Qobuz prépare son arrivée aux Etats-Unis (Yes, the US)

According to The Belgian Radio-Television of the Wallonia-Brussels Federation (RTBF), Qobuz, the French streaming and download service provider, will be offering their three-tier streaming service for residents of the US come 2018.

From the RTBF article (using Google translate):

"We are present in nine European countries, we will open, Italy, Spain, Poland (...) and our other border is the United States, we will be in the spring," said Denis Thébaud to AFP."
As I'm sure most AudioStream readers know, Qobuz offers a lossless tier (Hi-Fi) for £19.99/month or £199.99/year, and a Hi-Res tier (Sublime+) for £349.99/year.

I would categorize this news under "Great News!" for a few reasons—choice is good, and the Qobuz catalog is not the same as Tidal's or Spotify's, etc. And for those people who want to avoid MQA for religious reasons, Qobuz's Sublime+ is MQA-free.

I've been in contact with the company and hope to get more details in the not-so-distant future.

Happy New Year!

COMMENTS
DH's picture

Not mentioned: there is the sublime tier, which gives lossless streaming + significant discounts on buying hi res downloads. The Sublime+, in addition to hi-res streaming, also gives discounts on downloads

Michael Lavorgna's picture
...they will be offering downloads in the US. This is one of my questions for our phone call.
channel-1's picture

And... given the way the music business is configured, their USA catalog may differ from what they offer in Europe.

hltf's picture

That would be a big plus of course. I mean in the way that Tidal does? I like the Qobuz catalog.

A related question Michael. I haven't tried this myself yet as I have been too busy getting used to Roon itself lately. But I hear that Tidal sounds better directly than through Roon? Can you confirm that? Is it worth a try?

Thanks

DH's picture

IME, Tidal doesn't sound better directly.
Roon is very willing to partner with streaming services. The issue is that Roon needs full access to the service database in order to integrate the service fully into the Roon interface (as with Tidal).
Apparently, so far only Tidal has agreed to this. Roon doesn't want to compromise their UI and ability to fetch metadata, which they feel is the essence of their product, for the streaming services.

Michael Lavorgna's picture
I have not spent any time comparing this to Tidal direct as the Roon interface makes it a moot point for my interests.
PAR's picture

Qobuz did state that they would not partner with Roon ( however only a few months ago they said that they would not venture into the USA market, so take your choice). This is unsurprising as If you subscribe to Qobuz you will find that the 2017 user interface is similar to Roon being rich in content with the ability to read the CD booklets, see articles on the artist or music selected, enjoy curated playlists etc.

hltf's picture

Do you know whether Qobuz and Tidal have to pay the record companies a fee for all music they host on their sites? Or do they pay fees based on usage?

Michael Lavorgna's picture
...on a per click basis.
PAR's picture

"on a per click basis."

That is probably correct for the sound recording. However the musical work has its own distinct and separate set of rights one of which is called the mechanical right. That is the right of the owner to permit or prohibit the fixing of a copy of the musical work in question.

In some territories this right is excluded for broadcast use but streaming services are not broadcasters.

After my many years in the music industry I have never known the music publishers to voluntarily give up on any opportunity to exploit a revenue stream. So I would not be surprised to find that the streaming services have to pay the publishers for each musical work held on their servers, whether it's accessed or not.

hltf's picture

these streaming businesses don't seem to do well. Qobuz had some problems of their own a year or two ago although they seem to have come back since. I subscribed to their streaming service for a while myself. May go back to it sometime.

hltf's picture

Any differences noted by anyone in sound of Tidal via Roon and Qobuz?
Thanks

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