MPEG and not MQA

When I play in my Bartok , Tidal MQA ,Mosaic is showing MEPG . What is this ? Is really playing MQA? Before I can see MQA on the display and also on my mobile screen with Mosaic , now only this MPEG …(?) My Tidal account is Premium and I was playing MQA perfectly till few days ago.

MPEG is a collection of audio and video compression protocols more often associated with movies ( MPEG = Moving Picture Expert Group). You say you now only see MPEG showing on the Mosaic screen. Do you mean this literally i.e. whatever you play you only see MPEG or is it linked to only particular files from Tidal or Tidal Masters ( only the latter are MQA of course)?

Sorry Pete if I don’t explain well , I’m only seen MPEG on the Mosaic screen (iPad) playing Tidal Master : albums or playlist. I really see “MPEG” follow by a number of “kbps” Before when I play this files in the screen it’s “MQA” Studio or just MQA with a green spot of light follow by 44, 96,192 Khz depending on the file you are playing . Because of that I think this is so weird and I really don’t know what is happening and what I’m really hearing when I play now Tidal Masters (MQA). But seems something wrong is happening.

Yes, it does seems strange as it was working as expected before. Unfortunately I am not a Tidal subscriber so cannot check it myself with Mosaic. However if you could list a couple of titles that you are having the problem with and/or post a screenshot of what you see with Mosaic I would hope that another contributor could check and see if they get the same.

Perhaps , for some reason, Tidal are sending you MP3 files (which fall within the MPEG protocols). As I am not a Tidal subscriber I haven’t much knowledge of it but I am wondering if you may have changed something in your Tidal account settings? For example Qobuz allows you to select MP3 files even if your subscription is for hi-res ( for example you might be using Qobuz on a phone that cannot play FLAC). Could something similar be happening with your Tidal account?

It was working well with Tidal Masters (MQA) till few days ago, suddenly changed to MPEG, very strange. I checked my Tidal account and the streaming quality selected is Master . But if you go to Tidal account on dCS device through iPad the possibility is as you can see on the attached screenshot streaming low, high or Lossless , and I selected Lossless to. Al the albums in Tidal Masters are as you can see in the screenshots samples. Strange but the end is a lost the MQA in my Bartok/ Tidal…

Another screenshot

Finally album screenshot

There are two versions of this track in Tidal; one in MQA (FLAC 48kHz 24bit, MQA 96kHz) and one plain FLAC 44.1kHz 16bit. You’re not accidentally playing the non-MQA version, are you?

That 44.1kHz would correspond to 1411kbps, with a bit of MPEG (lossless) compression that could well correspond to the observed 1062.4kbps.

The same problem is with all the Masters Album in Tidal

Thanks for the further information Augusto. Just to help complete the picture what does Mosaic show when you don’t play a Tidal Masters file but just a straightforward redbook 16/44.1 file?

In this screenshot you can see how looks playing Tidal

Albums CD quality.

OK. That settles that Paul’s otherwise good idea about you selecting a redbook instead of an MQA file is not the cause. The redbook file appears exactly as I would expect.

So the problem affects only Tidal Masters. As I understand matters Mosaic analyses the incoming data and its path and displays what it finds . That is, it is not displaying a file description that it is receiving from an external source such as Tidal. So my expectation is that for some reason Tidal is sending you compressed files instead of MQA. What is the Bartok’s front panel display showing when playing these files? Are you not seeing the MQA or MQA. icon there as well?

As this now exceeds my knowledge I think that this thread now needs input from a Tidal subscriber with knowledge of the MQA configuration and who can try out some of the files shown in your screenshots. Input from a dCS engineer could certainly assist; James. Andrew, Ben?

Hi all,

Thanks for reporting this. We have confirmed this issue, and are currently investigating the cause. Will keep you updated.

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The bitrate of that “Hypotheticals” stream does suspiciously look like an unfolded MQA stream, at say 88 or 96 kHz…

When playing Tidal Masters there is not MQA icon on the front panel display , here you can see the screenshot of the display playing the Tidal Master stream “Hypotheticals” . Thank you all for your help PXL_20210323_192609181.MP|281x500

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The screenshot

It’s almost as if the first unfold from the MQA stream is done in such a way that the downstream renderer in the Bartok doesn’t recognise the MQA signal bits anymore. Something for dCS to ponder I think. This would be a problem with the Mosaic code on the network board inside the Bartok, as it is a device that both implements decoder AND renderer.

As dCS are investigating until we know the outcome the issue may or may not be related to the performance of Mosaic or to any other aspect of dCS equipment. It could be a Tidal issue or even have originated at UMG and Warners. I therefore think that at this point there is little to be gained from speculation.

I use Tidal and Roon, never Mosaic for streaming, and I have never seen this problem. My guess therefore is: it is a Mosaic issue.

I just played the above track through Tidal and Roon, and this is my display:

Apologies for what appears to be a lot of dust on the clock. We have an invasion of birch pollen here, in the tundra :innocent:

Dust? Surely you mean specially applied damping compound?

Tundra. I wonder where you are, Canada, Scandinavia?

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