Why do you still buy CDs? (HELP with my MA paper)

  • Why do you still buy CDs? (HELP with my MA paper)

    Hi Guys... Long(ish) time member, first time poster.

    At the moment I'm writing and researching my MA Dissertation in Popular Music Studies. The topic relates to the ways in which digital music and services like Spotify/Pandora/Last.fm have affected the ways in which we interact with, consume and value our music.

    As everyone here still likes to buy CDs, I thought it would be cool to try and get a thread going about why we do it? Is there any difference between getting a CD and downloading off iTunes/eMusic etc? Does the 'experience' of the music change depending on how you listen to it?

    If anyone says anything particularly cool I wouldn't mind dropping it into my paper (anonymously), but it would just be cool to see what you guys thought about it... help me get some more ideas

    Thankssss :)

    • Otokichi disse...
    • Usuário
    • Jul 14 2010, 8h08
    I play/collect music CDs by artists who compose/perform in the Hawaiian language. Not every artist feels the need to translate song lyrics, but it's a plus for understanding that "Eleu Mikimiki" is a "go for it!" song. As for other languages, I have to rely on Pali's liner notes to get the drift of "Friend/Tomodachi." Other songs aren't figured out without a Google! search. For instance, what is "Donkey Riding" by Great Big Sea about? (It's about life in a storm-tossed sea, not bestiality.) To stream over the Interweb, I go to mog.com, type in an artist's name, and play Mog radio's 320K/sec. MP3s to sample output or find related musicians. I don't download from iTunes, since they used to encode at 128K/sec., which was AM-radio-quality at best. Going the "all you can hear" subscription route lasts only as long as your subscription. A music CD may take up all space, but there's no substitute for hard copy...especially if/when your hard drive crashes or is hit by the latest malware.

    Education can't be confiscated at the border
  • Otokichi ha detto:
    A music CD may take up all space, but there's no substitute for hard copy...especially if/when your hard drive crashes or is hit by the latest malware.

    You're so right!
    I bought some records from ItunesStore for saving space (I listen to music especially at computer with headphones) ... but no more. If you loose your records, you can't download them again.so you have to backup ( external hard drive or burning a cd) ! And btw, I really missed the real booklets :)
    And let's talk about the price... there are no significative differences. For almost the same price you have a physical support you can play and import in any format you want.
    Don't forget the collectionism... something material is much more satisfactory than a simple collection of Gbs of files (pretty the same for pictures and books). :)

    • rooie666 disse...
    • Usuário
    • Ago 1 2010, 19h18
    I buy music on physical carriers because of three reasons:
    - support the musicians
    - collect hard copies
    - better artwork

    for each of these reasons I enjoy vinyl even more than cd's, but not all music is released on vinyl and cd's are cheaper most of the time.

    I download a lot, but when I like it, I buy the music as well.
    I don't use Spotify (yet), but am a subscriber to Last.fm, but that's more like a (collection of) radiostation(s) to me. I like to play records and cd's.

    Funny thing is that I started to collect music with much more enthusiasm since it is available for free thorugh downloads.

  • I listen to a lot of foreign music (I'm a Brit), so to buy the music I like it easily costs x2-3 what a CD in this country would cost and often includes 2-3 week shipping times. But to have a physical copy of the CD by a band I love is totally worth it.

    I appreciate music a lot more if I buy it rather than just downloading it. I'll choose my music more carefully so as not to waste money and therefore only pick my favourites. If I want to listen to just a few tracks by an artist then I'll just go on YouTube instead or borrow it from a friend.

    I like the booklets and extras that come with a CD. Some come with postcards and other extras inside; one CD I bought last year actually came with a jigsaw puzzle of the band inside (the album itself was called, "PUZZLE"). About a half dozen of CDs I've bought in the last year also came with DVDs featuring documentaries and the "making of" videos, and I love watching these.

    Plus I just love watching my collection grow too. The first thing anyone does when they walk into my room is check out the CD racks (okay, third: first is bow to the TV and second is stand and read a fake newspaper article on my wall dated April 1st 2010). I was so thankful that when my last laptop died on July 1st that I had so much of my music on CD. I lost any downloaded music (except the lives & b-sides from out of print CDs by two of my favourite bands that I had backed-up) I had, but I was still able to listen to all of my favourite bands. I even found a lot of CDs by artists I'd forgotten I even liked at one point. But the nine "Weird Al" Yankovic albums I found were quickly hidden again, hehe~ =]


    Wet 'N Wild feat. SUITE CHIC
  • - Because of feeling - I bought somethink and now I psysically have it.. not just piece of untouchable software if I buy mp3...
    - Because of CD with nice cover...
    - Because I don't listen mainstream music and they don't have my favorite music on itunes and sites like itunes...

    • aujdz disse...
    • Usuário
    • Ago 2 2010, 14h17
    I think it's been well documented in the thread already, the feeling of having ownership, you've actually got it in your hands. Though the way I put it to people who I talk to is, would you like to see my .mp3 collection or see my racks of albums, I'd like to think the answer is the latter.


    • [Usuário excluído] disse...
    • Usuário
    • Ago 2 2010, 21h51
    I like it to be there.
    If my computer breaks, which will happen soon as I repel modern technology, I have lost it all.
    I like looking at the booklet thing.

    I also like buying vinyl too, but I usually buy things on vinyl that was realeased before 1990, I don't know why.

    • wrelqa disse...
    • Usuário
    • Ago 3 2010, 12h17
    The collecting side of buying cd's has come up here already, and I agree with all the posts before. I'd like to add the feeling of going to a small, independent record store that is very familiar to me. The store of our town has its own feel to it and the owners are really nice. And I'm speaking of independent stores mostly because those places usually are a lot better by mood and service than big chains. So the event of buying or just browsing cd's and vinyl is a nice part of it that I wouldn't want to give up.

    • Loucifer disse...
    • Usuário
    • Ago 3 2010, 21h46
    Most of what I'm going to say has been said already, but I'll say it again anyway!

    My reasons for buying CDs:

    1. I like the 'collection' aspect to it. Also, rather than paying for a download and get a few files on your computer, with CDs/records you can walk into the room where your collection is and have a look at it. You can see where all your hard-earned money's gone! LOL! I also like to pick albums out at random, look at the covers, read through the inlays and listen to them. This evening alone I've 're-discovered' two albums that I haven't listened to in ages. I doubt I would have done that had they only been files on the computer.

    2. I like to feel like I'm supporting the bands.

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  • If I'm going to pay money for music, I want a physical artefact and not a relatively easily corrupted or destroyed digital copy. I get to rip my CDs at whatever quality I choose (high). I enjoy supporting artists who I feel deserve it. It hopefully will encourage them and likeminded people that there is a market for their music. The better art in CD cases and booklets is sometimes worth money for it alone.

  • I'm a bit sad at the reply to this topic. It tells me that either some people don't stop to compare MP3 and CDs OR everybody listens to music through some LowFi earbuds and simply do not care...

    BUT I'm an audiophile and I have both the hardware and the ears to be satisfied at the differences. CD quality is at least 3 times better than MP3 at it's best, which is 320kbps (CD is 1411kbps). Listen to symphonic music or classic rock through a pair of studio headphones (I own a pair of Shure SRH440, for reference) and the difference between mp3 at 320kbps and CD quality is like listening to the same song through a 1-way 20w boom-box and being inside the recording studio itself. MP3 encoders "flattens" the dynamic range of the music, lowering details of some frequencies by applying it's own equalizer. The music then becomes boring and distant. I used to encode all my CDs to mp3s in my computer... Until I went and actually compared the MP3s to the original CDs. The difference was so obvious I was ashamed that I have been listening to MP3s all these years.

    Ok I might be exaggerating a little, but you see my point. Those artists we love and hype put efforts in releasing good quality material. Don't you ever feel like you are insulting them when you go and hack their hard work into one fifth of it's original quality just for the sake of saving disk space?

    Of course I also share some reasons as many other shared in this threat; Owning a physical copy of the actual work with original artworks and booklets. Even though with todays's technologies we rarely read the music from the original CDs (which is a good thing, considering how fragile those things are...), collecting them is a sens of entertainment in itself.

    • Dizzy_93 disse...
    • Usuário
    • Ago 4 2010, 23h42
    I agree with some of the things said here. If I'm going to pay money, sometimes up to £15, then I'd rather have the packaging, the CD, the booklet, the images come with that than just the tracks that I have to listen through bad sound quality on my computer or earphones.

    With the physical album I can not only HAVE it in my hands, but I can still upload it on my computer just like if I'd downloaded it. You're sort of getting two for the price of one!

    • [Usuário excluído] disse...
    • Usuário
    • Ago 5 2010, 10h50
    I Still Buy Cds because I think, although downloading can be very handy sometimes, It's just not the same. I now own over 200 cds, and I've downloaded quite a lot as well, but one of my pride's is the wall which has my CD collection on it. It just looks so good. Also it's much nice to have a hard copy than just something digital. it just feels more special to me.

  • I buy and download, becouse I'm not that rich to buy a lot of CD's I want to have. When i get some money I buy CD's. I want to help bands and it's better when you can hold in your hands a booklet, CD and stuff. Funny thing is that I don't that much space to hold all music on PC and don't want to lose money on burning CD's.

  • I am torn between the cost, supporting the bands, and the desire to have the physical cds.

    I buy cd's because there's something satisfying about looking at the cover art, the lyrics and pictures in the booklet, even the small print thank-yous and the barcode on the back. I like looking at them all in a row, picking one out, and popping it into the cd player. But if I bought new cd's for every band I like, I'd have gone broke three years ago. My solution is to only buy physical cd's that I really, really like, and to buy used whenever I can for older releases.

    That's where the other problem comes in. The bands don't get any money when I buy used cd's. It's as bad as downloading, though perfectly legal. But I do it anyway because I love having them.

    I'm not sure how I feel about that. My compromise is to buy a few songs digitally and if I like them, and see it in the used record store for a good price, I'll buy it. The extreme, I guess, is when I found this album in Amoeba's discount section and got it, even though I'd already bought all the songs. I don't regret it.

    • [Usuário excluído] disse...
    • Usuário
    • Ago 9 2010, 2h29
    I like the physical aspect of owning CD's. I don't have the money, though, to pay for all the albums I'd like to have. And honestly, it's terrible, because I'd like to give the money to the artists, even though their percentage of the profit isn't very much. Or at least so I've been told.

  • marcopacca83 said:
    Otokichi ha detto:
    A music CD may take up all space, but there's no substitute for hard copy...especially if/when your hard drive crashes or is hit by the latest malware.

    If you loose your records, you can't download them again.

    cdbaby lets you download the mp3 files you buy without limits.

    the sound of the ocean is dead
    its just the echo of the blood in your head
  • 1.- Support the bands. Several times I buy directly from the bands or I buy from webstores that work closely with them (relapse, meteor city records, crucial blast, the end records, earache, southern lord, etc., etc., etc.).

    2.- Backp Up. The CD is a physical back up.

    3.- The artwork. But, vinyl has better artwork, so now I buy vinyl too now. :)

    4.- Listening the whole album. This is a great experience that I think is being forgotten in this new age of streaming audio and "radio" stations. If the band is good the order of the songs is important and even if the album is composed of several songs the order will be important in order to get the complete experience of the music.

    But I also buy mp3 files. I found them convenient in some cases, especially since I found the cdbaby.com webstore that sells cds and mp3 files without drm with high quality encoding that allows you to download your files everytime you want to.

    I live in Mexico but since most of those webstores are based in the USA I can buy with confidence. Sometimes I have bought from stores based in Europe with no problems too. :D

    the sound of the ocean is dead
    its just the echo of the blood in your head
    • [Usuário excluído] disse...
    • Usuário
    • Ago 10 2010, 11h12
    i think that if i bought the album off itunes ...
    i wouldnt feel like i actually own the album
    as its not physically there.

    i like the cd because it is a physical copy
    you have the album art to read and admire
    and it can be part of your collection
    plus if you downloaded it off itunes or somewhere
    and wanted to play it in your car
    youd have to rip a cd probably ...
    and then it'd be a copy cd - which i hate.
    when if you buy the cd ... you can just take that :)

    and for those that still put lyrics in the booklet
    i like the read along with the first listen of the album

    ALSO - rare point ....
    if you went to see a band live ...
    and wanted something signed ... you can't sign an mp3

  • ALSO - rare point ....
    if you went to see a band live ...
    and wanted something signed ... you can't sign an mp3

    Good point.

    the sound of the ocean is dead
    its just the echo of the blood in your head
  • wow, thanks for all of your thoughts! it's helping me an awful lot. I have to admit that I used to download a lot of stuff illegally. Although fun, I always found that I was just getting as much as I could get onto my hard drive (5-10 records in one go), listening to a few tracks and thats it. When I buy a CD I tend to make the effort to enjoy it and listen to the whole thing at least a few times. Creative packaging is always cool (but I think vinyl is often far better for that sort of stuff) and I love watching my collection grow and grow.

    However, although I love my CD collection (which is pretty substantial!), I've become a recent convert to Spotify. I still buy CDs but have found that its become a replacement for piracy. Really nice interface and I like to think that the artist is benefiting in someway (although how much they make per stream doesn't look like too much =/). I also get to share music with my facebook/twitter friends, along with subscribing to and making my own playlists. Anyone else checked it out much? How do you think it compares to the 'real thing'?

    Oh and glad someone mentioned fidelity, tbh, as long as a track is of fairly good quality I'm pretty happy, I'm more interested in space saving and portability (I know shoot me now!). However, my brother is totally with you on that, has to enjoy his music from CD (or lossless format) MP3 just doesn't cut it for him!

  • Same as above mostly: support the band, artwork, signing, backup, sleeve notes, fidelity(flac>mp3), car playing... and also on fidelity, its far easier to play along to cds or lossless files, the instruments tend to blur together a bit more in an mp3, which is especially bad when I play the bass, which is usually lower in the mix anyway. And indeed it is fun watching the collection grow, though sometimes quite frightening. I used to buy at least 3 cds every time I went out, and they aren't cheap. All my music is on cds, except for some vinyl and one song or two unpublished songs

  • For some reasons I buy CDs

    1. To support the artists
    2. To express that I care much about music so that I find it worth spending my money on it.
    3. For the little books that come with every cd. Often artists give credit to bands you have never heard of and are often very much worth listening to. Also the lyrics often come with it, and helps you understand every song better (not english native speaker).

    Just my humble opinion.

    • Vortus disse...
    • Usuário
    • Ago 16 2010, 19h33
    I Still Buy CDs because I'm not a thief

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