Sonos Embraces Qobuz Bringing Hi-Res Audio to the Masses
Qobuz has officially got the bragging rights of being the first music service to deliver 24-bit Hi-Res audio streaming on Sonos.
Qobuz, expected to launch for Australian music lovers in April, will see subscribers to the French-based streaming service having the ability to listen to studio-quality music on their Sonos speakers by simply pressing play in the Sonos app.
This is Qobuz's broadest expansion of hi-res streaming support yet. This new integration is available via the Sonos S2 app, which supports 24-bit 44.1/48kHz for FLAC and is compatible with most Sonos speakers, including the recently announced Sonos Roam.
Qobuz USA Managing Director Dan Mackta told StereoNET:
Qobuz has always strived to make the highest quality audio accessible, as people become more interested in better sound. Now, on Sonos devices, we're making it easy for millions more people to experience the improvement Hi-Res audio can make.
Ryan Richards, Director of Product Marketing at Sonos, added:
Our open platform enables partners to bring the best of their experiences to the Sonos system and our mutual customers. Qobuz has been at the forefront of high-resolution music streaming, and we look forward to customers enjoying their music with the clarity, depth, and room-filling sound of Sonos.
Qobuz has been streaming since 2007 and was the first such hi-res service to land in the UK. In 2013, Qobuz became the first music service to offer 16-bit FLAC streaming on Sonos. However, now it introduces 24-bit streaming, compatible with most products on the Sonos S2 platform, which supports up to 48 kHz/24-bit audio resolution.
Currently, Qobuz 24-bit Hi-Res streaming is available on Sonos in Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland, United Kingdom, and the United States.
WHAT WE THINK?
Has hi-res music streaming finally come of age? Once, it was assumed that it was only audiophile types were bothered about such things as FLAC and 24-bit resolution. However, with the likes of Spotify bringing onboard its Spotify Hi-Fi tier offering “lossless audio” streams, admittedly not hi-res, are consumers getting savvier and forcing services to provide higher quality streams? Or, is it that streaming speakers and wireless headphones are getting better and are highlighting the shortcomings of low-res audio? Whatever it is, we applaud anything that improves audio for all and brings high resolution audio to the masses.