There are difference between Tidal and Qobuz regerdless of Hires or not.
I wanted to ask which one is better between the two
The answer will not be the same for everyone, as it will depend on the hardware you are using, and what level of MQA unfolding it can do, and other variables.
Streaming on nd5 xs2
Naim streamers do not support MQA, so you will get a regular 16/44 stream if you try to play a Tidal ‘master’.
If you connect your Dragonfly to it, that can ‘unfold’ MQA to 16/44, which you could then play into your amp.
And via iPhone + dragonfly?
Let’s assume we have a streamer that supports mqa and hi Res which is better between Tidal and Qobuz?
No there isn’t for me. Using Roon they are both the same apart from hires and mqa, standard cd as long as same master is identical.
That’s down to you to decide there is no hard or fast rule. Some mqa can sound better, some pcm hires can also sound better sometimes it’s hard to hear any difference. It will be down to your kit, how it handles each service, is it the same application and hardware being used for both services? You cant judge it by using to different transport methods such as Naim app for Tidal and another UPnP method for Qobuz as each will handle it differently. I use Roon and for normal materiels that are from same master they are equal for hires and mqa it depends on the material and if it’s the same master.
No Naim streamer will do this, so you will not get many informed opinions here. The nearest you will get is with Roon, but even then, you are only hearing a partial unfold of Roon.
When I previously tried Qobuz it sounded distinctly odd. I did say I would give it another go at a later date so I have; and paid for this time too.
This time it’s much better so I can stream.some 24bit for a bit now.
What is the partial unfold in Roon about, and do some hardware do more?
Without going into the technical details, which to be honest, I have forgotten, the first ‘unfold’ can be done by Tidal software, Roon and maybe others. The second and third ‘unfold’ can only be done by a DAC that supports MQA. Naim DACs/streamers don’t, so listening to Tidal ‘masters’ will not give you the full benefit (if, subjectively, it is a benefit).
My only experience of Tidal is with an Audioquest Dragonfly DAC, which is a surprisingly good DAC for its size and cost, and so far I haven’t heard anything to get excited about.
If you look at the MQA website, there is a simple explanation of this. Obviously it’s promoting it as the best thing since sliced bread, but it gives you a simple guide to how to use it.
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