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Higher Audio Quality

Higher Audio Quality

Status: Open Ideas

How about higher audio quality?  Amazon has introduced this feature, and others have been ahead of Pandora as well.  It would be great to have the Genome Project advantage with higher audio quality.  Do others agree?


Moderator Edit: Edited title for clarity

Labels (1)
Opening Act

+1 for higher quality audio. I'd like to see (hear) 128KB/s (VBR) Opus. for more info and links to studies done. Results show Opus is perceptually superior to MP3, Vorbis, and others. It is also technically superior and a free format.

Yes, the number is lower but it is said to sound lossless at this quality bitrate. The bitrate can go higher i.e. for 5.1 and 7.1 surround sound .


Frankly, I'm offended that they want $165/yr for a family plan and the "higher quality audio" is only one step up. It still sounds terrible. For this reason alone, I don't think I'm going to continue with my trial. The quality to price ratio simply isn't worth it.


Honestly I’d be happy with 96 he-aac plus (rather than the current 64kb he-aac plus they offer for mobile) as that would give pretty decent sound and not use too much data. He-aac usually caps at 96kb anyway and sounds roughly as good as 192 whereas 64kb aac plus sounds roughly as good as 128 based on listening tests. 

For anything streaming wifi where data isn’t an issue I see no reason why at least 256 aac like Apple Music or 320 like Spotify isn’t standard. 

So, again my preferred rates would be: mobile 96 he-aac or higher, and wifi/home devices at 256 or higher. 

Perhaps pandora doesn’t have the other bitrates encoded in their library to simply switch on? Without ever receiving any formal responses from then we just don’t know. 

Local Performer

Would be great and keep my monet

Local Performer

This is definitely needed, at least on the home device streaming. I use the app on my tv and it’s capped at 128kbs? My speaker system is going to waste. 
I will switch streaming services to anyone who supports the full capabilities of my equipment.


I don't understand why Pandora doesn't offer decent audio quality.  Pandora is behind every other streaming service in this regard!!!  With high quality headphones and home speaker systems such as Sonos, Pandora's best available of 192kbps is very subpar and unacceptable

That is very poor when every other streaming service offers at least 320 kbps.  Pandora should offer to pay a higher subscription that allows HD/high fidelity audio such as is available through Tidal and Amazon Music.  It makes no sense that Pandora is so behind on this point.  
I will very likely be cancelling Pandora and switching to another service with high quality audio if this does not change very soon.

Local Performer

I would give up my grandfathered priced premium subscription just to get higher quality sound. No other streaming music service I have tried is as easy to create custom stations that play what I want to hear. Pandora is perfect with the exception of HD music since you rarely need to interact with it to hear music you like once your station(s) are dialed in unlike the other music services. If Pandora offered this I believe it will become serious competition to higher streaming quality services like Tidal, Spotify, and Amazon HD music increasing their subscriber base.

Opening Act

For me, for an ordinary smartphone 190kb is enough and no more is required, in fact, if you compare the Spotify and Pandora, they are identical in sound on smartphones. Spotify uses outdated ogg codec and it does not sound expressive even at 320kb. Pandora sounds livelier.

At home I have Creative AE-5 sound card at my PC, the software from this card allows me to pull the quality of mp3 or its subtypes to a good sound level, it sounds very cool after such processing, so for me the sound quality in Pandora is good for daily tasks. It feels good as any other service, don't look at the numbers, Spotify has completely different psychoacoustics and as it uses old-fashioned codec, it sounds really crappy on my PC without any sound processing.

By the way, modern receivers can pull low bitrate stream.

If you enter it into Pandora, you'll get flac at once. Then I'll cancel Qobuz subscription at once, xD.

But don't forget, no other streaming service will give you such a rich experience in listening to music, appreciate it, Spotify is the bottom in terms of recommendation system and in general, as a service if you use it for a long time in it so many gaps that you'll develop a strong phobia and fear of listening to music. Pandora gives you freedom without locking you into narrow genres and you should give it a huge bow for that. Thank you Pandora for having you with us.

Local Performer

I disagree as I can clearly hear the difference in sound quality and Pandora needs to up their game.  Qobuz is superior in sound but inferior in the way they serve up the music I want to hear.  There is a caveat however... SOME stations on Pandora sound better than others.. not sure why or how that is but I'm sure they know.

Opening Act

Well you compared Qobuz de benchmark sound and standard sound, I was comparing among regular services, Pandora sounds as good as Spotify.
That's why I say that if you introduce something radically new, only Flac.
But if Pandora introduces Flac, it will be the best service among all the existing ones, with its system of recommendations, Pandora has no competitors and will never have.

Local Performer

I agree in part... the whole purpose of my posting this in the first place (months ago) was that I'd love the Qobuz quality but on Pandora because their platform is the best, just not the best sound.  With bandwidth the way it is today low quality MP3s are not necessary.   Just as Netflix charges more for 4k, Pandora could charge a little more for high quality.  I even tried to tell management... they could CRUSH the competition... it makes no sense.   as I said before... I guess when you have $Billions in stock market $ you don't give a sh*t anymore.. who knows.   They've gotta be careful they don't end up a Blockbuster Video in a Netflix world.   I have a passion for high quality music and the world is missing out...  we listened to better quality 35 years ago!   This thread has been around a couple of years and Pandora doesn't care.