Feb 17, 201966 views

Why no MQA capable DACs?

There have been a lot of DAC drops over the past year, but I can't recall any of them including an MQA capable DAC. Any chance we can see one of those in the future, preferably one with multiple outputs and a remote?

Changes like MQA take a long time for many complanoes to implement, and there's no guarantee it will be successful. Just look at the seeming stagnation of DSD, or the death of reel-to-reel, etc.
MQA = Shill Scheme
What do you consider MQA exactly? It seems like they drop all the time to me... Apparently MQA means something different than I assumed it did.
Master Quality Authenticated, it's similar to many of the audio packing codec's we've seen over the years and can ride on FLAC or ALAC files. This one claims to be able to "unfold" hi-resolution audio up to 96kHz/24-bit via software decoding and 192kHz/24 bit via hardware decoding. MQA enabled DAC's have to pay licensing fees to these guys https://www.mqa.co.uk/ to be able to decode the 2nd "fold". This hardware decoding option is what OP is referencing, but the partnerships are pretty limited at this time: https://www.mqa.co.uk/customer/our-partners The manufacturers that do offer it don't tend to do so cheaply. Since many of these are very upmarket offerings you won't see them here any time soon. I'm still undecided on MQA, interested enough with software decoding level from Tidal to try out some hardware decoding... a la iFi Nano BL.
Teac NT-505 has my vote
There aren't many options for headphone-centric MQA DAC's. Maybe the Pro-Ject Pre Box S2? That being said, does MQA even offer a perceptible improvement over FLAC in blind tests? I thought MQA was just a company attempting a power grab on digital audio, to force you to buy specific hardware to manipulate the audio, essentially a DRM scheme.