TIDAL have just integrated MQA into it’s service.
I’m not sure how much you all know about MQA but in a nutshell, it’s a new audio format that plays back in extreme high res, 24bit, as opposed to 16bit. It’s designed to play back in studio-like quality and just as the artist intended. So far, the entire Warner Music catalogue has been integrated, so that’s thousands of songs. Apart from the enhanced quality, MQA uses a lot less data to stream as the audio file sizes are smaller than traditional FLAC audio files. In laymans terms, the MQA audio files are zipped in to a smaller file, streamed over the air, and then unzipped at the other end. Neat.
What is TIDAL Masters?
TIDAL has partnered with MQA (Master Quality Authenticated) to deliver guaranteed master-quality recordings directly from the master source – an audio experience that the artist intended.
What is the difference between HiFi quality and Master quality?
HiFi audio is a superior sound, but is still limited in its resolution—44.1 kHz /16 bit. Yet TIDAL has partnered with MQA to deliver something infinitely better: an authenticated and unbroken version (typically 96 kHz / 24 bit) with the highest-possible resolution—as flawless as it sounded in the mastering suite. And exactly as the artist intended it to sound.
I’m already a TIDAL user, what do I do?
Premium Members: As a Premium member, you will need to upgrade to a TIDAL HiFi Member and use the
desktop application in order to enjoy TIDAL Masters audio feature. HiFi Members: All you need is your TIDAL HiFi membership to access thousands of master-quality albums only through the TIDAL desktop application. When you are in TIDAL desktop application, go to “What’s New” and select “Masters” in the Albums section. If you don’t have the TIDAL desktop application, you can find it here: http://tidal.com/us/download .
How can I listen to TIDAL Masters (master-quality recordings)?
All you need is a TIDAL HiFi membership to access thousands of master-quality albums only through the TIDAL desktop application. When you are in TIDAL desktop application, go to “What’s New” and select “Masters” in the Albums section. To get the best quality, make sure to select “HiFi/Master” quality in “Settings” and then select “Streaming”. If you don’t have the TIDAL desktop application, you can find it here: http://tidal.com/us/download .
Where do I find a list of available master-quality albums and tracks?
TIDAL HiFi members can access our growing catalog of master-quality albums and tracks only through the TIDAL desktop application. Go to “What’s New” and select “Masters” in the Albums section.
Master-quality albums and tracks will be available on mobile and web application at a later date.
What will it cost?
We are introducing this to all TIDAL HiFi members at no additional charge.
How much music is available in Master quality?
We have music over 30,000 tracks from Warner Music Group, our TIDAL artist owners and key independent labels. We will continue to add more master-quality content over time.