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#258197 - 2017-01-23 20:11 Analog Mastered MQA Albums
Registered: 2000-05-28
Posts: 8,666
Fiddler Offline
President of the Imperial Galactic Government
Fiddler Offline
President of the Imperial Galactic Government

Registered: 2000-05-28
Posts: 8,666
Loc: Northeastern, USA
Wow, I see a lot of old ANALOG Mastered Albums listed in the What albums are you most looking forward to receiving the full MQA treatment topic.

Unless the original masters were done digitally at 24/96 or better there is nothing to be gained over a CD using MQA or anything else.

In fact if such albums are presented as such it will only hurt MQA's reputation.

Unless of course, all you are all just looking for is a good "stream" of "CD quality" of such albums.

You might watch and listen to this excellent presentation by Mark Waldrep (whom is fan of Bob and MQA).

It's a pretty long talk but quite good and seems quite honest coming from a "Hi-Res" guy.

High-Resolution Audio Demystified - Mark Waldrep


- Fiddler (IMHO)

If you think listening to music is fun, try learning an instrument.
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#258199 - 2017-01-23 21:39 Re: Analog Mastered MQA Albums [Re: Fiddler]
Registered: 2010-02-03
Posts: 750
Mtns Offline
Paranoid android
Mtns Offline
Paranoid android

Registered: 2010-02-03
Posts: 750
Loc: North Carolina, USA
Search old threads for MQA and Mark Waldrep. MQA is not necessarily friendly to his business model. I can't speak for what Tidal does but the studios would use the analog master tapes or best available representation of the true original studio event to apply MQA too at 24 bits. MQA clearly signals by lights and the resolution stats of the unfolded file, how fine up to full fat MQA. Probably an oversimplification of one of several giant page count MQA threads, but the general idea.


James
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#258200 - 2017-01-23 21:45 Re: Analog Mastered MQA Albums [Re: Fiddler]
Registered: 2001-05-23
Posts: 2,718
Gianni Offline
Great Green Arkleseizure
Gianni Offline
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Registered: 2001-05-23
Posts: 2,718
Loc: North London, United Kingdom
I understood the point is that the original analogue master is the nearest to the original performance.

Digitising that master at up to 24/352 and knowing the ADC characteristics will arguably enable a "better" analogue output once those higher sampling rates, the ADC characteristics and the DAC characteristics have been factored into the final conversion back to analogue.

That analogue to analogue process should surely be theoretically better than 16/44 from the same original analogue master. Whether that would be entirely down to MQA is a point of contention given the poor digital mastering used in the early days of CD.


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#258201 - 2017-01-23 21:55 Re: Analog Mastered MQA Albums [Re: Mtns]
Registered: 2000-05-28
Posts: 8,666
Fiddler Offline
President of the Imperial Galactic Government
Fiddler Offline
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Registered: 2000-05-28
Posts: 8,666
Loc: Northeastern, USA
Originally Posted By Mtns
Search old threads for MQA and Mark Waldrep. MQA is not necessarily friendly to his business model. I can't speak for what Tidal does but the studios would use the analog master tapes or best available representation of the true original studio event to apply MQA too at 24 bits. MQA clearly signals by lights and the resolution stats of the unfolded file, how fine up to full fat MQA. Probably an oversimplification of one of several giant page count MQA threads, but the general idea.
No doubt. But in the Video I linked above he seemed fairly favorable towards MQA. But was very clear that you can't make bits out of no where and certainly not exceed "CD" quality with any analog master.

I think this is what is partly responsible for DTS-CD, HDCD, SACD, DVD-AUDIO never taking off.

People confuse "ReMastered" with "More Resolution".


- Fiddler (IMHO)

If you think listening to music is fun, try learning an instrument.
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#258205 - 2017-01-23 22:40 Re: Analog Mastered MQA Albums [Re: Fiddler]
Registered: 2002-08-28
Posts: 4,303
Mr Meridian Offline
President of the Imperial Galactic Government
Mr Meridian Offline
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Registered: 2002-08-28
Posts: 4,303
Loc: Perthshire, Scotland
Originally Posted By Fiddler
...But was very clear that you can't make bits out of no where and certainly not exceed "CD" quality with any analog master.
Wouldn't this be akin to movies originally shot on film being mastered at 2k, and then 4k as playback devices and formats became more capable?

If he is still of similar mind to Bob (until fairly recently) that a given number of bits and samples can capture everything (historically with Bob it was 20 bits and 55k IIRC, Waldrep will doubtless be 96/24 or 192/24) then I could understand the confusion over higher sample rates. It does however ignore the whole psychoacoustic philosophy of using more samples to achieve more accurate preservation of "timing" info.

Cheers

George

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#258207 - 2017-01-23 22:47 Re: Analog Mastered MQA Albums [Re: Mr Meridian]
Registered: 2004-04-15
Posts: 12,355
VirusKiller Offline
Don't Panic
VirusKiller Offline
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Loc: nr. Milton Keynes, UK
Fiddler. You missed out on a year of discussion. You are now going over a whole range of stuff that has been discredited. There is nothing to be gained bringing this stuff up apart from confusing others. We spent ages dealing with this ****.

FWIW, analogue masters given the MQA treatment represent some of the best possible audio quality. The Bob Dylan and Ella/Louis that I *heard* in MQA is nothing short of astonishing.


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#258210 - 2017-01-24 01:21 Re: Analog Mastered MQA Albums [Re: VirusKiller]
Registered: 2009-11-10
Posts: 1,391
CMB Integrations - Bruce Offline
Meridian Partner Working on the ultimate question
CMB Integrations - Bruce Offline
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Working on the ultimate question

Registered: 2009-11-10
Posts: 1,391
Loc: Lexington, South Carolina, USA
+1. That is how I understood it.


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#258215 - 2017-01-24 03:32 Re: Analog Mastered MQA Albums [Re: VirusKiller]
Registered: 2000-05-28
Posts: 8,666
Fiddler Offline
President of the Imperial Galactic Government
Fiddler Offline
President of the Imperial Galactic Government

Registered: 2000-05-28
Posts: 8,666
Loc: Northeastern, USA
Originally Posted By VirusKiller
Fiddler. You missed out on a year of discussion. You are now going over a whole range of stuff that has been discredited. There is nothing to be gained bringing this stuff up apart from confusing others. We spent ages dealing with this ****.

FWIW, analogue masters given the MQA treatment represent some of the best possible audio quality. The Bob Dylan and Ella/Louis that I *heard* in MQA is nothing short of astonishing.


I understand I missed a lot, but I'm kind of in a bit of shock at some of the claims being made.

Were you able to compare it to lossless CD 16bit/44 quality of the exact same Mix? On the same system, at the same listening session?

I'm not against MQA and I think I understand it a bit better, but I admit not fully. But I don't believe it will magically do anything more than a straight 20bit/48Khz PCM could do, to anything, let alone to 20-30 year old analog recordings. There is plenty in the Mastering process that can certainly be done to eek information from old analog masters but I personally don't believe the transmission container is the one responsible nor does the container need to be so large to appreciate those differences obtained in each remastering every decade when a new container comes along.


- Fiddler (IMHO)

If you think listening to music is fun, try learning an instrument.
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#258223 - 2017-01-24 07:18 Re: Analog Mastered MQA Albums [Re: Fiddler]
Registered: 2010-01-24
Posts: 747
Altus Offline
Paranoid android
Altus Offline
Paranoid android

Registered: 2010-01-24
Posts: 747
Loc: Midlands, UK
Originally Posted By Fiddler
Were you able to compare it to lossless CD 16bit/44 quality of the exact same Mix? On the same system, at the same listening session
Comparison against 16/44 is generally no contest. I did a lot of listening to the high res masters in the 2L catalogue (not just single tracks but whole albums - I went to the expense of buying 10 albums in both MQA and high res formats) and came to the conclusion that MQA was generally an improvement except for albums originally recorded at ultra high resolution. This was over a three month listening period in the same high end system - not direct AB listening and certainly not scientific but over an extended listening period I consistently favoured the MQA version. Not always but most times.

My experience with the TIDAL MQA tracks has been similar even though most of these MQA albums will have been "mass produced".

It's one of those things you just have to hear - impossibly complex to understand in all its intricacies. I would recommend anyone to try an Explorer 2 into headphones direct from the TIDAL app for a very low cost way to find out what all the fuss is about.


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#258224 - 2017-01-24 07:37 Re: Analog Mastered MQA Albums [Re: Altus]
Registered: 2002-02-14
Posts: 8,455
ncpl Offline
President of the Imperial Galactic Government
ncpl Offline

President of the Imperial Galactic Government

Registered: 2002-02-14
Posts: 8,455
Loc: Surrey, UK
@Fiddler

The CA FAQ with Bob is a very informative if heavy read. Suggest you start there.

If that doesn't help then as Altus notes above a simple test with your own ears should give you everything you need to know.

If you still find yourself in the Waldrup camp then consider that you may have saved yourself some cash. Am sure he'll mention his award winning credentials and the Mosaic track just one more time.

I stopped reading his blog. Seems like just another expert with a vested interest hoping MQA doesn't work.


Rgds,
Nick

#15SE
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#258225 - 2017-01-24 07:39 Re: Analog Mastered MQA Albums [Re: Altus]
Registered: 2004-04-23
Posts: 2,476
Cliff. Offline
Senior Shouting Officer
Cliff. Offline
Senior Shouting Officer

Registered: 2004-04-23
Posts: 2,476
Loc: South Wiltshire, UK
Unless you can be sure the master hasn't been messed with, A:B comparisons are meaningless.

If MQA encourages better remastering then I'm all for it. IMHO, compared to the input of competent sound engineers to that process, that which MQA brings to the party via the upsampling process is relatively insignificant.


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#258226 - 2017-01-24 07:56 Re: Analog Mastered MQA Albums [Re: Altus]
Registered: 2004-12-09
Posts: 6,259
ChrisLayerUK Offline
President of the Imperial Galactic Government
ChrisLayerUK Offline
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Registered: 2004-12-09
Posts: 6,259
Loc: Colchester, Essex, UK
I think long listening sessions are possibly more scientifically valid than short AB comparisons. Bob said, listen for longer in the recent video featuring Bob Ludwig and others I posted a link to.
Also MQA is not just a file packing wrapper. It's the effect on pre and post ringing that was clearly shown graphically to explain the concept in the aforementioned video.
From my understanding (and I'm sure I don't know much) the effect will be easily discerned in high frequency short sounds. Think Tambourine, shakers, brushes etc.
They just sound 'Real' to me. Try The Monkeys, 'Last Train to Clarksville'. A classic of the genre and sounding just so fresh in MQA.
Thoughts, Chris
P.S. Bobs advice on the best tool for audio reviewers? Concert Tickets.


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Edited by ChrisLayerUK; 2017-01-24 07:59. Edit Reason: Added P.S.
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