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ARSCLIST  January 2008

ARSCLIST January 2008

Subject:

Re: The "dumbing down" of Downloaded Recordings

From:

Joel Bresler <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Association for Recorded Sound Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Tue, 29 Jan 2008 00:15:18 -0500

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (118 lines)

"With the hundreds of articles I have been reading on the changes in media
distribution (literally hundreds and is this a REALLY big surprise??) I have
not read one - not one - that makes any mention of the fact that the quality
of the recordings being distributed by download are significantly compressed
and poorer then those distributed on media."

Here's one such article, by the way. It ran Monday in the Boston Globe.
Someone cares!

Best,

Joel

http://www.boston.com/business/technology/articles/2008/01/28/more_music_dea
lers_offering_downloads_with_sound_quality_that_rivals_a_cds/ 

More music dealers offering downloads with sound quality that rivals a CD's
By Hiawatha Bray
Globe Staff / January 28, 2008

Internet music retailers offer millions of tunes, in every genre from opera
to hip-hop to Palestinian folk songs. But it's still hard to find online
music that sounds good on a $10,000 stereo system.

Online music sellers like Apple Inc. and Amazon.com use digital compression
technologies to shrink the sizes of music files, making them easier to store
and download. But compression also hollows out the music, eliminating many
of the sonic subtleties cherished by hardcore audiophiles. That's why many
finicky music lovers won't sully their ears with today's downloadable tunes
and are clamoring for something better.


Joel Bresler
250 E. Emerson Rd.
Lexington, MA 02420
USA

781-862-4104 (Telephone & FAX)
[log in to unmask]
IN CASE OF VERIZON EMAIL PROBLEMS, PLEASE USE MY BACK-UP EMAIL:
joelbresler-at-gmail.com


-----Original Message-----
From: Association for Recorded Sound Discussion List
[mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Jim Lindner
Sent: Friday, January 25, 2008 8:54 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: [ARSCLIST] The "dumbing down" of Downloaded Recordings

Is it just me who wonders about this? With the hundreds of articles I  
have been reading on the changes in media distribution (literally  
hundreds and is this a REALLY big surprise??) I have not read one -  
not one - that makes any mention of the fact that the quality of the  
recordings being distributed by download are significantly compressed  
and poorer then those distributed on media. Of course it does not  
have to be this way - there is no reason why .wav files could not be  
being downloaded instead of AAC or MP3 - but no one seems to care -  
at all.

I figure that if anywhere - the members on this list should care. I  
don't get it - why aren't people complaining? Has our benchmark for  
quality become Apple Ipod earbuds? Tell me it isn't so. While people  
are spending untold thousands on Krell's and esoteric speakers what  
we are witnessing here is a recording media and quality implosion and  
I for one am concerned that getting a recording that is of the former  
relatively high (ok we can debate that but this is not the real  
point) quality of recordings on CD will become an impossibility in  
the not too distant future. How come there aren't a bunch of  
audiophiles - or professionals - or both - speaking up and saying to  
the downloading public and to the distributors - hey wait a minute -  
if I am paying the same prices for downloading as I am for physical  
media - the least you can do is give me the same quality.

All I hear is - silence. To me this is a HUGE threat - even short  
term - to what you are going to be able to listen to, and the quality  
of what you will be able to listen to.

So, members of ARSC - I ask you - to discuss this - and - OK I will  
say it - as an organization - take an actual position on this subject  
- let the world know that this is a BIG issue. That is right - I am  
actually advocating for standing up and talking out loud - not to our  
group but to the rest of the planet. If we are not going to take a  
stand on this -  what will we take a stand on? Get some manufacturers  
behind you - you know the Krell and "monster cable" kind of folk that  
have lots of marketing smarts - because there really isn't any point  
in spending thousands of dollars on esoteric gear when the quality of  
the recordings will not let you hear it anyhow. They have allot to  
lose also. What we are talking about here is the dumbing down - the  
AAC'ing of all distributed music and I for one think this is an  
issue. Does anyone agree?



Jim Lindner

Email: [log in to unmask]

   Media Matters LLC.
   SAMMA Systems Inc.
   450 West 31st Street 4th Floor
   New York, N.Y. 10001

eFax (646) 349-4475
Mobile: (917) 945-2662
Office: (212) 268-5528

www.media-matters.net
Media Matters LLC. is a technical consultancy specializing in  
archival audio and video material. We provide advice and analysis, to  
media archives that apply the beneficial advances in technology to  
collection management.

www.sammasystems.com
SAMMA Systems provides tools and products that implement and optimize  
the advances in modern technology with established media preservation  
and access practices.

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