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Highreasaudio dot com MQA Rant

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Posted on February 21, 2017 at 15:17:45
Isaak J. Garvey
Industry Professional

Posts: 1009
Location: Hollywod, CA
Joined: January 7, 2016
This appeared on both the Facebook and Twitter accounts of German high rez vendor Highreasaudio.com this morning:

"Breaking News: HIGHRESAUDIO to stop offering MQA. Proprietary system solutions and licensing models aren't what customers want. MQA is NOT lossless, the original signal is never recovered, estimate to recover at most 17bits (reduces the sampling rate), reduces the frequency range, SNR reduced by 3bit, aliasing with artifacts at 18kHz. MQA encoding filters manipulate drastically the original source. No analysis tools are available to verify the encoded MQA content. Therefore no quality control is possible. highresaudio.com stands for offering purity, original mastering source, none manipulated, tweaked or up-sampled content and codecs that are widely supported and offer use of freedom.

"We hope that MQA will adjust all the above issues. We are truly disappointed, the way MQA has progressed in the past year. We have been mislead and blinded by trust and promises."

A few hours later, the posts disappeared.

 

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RE: Highreasaudio dot com MQA Rant, posted on February 21, 2017 at 15:52:50
pbarach
Audiophile

Posts: 1473
Location: Ohio
Joined: June 22, 2008
So were these posts a hack, or did somebody from highresaudio decide to take them down?

 

RE: Highreasaudio dot com MQA Rant, posted on February 21, 2017 at 15:55:01
Isaak J. Garvey
Industry Professional

Posts: 1009
Location: Hollywod, CA
Joined: January 7, 2016
I really don't know. I think if they were hacked, they would have would have put out a disclaimer.

If it was not a hack, they were probably asked to take it down by lawyers.

 

RE: Highreasaudio dot com MQA Rant, posted on February 22, 2017 at 04:34:29
PAR
Audiophile

Posts: 2190
Location: South London
Joined: April 15, 2013
Contributor
  Since:
January 12, 2014
Almost certainly a hack. Highresaudio continue to offer MQA titles as I write (checked around 2 minutes ago). I also cannot imagine any genuine company run by professionals composing that final sentence. One would have to be very naive to do so. The use of English is also poor e.g. "none" for "no" and " offer use of freedom".

Also why would you post the discontinuance of a format on Twitter and Facebook but not mention it on your actual website ?

I would also add that the claim made in the posting does not add up technically ( as the claimed loss of 3 bits = 21 bits recovery and not 17 as MQA is "carried" in a 24 bit word).

 

RE: Highreasaudio dot com MQA Rant, posted on February 22, 2017 at 07:17:53
Isaak J. Garvey
Industry Professional

Posts: 1009
Location: Hollywod, CA
Joined: January 7, 2016
Sorry to burst your bubble, but it is official.

Several posters on CA emailed HRA to see if indeed they were hacked and they CONFIRMED the message and reposted.:

"Breaking News: HIGHRESAUDIO to stop offering MQA. We decided not to offer and support MQA any longer. We will take MQA out of the shop by 01.03. We already have taken down the MQA icon and search function in our shop.

HIGHRESAUDIO stands for offering purity, original mastering source, none manipulated, tweaked or up-sampled content and codecs that are widely supported and offer use of freedom. You can trust us in what we do and have to offer!

We sincerely hope for the future, that MQA will supply analysis and verification tools in order to ensure the quality of product.

P.S. This is a revised version from our post yesterday! Which was not a fake. Upon request from MQA, we deleted that post."

 

RE: Highreasaudio dot com MQA Rant, posted on February 22, 2017 at 07:46:27
PAR
Audiophile

Posts: 2190
Location: South London
Joined: April 15, 2013
Contributor
  Since:
January 12, 2014
Glad they revised the original post. That final sentence would have given MQA's lawyers a bonus. I guess that I must have seen the MQA tracks still there before 01.03 ( whatever time zone).

Just for interest MQA still list Highresaudio as a download partner.

 

RE: Highreasaudio dot com MQA Rant, posted on February 22, 2017 at 08:00:26
Isaak J. Garvey
Industry Professional

Posts: 1009
Location: Hollywod, CA
Joined: January 7, 2016
Yep, clearly lawyers were involved.

I have information that the major online vendors of hirez audiophile downloads having been talking about blocking out MQA. This may or may not happen.

You can see why they would..Tidal is certainly disruptive to their download model.

 

RE: Highreasaudio dot com MQA Rant, posted on February 22, 2017 at 08:42:06
PAR
Audiophile

Posts: 2190
Location: South London
Joined: April 15, 2013
Contributor
  Since:
January 12, 2014
" You can see why they would..Tidal is certainly disruptive to their download model. "

Very good point. As is the whole streaming phenomenon, MQA'd or not. It is just so substitutional.

 

RE: Highreasaudio dot com MQA Rant, posted on February 22, 2017 at 12:12:23
Isaak J. Garvey
Industry Professional

Posts: 1009
Location: Hollywod, CA
Joined: January 7, 2016
I find it funny that not a SINGLE member of the audio press has reported this NOT ONE. Well, we know why.

But they get other insignificant BS up with in minutes.

 

RE: Highreasaudio dot com MQA Rant, posted on February 23, 2017 at 10:37:51
hiredfox
Audiophile

Posts: 48
Joined: March 25, 2016
Surely you were sceptical about all that MQA BS claims being peddled around the place for the last few years?

Just a reminder, if something looks to be too good to be true then usually it isn't true.

 

What? BS claims in the audio business?, posted on February 23, 2017 at 11:25:46
Ivan303
Audiophile

Posts: 35393
Location: Cadiere d'azur FRANCE - San Francisco
Joined: February 26, 2001
What a surprise!

OK, a surprise for you guys, or so it seems.







 

RE: Highreasaudio dot com MQA Rant, posted on February 23, 2017 at 11:54:42
Isaak J. Garvey
Industry Professional

Posts: 1009
Location: Hollywod, CA
Joined: January 7, 2016
Skeptical? That is the understatement of the millennium.

MQA is outright fraud.

 

RE: Highreasaudio dot com MQA Rant, posted on February 23, 2017 at 13:02:49
Mercman
Reviewer

Posts: 6268
Joined: October 20, 2002
Contributor
  Since:
May 20, 2004
Don't you work for Universal? I thought they were going ahead with MQA.

 

RE: Highreasaudio dot com MQA Rant, posted on February 23, 2017 at 13:50:16
Isaak J. Garvey
Industry Professional

Posts: 1009
Location: Hollywod, CA
Joined: January 7, 2016
Yeh, and here is what no one is getting. The execs did not consult ONE production engineer, NOT ONE artist, an not ONE staff mastering engineer.
It is purely a cash grab for more exposure on streaming services.

The bogus MQA "process" has been applied AFTER mastering. It is NOT what the artists heard or intended.

MQA is pure fraud.

 

RE: Highreasaudio dot com MQA Rant, posted on February 23, 2017 at 15:15:39
Mercman
Reviewer

Posts: 6268
Joined: October 20, 2002
Contributor
  Since:
May 20, 2004
I have no interest in it.

 

RE: Highreasaudio dot com MQA Rant, posted on February 23, 2017 at 15:32:09
Isaak J. Garvey
Industry Professional

Posts: 1009
Location: Hollywod, CA
Joined: January 7, 2016
I knew you would not.

Let me try to illustrate what MQA really is.

Imagine you have bought a few hundred albums from HDTracks, Superhirez.com, Qobuz, ProStudiomasters etc.

Out of the blue,because you have an epiphany after drinking tea in your English Garden, you decide you can make them sound "better" by "correcting" what you think are issues with the sound. You run the files through a pro mastering software, or even Adobe Audition, or similar.

You decide to call these files, which you have EQd, added timing and spatial effects, M Q A...

For Mercman's Quality Adjustments.

You convince people that your Mercman's Quality Adjustments are SUPERIOR to the files that came out of the mastering studio.

There my friend, you have it.


 

RE: Highreasaudio dot com MQA Rant, posted on February 23, 2017 at 16:11:31
Mercman
Reviewer

Posts: 6268
Joined: October 20, 2002
Contributor
  Since:
May 20, 2004
Gee, if they gave me a piece of the action, I might reconsider :-)

 

RE: Highreasaudio dot com MQA Rant, posted on February 23, 2017 at 16:28:19
Isaak J. Garvey
Industry Professional

Posts: 1009
Location: Hollywod, CA
Joined: January 7, 2016
Wait! I forgot the BEST parts!

You decide you need proprietary decoding, which means the DAC must be able to "unwrap" your file, so you get DAC manufacturers to pay you a fee, and they have to send you their DAC and give you permission access it's DNA. And it gets better! You convince some idiotic record companies who would love to sell the 350th version of Kind Of Blue, to also pay you a fee.

You also claim that this process will save bandwidth for streaming, in a world where people are streaming HD Video without a hitch.

When 99% of DAC makers tell you they are not interested, you magically pivot to software decoding!

 

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