Nd5 xs 2/ mqa

I have to admit I don’t have a clue; MQA is far from my area of expertise!
I believe @Stevesky is already tagged in here, but i’ll attempt to summon him again :slight_smile:

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I understand what you are saying. In my experience, with two devices that are not MQA devices, don’t have Tidal Connect, such as the Auralic Aries G1 (Auralic has a rep of not liking MQA) and Sonore ultraRendu both can pass the MQA stream (it’s just a flac file with MQA markers afterall) untouched on to an attached MQA Dac for the full decoding. I don’t see why the Naim streamers when acting as “transports only”, no need to know anything about MQA, can’t do the same via Tidal Connect when using the Tidal App. Unless Naim has specifically disabled or not enabled this, not Tidal.

It can’t. Tidal sees it as Naim and sends the regular format,not mqa.
You need roon for mqa.

I believe Naim have said it is possible, but if you are using the Naim streamer digital out as opposed to analogue out, I believe it can only be upto first level MQA decode.

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Those are both Dacless streamers which support MQA in order to allow MQA compatible DACs to process it. The ND5XS2 doesn’t support MQA, either as a streamer or a DAC. Tidal recognises it as such and therefore automatically selects a non-MQA version.

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Thanks for the clarity guys

Interesting, even a Raspberry Pi running MPD/upmpdcli and acting as a transport, will pass an untouched flac Tidal MQA stream over to an attached MQA dac via USB for a full decode. The Pi, mpd, and upmpdcli are open source and have nothing at all to to with MQA. They just pass the data and don’t care what actually is. Using Audirvāna or Mconnect.

You are still apparently totally missing the point. As I understand it, Tidal sends Naim streamers HiFi streams because it knows from Naim’s request that Naim streamers want HiFi streams, not MQA streams.

The DAC that may be ultimately used is irrelevant because that is not part of what the streamer and Tidal communicate, so Tidal has no way of knowing. The streamer can’t pass through what it doesn’t have, however much you would like it to. So what a Naim streamer will pass to a DAC is whatever Tidal sent it, which will usually be a HiFi stream. So using an MQA capable DAC on the back of a Naim streamer isn’t going to result in unfolded MQA streams.

The fact that you think it works with a hundred other products you use that aren’t Naim is just completely irrelevant.

Roon will do the first MQA unfold, but I don’t believe it will send the remaining MQA stream to a non MQA-enabled Roon endpoint to pass along for further unfolding. As with TIDAL Connect, it will send a non MQA-encoded HiFi stream to the Naim

Hi @Vantage420 and @frenchrooster

As part of MQA licensing requirements, a hardware based streamer & dac device cannot access the Tidal MQA streams. Only once a manufacturer has passed sufficient product certifications for MQA will Tidal enable access to the streams, which is granted server side.

On the Naim side the streaming core is bit perfect and will give total data integrity on the spdif out upto 192kHz, but Tidal won’t send us the stream due to these licensing restrictions.

Best regards

Steve Harris
Software Director
Naim Audio Ltd.


Thanks for the Naim clarification. So in my case, I have several hardware transport devices that have no MQA license or agreement. And it all works sending MQA to a dac. But I had not gave thought where the license came from. In my case it has to be Audirvana. Audirvana is licenced to do the first decode or can be set as a MQA pass though to an MQA dac via some (any, it appears, take your pick) transport.

Hi @dknk

Software players are a special licensing case for MQA stream access, with the option to do a first unfold and/or drive an external DAC.



So @Vantage420, after all of that, the answer to your question is indeed “no”.

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MQA is bollocks anyway.
Particularly using Chord Array dildo thingies… and pot plants.

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