Qobuz Lies about High-Resolution Music

I got an ad on Facebook today from Qobuz, the beleaguered French music service that offers both streaming and downloads.

Qobuz lies

You may have seen similar graphics before about high-res music; I think Sony was using this in the past. But it’s simply a lie. Digital music files do not create stairstep waveforms, no matter what the resolution. Encoders extrapolate the data in the files to create fully fluid waveforms. Using this sort of illustration is just another way of trying to get gullible people to pay more for music.

And even if it weren’t true, it wouldn’t be a correct visual interpretation of the differences between music files. If a high-resolution file is 24 bits – as Qobuz claims its music is – then where does that show up in the graphic? This stairstep graphic has been used to illustrate differences in sample rate, not bit depth. (And it’s still a lie.)

10 thoughts on “Qobuz Lies about High-Resolution Music

  1. Absolutely right. The whole subject is a bit of a nightmare. What adds to the stupidity is that some people download, or otherwise acquire, allegedly Hi-Res music and then play the same through cut-price speakers or earphones.

  2. Absolutely right. The whole subject is a bit of a nightmare. What adds to the stupidity is that some people download, or otherwise acquire, allegedly Hi-Res music and then play the same through cut-price speakers or earphones.

  3. It’s modern marketing… misleading either accidentally or by intent. If you have a high resolution audio system you might notice the difference, if not you won’t. I do have such a system so I’m hoping that Qobuz will survive but the number of people who have such systems is too small alone to sustain Qobuz. So of course they have to provide normal resolution streaming too. What a pity though that they mislead to try to persuade owners of regular audio products to subscribe to something from which they won’t benefit.
    But then life isn’t fair.

  4. It’s modern marketing… misleading either accidentally or by intent. If you have a high resolution audio system you might notice the difference, if not you won’t. I do have such a system so I’m hoping that Qobuz will survive but the number of people who have such systems is too small alone to sustain Qobuz. So of course they have to provide normal resolution streaming too. What a pity though that they mislead to try to persuade owners of regular audio products to subscribe to something from which they won’t benefit.
    But then life isn’t fair.

  5. Something which only a handful of people in the world understand is that the low-pass filter at the DAC’s output DOES NOT “regenerate” or “recreate” the original waveform. In a properly sampled signal, the complete original waveform is always present, and is never lost.

  6. Something which only a handful of people in the world understand is that the low-pass filter at the DAC’s output DOES NOT “regenerate” or “recreate” the original waveform. In a properly sampled signal, the complete original waveform is always present, and is never lost.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.