NDX and Tidal Master Quality Files

I’ve changed things as you have described, this hasn’t fixed things with the conversion side of things. Re- installed BubbleUPnP, this didn’t fix things then I went to the C:\Program Files (x86)\BubbleUPnP Server directory located file “ffmpeg.exe”, deleted this and installed from FFMPEG website. Still the same issue. From this I concluded that “ffmpeg.exe” is not the issue, another words the conversion side of things on the laptop are fine.

Next stop the network and the router (Talk Talk), so I tried investigating the router settings, nothing out of the ordinary here. I gave it another go around 6.30 am, it worked! streamed 192/24 (9.2 mbps ) & 92/24 (4.6 mbps) in wav. Only for one song each then I got the same- stopping, sticking and stuttering- playing for a few seconds.

I performed a internet speed test- download speed is 30.67 mbps and upload speed is 9.20 mbps, is this the issue? Do I need faster broadband? The issue seems network related?

All FLAC versions can be played without any issue. In Linn Kazoo app they show up for example as “FLAC 96 khz/24 bit 0 kbps”, instead of the 4.6 mbps or 9.2 mbps. I think when the data rate goes up that is when the issue occurs. This happens when the laptop is hard wired to the network or on wifi.

When I set NDX to UPnP, on the screen it says no server found, should it be showing something here? Like the BubbleUPnP Server details?

I’m lost, if there was some way to simulate the data rate ramped up throughput from the Linn Kazoo app, I might be able to prove network throughput issue.

Interesting thread, especially as I am looking at a new streamer and it was this kind of confusion over compatibility that made me stick with a Sonos digitally into a DAC instead of an NDX circa 10 years ago.

Maybe Naim could answer some points of interest.

IF and I say IF (as I’m not requesting MQA) to be included in a product, would the company pay some sort of yearly licence ? Or would it be like, 20 quid licence per box or something?

Just interested in the economics of this.

Thanks for your help much appreciated.

Laptops fairly new, I believe it’s the network capacity somehow it’s getting constrained. Going to run some diagnostics- network latency tests, capacity throughput etc.

Hi @Martinzero

MQA is a licensable format and each product sold has a one off licence fee. Products that are already sold and will gain MQA by software update is up to the manufacturer to negotiate with MQA Ltd. how this will be handled.

Otherwise it is R&D and recertification time for adding the format that has to be justified. It runs quite deep and has side effects on Tidal, Roon, DSP/DAC, Multiroom, external S/PDIF inputs and all user interfaces, plus ensuring the original audio performance of the products are maintained. It’s a business case that is very expensive to add and maintain so needs a strong customer demand to justify it.

Last year we made the decision to do Qobuz on all platforms that can properly support it. Based on Qobuz’s new owners, roll out to USA and ever growing lossless hidef library it was a sound business case to invest in it.

We do however watch the progress of MQA in market adoption and financial state of MQA Ltd. to guide us if the technology has gained sufficient adoption to justify the R&D investment and increased product licensing costs. For those who are using our newer range of products that are Roon RAAT enabled, you can get a taste of MQA 1st unfold from that.

Best regards

Steve Harris
Software Director


Steve, thanks for “the decision to do Qobuz on all platforms that can properly support it.”

I was a long time TIDAL user with no interest in pursing MQA. As soon as Qobuz was available in the US I did a comparison and thought Qobuz was the company with the better product sound wise. I was happy that my NDX 2 supported the product!

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audirvana on windows and mac can do the 1st level tidal MQA unfold.

Fantastic info, thanks Steve.

In my mind, MQA should have long ago reached critical mass to incorporate it into the product. I have a 500.00 portable player dac, headphone amp that has it, and it’s so simple, no games to play , just open the tidal app, pick a song with MQA and play. This product is marketed as a streamer and the reputation of Naims high quality sound. Not sure how that is when we still have to listen at CD quality, albeit, one of the better CD quality sounds. CDs are so 80s and 90s, lol. I just bought a Naim yesterday, and considering returning it and getting an NAD which does support MQA

It’s because Naim have a reputation of high quality sound that they haven’t seen fit to support an inferiour format.

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Jm, I think we will have to agree to disagree on the critical mass issue. Look at numbers of subscribers for tidal and their competitor. Numbers not that different, and by far there’s much more buzz on the forums, online, and all the audiophiles I know, tidal and MQA seems to be their preference. But high resolution in general has been making a big push in the consumers minds, not just audiophiles. Non audiophiles seem to at least have heard about MQA, maybe because it’s just shorter and easier to remeber.

I jumped from Tidal to Qobuz because the quality of the music was better. I have no interest in pursuing another technology and believe TIDAL made a mistake going with MQA and it may be a reason they eventually go under… A lot of people have jumped from Tidal to Qobuz when it came available in the US, better sound at a better price.

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It would be good for all people criticizing MQA to have first a listen on them with a true MQA dac . If not, it’s only speculation.


Add Roon and a UPnP Bridge for the NDX, and you are sorted for Tidal, Tidal Masters, Qobuz, MQA (1st unfold to 24/96), and all other formats (DSD128, DSD256, DSD512, DXD etc.), plus a better UI and Library management system.
The Naim app stopped adding new features for use with the NDX, NDS, ND5XS and 3rd party UPnP server use years ago.

Spot on! I fully agree with your observation.
Too much controversy ongoing, between both MQA advocates or its opponents.
OP, just give it a try, whenever you have an opportunity: When I tested a decent MQA-certified streamer/DAC combination vs. a Naim NDX2 streamer/DAC, in nearly all cases, the SQ of Tidal Master MQA files wasn’t better, in comparison to ‘normal’ Qobuz Hi-Res files. I preferred the latter, also on a former NDX-platform.

Slightly off topic and I am going to lower the tone by mentioning the “S” word…SONOS…there I’ve said it!

Sonos are launching their new control system S2 in a week or two which is said to finally support hires audio on compatible products.Bearing in mind that most users will have their multi room setups using WiFi surely they will use MQA and Sonos already supports Tidal as a service, this could give MQA a significant boost in popularity/ awareness with Sonos being a very popular lifestyle product. All supposition on my part of course.

I notice that Sonos have been careful to say that “higher res” formats will be supported rather than just hi-res, so I wouldn’t get your hopes up for anything too exotic.

Yes indeed, but they certainly won’t ignore MQA which could just be what the format needs to gain greater acceptance and a way of selling hires to the “masses”