Tidal launches HiFi Plus

Today I received a message from Tidal announcing the new HiFi Plus subscription. As can be seen here, HiFi is now regular CD quality, while HiFi Plus includes MQA, 360 Reality Audio, and Dolby Atmos Music.

HiFi Plus will also include direct-to-artist payments and fan-centered royalties. Some more info can be read here and here.

There’s also a new ad-supported TIDAL Free tier (160 kbps), but only presently in the US.

What, no ads in MQA? :face_with_hand_over_mouth:

Good. I don’t really need MQA as my chord Dac is not compatible


I received this notification as well.

I am in Canada.

They advised that my Tidal HiFi subscription has been automatically upgraded to HiFi Plus (at $19.99 per month).

Tidal HiFi has now been reduced to $9.99 per month.

As indicated by posters above, the only extras with the Tidal HiFi Plus subscription are MQA, 360 Reality Audio and Dolby Atmos.

My NDX2 is unable to decode MQA. I only do two channel listening.

I think it makes financial sense to downgrade my subscription to Tidal HiFi (at $9.99 per month). Would I be missing out on something like 360 Reality Audio? Not quite sure what that is.

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360 Reality Audio and Dolby Atmos music are the latest generations of ‘spatial’ music mixes - see also previous incarnations from quadrophonics to Multichannel SACD and DVD Audio…

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@clare.newsome , thank you.

I’m relatively new to streaming (having just purchased the NDX2 to go along with my SN3 last year) so please forgive the daft question: can my NDX2 take advantage of 360 Reality Audio?

All I’m really interested in is access to FLAC which I now have with the $9.99 Tidal HiFi plan.

Not really, no - we’re all about the music in good old stereo (or even mono, should you wish).

Spatial audio mostly for headphones in its current incarnation.

That new CD-quality £9.99/$9.99 tier seems an obvious choice for most Naim users - though Hi-Fi Plus does promise the potential of more money reaching artists. With our Naim Records hat on, we’re looking into what that means in more detail.

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Just downgraded to the standard hifi version.

Thank you Tidal!

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Oh dear :roll_eyes:

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So Tidal levering peoples conscience as a marketing tool to get subscribers to spend more on their service.

I presume that marketing strategy does not apply to the cheaper Tidal HiFi subscription?


Done dat!

“Downgraded” from HiFi quality to HiFi quality.

How unusual in these times of rampant inflation, that the cost of my existing Tidal service has halved.



Just read on the weekend a review on multiple streaming services in a German computer magazine. They focused a bit on the “3D audio”, since it’s the new kid on the block.

I think you can summarize their findings:

  • It’s really great,
    • IF the composer/mixer really knew what they were doing - they found handful (!) of mixes of modern/electronic music and some concert recordings they liked,
    • AND IF you have a proper 5.1.4 (or: 7.1.4) setup at home in a room suited for it. Ideally with the .4 at the ceiling itself.
  • There’s some nice effects with headsets here and there, but only if your ears match the model they use when encoding/decoding the spatial audio and with mixed results based on playback device, recording, etc. pp.
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Was confused when I received the Tidal email saying I’d being bumped to it, but I was already paying for Hifi.

Seems the Audiophile services are all going LoFi as well, maybe why hapless Spotify have hesitated for years and still no lossless.

I think all this spatial audio stuff is simply a gimmick for standard consumers, be it from Apple, Tidal or anyone else.

Just tried a 360 Reality Audio track which wasn’t simple to find without searching for 360 reality audio.

Tried a John Denver track on a country playlist (simply as it was one I knew).

Yes maybe a bit of spaciousness but sounded quiet - a few minutes in the volume shot up to 100% on my Airpods Pro and scared the heck out of me.


Not really, my understanding is that folks on the HiFi service can “downgrade” to their existing service, rather than opting for the new super duper one, at a 50% saving on the existing monthly HiFi subscription.

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Think I just need to cancel and keep Apple Music/Qobuz.

Bloody hell this is awful and dangerous, just had the same on a Dolly Parton track.

Do not listen to this stuff on Airpods or similar given a risk of sudden volume increase, and I’d suggest definitely not playing to a streamer unless your pre-amp volume is pretty low (ok the 360 track may not work with a streamer but if there’s a wider encoding or playback issue…). This could blow speakers and damage hearing if it’s some kind of encoding bug or Tidal App volume issue.

This was from Country: 360 Reality Audio (a random choice of 360 stuff).

My ears are hurting after two bad tracks.

At least Qobuz isn’t providing this nonsense (yet !)


I think it’s a reaction to Quobuz previously lowering prices. I pay Quobuz £12.99 for streaming including proper 24/192 hi res which sounds a bit better to me than MQA (both via Roon so I did get the first MQA unfold).

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