November 16, 2020 Home Audio 0

It is nearly impossible to find non-digital music anymore.  There’s vinyl of course but right now I do not have the finances to rebuild my HiFi system…at least not all at once.  Modern digitizing has made music easier to obtain but also much harder to sound truly immersive.  I see folks playing stuff through their phone speakers, through wireless ear pieces and other ways that take an already compromised source and further squish it down.

For a little bit I was able to do a little exploration.  Tidal has something really nice with their MQA certified titles and I was able to listen to Jean Michele Jarre once on Spotify and then on tidal MQA.  I made it a blind test where I had a friend start one of the two without telling me which I was listening to.  The highest quality Spotify vs. Tidal MQA.  Currently I am using my computer with Klipsch Pro Media 2.1 THX certified speakers.  The difference was startling.  The first was the MQA and man was i blown away.  Everything was so much clearer.  I could still hear the 16bit cutoff though which was disappointing.  I then remembered I could raise my sound card to a higher sampling rate to compensate a little bit.  It made no real perceptible difference though.  Then came Spotify.  I had listened to Jarre for many hours on Spotify and it sounded like..320kbps joint stereo audio.  I can immediately hear the compression artifacts even though this was at the maximum quality mp3 could give.

I was only able to afford a tidal sub for a few months…it was also pointless to spend that kind of money when I also didn’t have the gear to back it up.  I have since acquired an Asus Xonar Ae sound card.  it made an immediate difference in my overall sound.  I now had a sound system worthy of the Klipsch Pro Media speakers.  I am now listening to an artist called Two Feet and his sound engineer is really good.  The artist and the engineer have Spotify sounding really nice.  I am hoping there’s an MQA version on Tidal of him as i like his style.

Now that the server project is done for now…I can turn my attention to one of my passions..and that’s music and home sound.  I do sound for the church I attend and that also drives my gear choices for home.  Klipsch has a good pre-black Friday sale going and I intend to restart my home audio hobby again.  Modern technology has made what i built 30 years ago a quarter of the cost of what i built back then..which means for the obscene amount of money i spent back then I could really go nuts.  I have no intention of going nuts..but what I can get for a modest amount is light years ahead of what I built back then.  This is not going to start as home theater but a simply 2.1 system(like my Klipsch system for my computer) for my office/listening room.  More to come including thoughts on why I like the sound of the Klipsch speakers overall.  They are my favorite throughout all of my years of trialing speakers and equipment.  Welcome to my journey and I hope you decide to follow along..:)