For years the compact disc was the preferred audio format for music fans. In addition those years were the most profitable in the recording industry’s history.
Fans/collectors of vinyl and cassettes started to re-purchase albums they already owned for the sake of convenience. That is what the CD offered. Convenience.
It saddens me to keep on hearing that the recording industry still prefers a return to that era instead of innovating.
The most recent “innovation” comes from Universal Music Group.
UMG is launching a new audio format called High Fidelity Pure Audio. Basically it is a Blu-ray disc that delivers high definition audio recordings. This is yet another attempt to reinstate a long-gone profit margin that has all been done before.
There is nothing innovative about re-factoring the compact disc.
Remember convenience. Fans didn’t choose to replace the CD format with MP3’s simply because MP3s sounded better. It was about convenience. Convenience is key here. For personal use, portability and speed is worth more. That is what UMG fails to understand.
UMG is banking on a demand for high-fidelity re-releases of their back catalogs.
The label business models are built upon lack of competition in their market. Once upon a time the only music available came from the established recording industry. They told us what we were going to listen to and in what format.
I liked CDs, I really did, but after a while I ran out of space. I still buy physical CDs from time to time however I never buy CDs for the music itself.
The last physical discs I bought were for the special edition of Coheed and Cambria’s Afterman: Ascension / Descension double album. This package was was sold when Ascension released in September 2012 and Descension was months away (February 2013).
So when the package arrived The Descension disc in the box is completely blank. The purpose of this is that I am meant to burn the 320 high-quality Descension track downloads to it. I still haven’t bothered to do it, however the art book that came with it is priceless.