Streaming via Lenovo yoga tab pro to Bluetooth 4.0 with a Texas Instruments TI PCM5102A 32bit to an Audiolab MDac plus via Stereo RCA, or Digital RCA or Glass fiber Tosslink. to pair of Audiolab 8200mbs Monoblocks driving a pair of USHER Audio Mini Dancer II. This set up is very good with std E Tidal tracks but I feel like I'm missing something huge with the Master E tracks which a lot of my favourite music seems to be converted to. Some are superb I will admit. For eg. All the Fleetwood Mac, Hillary Hahn, Dire Straits, Etc. But.. Beatles, Rolling Stones, Lou Reed, Beach Boys, Tom Scott, First Aid Kit, Neil Young, aso are best kept on Std E or vinyl.! Maybe I need a better streamer.! Or play around with the filters. Or run TIDAL via pc or iMac
MQA file can still play through non-MQA DAC as 44.1kHz/16bit, or do 1st unfold to 48Khz/24bit (on PC). If you have a MQA capable DAC, you can either let DAC to do both unfold (to 96kHz/24bid) or let PC do 1st unfold and let DAC to the 2nd. I prefrer direct wired (no Wifi, No blue tooth)
please don’t get shadorne started on MQA. He never warmed up to MQA and currently owns the ‘perfect’ non-MQA DAC in the world, his ears and the DAC both are completely immune to any digital imperfections 😉
I find non-MQA has less distortion on both Benchmark and Directstream Sr DACs than MQA. MQA doesn’t image quite as well due to the added distortion from the minimum phase filter. The apodizing filter adds some audio compression which while pleasant to many ears, it is simply less faithful to the original than other formats.
You can hear the imaging issues on most tracks but the audio compression is very slight and almost imperceptible unless you know what to listen for. (It changes the timbre of transients)
Shadorne - you might be right with the benchmark dac, I always thought it was a terrible dac, but with the DS, I don’t agree. I also have the PSA DS dac and I think MQA sounds better than an equivalent cd or even vinyl. Since cd gets converted to dsd on the DS, everything sounds great out of the DS
My dac reading from Bluetooth input is saying 48khz as opposed to 44.1khz I get from cd (digital coax) There's no argument that Tidal hifi is cd quality lossless audio. There's also no argument that Tidal MQA is "a very clean detailed reproduction" .. however there's something about it that makes some recording seem bit dead or clinical, lacking warmth or something.