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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
I just don’t get it. It is the only thing keeping me from Pandora Premium (or whatever they would call their higher quality stream). It would be nice if they caught up to everyone else with at least 320 bps, or perhaps CD quality, let alone the newer services that are offering Hi Res audio streams. I have been asking for this via email and requests for years and it seems they are not listening, or have no interest in improving the quality of their sound. In my opinion, they have the best algorithms to determine the music for their stations, but the worst sound quality of all that I have listened to. (have tried Spotify, Deezer, Amazon, Apple, Tunein and many more. ). Listen mostly via Sonos Connect and via my stereo system. The lower quality sound is ok for my bluetooth headphones and in my car, but not when listening at home. PLEASE....consider this....Thanks.
@FLuser exact same story with myself. Have asked again and again. Back in January I finally jumped ship (I was a paid Premium subscriber for years) and signed up for Qobuz which is nothing short of incredible. I still use free Pandora for just casual listen and to find new stuff. Actually, since Pandora doesn't seem interested in high bitrate audio, this combo works great.
I had gone to Deezer Hifi, and although it sounds much better, I did miss the radio stations on Pandora (but hate the lousy sound quality). (and even more annoying and a bit insulting, when you send them an email with the recommendation, all I usually have gotten back on the first attempt is a generic response with a list of their bit rates. They don’t really ever take customer service seriously here at Pandora. Guess, perhaps they make the bulk of their money from the free radio with ads, and are not really serious about going after any of the better sound quality customers. Just curious, how are the stations on Qobuz....I have looked into it preliminarily....and was considering a trial...especially now that Sonos is upgrading their operating system to accommodate Hi Res audio.
@FLuser It's sort of hard to directly compare Qobuz with Pandora - the interfaces are entirely different and the focus is as well. It works great via Bluesound or Sonos, and the mobile app is great itself. My favorite thing is the desktop app (and mobile to a lesser extent) ... They have many, many, many playlists as well as "Panoramas" as they call them. It's more for focused listening and to me it rather feels like having a subscription to an old music mag, like Rolling Stone or Paste, that also plays hi-res music (the best I've heard in terms of quality) while you read. It's fantastic but very different, and that's why I still use free Pandora occasionally - it's algorithm like so many mention is unbeatable for casual listening, and I've realized that when I am just listening casually I usually am not paying enough attention to be bothered by the lower quality. The ads are a little annoying but they're not frequent. So between the two I'm sorted. That's been my last six months anyhow and I'm digging it.
I may wind up trying it. I mainly use Sonos when at home. Today, I just decided to try the Amazon HD/UHD via Sonos. Years ago, I downloaded the Amazon app to my iPhone and added it to Sonos but never used it. Figured it was easy to try, no new software, and with Prime, much cheaper than all the competitors, about $10 a month (with the annual plan). I recently let my Deezer Hifi/Premium subscription lapse. I had used Pandora premium for years, and downgraded to Plus when I started Deezer a couple years ago, to get rid of the annoying ads, but if I could find a reasonable sounding replacement that had both good quality audio via Sonos and good radio station selections that learn what I like....I would switch. Much easier to go with 1 streaming service. I already found something in the Amazon that needs improving....there seems to be no way to save Stations you like to a favorites list or bookmark them. Also, any station you create, it seems there is no way to get back to it on Sonos.
@FLuser I signed up for Qobuz with a yearly on sale (not sure if the promo is still active) that came to around 12.50/mo. Considered Amazon briefly and used to purchase music from there, but frankly I'm not giving them anymore money (they've enough). I'd rather pay an entity that specializes in audio delivery ... the curation alone is worth it to me. Amazon is fine for data storage and virtual services but beyond that I'm not interested. Anything that doesn't come with my Prime membership no-strings I leave alone.
I find I am longing for improved audio quality, as Bluetooth and codecs improve, I feel this will become a growing concern. I really enjoy Pandora. I feel it is the best service but quality is a growing concern. And competition is rolling out higher bitrates.
I prefer Pandora’s ability to help me discover new music but Pandora’s maximum desktop audio quality of 192kbps is simply not enough for high quality sound reproduction and/or long-term listening. There needs to be at minimum an option to stream at 320kbps for good fidelity on even a lower end set-up and so the listening is unconsciously non-fatiguing.
Ive been using Pandora around 20 years and i would have gladly been a plus user at an annual rate for several years at least if the bit-rate was higher. Ive always loved Pandora have been sharing it since i was young but i am older now and have much better equipment and the fullness and clarity of the sound is lacking with you and I'm sad please Pandora my love don't do me like this.
Edit: so i didn't know there was a difference between plus and premium so maybe ill try premium first before i decide to cry.
@jrlynx13 the sound quality is no different between Plus and Premium... only the ability to play complete albums, or select specific songs. (It's really, really well executed and my favorite of all the services in terms of usability, but yeah... the SQ has been lacking for a very long time.)