MQA DAC with Coax Output


I’d like to fully unpack MQA with a DAC but also want coax out from said DAC. I use Tidal Masters streaming from Roon which is running on an Antipodes DSGT with coax out to a pair powered Dynaudio 200 XDs. The MQA DAC would need to have a USB or coax in (the two digital outputs from the Antipodes) and and coax out to the Dynaudios. I don’t want a super expensive DAC but certainly one to do the system justice. Any thoughts?
krilll
If you mean digital coax out, the last I heard, the MQA terms prohibit output of a fully decoded MQA digital stream. But maybe there are work-arounds?
Yes, I did mean digital coax out. Any thoughts on a work around?
I’m confused as to why you wouldn’t want the DAC to connect via RCA?
You mean you want a streamer with coax out. :)

Even if you find a streamer with coaxial out, the highest level of unfolding is only allowed at the DAC itself, that is, with ANALOG outputs.

You can't buy a DAC that streams MQA and hope to get around this limit because it is a DAC. :)

Best,

E
The purpose of a DAC is to convert a digital signal into an analog signal. At this point the signal is sent via RCA (or XLR). 
Why would their be any benefit, advantage, or functional use to a digital coax output?
I guess keeping the signal digital all the way to the speakers with the built in DAC / amp maintains the quality of signal until conversion to analog until the last possible moment. 
@krilll

Looking at that specific ifi nano-ione it does not appear to do any MQA processing.  With the digital pass through it appears to reclock and regenerate digital signals.  There are ifi products that act as DACs with MQA unfolding and have analogue output.  The final MQA unfolding is dependent directly on the DAC chip in the final conversion unit.  Does your speakers built in DAC have MQA capability?  If not, and you want to listen to the full MQA product, you will need a DAC with that capability and have analogue signal cables between the DAC and an analogue input on the amplifier in the powered speakers.
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Thanks so much for the info. Would anyone have a suggestion then on a good MQA capable DAC that would pair well between the Antipodes and Dynaudio powered speakers?
Now you’re on the right track. Next thing we need from you is a budget.
Good question. I guess I’d probably go up to $5k or so for great sound. Less would be better obviously. 
You’ll have plenty to choose from with that budget. Be prepared to get some pushback from members regarding MQA, as it’s not universally accepted as being the greatest thing since sliced bread. Plus, you eliminate a lot of excellent DACs if MQA is a prerequisite. 
Okay. I’m looking forward to getting some suggestions. My hope is that a decent MQA capable DAC will also be good at other file formats too I suppose. Not too hung up on MQA but I do want it. 
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You might want to look at the MQA website for the equipment that is currently capable.  They break out streamers, DACs, etc.  this could give some direction for research.  Most MQA equipment is very capable of other formats even before the license was obtained to add this additional format.
https://www.mqa.co.uk/how-to-get-mqa
Thanks. I’m familiar with the website. I’m looking for recommendations from individuals with experience. 
I've gotten a couple "tut, tut, oh you poor boy" responses from other posters here but I really like my Mytek Brooklyn Bridge.  A good fifty percent of the time I get better fidelity streaming Qobuz and Primephonic through the device than I get from my vinyl.  If I have an LP of a performance I want to hear, a good fifty percent of the time I'll leave the vinyl in the jacket, crank up the Qobuz and just read the record's liner notes.  As for the MQA I got from Tidal, I liked it an awful lot but the hi-rez I get from Qobuz was better enough to induce me to bid farewell to the Swedish streaming site.
Okay cool. Thanks for the suggestion. Why are other members critical of the Mytek? It seems like a nice piece to me as well. I’ll look into it some more. What do you think of the Brooklyn+? Unfortunately being in Canada I’m unable to get Qobuz hence the desire to squeeze everything I can out of Tidal Masters MQA. Otherwise I probably wouldn’t be doing any of this. 
Look into the stuff from matrix audio. The products I would suggest

matrix SPDIF-2 (it will convert a USB to basically any known output and as of now it does it to the highest we’ve figure out. It will even transport DSD over IIS, thought to be LITERALLY impossible)

Matrix Sabre-X DAC (MQA edition) one of the record breakers for SINAD. Enough said imo

together about $2500

OR (for single unit)

Matrix Element (MQA) All In one streamer from them has A bunch of outputs. About $3k
Krilll -- enjoy Tidal!  As for all the criticism of Mytek on this website, I just let it wash over me.  When it comes to the Brooklyn, I just haven't heard it.  I live three+ thousand miles away from the nearest Hi-End dealer.  I can say, though, that I get considerably better fidelity from the Brooklyn Bridge than I ever got from jerry-rigging my laptop to my stereo system.
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Sonnet Morpheus. BEST value in mid-priced DACs with MQA, IMO. 
if you have a streamer that decodes mqa do you also need a mqa dac?
@mboldda1

It is my understanding that the streamer will allow the first two of three “unfolds” to occur. This will give you 24/96. The “third” and final step is dependent on the DAC chip so has to occur in a MQA DAC to have full 24/192. The third step is hardware dependent while you can get the first parts by software. Tidal website, Roon, etc will get you the MQA software unfolding to 96/24 if it is available.
I was going to recommend Mytek as well.  Not a fan of MQA but they make great DACs
Sounds like Mytek might be the way to go. Thanks all. 
Everyone. This is the product / solution I’m looking for. I’m surprised no one here knew about this. It’s a Roon endpoint with full MQA unpacking. And it does have a coax out. Please see link to EMM Labs NS1. 

https://www.emmlabs.com/ns1.php
http://www.luxman.com/product/detail.php?id=36

I think I read another thread here that Luxman is also releasing a new flagship DAC that will also do MQA.  Will above $10K though i beleive.
Happy hunting!
Where does it say it does the FULL unfolding? Like many other streamers, it may just do the first unfold, relying on the DAC to do the final unfold. Even if it does, what you’re trying to accomplish REALLY makes no sense. 
It says MQA endpoint. That’s what that means when used with something like an antipodes running Roon. I don’t know why this makes no sense. 
My Bel Canto Stream E.one says the same thing and I can assure you it won’t do the full unfold. What you’re looking for is essentially a MQA decoder. Something that only unfolds MQA and then passes on the otherwise unprocessed digital signal. As far as I know there is no such device, and believe me, if there was a need for such a device there would be someone making said device. What do you have against an external DAC, one that could potentially sound way better than the internal DAC on the Dynaudios, and feeding the speakers via RCA? BTW, it says Roon endpoint, not MQA endpoint.
I see, okay. I suppose a good place to start would be to get more information on the quality of DAC built into the Dyns. They are amazing in terms of sound already so I want to know what it’s going to take to get a real and noticeable upgrade. 
Look at the Luxman flowchart carefully.  The decoded MQA goes only to the analog outputs.


Yes I saw that. Thank you. 
If you want to try another DAC, my only suggestion is to buy from someone who has a good return policy. That way you can audition in your own home and compare against the DAC in the Dyn’s.
From the Emm Labs NS1 manual:
When playing MQA® through the NS1 coupled with MQA®-enabled DAC, the NS1 will output MQA® Core decoded signal. �e MQA®-enabled DAC will display the original sample rate of the MQA® stream. In case of the DV2 DAC, the Optilink input currently cannot fully render MQA® streams beyond the Core decoding of 24bit, 96kHz.
I went through the same MQA decoding unfolding and rendering delima Try many dacs and streamers but all of them is limit 24/96 but streaming straight from MacBook Pro with USB to Preamp Michi P5 (MQA support) gave me 24/358  
Read up on the NAD M10 great for streaming with MQA.
Krilll, I have an Antipodes DS. I use USB from that to a Denafrips Pontus DAC.
To my ears at least, the sound is really good and the Pontus is capable of
  • 24bits / 44.1, 48, 88.2, 96, 176.4, 192KHz on all Inputs and
  • 1536kHz on USB & I²S Inputs
The outputs are RCA and XLR

Have a look at the vinshineaudio.com web site. Alvin Lee, the proprietor, is the sole Denafrips distributor.
I want to add something:

To my ears, the quality of the DAC is much more important than MQA. I’d rather have a great DAC with no MQA or 96/24 MQA than a crappy DAC with full MQA.

I have a DAC that can do full MQA, and I have it off, because I’d rather use different digital filters than have full MQA. It just sounds much better to me, so trying to get full MQA unfolding in a streamer to DAC solution isn't that important to me.

Also, if you forego coax and accept USB, you can use Roon  to get full MQA to your DAC.

Best,

E
Yes I’ve heard this argument but I think it’s false dilemma. It would seem that a good DAC capable of MQA is also a good DAC. I’m thinking of the Mytek Brooklyn+ or Simaudio Moon DAC for example. Both MQA capable and also some of the best DACs available right now. 
From what I’ve read so far full MQA is only possible with a MQA DAC (analogue output) at the final stage regardless of what output on your Roon streamer/core you choose.  
Mqa is not all that it is cracked up to be
I have heard many great non Mqa
that sounded better.Qobuzz for example sounds better then Tidal,
and many music programs like a Jrivers media, Audirvana, sound excellent.
Check out this Audio download program 
Audiophile Optimizer  totally transforms your music pc 
computers load many programs in the back ground and hundreds of threads . This disconnects most of them and does man. Other functions ,it has won a bunch of awards ,
also  a dedicated Jcat usb card,and  or  a Jcat Net card,
is a noticable upgrade using a dedicated Femto clock pure linear regulators,not switch mode, and filters it isolates a lot of garbage from the noisy 
switching part of the computer. And option to make better still with a dedicated linear power supply ,the majority of streamers have. Switch more power supplies.If serious. About your Audio worth 
checking out. 
Thanks. I’ve heard the anti-MQA arguments and it seems like people who have that perspective are very adamant about it. Again, Qobuzz isn’t available in my country so trying to squeeze all I can out of Tidal. A good MQA DAC should also be a good DAC. 
I have the original Mytek Brooklyn. Great DAC. MQA does not add to it. It sounds better with MQA disabled and the filter set to fast rolloff than with MQA enabled and the apodizing filter.



Best,

E