Tidal HiFi vs Master: Which One Is Better

By Miley Swift Updated on 2023-03-10 / Update for Tidal Tips

Tidal stands out from other music streaming platforms due to its audio quality. It offers users Tidal Free, Tidal HiFi, and HiFi Plus tiers. Both Tidal HiFi and HiFi Plus offer high-quality streaming audio. When you use the Tidal HiFi plan, you get CD-quality sound. You also get Master Audio when you use Tidal HiFi Plus.

What is the difference between Tidal HiFi and Master other than the price? This article focuses on comparing Tidal HiFi vs Master from different aspects to help you make a wise choice.

tidal hifi vs master

Part 1. Tidal Master vs HiFi: All-in-depth Comparison

Tidal offers free listening plans as well as two paid tiers, Tidal HiFi and HiFi Plus. Tidal Master quality is included in HiFi Plus. Now, let's see the differences between HiFi vs Master Tidal in all aspects.

1. Overview

Tidal HiFi

Tidal HiFi is an entry-level subscription that lets you listen to music in lossless high-fidelity audio. Tidal HiFi streams sound quality in lossless FLAC format at 1411kbps or 16-bit/44.1 kHz resolution. This is the same quality you get on most basic streaming options.

With Tidal HiFi, you can stream over 100 million lossless and compressed tracks and listen to your music in its purest form. You can also get access to Tidal's collection of over 650,000 videos.

Tidal Master

Tidal has partnered with MQA (Master Quality Authenticated) to deliver master-quality audio (typically 96 kHz/24 bits) at the highest possible resolution. With your Tidal HiFi Plus membership, you can listen to and access Master quality tracks on your desktop app, iOS or Android device.

Currently, Tidal has millions of tracks that are available in Tidal Master quality, from major labels, Tidal artist owners, and key independent labels. Also many users tend to download Tidal MQA music to enhance their listening experience.

2. Price

In fact, if you are a new user and want to enjoy Tidal Master or HiFi, you can get Tidal for free through a 30-day trial. After a one-month free trial, you can decide to continue with Tidal HiFi or Master if you want. Below is the comparison table of Tidal HiFi vs HiFi Plus price.

See Also: Get Tidal 6 Month Free Trial in 4 Ways

Individual Student Family Military First Responders
Tidal HiFi $9.99/month $4.99/month $14.99/month $5.99/month $5.99/month
Tidal Master (HiFi Plus) $19.99/month $9.99/month $29.99/month $11.99/month $11.99/month

Tidal HiFi

Tidal HiFi is $9.99/£9.99/AU$ 11.99 per month with a 50% discount for students. For the U.S. military and first responders, they are also eligible for discounts upon confirmation of eligibility. The Tidal HiFi Family Plan costs $14.99 per month for a total of 6 accounts and gives you the right to play Tidal on multiple devices.


If you want to listen to Tidal Master, subscribe to the Tidal HiFi Plus plan for $19.99/£19.99/AU$ 23.99 per month. Students, US military personnel, or first responders also receive discounts upon certification. The family plan costs $29.99 per month and includes a total of 6 accounts. On the Tidal HiFi Plus service, not only do you get free access to Tidal Master, but you also get access to thousands of master-level videos.

tidal master vs hifi price

3. Library

Because the Tidal HiFi and HiFi Plus libraries are virtually identical, once you subscribe to either of these two levels, you have access to Tidal's complete library of over 100 million Tidal HiFi and Master music. When you have no other requirements other than the Tidal library, you'll get a better deal by choosing Tidal HiFi.

However, all songs on Tidal can be listened to in HiFi quality, while MQA is not. There are no exact numbers on how many songs are MQA, but Tidal claims: TIDAL's artist owners and labels have millions of tracks in all genres and will continue to add more master-quality content every week.

4. Audio Quality

The Tidal HiFi delivers uncompressed lossless high-fidelity audio streaming at 44.1 kHz/16 bit or 1411kbps in exceptional lossless CD quality. Since it is a lossless FLAC file with no data loss, Tidal HiFi is suitable for the audiophile or audiophile.

Master Quality Authenticated (MQA) has a much better quality than HiFi sound. It delivers audio at 96 kHz/24 bit and up to 9216 kbps via FLAC or WAV files at the highest possible resolution. So, users will enjoy the exact music the artist intended to convey.

tidal hifi vs master quality

5. Performance

Inspecting Tidal HiFi vs Master in terms of performance, Tidal HiFi audio consumes an average of 5.5MB of data per minute and Master consumes up to 7.5MB of data per minute (varies depending on the specific sample rate). For a better streaming experience on HiFi and Master, it is recommended a steady Internet connection of 1.5 to 2 Mbps or more.

Generally speaking, high-quality lossless files will be larger. On Tidal MQA vs HiFi perception, Master is basically hi-res streaming as compared to Tidal HiFi. And the MQA partnership has brought an absolutely ultimate audio experience.

6. Compatibility

Tidal provides support on a wide range of devices, including audio devices, Smart TVs & Streamers, DJ software, mobiles & tablet, desktop & laptop and more.

tidal hifi vs master compatibility

However, not all Tidal-compatible devices accept Tidal HiFi and Master. In iOS devices, only iPhones and iPads with iOS 13 or higher support Tidal HiFi and Master. For Androids, devices with Android version 6 or higher (Blackberry is not included) and Kindle Fire with Android version 4.4.4 or later are compatible with Tidal Master and HiFi.

On Windows, Windows 7 or later with a CPU of 2.33GHz Intel® Pentium® 4 or faster processor and a RAM of 512MB and 1GB offers support to Tidal HiFi and Master. While on Mac, Tidal HiFi and Master are only available on Mac OS X 10.10 or higher with a processor of Intel® Core™ Duo or quicker and a RAM of 512MB or 1GB.

For web browsers on Mac or Windows computer, only the lastest version of Google Chrome, Firefox, Opera, Brave, and Vivaldi get support from Tidal HiFi and Master. Among Smart TVs and Streamers, Master and Tidal HiFi can be available on Roku TV, Apple TV, Fire TV, Android TV and Chromecast.

With regard to home audio devices, Master and Tidal HiFi integrate with Sonos, Roon, Naim, Heos by Denon, BluOS by Bluesound, Google Cast or Chromecast, and audio devices that can be connected to desktop app via USB.

Part 2. Tidal HiFi vs Master - Comparison Table

Tidal HiFi Master
Price $9.99/month $19.99/month
Library 100M+ songs millions of tracks
Sound Quality up to 1411kbps up to 9216kbps
Perfermance 5.5MB of data per minute 7.5MB of data per minute
Compatiblity more devices fewer devices

The choice between Tidal HiFi or Master really depends on one important factor - how much you value high-quality audio.

If you're an audiophile with a passion for hi-res music, Master will unleash your musical desires. It is worth mentioning that most devices with standard headphone output support Master quality. In order to enjoy MQA at its fullest potential, you may need an external Digital Analog Converter (DAC). Wisely choose the best DAC for Tidal to listen to your music in the best and most accurate way possible.

But if you just prefer to listen to Tidal Music simply through a regular pair of headphones, Tidal HiFi should be sufficient for your needs. It saves you money while still giving you full access to Tidal's entire library and videos.

Part 3. Tips: How to Download Tidal Music without HiFi

As mentioned earlier, both Tidal HiFi and HiFi Plus subscribers can download music from Tidal for offline listening. But notably, you can only do that on the mobile app since there is no download feature on the Tidal desktop. Also, if you cancel Tidal subscriptions, the downloads on Tidal will disappear. In the meantime, please remark that these downloaded caches are solely playable offline within the Tidal app.

And we are here to provide you with a tip to download Tidal HiFi and MQA music without subscribing to Tidal HiFi or HiFi Plus. You just need AudFree Tidal Music Downloader. It allows you to explore Tidal HiFi and Master music on any device without restrictions. It is designed to convert Tidal Music to MP3, AAC, FLAC, WAV, M4A, etc. There is no compromise of original audio quality and metadata.

AudFree Tidal Music Converter

audfree tidal music downloader
  • Download Tidal HiFi and Master music without quality loss
  • Convert Tidal music to unprotected files at 5X speed
  • Can be used for Tidal Free, Tidal HiFi, and HiFi Plus
  • Listen to Tidal music offline on any device, anytime

How to Download Tidal Music without HiFi/HiFi Plus

Follow the stepwise guide to download Tidal HiFi or Master music to computer for offline use anywhere and anytime.

download tidal music without hifi

Step 1. Before you begin, please make sure that the Tidal app and AudFree Tidal Music Converter have been installed on your computer. Launch the converter and the Tidal app will soon open by itself.

Step 2. Find your favorite Tidal tracks or playlist. Next, copy the corresponding link and paste it into the search box on the top of the home screen. Don't forget to click the "+" icon to load Tidal tracks. Alternatively, you can drag and drop songs from Tidal to this converter.

Step 3. After that, switch to the "Menu" option that resembles an icon of three horizontal lines. From the drop-down list, choose "Preferences" and touch "Convert" to unfold the format window. Here, according to requirements, you are free to set the output format and parameters for Tidal Music.

Step 4. As a final step, press the "Convert" button on the bottom right and it will automatically start downloading music from Tidal. Wait until the process gets done, then you can listen to Tidal music with lossless audio quality offline on any player and device.

Part 4. FAQs about Tidal HiFi and Master

Q1: How Can I Listen to Tidal Masters?

A: Once you upgrade to Tidal HiFi Plus, you can enjoy Tidal Master quality music. To find Master songs, go to 'Home' > 'Master Quality Authenticated'. If you want to get the best quality, go to 'Settings' > 'Streaming' > 'Master'.

Q2: How Do You Tell What Streaming Quality Is In?

A: When you play a song, tap on it to go to the 'Now Playing' screen. Then you can see the audio quality under the 'Play/Pause' button.

Q3: What Is the Difference Between HiFi and Masters?

A: Tidal HiFi music quality needs to subscribe to the Tidal HiFi plan at $9.99/month. Masters quality needs to upgrade to the Tidal HiFi Plus plan at $19.99/month. And the sound quality they deliver is different. HiFi streams music in 44.1 kHz/16 bit while Master streams music in 96 kHz/24bit.

Part 5. In Conclusion

Which one is the winner in the Tidal HiFi vs Master comparison? For many audiophiles, the answer is Tidal Master Quality Audio.

But if you just like listening to music, and playing it through a regular pair of headphones, the HiFi plan will be perfect for you. This saves you money while still giving you full access to Tidal's full library and all of its videos.

By the way, AudFree Tidal Music Converter is the best helper when you want to listen to Tidal offline on other devices. It allows you to download music from Tidal even without Tidal HiFi/HiFi Plus.

Miley Swift

Miley Swift

Staff Editor

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Miley Swift is a professional content creator in the field of music entertainment and tech. Passionate about Tidal streaming technology, she is adept in offering and updating relevant tech skills and tools of Tidal music.

AudFree Tidable

Download and convert Tidal HiFi and MQA songs to MP3, FLAC, WAV, M4A at 5X speed.