Digital music sales drop for first time since advent of iTunes Store, execs blame streaming

124

Comments

  • Reply 61 of 82
    philboogiephilboogie Posts: 7,675member
    zoetmb wrote: »
    What has happened to me many times is that I play a commercial CD of a classic album and think, "this sounds like crap - the vinyl sounded much better."  So I pull out the vinyl and put it on and it sounds far worse.    I think a lot of what we think about the sound of analog vinyl is nostalgia and a lot of it has to do with the ears we listened with back then.

    Having said that, there are certain types of distortion that we like to hear.    Certain types of over-modulation generates odd harmonics and we "love" the sound of odd harmonics (like a fuzz guitar).    Analog does that.    

    Funny how the mind works!
    There are several things I find funny surrounding the vinyl hype:   the first is that back in the vinyl days, all we did was complain about lousy vinyl quality.    That's why people sought out pressings from the UK and Japan.   The other is that in case of new modern vinyl, it's all getting mastered using the digital master, same as the CD.    Some of the best vinyl cutters have sold their lathes and left the business because the record labels won't pay for a separate vinyl master.    So these vinyl junkies think they're listening to analog, but they're not because it's a digital master.   Only if they buy used classic vinyl is there a possibility of hearing true analog material. 

    I see there are now 180 grams vinyl being the 'latest thing to get'. I take it this is 'just a scam'? At $20-35 a pop, I would think so, but this is of course purely an emotional reaction.
    One of the reasons why I think audio sounded better "back then" is that the old tube systems had a much warmer sound that today's IC electronics.    (They also had more distortion and tended to hum.)

    I haven't listened to a tube system in a long time, but do remember it 'sounding great'. But like you said, that could be just my mind playing tricks here. There's a store right around the corner that I reulary pass, and the only clients in there have 100k cars pulled up in front. (if that is anything to go by; I haven't checked their prices since I'm not interested, but do presume it being expensive)
    I have a bunch of 60s-70s mostly used (some new) vinyl for sale.   If anyone is interested in receiving the list, they can contact me.    

    After these posts, who want them¿ Kidding. Thanks, but no thanks. Besides, the shipping costs would be quite an add-on for me.

    I really enjoy this tech talk on audio; going to read up on it tomorrow. Should head for bed now; it's almost 3am here. Thanks for your insightful posts.
  • Reply 62 of 82
    zoetmbzoetmb Posts: 2,655member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post





    Funny how the mind works!

    I see there are now 180 grams vinyl being the 'latest thing to get'. I take it this is 'just a scam'? At $20-35 a pop, I would think so, but this is of course purely an emotional reaction.

     

    The 180-gram vinyl does serve a purpose - it tends to warp less then the lighter vinyl of yesteryear.    But the $20 to $35 a pop is not just because of the 180 gram, it's to pay the licensing costs (these are mostly not put out by the original labels) and the higher manufacturing costs (since these are low volume pressings).

     

    Also, if you take a pop album that sold for $6.98 in 1975, that is $30.24 in today's (U.S.) dollars.   So it's not that bad a deal.    It just seems that way because in spite of all the complaints about how CDs were too expensive, the price of music has not kept pace with inflation by any means, which is one of the reasons why the industry is in such trouble.      

     

    In the U.S., in the early 1960s, singles (albeit a 2-sided single) listed for $1 and generally sold for 64 to 66 cents.   64 cents in 1965 is $4.74 today, yet people complain about $1.29 i-Tunes singles.    A $5 LP in 1967 would be $34.89 today, yet most new CDs sell for $12 to $14 and have far more tracks, yet people cry rip-off.   And most mid-line catalog CDs sell today for 2 for $7 or something similar.    That's incredibly inexpensive.

  • Reply 63 of 82
    philboogiephilboogie Posts: 7,675member
    zoetmb wrote: »
    ^ post

    1) You post things into perspective; we could use that more around here.

    2) So even if we buy two songs from iTunes at $1,29 should the artist put a new / different song on the B-side of the vinyl it would still be cheaper today. Wow.
  • Reply 64 of 82
    elrothelroth Posts: 1,201member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by pigybank View Post

     

    You do realize that iTunes Match automatically upgrades all of your tracks, right?  Even ones you didn't buy from iTunes.


    No - my tracks are Apple Lossless (from CDs), so iTunes Match would DOWNgrade them.

     

    Interesting that still 57% of album sales are from CDs. And that doesn't even include the sales of used CDs, which is a very large market itself, but the record industry of course doesn't add in those sales. Adding used CDs in may take CD album sales up to 65% or more of total album sales.

     

    For years digi-heads have told us CDs are dead - not true.

  • Reply 65 of 82
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    elroth wrote: »
    No - my tracks are Apple Lossless, so iTunes Match would DOWNgrade them.

    A bit off topic, I know someone that took MP3s and converted them to FLAC so they'd be higher quality.
  • Reply 66 of 82
    boltsfan17boltsfan17 Posts: 2,294member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post





    A bit off topic, I know someone that took MP3s and converted them to FLAC so they'd be higher quality.

     

    lol...that's hilarious. Converting an MP3 to FLAC won't change the quality. 

  • Reply 67 of 82
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    boltsfan17 wrote: »
    lol...that's hilarious. Converting an MP3 to FLAC won't change the quality. 

    He swore it was better. Unfortunately it took way too long to convince him.

    I wonder if the average person using their average listening HW could tell the difference between a CD encoded as 320kbps MP3, 256kbps AAC, ALAC or FLAC. I know I can't.
  • Reply 68 of 82
    boltsfan17boltsfan17 Posts: 2,294member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by elroth View Post

     

    No - my tracks are Apple Lossless (from CDs), so iTunes Match would DOWNgrade them.

     

    Interesting that still 57% of album sales are from CDs. And that doesn't even include the sales of used CDs, which is a very large market itself, but the record industry of course doesn't add in those sales. Adding used CDs in may take CD album sales up to 65% or more of total album sales.

     

    For years digi-heads have told us CDs are dead - not true.


     

    The majority of music I buy is CD's because of the quality. Buying digital doesn't do it for me. The quality just isn't there. I rip all my CD's to Apple Lossless for my iDevices and then rip them to FLAC to store on an external hard drive. 

  • Reply 69 of 82
    boltsfan17boltsfan17 Posts: 2,294member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post





    He swore it was better. Unfortunately it took way too long to convince him.



    I wonder if the average person using their average listening HW could tell the difference between a CD encoded as 320kbps MP3, 256kbps AAC, ALAC or FLAC. I know I can't.

    I think it depends a lot on what you are using to listen to the music. It's hard to tell the difference on computer speakers. I can really tell the difference listening with good quality headphones. And when I say good quality, I don't mean Beats by Dre. Those are overrated garbage. 

  • Reply 70 of 82
    solipsismx wrote: »
    boltsfan17 wrote: »
    lol...that's hilarious. Converting an MP3 to FLAC won't change the quality. 

    He swore it was better. Unfortunately it took way too long to convince him.

    I wonder if the average person using their average listening HW could tell the difference between a CD encoded as 320kbps MP3, 256kbps AAC, ALAC or FLAC. I know I can't.

    It would be interesting to listen to the same music recorded using different formats, played on iStuff & say, uhhh, Beats earbuds vs McIntosh tube amp &, oh idunno, Magneplane speakers.

    Big whomping stereo speakers playing from an audiophile tube amp in a nicely accesorized room, vs iPhone & headphones or earbuds.

    I know what I'd prefer. (No I don't have a McIntosh amp or even a Marantz :-( )
  • Reply 71 of 82
    philboogiephilboogie Posts: 7,675member
    solipsismx wrote: »
    A bit off topic, I know someone that took MP3s and converted them to FLAC so they'd be higher quality.

    1) Wow. I met some people (here) with a single-digit IQ but never heard of someone with a negative IQ.

    2) I can't tell the difference either, (hence) my discussion with zoetmb up in this thread.
  • Reply 72 of 82
    philboogiephilboogie Posts: 7,675member
    elroth wrote: »
    No - my tracks are Apple Lossless (from CDs), so iTunes Match would DOWNgrade them.

    Supposedly one can put an audio (Apple Lossless?) file into their Mobile Documents folder and play it through their iPhone straight form the Cloud. Haven't tried it, and the 5GB might be too cramped for lossless. You could upgrade, but risk of them disabling the option.
  • Reply 73 of 82
    hill60hill60 Posts: 6,992member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Boltsfan17 View Post

     

     

    The majority of music I buy is CD's because of the quality. Buying digital doesn't do it for me. The quality just isn't there. I rip all my CD's to Apple Lossless for my iDevices and then rip them to FLAC to store on an external hard drive. 


     

    Um, CD is digital.

  • Reply 74 of 82
    philboogiephilboogie Posts: 7,675member
    hill60 wrote: »
    boltsfan17 wrote: »
     

    The majority of music I buy is CD's because of the quality. Buying digital doesn't do it for me. The quality just isn't there. I rip all my CD's to Apple Lossless for my iDevices and then rip them to FLAC to store on an external hard drive. 

    Um, CD is digital.

    NSS. He means 320 or lower, as opposed to 1411
  • Reply 75 of 82

    For the times they are a-changin'.

     

    Everything is going cloud and streaming.

     

    ?How long before Apple offers streaming movies?

  • Reply 76 of 82
    Im in the buy it camp, but if i just want to listen to an album at work I'm generally streaming it now. Its hard to justify paying £8 for an album when you can listen to it for free.

    I still happily buy music to put on my phone for the car. But at home and work it doesn't make sense when its the exact same experience and I don't hit the 10 hour limit where you start paying.
  • Reply 77 of 82
    Originally Posted by FerrariBoys View Post

    ?How long before Apple offers streaming movies?


     

    2nd-gen Apple TV, September 2010.

  • Reply 78 of 82

     Very true.

     

    I meant commercial-paid free streaming movies.

  • Reply 79 of 82
    Originally Posted by FerrariBoys View Post

    I meant commercial-paid free streaming movies.




    Ew. Never, hopefully.

  • Reply 80 of 82
    boltsfan17boltsfan17 Posts: 2,294member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by hill60 View Post

     

     

    Um, CD is digital.


    I know that. I was referring to digital music sales such as the iTunes Store. 

Sign In or Register to comment.