Author Topic: Tidal streaming issues with 3rd party devices when streaming quality set to HiFi  (Read 170 times)

Offline JamesB

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Just an fyi for those subscribed to Tidal's HiFi streaming service and streaming using a device (i.e. not through Tidal's app).  After a handful of back and forth with Kef's and Tidal's support, finally an answer to what the source of the problem is, but unfortunately no permanent solution as of yet...

Device Used
Kef LS50 Wireless streaming Tidal via Kef's app.  Not sure though if other devices are affected, but per Kef's support, it is a Tidal issue, so it's possible that other 3rd party devices are also affected.

Observed Problem/Issue
Music cuts off around 5 to 10 seconds after the song starts and sorts of loops ever so slightly forward and constantly cutting off (basically un-listenable), but only manifests when Tidal's streaming quality is set to HiFi. This problem basically manifested overnight w/o any app or firmware updates done.

Temporary Solution
As per Kef's support, the temporary solution is to set Tidal's streaming quality (from w/in Kef's app) to High instead of HiFi (effectively downgrading the quality). Apparently the issue has been reported by a few people globally and they have forwarded it to Tidal but have not gotten any feedback from them as of yet.

Diagnosed Problem
After reporting the problem to Tidal's support and a bit of back and forth, their network team confirmed that the problem is related to ISP connectivity and that they are already working on the problem with the ISPs.  Wanting to confirm that indeed it is an ISP connectivity issue (my current ISP is mWeb on LTE-A via the Rain network), I used my phone (provider is MTN) as wireless hotspot and connected my speakers to it with Tidal streaming quality set to HiFi, and voila, problem gone and source of the problem confirmed. Reverted back to the Rain network, and problem manifests again.

Unfortunately, there is nothing much I can do but wait until Tidal sorts out the issue with my ISP (most likely a setting, patch or plugin) while paying for the premium subscription that I cannot use.

Strangely enough though, the problem does not manifest when using Tidal's app with my phone or PC with the streaming quality set to HiFi on either ISP. so Tidal may be exposing a different stream or using a different mechanism as from what they expose to 3rd party devices/streamers.

Offline Hi-Phibian

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Temp fix google chromecast audio with tidal app. 







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Offline JamesB

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I don't think the Kef's are compatible with google chromecast audio. The next best thing I do is run Tidal off my phone/PC and into the Kef's aux input, but then unneccessary digital to analogue (from PC/phone), analogue to digital (after Kef's aux in) conversions occur.

Offline Hi-Phibian

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Chrome cast has optical digital output. 







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Offline JamesB

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Thanks G, didn't know it had optical output and actually though all along that it was a software product. Would be a good solution though as Kef's app really leaves a lot to be desired, but the TV is already using the optical inputs.

Offline gavinbirss

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Curious is Kef device Android based?

A 3rd party plugin is available for kodi if you are able to install kodi.

Offline JamesB

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Curious is Kef device Android based?

A 3rd party plugin is available for kodi if you are able to install kodi.

Don't know what platform they are running the speakers, but the app that controls the speakers is available in both Android and iOS.  I don't think you can install or use Kodi with it though.