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By Jesse Fray
November 6, 2008
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Sales of new CDs have been plummeting for years, thanks in large part to the popularity of the iPod. The battle between the compact disc and the iPod is impacting Lawrence CD stores in more ways than one.
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Really, the problem isn't so much with the disc itself; the problem is that we need to go the route of television, junk out all the old standards, and upgrade to "high-def."These standards...http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_Book_(audio_CD_standard)were perfectly fine in 1985... but with today's technology, processors, etc. these numbers are holding us back. What we really need is: 1. Maximum playing time is 180 minutes (including pauses) 2. Minimum duration for a track is 4 seconds 3. Maximum number of tracks is 299 4. Maximum number of index points (subdivisions of a track) is 99 with no maximum time limit2-channel signed 64-bit PCM sampled at 256,000 Hz.An audio CD can represent frequencies up to 128 kHz-the Nyquist frequency of the 256 kHz sample rate.I admit I'm fudging a lot of numbers--but the point I'm trying to make is that there's no reason to move music over to 1st generation DVDs, now that video is moving over to Blu Ray.Over and out... --Ag
Say what you will about compact discs, mp3 files, and the "crappy sound" they serve up, the distortion, yadda yadda yadda.But answer me this...How many artists can afford to purchase their own vinyl record pressing plant?Really?Consider this, from the latest issue of "Spin" magazine:http://www.spin.com/articles/faking-bandI've run across this more than once on iTunes--you want to buy a song from an album, one that was probably never officially released as a "single" by the recording company... and the track says "Album Only." Which means that, instead of buying that 99-cent song, you have to fork over $14 for one track that you want, and 8-10 tracks you have no interest in.Wait wait wait wait.... I'm getting a sense of... deja vu...Say what you will about the compact disc, but it has, ultimately, busted down more doors than the FBI and the ATF, and freed more "slaves" than Abraham Lincoln.1) Artists don't need a recording contract; they can record their music in a studio (optional in 2008), get the master sound files, press the CDs themselves, sell them online... no real major record label necessary.2) Sure cassettes had everybody making their own mix tapes back in the day... but if you wanted to share it with a friend, and that friend wanted to share it with another friend... a copy of a copy of a copy of a copy of a sounds like a turd. Not so with digital files and "Red Book Standard" audio CDs.3) So, the record sounds a bit better than the CD? Try this: Go to your mother's, sister's, wife's sewing kit. Grab a straight pin or a needle. Now, drag that needle lightly across the surface of your favorite vinyl record; then, drag it lightly across the surface of your favorite music CD. Pop each one into its respective playback device. Which one sounds better now? Exactly. Which is why...4) Most used records sound like crap, unless they were only played once, and then stored in a temperature-stable, low-humidity environment free of dust, sunlight, vibrations, noise... life, in general. Used CDs, on the other hand, represent the best value available to the consumer. You get what you want at a deep discount, most reputable retailers will buff out scratches for you (have any luck buffing out those scratches on your vinyl?), and offer a "guarantee" if you find more problems after you've played it a couple of times.5) Here's another fun experiment: Take your vinyl record out to you car and load it into... oh, sorry, never mind.I'm kinda rambling now, but I think I've hit the dartboard at least a few times.[more]
gccs14r (Anonymous) says:"I don't know how anyone listens to mp3s. CDs are bad enough."SMe (Anonymous) says:"CD sales are down. No big surprise look at the trash being considered "Music." Then consider the terrible mastering and compression 'cause "I want my song to sound louder that her song.""Yargh! Gittoff my lawn!
"I'm sorry, but there's just no way you can convince me that a medium that distorts the artist's intended sound is in any way superior to anything."Have you heard of vacuum tube amplifiers? These are considered the ultimate 'top end' amp with claims of 'richness', 'depth' and 'life' added to the music, where a modern digital amp is usually considered 'flat' and 'lifeless'. In reality, all these claims of the vacuum tube amp can be labeled with another name, too....distortion. It may be pleasant distortion, but still distortion.I guess it helps to look at music the same as a digital picture...yes, you can always have perfect lighting, perfect contrast/brightness, and razor sharp focus. But every now and then, it's fun to take a picture by candle light, throw in some shadows and a little soft focus.Looks like CD's are headed the way of 8 track and cassettes before them. Frankly, I'm surprised they have held on so long.
I'm sorry, but there's just no way you can convince me that a medium that distorts the artist's intended sound is in any way superior to anything. If you're over, say, 30 I can see you liking vinyl either a) out of some nostalgic reason, or b) since you were raised on it, it's the "norm" for your listening sensibility. If you're younger than that, your "love" of vinyl is an irritating affectation. You might as well declare that's it's all been downhill since they got rid of wax cylinders. Or wear a monocle, or a tail. I straddle that age line. I remember the first time I heard a CD. I was maybe 11 or 12, and it was some sort of remastered Beach Boys album. My first thought was "My God, how did we not know how much records sucked?" I have not changed my opinion.
CD sales are down. No big surprise look at the trash being considered "Music." Then consider the terrible mastering and compression 'cause "I want my song to sound louder that her song."Interesting article in the new Stereophile. Shows a spectrum analysis of a snippet of sound from the original master tape with response above 20K, same snippets from vinyl with response above 20K and CD no response above 20K.Always thought it was funny how a CD with the same artist expenses but less material and packaging cost more than a vinyl pressing.Remember, "Perfect sound forever." Oh, yea I forgot the thin layer of reflective film can (and does) breakdown and separate.
gccs14r (Anonymous) says: I don't know how anyone listens to mp3s. CDs are bad enoughWhat cave do live in?
CD sales may be going down, but look into the resurgence of vinyl. Record sales have been going up for several years. Record pressing plants are back logged by all the new artists looking to release their work on vinyl. More people are coming to value the better quality of sound that records hold.
Thats what happens when you gouge the consumers with high prices
I don't know how anyone listens to mp3s. CDs are bad enough.
I don't have a ipod not do I have a cell phone. Those devices are ruining people.
For the love of Pete, it's "compact disc" not "compact disk." If you're going to run a story about technology, get your terms straight.
That dam Obama is ruining the capitalistic sales already.....
Indeed jonas. . .the headline should read "Stores see decline in CD sales & we've landed on the moon" with a clip from dumb and dumber.
Ummm. . . duh. That's because they'll be simply gone within a decade, save for us old farts who still have a couple lying around from the good ol' days.
Still paying for my content, often in the form of CDs in addition to any of the electronic copies ( for which I also pay ) . Rather have those higher quality renderings, and downsample, myself.
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