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Buying Music via Download

Discussion in 'Music & Music Streaming Services' started by Branxx, May 20, 2003.

  1. Branxx

    Branxx
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    With all the hype surrounding the launch of Apple iTunes, where one can buy and download a music track for $0.99, I was wondering how many of you have actually tryed this or similar services (for example www.vitaminic.co.uk, www.allofmp3.com, etc.)?

    Apple is apperantly selling 4 track a second! The tracks are 128kbps AAC encoded and come with DRM protection.
     
  2. Azrikam

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    $0.99 a track is still too expensive for me. (that's roughly what you pay in the stores) CD prices have been artificially inflated for years, which is why I don't buy near as many as I once did.

    For an online service to hook me, it would have to be DRM-free and much cheaper. ($0.30-0.40 a song, maybe)
     
  3. 50/50

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    why pay when you can get them free ?
     
  4. Branxx

    Branxx
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    I am of the similar oppinion. Download prices appear to be too high.

    One can spend approx $10 and buy CD from online retailer. The price includes:
    • Uncompressed audio tracks; the highest playback quality;
    • Unlimited use on any playback device;
    • Unlimited right to make backup copies or complations;
    • Once music is copied onto PC, CD itself becomes the backup;
    On a negative side:
    • Need to buy entire CD even if only one or two tracks are of interest;
    • Have to physically go to the shop or wait for postal delivery
    Marketing message must be something along the lines: if you are really short of cash, too impatient to wait or too lazy to walk, buy online!

    Of that $10 retail price, the artist won't get more than $1.50, everything else is production, distribution, sales costs and margin. Assuming in average 8 tracks per CD, the artist gets less than $0.20 per track. considering that the production costs are reduced, distribution is eliminated, costs of sale are significantly smaller, the only conclusion that the on-line delivery method has much higher margin.
     
  5. rhoamish

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    The download price is far, far too high. Why would you want to pay, when you don't get any of the packaging with sleeve notes, etc? In the old days of taping, I used to buy albums I really liked just for the packaging (pretty sad, but there you go).

    It's pretty clear the record companies are being seriously greedy. But on the plus side, if this catches on we could see a resurgence of indie labels, and some diversity in the charts!
     
  6. Daneel

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    No one has a problem with the fact it is 128kbps?

    If I were to pay for downloaded music it would have to be at least 256kbps. I would far prefer mpc format or best of all monkey audio.
     
  7. minimad

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    This is EXACTLY what the record companies are moaning about. I had a very long (4 hours!) discussion with a friend about this the other night.

    He is quite happy (as am I - I was playing devil's advocate) to buy a CD, knowing that he (in theory) will help the artist, he will get the sleeve and notes, and a top quality recording.

    The problem with d/ls is that most are at 128k at best.

    I only deal with 192Kbps as a minimum, preferably higher. and if you tell me you can't hear the difference, you must be deaf or using crap equipment!

    Everyone is using the $ sign. I assume that we are talking dollars and not pounds?

    If so, ten tracks on a CD = $9.90. take that into proper money, you are only paying about £4 for an album. Don't forget that they have to cover their server and connection costs, support and upgrading too.

    I don't think that's a bad price. Just a shame about the 128k.

    Collin
     
  8. betamac

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    Well i never buy Audio CDs anymore, if i really want a new album i will (shamefully) download it, the quality does not bother me too much i just either play on my PC or My Minidisc player

    but just lately i have bought 5 DVD Audio's and i can clearly say is the fututre of music, i was blown away, now i dont have a DVD Audio DVD player, i just played the DTS track and it blew me away, i would never buy a CD after listening to these. Queen a night at the opera is my fave so far, if you ever get a chance to listen to it (Queen fan or not) you should do.
     
  9. Gambit

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    I know many people use kazza (or any free download program) as their main source of music, but if I like something I hear, I will gladly buy the CD, so the artist gets what they want. 128kbs is not good enough to really enjoy, so I see no alternative and certainly would not pay for music sampled at that rate. It's fine to give it a quick listen to see if you like it, but it's certainly worth buying CD's.
     
  10. tomson

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    I download quite a bit of music and usually listen to it at work on headphones (and more recently on my ipod). 128kbs is the absolute minumum I go for but 160 or 192 if its available (which it quite often is) and if i like what i hear then I buy the album

    Theres no way i'd pay money for an mp3 or AAC version of an album I liked - i'd prefer to pay 9 or 10 quid, get high quality audio and the proper packaging.
     
  11. Azrikam

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    At the risk of knocking this thread off-topic, I've also got a huge issue with the way the record company runs their business. The artists should get paid for their music... and they don't. The artist who makes money in the music industry is the exception, rather than the rule.

    Online music selling should cut production costs to the point where: A) Music is sold for less AND B) The artist gets a higher percentage of the sale.

    The simple fact of the matter is, unless there is a huge shakeup in the recording industry, neither of those two options is going to happen.
     
  12. minimad

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    Azrikam

    I can't agree more! The way the records industry treats their artists sucks.

    But! Yes, you knew it was coming! But, is this not fuelled (at least partially) by the attitude of people like 50/50 (an example only) who won't pay when they can get it for free?

    The record company, at the end of the day is a company that needs to make money. There are so many of 'em that they need to be ruthless to stay in business!

    And the internet isn't helping.

    Collin
     
  13. menalaus

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    maybe because if we all did that there would be no music to download?
     
  14. Azrikam

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    Yeah, this has been a long time coming, and I think the proliferation of music downloads is a symptom of the music industry's problems, and not the cause. This would have probably happened earlier if the technology was available.

    I honestly don't think it's rediculous to believe that the recording industry is going to collapse before it sorts itself out.
     
  15. rhoamish

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    Does anyone care if any of the large record companies fail? It's not as if they do us any favours.

    Perhaps if a big company went bust, it would make some room for some indie labels. The music industry is safe, boring and predictable at the moment, which isn't something I apreciate in music.

    I for one would be delighted if it all came crashing round their ears.
     
  16. Azrikam

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    So would I. I'm convinced that the recording industry won't get better until it completely collapses.

    Should be fun to watch. :D
     
  17. Duncan Craig

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    The AAC codec is superb and at 128 sound as good as MP3 at 256 in my opinion (having tried it myself)

    QT AAC is only available on Mac at the moment though.

    Also, Apple have said that they hope the price of the tracks will soon drop.
     
  18. Branxx

    Branxx
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  19. Branxx

    Branxx
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    This needs to be refreshed as MSN/Tiscali are now offering music downloads via www.od2.com. They donw say explicitly what is the bit rate.

    Has anyone tried this service?
     
  20. mattruston

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    i thought the going rate was about 6 american cents for every album sold?

    Or at least it used to be. As for me i have no qualms with 128kbp/s as long as its encoded properly it sounds fine. Unless you have a £5000 system. Besides isn't the cd format itself a 20 year old dinosaur?

    If you really want to be blown away by audio get a few dvd-audio discs. Its like comparing a grammarphone to a live gig. No seriously!
     
  21. neilneil

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    Surely now (or very soon) the artists will be able to cut out the record lables.
    Everyone with an average PC and a bit of relatively cheap software (as cheap as any mysical instrument) artists can have a 24 track recording studio in their bedroom.
    If the artists can get access to digital rights management software themselves they can produce tracks for $0.50 each and keep ALL of it. We end up with:-
    1. No more fatcat record execs involved!
    2. Artist has complete control.
    3. Artist has no restrictive contracts.
    4. Cheaper music for all.
    5. All money paid goes to artist minus a bit of Credit Card admin etc.
    6. No middle men distributors / wholesalers / shops / media production costs.
    7. Greater number of artists to choose from all playing on a level playing field.
    8. The public gets what it wants or is prepared to pay for NOT what a Label wants to push.

    There only seems to be advantages to getting direct access to the artists without record lables involvement.

    -Neil
     
  22. Azrikam

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    I couldn't agree more, Neil. The labels, and (to a greater extent) the middlemen like the RIAA are completely useless in a digital music delivery system. Without these organizations, there would be a huge increase in the diversity of radio airplay, music fans would hear many more bands, artists would actually be paid for their work, and (most importantly) a band would have to actually be good to sell songs. Nowadays. as long as a band/artist is promoted by the labels and MTV, they can be propelled into being the next "big thing" without a stitch of talent.

    Of course, the labels and their hangers-on know all this, so they are fighting it with every politician they can buy.

    I, for one, am looking forward to the music revolution.
     

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