Tidal Limit

I know some say Tidal vs ripped to NAS or USB, ext ... is not discernable, but I think it is.

So my question is how many people here with NDS/552/High end speakers use Tidal either full time or the majority.

Reason for asking, is I love the Tidal simplicity and huge catalogue, but mindful I want to move from my Nova to a new NDS type based system, but after comparing some higher end Focal Speakers 1000be and Sopra No 1 in particular I found Tidal was maybe revealing it's limits, odd as I did listened to some Kanta 2 but very brief and they sounded good.

Original Post
Paul Quigley ie posted:

Me too, but why? Tidle is sussposed to be CD quality! 

 

The files streamed are lossless FLAC (usually, I’ve spotted a few 320k MP3s, normally by disliking the SQ and checking). But this is all delivered over the Internet, so if you have any latency or jitter issues between the Tidal servers and your home network, that could impact SQ. People’s experience seems to vary, which may be dependent on their network connection, or their tolerance to the artefacts the network variations cause. My experience is that after about 10pm the quality is pretty good, which could be local exchange loading dropping off Tidal server loading dropping off, or might just be me being more chilled after the evening.

The only two sources I use at present is a NAS and TIDAL (and on a rare occasion Internet Radio).  The $20/month fee I pay for the TIDAL Hi-Fi service is worth the money for two reasons for me.

The first is I can  access a lot of music for a listen without making a purchase. I still purchase a number of CD's but I have given the albums a test run and I have not bought a CD that I wish I hadn't since I started using TIDAL. 

The second is I can access TIDAL through my Computer, iPhone, or iPad and with a set of headphones can access music easily when not at home.

So no matter how high one climbs up the Naim or other hi fi manufactures hierarchy of products I do believe that TIDAL or other streaming services fit a nice niche for what it provides.

JMHO - YMMV

I can’t tell a difference between my NAS or tidal streaming at all. Zero, zilch. As a result I find myself almost exclusivly using tidal unless it decides to cut out, which it has been of late.

My system is a 272/xpsdr/250dr feeding Wilson Yvette’s. 

I agree with HUTCHMD & FRENCH ROOSTER. 

On my KDS/1, most material on Tidal (not all) comes pretty close to the same material ripped from CDs to my NAS. Certainly well worth listening to. Virtually no (TIDAL) glitches for me either on both of my main systems.

I do wish it didn't cost quite so much, but I would find it very difficult to give up the service, and for my particular tastes in music, probably a more comprehensive selection of music than would be available from the Qobuz alternative. However, I do use Qobuz to purchase both CD and Hi-res downloads so always tempted by Qobuz sublime+, but it's just a little too expensive for me. . 

Paul Quigley ie posted:

Me too, but why? Tidle is sussposed to be CD quality! 

 

It can be - but as came up on another thread - it depends on the music media publisher. UMG (and apparently) Sony use audio water marking and allegedly have it quite high so as to be robust on their digital distribution masters. This will add audible distortion and artefacts to the audio. Luckily not all audio has this done - but it is a lottery based on distributor. This watermarking is also added to digital downloads and web radio masters I understand.

To be safest - best rip a CD - as far as I am aware UMG don't watermark their CD masters.

S

HutchMD posted:

I can’t tell a difference between my NAS or tidal streaming at all. Zero, zilch. As a result I find myself almost exclusivly using tidal unless it decides to cut out, which it has been of late.

My system is a 272/xpsdr/250dr feeding Wilson Yvette’s. 

Exactly the same here. I have the same system and I can hear absolutely no difference between Tidal and UpNp from my UnitiServe. Both sound superb. I wonder if the often reported disparity is down to location and broadband speed?

If you are comparing certain downloads and Tidal... there will be very little difference other than the FLAC / WAV decode noise matter and how hard the streamer TCP engine is working... however if you are comparing UMG distributed media on Tidal/Qobuz etc and ripped CD then the media will often be more distorted and manipulated due to audio watermarking on the UMG streamed and downloaded content.

Alas short of analysing the  media with certain tools, you might not realise you are hearing watermarking, but perhaps an overly processed master.. and piano and subtle decaying sounds can be the most mangled. Sadly bit perfect becomes irrelevant for such content.

S3 posted:

Exactly the same here. I have the same system and I can hear absolutely no difference between Tidal and UpNp from my UnitiServe. Both sound superb. I wonder if the often reported disparity is down to location and broadband speed?

It's not broadband speed as I live in the sticks and have 5-7mb on a good day and find Tidal as good as flac rips.

This situation may change as some local entrepreneurs are making fibre to the premises available in the Chew Valley. They've already done Nempnet Thrubwell (really!) and we are lined up for the summer

Pev posted:
S3 posted:

Exactly the same here. I have the same system and I can hear absolutely no difference between Tidal and UpNp from my UnitiServe. Both sound superb. I wonder if the often reported disparity is down to location and broadband speed?

It's not broadband speed as I live in the sticks and have 5-7mb on a good day and find Tidal as good as flac rips.

This situation may change as some local entrepreneurs are making fibre to the premises available in the Chew Valley. They've already done Nempnet Thrubwell (really!) and we are lined up for the summer

I tend to always download Tidal media I like, mainly for use on the go but then it also pops up in the Naim app home screen.

So I assume when streaming in this case it is playing the downloaded content not download streaming ...

Obsydian posted:

I tend to always download Tidal media I like, mainly for use on the go but then it also pops up in the Naim app home screen.

So I assume when streaming in this case it is playing the downloaded content not download streaming ...

Assuming you mean you download in the Tidal app on your phone (or tablet) then that download is only available on the phone (or tablet) you downloaded it on.  Your Naim device always streams direct from Tidal (even if the download is on the same device as you are using to control the Naim, there is no "connection" between the Tidal app on that device and the Naim).

Eloise posted:
Obsydian posted:

I tend to always download Tidal media I like, mainly for use on the go but then it also pops up in the Naim app home screen.

Assuming you mean you download in the Tidal app on your phone (or tablet) then that download is only available on the phone (or tablet) you downloaded it on.  Your Naim device always streams direct from Tidal (even if the download is on the same device as you are using to control the Naim, there is no "connection" between the Tidal app on that device and the Naim).

The only (logical rather than physical) “connection” is that that items you download to your phone (seen in My Collection -> Downloads) are also automatically marked by Tidal as Favourites and included as titles in My Collection... which is what the Naim app offers as your “ready to choose from Tidal” content. Downloaded items on your iPhone should also show up as favourites in the Tidal app on your iPad, for example, even though you didn’t download them to your iPad. This presentation in the Naim app is directly analogous to choosing preset Internet Radio Stations, which are offered for your convenience but still must have the content streamed. 

The idea of adding an “offline content” to the new Uniti line, where local external storage is readily available, has been raised with Naim as a feature request.  If this gets implemented, then playback would mirror your iPhone experience. Nothing so far, though...

Regards alan

Thanks you just saved me a remote upgrade (as in iPad 128gb) I thought upgrade my Mini 32GB, I use that purely as a Naim remote, but download to it, as my mobile for on the move and now occasional Naim app control.

Think as ALAN33 mentions talk, but surely a local store avoid network traffic issues, etc... but then I suppose what would Naim do with all them Core's???

Pev posted:
S3 posted:

Exactly the same here. I have the same system and I can hear absolutely no difference between Tidal and UpNp from my UnitiServe. Both sound superb. I wonder if the often reported disparity is down to location and broadband speed?

It's not broadband speed as I live in the sticks and have 5-7mb on a good day and find Tidal as good as flac rips.

 

I think there are a lot of places that would regard 5-7 as amazingly fast... (presumably more in the sticks)

I agree with Pev, and am not so sure that broadband bandwidth is a critical factor in most cases. 

I get pretty much rock solid access to Tidal with my current 38 Mbps fibre connection as you might expect. But then, I also had pretty trouble free access to Tidal (and before that to Spotify) over my previous 3.6 Mbps connection, unless of course I was using the bandwidth for significant additional Internet based tasks at the same time.  

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