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I was wondering if the AQ Dragonfly Red/Black would ever get the firmware update needed for MQA so I asked, and here is their response:
"We're just waiting for Microsoft to sign off on the Desktop Manager (the MQA update will be downloaded via the Desktop Manager). As soon as they do, we'll be ready to go!"
So there is hope.
Money is very tight; my rationale for paying for Tidal is that I stopped buying CDs. I bought a Red after AQ announced at CES that the upgrade would be "by the end of the month." (In all fairness, they never specified which month.) ;-)
Then April 8th they sent out a tweet saying MQA was coming "real soon."
I just ordered a demo Meridian Explorer 2. Should be here Friday.
I'll compare them over the weekend. If the sound quality is close, I think I'm gonna sell the Dragonfly to finance the Explorer.
I'm sure it'll happen eventually. I'm just fed up waiting for the software upgrade.
"Decaf is for cowards."
Thanks. I will update my Dragonfly Red as soon as the update is available and as soon as there is there are sufficient MQA encoded titles from a variety of sources to be of interest. The latter may arrive somewhat after the former :-)
BTW, I use my Dragonfly for portable listening via my Android smartphone. To do this I use USB Pro player in order to access the phone's USB output. The latest player software update includes the ability to pass MQA encoded files to an external DAC (they cite Meridian Explorer as an example but I am sure it will work with a Dragonfly).
Until MQA comes through directly on my iPhone I won't be using this for mobile, just for my office. Besides, I do finally see one reason for MQA, and that is for those of us that still don't have unlimited data plans. I can see hi-res eating through those gb. What is the bitrate for MQA on Tidal? Do we even know?
" What is the bitrate for MQA on Tidal? Do we even know?"
A very good question. Reading MQA publicity it appears to require a 24 bit carrier for maximum hi-rez. However Bob Stuart has also indicated that a 16 bit carrier is feasible but that it has limitations compared to a 24 bit one. However I don't hink anyone has revealed what exactly Tidal provides nor what digital sample rate Warner have used to re-master their catalogue before it is MQA encoded. Of course the MQA hardware does not give any technical details away beside confirming that what you are hearing is MQA encoded or fully authenticated.
I doubt that Warners use higher than 96KS/s as higher rates than this are not that common in the recording world at present. If so, and as Tidal and Warner are currently almost the only source of MQA material ( only obscure stuff otherwise), I reckon that the Tidal " first fold" in-app software is probably all you really need in practice at this point.
BTW, that Dragonfly upgrade is "first fold" only which is only natural considering the limitations of the DAC itself.
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