In advance of the High End Show in Munich, MQA has announced several new partners. On the hardware side, big names like Mark Levinson, MOON by Simaudio, AudioQuest, dCS, Krell, TEAC, and Pro-Ject Audio Systems have signed on as partners. Mark Levinson, for instance, will add MQA support to the No. 519 digital audio player. AudioQuest will add it to the DragonFly Black and DragonFly Red portable USB DACs via a firmware update. Sonic Studio is adding TIDAL (and thus MQA) to its Amarra 4 Luxe media player. See the press release below for more new partners.
Music technology company MQA has achieved multiple milestones since last year's Munich High End show. Over the past 12 months, the MQA team has been busy concluding new partnerships to boost the availability of MQA-enabled products and software; the technology has been used to improve physical format releases; and MQA has debuted on TIDAL's global streaming service.
New MQA Hardware Partners
The list of MQA-enabled hardware partners continues to grow, from boutique to big brands, including: AudioQuest, CanEVER Audio, dCS, Esoteric, IAG, Krell, Lumin, Mark Levinson, MOON by Simaudio, Pro-Ject Audio Systems, TEAC and Wadax.
Jim Garrett, Director, Marketing & Product Management, at Mark Levinson commented, "We are proud to announce the addition of MQA playback support to our Mark Levinson No. 519 Audio Player. The ability to offer our customers the highest level of fidelity is paramount to our brand, and MQA is a natural extension of that approach."
Audiolab and Quad are aiming to launch several products with MQA integrated into their premium 8300 and Artera ranges, respectively. IAG's engineers have spent additional development time to ensure that existing customers will have the option to upgrade their current 8300 or Artera DAC board to make them MQA compatible. Additionally, Krell is planning to include MQA in its Digital Vanguard Integrated Amplifier and Vanguard Universal DAC products.
Dominique Poupart, Product Manager at MOON by Simaudio, stated, "MQA is the ideal format for high quality streaming, and the perfect way to explore new music through various music services. We are excited about integrating this technology into select audio products coming soon in our MOON lineup."
Good news for TIDAL HiFi subscribers: on May 17, AudioQuest will release a free firmware update (available at: http://www.audioquest.com/digitalupdates/) for its award-winning DragonFly Black and DragonFly Red portable USB DACs, enabling playback of all MQA files including TIDAL's growing collection of Masters titles. This update is the first implementation of the MQA rendering technology, making an AudioQuest DragonFly Black or Red the perfect and affordable complement to MQA-ready streaming services.
New Integration Partners
StreamUnlimited is implementing MQA into their modular software solution, StreamSDK. "We are proud to be able to partner with a company and a product developed with such a passion for music, and look forward to helping our brand customers and manufacturers include this technology in their new product lines," commented Frits Wittgrefe, CEO of StreamUnlimited.
Conversdigital will also be implementing MQA into their mconnect module and are already in discussions with many manufacturers on the implementation work.
Existing MQA Partners
MQA's existing hardware partners include: Aurender, Bel Canto, Bluesound, NAD, Brinkmann, Meridian, MSB, Mytek, Onkyo, Pioneer and Technics.
Commenting on the expanding availability of high resolution audio products and services powered by MQA, Mark Piibe, Executive Vice President, Global Business Development and Digital Strategy, Sony Music Entertainment stated, "As a long-running supporter of MQA's high resolution audio solutions, we are encouraged to see a growing number of digital service providers and consumer hardware companies adopting MQA technology to make studio sound quality from Sony Music artists available to streaming music consumers."
Mike Jbara, CEO of MQA, added, "We are delighted to work with so many partners, across all the different areas of this business, with the shared and constant goal of improving audio quality for all. We are looking forward to many more announcements at the High End show in Munich and beyond."
MQA Music Streaming
MQA launched on TIDAL at this year's CES in Las Vegas, enabling music fans to instantly stream thousands of MQA tracks, at no extra cost. The number of Masters albums, available on TIDAL's desktop application across all its markets worldwide, has grown rapidly, and new releases are highlighted on its weekly playlists. With a number of other music services championing hi-res audio, expect more announcements to follow later this year.
TIDAL HiFi subscribers will also soon be able to enjoy integrated TIDAL support with the Amarra 4 Luxe media player. Said Jonathan Reichbach, CEO of Sonic Studio, "Sonic Studio is excited to announce our collaboration with MQA, to bring all the benefits of the MQA experience for local playback and streaming high resolution music to the Amarra family of products."
In March 2017, Audirvana released the latest version of its software player, Audirvana Plus 3, which now integrates MQA audio technology.
• Audirvana Adds MQA Support to its Desktop Music Player at HomeTheaterReview.com.
• MQA Announces Partnership with Universal Music Group at HomeTheaterReview.com.