Anyone try Tidal w/HiFi DAC?

torbach1

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Hi Folks:

I'm wondering if anyone has tried Tidal's HIFI music subscription and if so have you noticed a difference in quality with regular 320k music services like Google Music when using good quality headphones?

Thanks
 

Almeuit

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I would be curious to see as well. Torbach -- have you tried the free trial to see if you notice a difference? IIRC Tidal does a few days for free on their "Hi-Fi" service.
 

torbach1

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Yeah, I think I will try that... Good idea.

I signed up for the trial and downloaded two albums in HIFI quality, which is the highest quality that Tidal offers. For comparison purposes, the file sizes for each song were about 3x those of the Google Music ones.

I tested this with my Bose QC25 headset and in my car, which has a fairly high end sound system. In my car I connected the phone via an auxiliary cable to allow the DAC to operate.

I honestly didn't notice any difference between the two in either scenario. Both sound fantastic, especially compared to the same albums via Bluetooth, or on my wife's Samsung S7.

Given the higher cost of Tidal HIFI, and the fact that Google Music also gives me YouTube Red, I'll stick to Google Music for now.
 

estebancam

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I've done the same anecdotal tests.

I had tidal for about a month, paid to extend the free trial. I have a pair of Master Tracks from SOL Republic for headphones (a decent pair of headphones, nothing great. I also have a surround system that I wired in which has a Yamaha amp connected to several speakers, the two main ones being two Klipsch Towers and a center channel speaker. These are very good speakers that cost about $500 each. Lastly, my vehicle has an Audiophile Shaker Pro system which I believe is 1000 watts (maybe 500?) With 13 speakers, and it sounds great. Not the biggest volume but quality rivals that of my last vehicle which had aftermarket dual 1,000 watt amps with two type R subs and 8 high end speakers from Alpine.

I wired in everything to get the full effect.

My findings are that Tidal vs Google play music didn't give me that much of a difference in quality. I noticed some difference in extreme low end and *some* classical music, but not much; definitely not enough to warrant the price and the loss of YouTube red and other services bundled with Play Music.

What I have found is that the difference lies when NOT streaming the music. I think the quality difference has to do mainly with streaming vs local music. When I plugged in local lossless audio that was transferred from my computer (ripped from CD at lossless quality), the music sounded louder, richer, and much better. However, when the same track was streamed, it didn't sound as full.

They both sounded great regardless, but the local lossless audio really is quite amazing. Rivals vinyl.
 

thunder18

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I signed up for the trial and downloaded two albums in HIFI quality, which is the highest quality that Tidal offers. For comparison purposes, the file sizes for each song were about 3x those of the Google Music ones.

I tested this with my Bose QC25 headset and in my car, which has a fairly high end sound system. In my car I connected the phone via an auxiliary cable to allow the DAC to operate.

I honestly didn't notice any difference between the two in either scenario. Both sound fantastic, especially compared to the same albums via Bluetooth, or on my wife's Samsung S7.

Given the higher cost of Tidal HIFI, and the fact that Google Music also gives me YouTube Red, I'll stick to Google Music for now.

One thing I noticed and confirmed via head-fi is that low impedance headphones (anything under 50 ohms I believe) won't actually trigger the higher powered amp. However, if your headphones have a few removable cable, plug in just the cable. The high impedance should trigger high power mode. Then plug the cable back into your headphones. Play some music and switch hi-fi mode on and off. You should notice a difference.
 

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