Majority of People Prefer Real CDs Over Downloadable Music?

Rob Williams

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From our front-page news:
Not too often do the results of a report pique my interest, but one recently held by two firms in the UK does, and it likely will for music-lovers of all stripes as well. Despite how it seems right now, it looks as though the majority of music purchasers equipped with broadband Internet would still rather purchase the actual disc in the store, rather than online in a downloadable format.

Given the absolute popularity of iTunes, Amazon's music store, Zune Marketplace and all the others, I would have thought the absolute opposite (I'm personally very fond of actual CDs, and usually buy one or two a week), but in one thousand conducted face-to-face interviews, 73% prefer a disc copy, and of those, 66% are between the ages of 14 - 18. Yes... the majority of people today who prefer the real thing over a download... are youngsters.

It's hard to settle on such a small percentage of music buyers, but numbers like these are very pleasing, at least to me. I'm such a big fan of buying music in the store (lossless quality being the number one draw), it gives me a little bit of hope that downloadable albums and songs are not going to kill off these retail music stores as fast as I originally imagined.

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Still, subscription and music streaming services are apparently doing their part to help people decide which music (CD or otherwise) to buy. According to The Leading Question's research, those who pay for a subscription service such as Napster spend more on CDs than the average music buyer (£16.87 per month, compared to £11.37). The same applies to people who listen to streaming music—those people spend £12.17 per month on CDs and £7.02 per month on downloads, compared to £3.81 per month spent on downloads by the average music fan.


Source: Ars Technica
 

On_Wisconsin

Coastermaker
If I want a song from one of my favorite bands, I'll buy the album. If it's from a group that's just ok, i'll get just one song online, 'cause i'll probably listen to the song from a fav. band far longer than a band that's just OK
 

Rob Williams

Editor-in-Chief
Staff member
Moderator
If I want a song from one of my favorite bands, I'll buy the album. If it's from a group that's just ok, i'll get just one song online, 'cause i'll probably listen to the song from a fav. band far longer than a band that's just OK

That's how I do things as well. If I want just one song that doesn't make me want to go and purchase the album, then I'll get it online. I do hate taking that route, because amongst the 7,000 or so FLAC files I have, I have a couple hundred 256K/bits files as well. I cannot wait for lossless to catch on to a far greater extent...

I've bought a few full albums off of iTunes, mostly because they were a good price. Sometimes though, if I want an album and it would cost me over $20 to get online or in the store, but $10 on iTunes, I'll go the iTunes route, as long as it's not a band I am totally in love with.
 

madstork91

The One, The Only...
I used to really prefer having a hard copy...

And then I got an MP3 player.

Now I have some coasters of the non failed burned variety.
 

Rob Williams

Editor-in-Chief
Staff member
Moderator
Well even if you own an MP3 player, hard copies aren't useless. It really comes down to how much you appreciate the sound quality of your music, how whether or not you want to add something else to your house. Some people don't like having a CD collection, but I'm of the opposite. I don't have a nice display or anything, but I just surpassed 500... perhaps once I hit 1,000, I'll get a decent shelf for 'em.
 

2Tired2Tango

Tech Monkey
Well even if you own an MP3 player, hard copies aren't useless. It really comes down to how much you appreciate the sound quality of your music, how whether or not you want to add something else to your house. Some people don't like having a CD collection, but I'm of the opposite. I don't have a nice display or anything, but I just surpassed 500... perhaps once I hit 1,000, I'll get a decent shelf for 'em.

Just in case you're wondering what 1000 cds looks like....
(No it's not my collection... but one can always dream)
 

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On_Wisconsin

Coastermaker
It's also nice having a hard backup incase something happens where your collection gets wiped out. Eg, I have NIN's The Slip on our external, but only 2 songs from it on my mp3 player since my HD on my desktop passed away....
 
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