Tone 2 Pro - Khadas Audio Dashboard Sample Rate

Hi guys, this could be just a dumb problem, but Khadas Audio Dashboard (KAD) sample rate, when using Tidal, only changes from 44000 Hz to 48000 Hz even when i’m supposedly playing higher sample rate files.
T2P flashes once with the sample rate, but KAD does not reflect that sample rate.

try having Tidal connect through ASIO

Hi @Pedro_TL

From what I understand since testing my Tone2 Pro, the Audio Dashboard is showing exactly the sample rate of the stream being sent from the player on your computer, smartphone… to the Tone2Pro, and not what is playing inside the Tone2 Pro.
So :
if you set Tidal app on “non-exclusive mode”, it acts like a non MQA DAC and the Audio Dashboard will show the sample rate you’ve set on the Playback Device menu in Windows, up to 384kHz (I was able to set 384 on Windows 10, but 192 only on Windows 7). Led will be yellow.

if you set Tidal app on “exclusive-mode”, the app takes directly control of the Tone2 Pro and you have two options :

  • no MQA passthrough : Tidal app does the first unfold (decoding) so a Master song will go up to 88.2 or 96 kHz, and the Audio Dashboard will show these numbers (stream output from Tidal app).
    Then the Tone2 Pro does the following unfolds (if any) and Led location on the Tone2 Pro will show you the sample rate for the master of this track used to create the MQA file in Tidal, and not the sample rate played. The led color will be Magenta.
  • MQA passthrough on : Tidal app send the file without doing anything on it, so it’s 44.1 or 48, and Audio Dashboard confirm these numbers. The Tone2 Pro then does all unfolds (only decoding if the MQA file is up to 88.2 or 96, or decoding+rendering if needed. The led location will show you the sample rate for the master of this track used to create the MQA file in Tidal, and the color will be Green or Blue, depending on MQA or MQA Studio file.

So it’s all good.

NOTE : at this moment, I’m not sure of one thing : what MQA processing is really doing after the decoding (once it’s at 88.2 or 96), it looks like it’s only upsampling playback because, to make it simple, a 3min song with MQA 96 has the same size than one MQA 192 or 384.
So I think that the LED spot showing the sample rate shows the original sample rate of the master used to create the MQA file for Tidal.
The first unfold (decoding) is the one that for sure give access to more data as the 3min file MQA 24/96 has a size about twice the size of it’s FLAC 16/48 version (if it was PCM 24/96, it would have 3 times the size : 16->24 makes it 1.5 the size and 48->96 doubles it, so 3 times)
I think it’s what is behind all the MQA debate

IMPORTANT THING TO CHECK : on Tidal, some album have different version, even several MQA version, with some having both MQA 24/96 and MQA 16/48… you wont see it in the Audio Dashboard, but from the led location only, or from a software like Roon or others, but not from the Tidal app.

The Tidal app won’t let you use ASIO directly, so you can do it only by :

  • using Tidal via a software like Roon
  • installing and selecting VB Audio Hi-Fi Cable as output from the Tidal app with exclusive mode, it sends as bit perfect, then lauching ASIO Bridge allow to get this stream and link it to a device supporting ASIO, and it works, but it’s useless as the Tidal -> Tone2 Pro works perfectly as described above.

Thank you very much, for a such a detailed explanation.