Nd5 xs 2/ mqa

Can the ND5XS2 Stream Tidal MQA via its digital out to an MQA Dac such as Mytek Liberty?

I would say yes, as it’s the Dac that decodes MQA.
@Suedkiez ? Right?

It depends on your dac. Does it do the full MQA decode? And more importantly, does it do the full decode on the coax input. Most MQA dacs that I know of only do the full decode on the USB input.
Using Tidal Connect would be the way to do it on the Naim unit (pass through MQA) to dac if you can do it at all.
I looked at the Mytek, it doesn’t appear to do MQA on the inputs except for USB.

I believe if Tidal knows it is sending the file to a Naim product then it sends HiFi rather than MQA. I doubt the fact you are using a different DAC would be visible to Tidal….

In my experience, not with Naim, if using Tidal Connect and the Tidal app, it will pass the MQA file through the streamer to a MQA dac on the usb connection.

Yes but he is proposing to use a Naim streamer at the front end?

Right, my first point was, if the MQA dac can do a full decode on the coax input (unlikely), then the Naim streamer could be possibly be used to passthrough the MQA file when using the new Tidal connect and the Tidal app.

Yes but my point was that when Tidal sees a request from Naim, it doesn’t serve a MQA version of the file…

The mystery remains :full_moon_with_face:

I hesitate to go on and indeed I should also give up, but if the OP uses a Naim front end then when the Tidal server handshakes with the ND5 XS2 to deliver the Tidal Connect service ordered via the Tidal app, I am suggesting that the file served won’t be MQA because Tidal will serve a HiFi file instead - as it’s Naim asking, so the ND5 XS2 won’t be able to pass through an MQA file to another DAC.

Anyway maybe @Stevesky could tell us what he thinks, if he has any spare time!



Good question, I would think so but never tried - and of course it’s totally up to the MQA people how exactly their restrictions work.

However, in all of these cases of using external DACs, my believe is that using expensive Naim streamers for a task that is essentially nothing but downloading small files, is a waste of money.

And this is a very good point:

I agree that using expensive Naim streamers only as transports is a waste of money.
But the OP has already an Nd5xs2. I can understand the preference for Tidal vs Qobuz, as it’s a nicer interface and bigger catalog for jazz and pop rock. Streaming MQA natively would represent a plus for me, if I was using Tidal.
Maybe @Simon-in-Suffolk knows if it’s possible to have full MQA with a Naim transport and full MQA dac as Mytech?

I agree, if someone has one and suddenly wants to change the DAC, keeping the Naim streamer for transport might be cost effective, in particular an nd5xs2. Plus, it has nice green glowing logo


Thanks Everyone. The question as David has highlighted is will the ND5XS pull an MQA encoded stream from Tidal ?

It won’t. When Tidal detects a non-MQA device it sends a non-MQA stream as David says.

Of course, from experience, I disagree. If you have an MQA dac attached to a network transport and using Tidal Connect, in “most” cases, MQA will be passed through to the MQA Dac.

You say from experience. However I see on your profile that you have Ultra Rendu transport and Denafrips dac.

And others as well… 2 MQA dacs on transports that pass MQA to them via USB for full decode.
Even the ultraRendu that does not support MQA directly can pass MQA over to my MQA dacs if I hook them up to the Rendu. In the Rendu case, not using Tidal Connect, rather Audirvana can pass MQA untouched to the Rendu then on to the MQA dac for full decode.

The ND5XS is a non-MQA device, so Tidal will send it a non-MQA stream. It’s as simple as that.

@Naim.Marketing should give the right information, even if now I tend to agree with David and Chrissu.