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Sir Sanders Zingmore

Archimago blog on MQA (guess what, he's not a fan )

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7 hours ago, legend said:

A 2 part interview of Bob Stuart by John Darko at the recent Munich Show:

https://vimeo.com/272083471

https://vimeo.com/272078385

 

Full article here:

https://darko.audio/2018/05/playback-pioneers-2018-bob-stuart-mqa/

 

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In the second half of my interview, I ask Stuart if MQA is his attempt to lock down the music industry’s supply chain, why MQA isn’t free of charge and then, catching the stupidity of my question, wondered aloud why internet forum members weren’t jumping up and down as much about, say, Qualcomm and the non-free licensing of their aptX Bluetooth codec?

 

It's really simple.  The design of the aptX system, does not include DRM capabilities.   The MQA system includes (very good) DRM capabilities.

 

It is not about non-free licensing.... MQA are asking us to do much more than pay for their product.    They are asking for complete, permanent, and flexible control over the quality of my audio playback.

 

... and if they achieve their goal of having all music encoded into MQA ... then they are asking a level of control over my playback whether or not I choose to use MQA devices.

 

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And that only by managing the entire chain, from studio to playback, can MQA get us closer to that which the musician and his studio engineers intended.

 

Furthermore, MQA authenticates the stream to sidestep (complaints of) label or download store up-sampling skullduggery. Any MQA-equipped software app or DAC can confirm (or deny) the presence of an untainted studio master file

 

 

These are really good things ... and if cards are played right, this should and could be adopted very widely.

 

THAT is what makes the DRM capabilities so scary.

 

Nobody seriously though AptX would be the "new end to end format for music".   So even if it did include some DRM capability, it would not be very effective.

 

The more people get on board with MQA .... the more scope they is to effectively abuse the DRM capabilities which are designed into MQA.   I fear that MQA has the potential to be so good, that everyone WILL adopt it.

 

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Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

 

 

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An ability to choose holds for DACs. Some are MQA enabled, others are not. 

 

There is a solution to this problem for MQA.    Make all distributed audio a much lower quality than it is today .....  Make the 'original quality' be unlocked by using an MQA encoder.

 

In 20 years from now, nobody will remember 'how we ever did without MQA'  (cos when you listen without a decoder it sounds like AM radio)

 

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MQA’s scope reaches beyond the uber-niche appeal of hi-res audio and, according to Stuart, promises better sound quality for ALL types of music

 

The technical capabilities of MQA encoding ... and the DRM capabilities it has .....  means that the words "better sound quality" in the above quote, need to be replaced with  "any type of sound quality chosen by MQA" .

 

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4 hours ago, davewantsmoore said:

The technical capabilities of MQA encoding ... and the DRM capabilities it has .....  means that the words "better sound quality" in the above quote, need to be replaced with  "any type of sound quality chosen by MQA" .

 

I've said before that this isn't DRM as I understand it, but you've hit the nail right on the head here. This is the threat.

Especially if music becomes exclusively streamed.. the new version can just appear overnight and nothing we can do about it, except pay for the new whatever is needed to play the files next time. And for whatever the method of piracy that will appear soon after because people won't get caught the second time.

 

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44 minutes ago, Eggcup The Daft said:

I've said before that this isn't DRM as I understand it

The technology described in the MQA patent has vast scope for DRM above what they have currently implemented.

 

44 minutes ago, Eggcup The Daft said:

Especially if music becomes exclusively streamed.. the new version can just appear overnight

Yes...  or even a version of the content is created or modified on-the-fly for a consumer.

 

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On 05/06/2018 at 3:42 PM, davewantsmoore said:

Hah.  I missed this one.

 

Right, so...

  • Nobody agrees on what "digital rights management" means.
  • Anybody who doesn't like the idea of DRM, does so because they want open standardised software.

What a kook.  How does this **** get printed in something like Stereophile.   >_<

 

 

 

Very funny. :) Stereophile having standards. 😂

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Actually Stereophile is one of the better audiophile magazines IMHO - editor John Atkinson is not a charlatan and has a science background as do some of his writers, including Jim Austin whose article I quoted.  The full article can be found at

https://www.stereophile.com/content/mqa-contextualized

Read BOTH pages - I find it pretty balanced, pointing out MQA's strengths and weaknesses/dangers.

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4 minutes ago, legend said:

Actually Stereophile is one of the better audiophile magazines IMHO - editor John Atkinson is not a charlatan and has a science background as do some of his writers, including Jim Austin whose article I quoted.  The full article can be found at

https://www.stereophile.com/content/mqa-contextualized

Read BOTH pages - I find it pretty balanced, pointing out MQA's strengths and weaknesses/dangers.

It took them an awfully long time to write anything vaguely balanced about MQA.

 

I suspect that if people like Archimago hadn't asked hard questions they would have continued to write articles that looked very much like paid advertisements

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1 hour ago, legend said:

Actually Stereophile is one of the better audiophile magazines IMHO

It is, but that's not saying a lot  ;)

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1 hour ago, legend said:

Actually Stereophile is one of the better audiophile magazines IMHO - editor John Atkinson is not a charlatan and has a science background as do some of his writers, including Jim Austin whose article I quoted.  The full article can be found at

https://www.stereophile.com/content/mqa-contextualized

Read BOTH pages - I find it pretty balanced, pointing out MQA's strengths and weaknesses/dangers.

I thought it was pretty below-average.

 

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Those militantly opposed to MQA think it sounds bad

There'll always be people who thinks something "sounds bad" ..... it's a normal and expected orccurance with "listeng tests", especially poorly controlled ones.

 

 

 

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