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Tidal’s Hi-Res Streaming Gets Cheaper!

by March 28, 2024
Tidal Lowers Prices for Hi-Res Streaming

Tidal Lowers Prices for Hi-Res Streaming

Tidal PlaylistAs I write this in March of 2024, a subscription to Tidal’s HiFi tier costs $10.99 per month — the same you’d pay for Apple Music. But while Apple Music includes high-res audio, Tidal caps its streams to CD-quality unless you pay for the costlier HiFi Plus tier (which has essentially ditched MQA and now offers FLAC instead, up to 24bit/192kHz). Overall, the move from MQA to FLAC has been a popular one for Tidal, but there’s still one catch. Tidal’s HiFi Plus tier will set you back $19.99 per month. That’s a hefty premium to pay for high-res audio, especially when you consider that competitors like Apple include high-res in the price of admission. On April 10th, however, Tidal is making a major change to its pricing structure, and for once, the news is good. 

Beginning on April 10th, 2024, Tidal will follow Apple’s lead by offering just a single tier that includes access to all current streaming features, including premium audio formats like high-res FLAC. Current subscribers to both existing tiers will be transitioned to this new tier, simply called “TIDAL.” Shockingly, the price will be the same $10.99 per month that users previously paid for the CD-quality HiFi tier. The new TIDAL tier will offer access to over 110 million tracks in lossless quality, including FLAC and Dolby Atmos.

The introduction of a single TIDAL subscription tier means more fans across 61 markets globally can discover and enjoy music in HiRes FLAC and (the) Dolby Atmos catalog, in addition to over 110 (million) tracks in lossless quality for a best-in-class listening experience.

— Tidal

For most users, that’s the long and short of it. Those who were paying $10.99 for the CD-quality tier will now get free access to high-res and Dolby Atmos content. Those who were paying $19.99 for the HiFi Plus tier will get the same premium content for way less money. When was the last time that a streaming service price change was actually a good thing for consumers?

Tidal 2

There are some nuts and bolts to get into, but these only affect some subscribers. Those who subscribe to a Tidal Family Plan will also be moved to a one-tier Family subscription priced at $16.99 per month, with the same content and features as the new individual plan. Professional DJs who actively use TIDAL’s DJ integrations (previously available only via the HiFi Plus tier) will have the option to pay an additional $9/month for a new add-on service called DJ Extension. Essentially, they will continue paying the same price they always did — a total of $19.99 per month. The DJ Extension provides access to Tidal’s catalog on specialized DJ hardware and software. Tidal’s suite of DJ partners includes VirtualDJ, Serato, djay Pro, Denon DJ, Pioneer DJ, and many more.

Students currently on Tidal’s discounted student plan will continue to enjoy a reduced rate of $4.99 per month, but Tidal is canceling its discounts for first-responders and members of the military. Existing customers with Military/First-Responder accounts will continue receiving the discounted rate through June 10, 2024. On April 10th — the same day the new one-tier program goes into effect — Tidal will be discontinuing its short-lived Free tier, which offered ad-supported streams at lower audio quality using lossy compression.

More information: Tidal


About the author:
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Jacob is a music-lover and audiophile who enjoys convincing his friends to buy audio gear that they can't afford. He's also a freelance writer and editor based in Los Angeles.

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