MQA update for AudioQuest Dragonfly Black and Red coming May 17 – new partnerships announced

Coming to a laptop near you very soon.

The MQA freight train keeps rolling down the tracks of high-fidelity seemingly without resistance. A press release just announced that portable USB DAC wünderkind AudioQuest will be releasing a free, and highly-anticipated MQA firmware update to its award-winning, and crazy good/affordable/popular Dragonfly Black and Red on May 17.

This is something that Dragonfly owners who are Tidal HiFi subscribers have been eagerly waiting for – full hardware decoding/unfolding of the original MQA studio masters that have been streaming on Tidal for the last four months in their 24/16 origami wrappers.

Also announced are a slew of new partnerships, please check the press release below.

–Rafe Arnott

From the press release:

This update is the first implementation of the MQA rendering technology, making an AudioQuest DragonFly Black or Red the perfect and affordable complement to MQA-ready streaming services.

The list of MQA-enabled hardware partners continues to grow, from boutique to big brands, including: AudioQuest, CanEVER Audio, dCS, Esoteric, IAG, Krell, Lumin, Mark Levinson, MOON by Simaudio, Pro-Ject Audio Systems, TEAC and Wadax.

Jim Garrett, Director, Marketing & Product Management, at Mark Levinson commented, “We are proud to announce the addition of MQA playback support to our Mark Levinson No.519 Audio Player. The ability to offer our customers the highest level of fidelity is paramount to our brand and MQA is a natural extension of that approach.”

Audiolab and Quad are aiming to launch several products with MQA integrated into their premium 8300 and Artera ranges respectively. IAG’s engineers have spent additional development time to ensure that existing customers will have the option to upgrade their current 8300 or Artera DAC board to make them MQA compatible. Additionally, Krell is planning to include MQA in its Digital Vanguard Integrated Amplifier and Vanguard Universal DAC products.

Dominique Poupart, Product Manager at MOON by Simaudio, stated, “MQA is the ideal format for high quality streaming, and the perfect way to explore new music through various music services.  We are excited about integrating this technology into select audio products coming soon in our MOON line-up.”

New Integration Partners

StreamUnlimited is implementing MQA into their modular software solution, StreamSDK. “We are proud to be able to partner with a company and a product developed with such a passion for music, and look forward to helping our brand customers and manufacturers include this technology in their new product lines,” commented Frits Wittgrefe, CEO of StreamUnlimited.

Conversdigital will also be implementing MQA into their mconnect module and are already in discussions with many manufacturers on the implementation work.

Existing MQA Partners

MQA’s existing hardware partners, who will be demonstrating MQA at Munich (see notes for more details) include: Aurender, Bel Canto, Bluesound, NAD, Brinkmann, Meridian, MSB, Mytek, Onkyo, Pioneer and Technics.

Commenting on the expanding availability of high resolution audio products and services powered by MQA, Mark Piibe, Executive Vice President, Global Business Development and Digital Strategy, Sony Music Entertainment stated, “As a long-running supporter of MQA’s high resolution audio solutions, we are encouraged to see a growing number of digital service providers and consumer hardware companies adopting MQA technology to make studio sound quality from Sony Music artists available to streaming music consumers.”

Mike Jbara, CEO of MQA, added, “We are delighted to work with so many partners, across all the different areas of this business, with the shared and constant goal of improving audio quality for all. We are looking forward to many more announcements at the High End show in Munich and beyond.”

MQA High End 2017 Press Events

To learn more about MQA’s philosophy and approach, join MQA founder Bob Stuart at the following sessions:

Friday, May 19th

  • 11:00am – 12:00pm | Hosted by journalist Joachim Pfeiffer | Audio Reference room
  • 2:00pm – 2:30pm | Hosted by Malte Ruhnke (Stereoplay) | Audio Reference room
  • 4:30pm – 5:00pm | Bob Stuart | Technology Stage

Saturday, May 20th

  • 11:00am – 12:00pm | Hosted by journalist Joachim Pfeiffer | Audio Reference room
  • 4:30pm – 5:00pm | Bob Stuart | Technology Stage


About Rafe Arnott 389 Articles
Editor of InnerFidelity and AudioStream


  1. I’ve been waiting since January 12th, when Dragonfly support for MQA was to be “available by the end of the month”. I’m not holding my breath.

    But I’m not cancelling my TIDAL subscription either.

  2. I’ve been waiting since January 12th. I’m not holding my breath, but I’m not cancelling my TIDAL subscription either…

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