MQA.... Scam or not?
Dec 23, 2021 at 12:27 PM Post #2 of 42

GREQ

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Oct 11, 2009
Posts
6,025
Likes
4,069
Location
Deutschland
Absolutely, totally, completely 100% a scam.

This video explains it the best.


TLDR - even the creators/owners of the 'technology' refuse to give proper straight answers when questioned about the science/evidence.
 
Dec 23, 2021 at 12:32 PM Post #3 of 42

pjones5

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Mar 30, 2020
Posts
445
Likes
152
Location
United States
Absolutely, totally, completely 100% a scam.

This video explains it the best.


TLDR - even the creators/owners of the 'technology' refuse to give proper straight answers when questioned about the science/evidence.

I actually just finished watching that video lol - that's what spurred the post on.

Where do you go for HiFi music then? I'm currently using Apple Music ALAC, though I just signed up for Amazon Music HD. I have a lot of tracks I got from AudFree from Tidal (100% legal btw, if you strictly use it for personal use and do not distribute), but now I'm thinking I might as well dump those since they aren't legitimately lossless.
 
Dec 23, 2021 at 1:24 PM Post #4 of 42

pk4425

500+ Head-Fier
Joined
Nov 11, 2020
Posts
510
Likes
645
Location
Marcellus, NY
I actually just finished watching that video lol - that's what spurred the post on.

Where do you go for HiFi music then? I'm currently using Apple Music ALAC, though I just signed up for Amazon Music HD. I have a lot of tracks I got from AudFree from Tidal (100% legal btw, if you strictly use it for personal use and do not distribute), but now I'm thinking I might as well dump those since they aren't legitimately lossless.
Qobuz.
 
Dec 23, 2021 at 1:46 PM Post #5 of 42

armstrj2

500+ Head-Fier
Joined
Nov 21, 2018
Posts
973
Likes
3,973
Location
Ireland
As the title says - MQA; scam or not?
Let your ears decide?

I can remember seeing that video and going down the rabbit hole of comparing tracks on the different services vs Tidal masters. Not all MQA tracks are the same quality but the same is true on the other services too.

Even when tracks say they are lossless or high-res they often don't sound great so for me it is about finding a service that suits your personal taste.

What I will say is that for me, since Apple introduced lossless, I find I enjoy listening to music that has instruments in it more on their service as it is more accurate and lifelike vs Tidal which I find adds more colour to the music and is better suited to EDM. Personal taste/ experience clearly.
 
Dec 23, 2021 at 2:06 PM Post #6 of 42

dirtrat

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Feb 17, 2010
Posts
193
Likes
102
I have no problems with MQA despite the complaining from many in the Audiophile community. I tried Qobuz but had constant pausing during playback on my vehicles Mark Levinson system. I switched to Tidal, and it's been perfect. My guess is because of the smaller file sizes since my understanding is MQA is compressed. To each his own I guess!
 
Dec 23, 2021 at 2:10 PM Post #7 of 42

armstrj2

500+ Head-Fier
Joined
Nov 21, 2018
Posts
973
Likes
3,973
Location
Ireland
Yea, I am not so sure why there has to be such absolutes when it comes to MQA. If you listen to it and it sounds good then what more could you ask for. If it sounds off and you think you are being scammed, then try another service. Thankfully there is a lot of choice.
 
Dec 23, 2021 at 4:48 PM Post #8 of 42

GREQ

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Oct 11, 2009
Posts
6,025
Likes
4,069
Location
Deutschland
MQA claims to deliver higher quality audio than CD despite being a lossy digital codec.

This is the definition of a scam.
 
Dec 23, 2021 at 4:55 PM Post #9 of 42

discord

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Sep 3, 2005
Posts
2,423
Likes
2,501
Location
SoCal
I’ll tell you the answer in a dark alley.
 
Dec 23, 2021 at 5:19 PM Post #11 of 42

GREQ

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Oct 11, 2009
Posts
6,025
Likes
4,069
Location
Deutschland
Paying money to satisfy your 'fear of missing out' (while remaining in ignorance) is the definition of 'getting scammed'.

Anyone who says MQA isn't a scam either has limited understanding of digital audio or audio science.
 
Last edited:
Dec 23, 2021 at 5:37 PM Post #12 of 42

KaiFi

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Jul 27, 2017
Posts
277
Likes
239
Location
California
Here's what I think: to my ears, MQA sounds just as good as hi-res offerings from Qobuz or Apple Music. I don't think it's worth paying twice as much as those services for Tidal just to have MQA. MQA doesn't sound better than other hi-res options (to me) so it isn't worth twice the price. I've noticed that Tidal has a slightly larger library than Qobuz. That might be worth paying more for if you can't find certain albums on Qobuz, but even then, it only affected a few obscure indie albums for me. Mostly what I listen to is classical and Tidal and Qobuz are about equal in terms of available classical albums. If you like Tidal and are willing to pay for it, then go for it. It's a good service and MQA sounds good. But it's hard for me to not think that it is some kind of scam or at least a gimmick, because to me it isn't superior to other hi-res formats but it's touted as if it is.
 
Dec 23, 2021 at 5:41 PM Post #13 of 42

armstrj2

500+ Head-Fier
Joined
Nov 21, 2018
Posts
973
Likes
3,973
Location
Ireland
Paying money to satisfy your 'fear of missing out' (while remaining in ignorance) is the definition of 'getting scammed'.

Anyone who says MQA isn't a scam either has limited understanding of digital audio or audio science.
Cool. So don't listen to it / pay for a service that provides it etc. Vote with your feet (or credit card in this case).

The only issue I'd have is if people who have an issue with MQA start telling other people they should also have an issue with it just because they have.

It is great to give people the opportunity to understand and to educate themselves on this if they choose but if someone is listening to MQA files and are happy I'm not sure they'll feel like they are being scammed.

If they keep getting told they are being scammed no doubt they will then begin to believe it.

People's ears should decide because maybe that thing you feel is inferior, and a scam, may just sound better to them.
 
Dec 23, 2021 at 5:53 PM Post #14 of 42

GREQ

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Oct 11, 2009
Posts
6,025
Likes
4,069
Location
Deutschland
Cool. So don't listen to it / pay for a service that provides it etc. Vote with your feet (or credit card in this case).

The only issue I'd have is if people who have an issue with MQA start telling other people they should also have an issue with it just because they have.

It is great to give people the opportunity to understand and to educate themselves on this if they choose but if someone is listening to MQA files and are happy I'm not sure they'll feel like they are being scammed.

If they keep getting told they are being scammed no doubt they will then begin to believe it.

People's ears should decide because maybe that thing you feel is inferior, and a scam, may just sound better to them.
Unfortunately you're missing the point.

Unlike headphones or amps where subtle differences amount to notable differences in personal taste due to tonal differences and presentation this isn't the case with digital audio.

Unlike analogue components which are many and varied in their subjective subtleties, digital audio is absolute and objective: there is no subjectivity to be gleaned from ones and zeros.

The simple fact is that MQA is lossy. It is by definition - missing information; all the while making outrageous marketing claims.

I know for a fact my ears aren't good enough to understand the complexities of digital audio and scam products - fortunately I've got a brain for that.
 
Dec 23, 2021 at 6:03 PM Post #15 of 42

armstrj2

500+ Head-Fier
Joined
Nov 21, 2018
Posts
973
Likes
3,973
Location
Ireland
Unfortunately you're missing the point.

Unlike headphones or amps where subtle differences amount to notable differences in personal taste due to tonal differences and presentation this isn't the case with digital audio.

Unlike analogue components which are many and varied in their subjective subtleties, digital audio is absolute and objective: there is no subjectivity to be gleaned from ones and zeros.

The simple fact is that MQA is lossy. It is by definition - missing information; all the while making outrageous marketing claims.

I know for a fact my ears aren't good enough to understand the complexities of digital audio and scam products - fortunately I've got a brain for that.
I'm not missing the point at all. I perfectly understand your argument.

What I don't understand is why when people have an issue with something they belive other people should have an issue with it too.

If someone listens to something and are happy with it that's all that should matter.

People don't listen in ones and zeroes.
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Top