First for those new to Qobuz you pay a monthly fee and after that almost all the tracks they have are available to stream, in fact if you click a link you can also play them when offline. Their cheapest offering is for those happy with their music in MP3 quality. I was given a trial of their mid-range offering that allows you to stream in 16bit FLAC for most of their catalogue. Full details of all their offerings can be found on their site, link at the end. Their offering of the MP3 quality is now in line with Spotify whose offering I have also recently looked at.
If you are listening when out and about it makes sense to stream in MP3 if only for the saving in mobile data charges.
However in the home you can tell the quality differential you get with the lossless format offered by FLAC and if you have those tracks when you are away from home and decent headphones you can still enjoy the higher quality but it does cost.
A few words on streaming this can be 16Bit FLAC or sometimes for older recordings MP3 and if you use their ‘Player’ this only gives MP3. If you download to purchase this can be 24Bit, 16Bit or occasionally MP3 sometimes there is a choice with the MP3 obviously being cheaper.
I noted there are a couple of adverse reviews of the Qobuz site about Windows 10 not working with Qobuz I tried on two machines first one that had been upgraded and second a new one that came with it pre-installed both worked without any problems.
When I first looked at Qobuz certain things did not work as they should on Android and indeed to my mind one still does not in that the screen still switches orientation even though I have it set not to and no other App on my device suffers in the same way.
Now while they do mobile versions for both iOS and Android users this latest upgrade is for Android - for some reason this does not include Kindle - the version I downloaded to my Android Tablet was 3.1.2 8. They also have a version for Windows Phone and they state that a new Apple version will soon be available.
Spotify certainly still have a larger Jazz catalogue but if you want higher quality than MP3 then they cannot deliver. So while Qobuz have the quality they do not seem to have the extensive catalogue especially as far as UK Jazz is concerned.
The new Android version allows a second screen which allows you do view more details – when available – like we used to with an LP sleeve while playing the music, this feature seems to have fallen out of favour with CDs unless it’s a re-release of an LP when you probably need a magnifying glass to read the biography details when scaled down.
While pop music is not my scene I looked up David Bowie and it listed 711 albums by him or featuring him and it included the one released just before his death.
It’s a nice service but still it has faults and on occasions like when you go to Help screens a knowledge of French is useful.
Full details of their various services are available from www.Qobuz.com
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