SQ of CD rip worse than Qobuz stream

I ripped my entire CD collection to flac a few years back using db poweramp. Yesterday I streamed one of these albums - Eric Clapton’s From The Cradle - and noticed that the sound quality on Qobuz was superior to my rip. Anybody else had similar experiences or can explain why?

The sound quality of cd rips will depend on the quality of the Nas/ server.
From cheap laptop to Innuos Statement, there will be a lot of differences.
Some will also say, and I believe in it, that the quality of the cd ripper hardware will also influence the sound quality. Dbpoweramp vs Melco ripper for example. But not all agree here.

I ripped my collection from CD via a Melco D100 to a Melco N10 and the sound of CD rips to my ears is better than Qobuz. HiRes can better the rips but is incredibly close. You could be experiencing a mastering difference leading to the preference for the Qobuz stream. Might be worth testing some more??


You can’t be sure that it’s coming from the same master. See the recent discussion here

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Thanks for the replies so far.
@frenchrooster: The albums were ripped on a MacBook and are streamed from a Sonictransporter via Roon Raat.
@Steve: This is a phenomenon I have noticed previously with other rips, e.g. noteably Björk’s Debut album, so no further testing necessary. Seems I might have to repurchase the lot as hires downloads.

I don’t believe ‘From the Cradle’ was ever re-released or remastered as a HiRes.

My experience of hires downloads is that some sound a bit better than regular CD rips, but some do not, and even the better ones are way overpriced for what you get. No way would I blindly purchase them if I already owned a regular 16/44.1 version.


I have Sublime so hi-res is usually under €10 but CD quality costs more (!). So with 16-bit I will probably just keep streaming the better quality.

It’s worth mentioning that Qobuz only have “CD quality” (16/44.1) available for download, and per my previous post, ‘From the Cradle’ has not been released in a higher resolution.
So if you do have a difference in SQ it’s most likely in the ripping quality.

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Strange if thats the case. I have always used a simple pc and either db or ms’s own software to rip to flac over the years. I haven’t yet noticed a poor sq rip compared to Qobuz or any other streaming service I’ve tried, but haven’t compared hires obviously.

@William Sounds like a Sinners Prayer! Brilliant album.

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Did you notice this difference over 10 or 20 CD/Qobuz comparisons, or just the one.
CD quality and Streaming quality differs greatly depending on the quality of the recording/mastering.
And re-mastering is not always an improvement.

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A big question - and far more significant than the devise used for tipping, is whether the two versions the same mastering. I’ve certainly come across high res releases that have not been the same mastering as the CD, and highres files that have not been the same mastering as 16/44 download files of the same album - at the very least you need to check what info is available about the version. Unfortunately it is not always obvious - I have come across two CDs that were apparently identical but sounded very different. Close examination of the discs and insert revealed one difference: one said pressed in UK, the other pressed in Germany. (As an aside, this discovery immediately made nonsense of any attempt to directly compare CD and LP!)

As for which sounds better, it is not necessarily the case that the hi res will sound better if they are different masters. And even with the same master, the difference between high res and 16/44 is actually subtle, at least on good equipment, and not always evident at all.


This is how it should be done!


Thank you for these comments. Unfortunately I don’t have any physical CDs any more, at least only a handful of autographed ones.

I have noticed often, say between 10 and 20 times, that the streams have much more separation and ooomph in general over my rips.
I agree that remastering is not always an improvement. At least with a combination of downloads and Qobuz, seamlessley integrated with Roon of course, I can pick and choose which recordings I prefer.
I am generally very impressed by 24-bit SQ but also by CD quality streams. I wouldn’t insist on Mark Knopfler in 24-bit, so good are his masterings, but would be very curious if he were to up-bit as it were.

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Did you use secure mode on dbpoweramp?
Are you using Plex to serve your music files?

As far as I remember I used secure mode. I don’t use Plex

Based on your statement the you use sonicTransporter then only other option is Minim Server. Is this what you use?