To this speciﬁcation the new 8300CDQ adds high-quality analogue preamp circuitry, coupled to three stereo pairs of line-level RCA inputs to connect analogue sources. The preamp circuitry is kept as simple as possible using high-quality components to maintain signal purity, with line input signals passing to a precision analogue volume stage. Much eﬀort has gone into the physical layout of the 8300CDQ’s circuitry, protecting the sensitive preamp section from noise interference.
Taking it to the next level the 8300CDQ now includes MQA technology, which enables you to play back MQA audio files and streams, delivering the sound of the original master recording.
MQA (Master Quality Authenticated) is an award-winning British technology that delivers the sound of the original master recording. The master MQA file is fully authenticated and is small enough to stream or download.
The 8300CDQ adds further ﬂexibility by incorporating a dedicated direct-coupled headphone amp with current-feedback circuitry. Accessed via a front-mounted 6.35mm socket, its gain bandwidth and high slew rate ensure a dynamic, detailed and engaging performance with all manner of headphone types.
The ﬁnal key feature introduced in the 8300CDQ is decoding of MQA (Master Quality Authenticated). The brainchild of Meridian Audio co-founder Bob Stuart, MQA is a digital audio format designed for high-resolution music streaming and is available via subscription to Tidal’s ‘HiFi’ tier (among other sources). The 8300CDQ unpacks MQA data – received via the USB input – at the original ﬁle’s full resolution and passes the signal through its DAC and preamp stages, ready to feed a power amp or active speakers.
Audiolab’s MQA decoding solution was developed by John Westlake, one of Britain’s foremost digital audio experts. There are various ways to enable MQA playback on audio devices, and not all are equal sonically. Westlake’s solution maximizes the format’s potential, just as the 8300CDQ’s design draws the best sound quality from other audio codecs and, of course, CDs