Thursday, February 22, 2018

Compact Disc! Yay!

Still today the CD technology is superb compared to most formats in terms of fidelity. The problem with most music is that the audio is dynamically compressed, noise reduced, equalized, and changed in many ways from the master tapes to try and cater to expected preferences of different listener audiences.
However, the CD is capable of much higher dynamic range than most music even contains. It is capable of incredibly low noise floor (no hiss). It is fairly durable when made on high quality compact disc materials (not cheap CD-Rs). It is compact (har har). And you physically own your music. No licensing or monthly fees. It can easily be converted for portable music players if needed.
Why are we moving away from this format? I understand streaming and its benefits. It is a great companion to CDs. However, streaming costs money forever continually, requires (with exceptions) an internet connection (which could cost more depending on the device), suffers from much lower audio quality (although it is improving slowly), music can (and commonly does) get removed from the service, you can't stream on every device in every situation (airplane, cell dead zone, etc.). Streaming is great, but CDs are better in many ways. We can have both, but allowing streaming to take over is ruining high fidelity audio.
Then again, I'm preaching to the masses who probably care less about fidelity at all. So I digress...

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