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HD Vinyl Format Patented - Vinyl Sales Increasing - Greater Revenue than Ad Supported Streaming - What's Happening???

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  • HD Vinyl Format Patented - Vinyl Sales Increasing - Greater Revenue than Ad Supported Streaming - What's Happening???

    Article over at Digital Music News on a new HD Vinyl format that was just recently patented in Europe (http://www.digitalmusicnews.com/2016...ome-a-reality/). According to the article, it will result in vinyl records having "30% more capacity, 30% greater volume, and double the audio fidelity of a typical LP sold today." With the recent forum discussion on "Why Retro? Why Now?" (http://www.harmonycentral.com/forum/...-retro-why-now), and the numerous discussions on the "return" of vinyl, is this a sign that vinyl is not only here to stay, but may actually be improving and gaining momentum?

    I don't think that vinyl will ever reach the heights it had back in the 'pre CD' days. However, does the fact that a company is investing the time and money to actually improve on the medium, indicate that vinyl sales are now stable and sustainable enough to warrant such an investment? The article offers some sales numbers regarding vinyl that seem to bolster the case;
    "The music industry witnessed another surge in vinyl demand last year, with sales booming 29.8% in the United States alone, according to Nielsen Music. That is being followed by an echo of turntable sales: late last year, Amazon reported that a $50 Jensen turntable was its best-selling home audio product for the holidays. Even better, the vinyl resurgence could be having a spillover effect into retail, with smaller record shops suddenly resurfacing. Bands are also realizing greater revenues from vinyl: according to financial details surfacing last year, vinyl is actually producing more revenue than ad-supported streaming."

    So what is happening here?
    The Mandolin Picker

    "Bless your hearts... and all your vital organs" - John Duffy

    "Got time to breath, got time for music!"- Briscoe Darling, Jr.

  • #2
    Originally posted by Mandolin Picker View Post
    "Bands are also realizing greater revenues from vinyl: according to financial details surfacing last year, vinyl is actually producing more revenue than ad-supported streaming."
    I wonder what the details are on this...do they mean the gross from records, what bands end up getting from it, what bands get selling it as merch...hmmm...

    As to HD vinyl, it is indeed interesting that further development is occurring. Maybe the inexpensive laser turntable is next!
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    • #3
      Well, it seems that nobody is making much money from streaming - not the artists, nor the hosts - so at what will probably be $25+ a pop for an HD phonograph record, it's not surprising that they think it will be a more profitable item.

      The real problem with any phonograph record isn't with making the grooves, it's with playing them back. People who are using a $50 USB turntable from Amazon (a best seller) aren't getting all the fidelity off a standard phonograph record today, so unless they invest in a new playback system, they won't get any benefit from an "HD Vinyl" record. But like high resolution streaming, it'll be something new to buy, which means that somewhere along the way someone will make money from the concept.
      --
      "Today's production equipment is IT-based and cannot be operated without a passing knowledge of computing, although it seems that it can be operated without a passing knowledge of audio." - John Watkinson, Resolution Magazine, October 2006
      Drop by http://mikeriversaudio.wordpress.com now and then

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      • #4
        It's phenomena like this - vinyl sales - that underscore the observation that people buy particular musical playback gizmos, not typically because of objective assessments, but because of the glow of coolness, of the buzz that gets around, and because of the look 'n feel that, well looks 'n feels impressive and fashionable.

        Most of the technical types of consumer goods - cameras, computers, smartphones, espresso machines, and musical playback systems, etc, have traditionally and still do to a very significant extent, rely on actual human salespeople to "guide" the consumer to their parting with their cash and their bonding to a new gizmo. If you've ever worked in retail of these sorts, you can just see the insecurity, the wide-eyed cluelessness that the average poor customer exhibits as they poke around the store, gingerly punching a button or turning a knob here and there.

        The salespeople can see this a mile away. The customers that come in exuding serene confidence and "I know all about this stuff" hauteur, they are going to milk the salespeople for a little hard data, kick a few tires, drop a few brand names of cool stuff they already own, but go buy online afterwards.

        I find all this amusing, but, hey, we all live in a world where we have to make decisions out of a fundamentally clueless starting point routinely. I may be informed enough to buy my stereo knowledgeably, but what the doctor or the lawyer tells me, I just nod "ok" my big round eyes going up and down like any trusting child being asked if they'd like a treat.

        So I repeat - the solution to the lousy fidelity situation is to make higher fidelity cool again.

        nat whilk ii
        Last edited by nat whilk II; 03-19-2016, 12:25 PM.

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        • #5
          Very interesting. What they are saying is that half the fidelity is lost in the current manufacturing process (making stompers from masters). But they will not be adding quality... Just minimizing its loss. But I'm thinking the the vinyl craze is more what Craig pointed out in another thread (anti-virtualism and ownership) than fidelity.

          I read in another thread that proclaimed the comeback of vinyl that the current average price of a sold turntable was $131. And Amazon is reporting the most popular model is $50. When I was an audiophile geek in the 70's my $400 Technics turntable had a $300 Keith Monks tonearm and a $300 Stanton cartridge (not to mention the hand tuned cartridge loading network). So I'm guessing the current trend might be a bit lacking in pure audiophileness.
          Don Boomer

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          • #6
            I've been checking into the structure of hd vinyl for a while. There is a digital conversion step in the process, which doesn't bother me. I've not yet got my head completely around what presses are used for the mass pressings. If it's the same equipment, the same turnaround bottlenecks are there are existing plants... some of them... are behind schedule all the time no matter what. If there are new presses for the mothers/stampers, I haven't yet figured out what they are or where they are.

            I personally know five or six sub-eighteen year old kids who bought real turntables in the past year. Surprised the heck out of me when I saw them. For the most part, the kids (all musicians) are playing old Doors and Hendrix records. I attribute these particular kids to doing this to go back in time in their own heads. Which is okay since the kids I tend to know now ogle "me" as having come from a very magical time in history since I saw the Doors/Hendrix/Cream etc etc. I can live with that meaning that I'm also ancient.

            When these kids are cranking up the turntables, they're not doing it for audiophile fidelity. They're cranking this stuff (when I'm there) like they would an old Marshall. Ear-deafening.

            Which is the way I used turntables when I was growing up. As a war toy (to coin a phrase I hear every so often now). If God had meant turntables to be for audiophiles, she wouldn't have invented teenagers..... my thought in 1965 anyway which seems to apply now as well. Audiophile.....hm..... 20-20k resolution.....hmm...... lessen the noise and hiss and crackles.....hmm..... more reasons to not trust anyone over 30 (what am I going on about????)

            Anyway, if there are new, accessible presses available for cutting hd vinyl, I'll be interested in that. Especially if they're affordable and don't include waiting for Neumann to reinvent something. I don't care at all about if hd vinyl gives a more pure sound with the cutting. I am interested that the cuts can play on any turntable ever built. That's a good feature.

            If I can get access to presses, eliminate the existing plants, heck yeah, I'll make more money on vinyl. And the more kids who grab $50-$100 turntables and then buy my old stuff.... great. I'll start printing on covers....."sounds best on inexpensive turntables through amps cranked to 11. Count me in.

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            • #7
              Why vinyl ? I wonder. Why not graphite or something slippery? Even a hi res picture of a record groove'll do. What's wrong with CDs anyway?
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              • #8
                Originally posted by 1001gear View Post
                Why vinyl ? I wonder. Why not graphite or something slippery? Even a hi res picture of a record groove'll do. What's wrong with CDs anyway?
                What's wrong with CDs is that they aren't singles. They have too much material on them. How many CDs are there where you really want to listen to the whole disk, non-stop?

                --
                "Today's production equipment is IT-based and cannot be operated without a passing knowledge of computing, although it seems that it can be operated without a passing knowledge of audio." - John Watkinson, Resolution Magazine, October 2006
                Drop by http://mikeriversaudio.wordpress.com now and then

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by MikeRivers View Post

                  What's wrong with CDs is that they aren't singles. They have too much material on them. How many CDs are there where you really want to listen to the whole disk, non-stop?
                  That's the fault of the so called artists. Sales artists is what they am. Classical music fills a CD very nicely. Still, I like the graphite disc idea.
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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Anderton View Post

                    I wonder what the details are on this...do they mean the gross from records, what bands end up getting from it, what bands get selling it as merch...hmmm...

                    As to HD vinyl, it is indeed interesting that further development is occurring. Maybe the inexpensive laser turntable is next!
                    Right. Gross, net... too many musicians -- and more than a few journos -- seem to get bollixed up on this stuff. And then there are a lot of other factors, as well.

                    In fact, this advocacy article attempts to put the lie to the meme that vinyl accounted for more revenue that ad-driven streaming -- XappMedia: RIAA MISLEADS WHILE ADVERTISING DELIVERS 54% OF INTERNET RADIO REVENUE

                    Whether one buys into their number crunching or not, this Billboard article gives an overview of first half 2015 music biz revenues: "Record Label Revenue Flat in First Half of 2015: Big gains in paid digital access and ad-supported streaming services kept things from going underwater."


                    Meanwhile a survey of members from the Merlin Group (global rights agency for 'major' independents) quoted in Billboard showed (in mid-year 2015) high levels of optimism from indies -- largely driven by streaming and subscription...
                    Another notable is the finding that growth from subscription and streaming services appears to be compensating for the decline in download revenue for many members. This helps explain why 81.7 percent of respondents reported being either very or somewhat optimistic about the future of their businesses.
                    Merlin Survey Reveals Members' Digital Growth Driven by Subscriptions and Streaming
                    Last edited by blue2blue; 03-21-2016, 11:16 AM.
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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Mandolin Picker View Post
                      Article over at Digital Music News on a new HD Vinyl format that was just recently patented in Europe (http://www.digitalmusicnews.com/2016...ome-a-reality/). According to the article, it will result in vinyl records having "30% more capacity, 30% greater volume, and double the audio fidelity of a typical LP sold today." [...]
                      Of course, the signal path to these 3D-based topographical mapping based LPs will make the elegant simplicity of conventional PCM digital recording look like a week in a zen monastery.

                      And, as with the overwhelming majority of conventional modern disk cutting setups with their digital look-ahead signal routing, this will most definitely not be an all-analog path. Not by a long, long shot.

                      This company isn't named Rebeat Digital for no reason. This is a heavily computer-driven technology undoubtedly filled with a number of compromises -- not the least of which is an output format that must be read by precisely manufactured and set up playback devices to get anything even laughably approaching the quality we've been enjoying for decades with CDs, as measured by the objective measures at our disposal, both analog and digital.
                      Last edited by blue2blue; 03-21-2016, 12:02 PM.
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                      • #12
                        Hipster nonsense.

                        Anybody who lived through the vinyl age would have taken the modern equivalents (CD, MP3, Streaming) in a heartbeat.
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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by MikeRivers View Post

                          What's wrong with CDs is that they aren't singles. They have too much material on them. How many CDs are there where you really want to listen to the whole disk, non-stop?
                          The curse of the Bonus Track Compulsion.

                          It's actually not a small part of why I so much prefer listening via subscription streams (given a decent service, which I feel like I more or less have in Google Music).

                          Because of the way Google Music is set up you can delete songs off the albums in your favorites library. The whole albums still exist with all their songs on the main service -- and you can get to them any time by searching for the album and opening it from the general search returns rather than from your library. And, of course, you can add any songs you've deleted back into your library [and so the albums as they show in your library] by highlighting them, singly or in group and u sing the rt-click add-to-library option. Very, very handy. I used to have to manually program out the tracks I didn't want to hear on my old dedicated players.
                          Last edited by blue2blue; 03-21-2016, 05:12 PM.
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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by MikeRivers View Post

                            What's wrong with CDs is that they aren't singles. They have too much material on them. How many CDs are there where you really want to listen to the whole disk, non-stop?
                            I generally buy CD's for listening on the go. Usually ripping onto my phone for listening when out walking for exercise (I just got a Daskin Bluetooth headphone(s) - now I won't have that swinging arm - snag the headphones cable - pull it out problem). I also often make a copy for my car. I put the original on a shelf as part of my permanent library.

                            I'm puzzled as to why you would complain about more songs on a CD. I know there are often alternate takes that are not that different than the original release. But there are often extra songs that for whatever reason didn't make it onto the original album.

                            If I don't like a song, I simply forward past it.
                            Last edited by davd_indigo; 03-22-2016, 09:30 AM.
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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by davd_indigo View Post
                              [...]

                              I'm puzzled as to why you would complain about more songs on a CD. I know there are often alternate takes that are not that different than the original release. But there are often extra songs that for whatever reason didn't make it onto the original album.

                              If I don't like a song, I simply forward past it.
                              It's a tricky proposition.

                              On one hand, we all like getting more for our money. And sometimes bonus tracks are really a delight: b-sides, rare live recordings, weird outtakes. And, at least if they're all added to the end of the original album, at least if that's all you want to hear, it's just a matter of catching 'once' it before the unwanted tracks (or interrupting them in the middle, which I always find a bit troubling*)... but what I REALLY hate are when they lay out an album with alternate takes side by side. Oh, yeah, I really want to hear three versions of the same song in a row with relatively minor changes, LOL. I don't much like having to interrupt my flow to fool futz with the music. It takes me out of whatever I'm doing -- even if it's eyes-closed, focused music listening.

                              * I think all hardware and software media players ought to have an optional (and maybe adjustable) auto-fade function for stopping or skipping in the middle of a track. Some software players have it (but not Google Music) and it REALLY makes life a lot more civilized.
                              Last edited by blue2blue; 03-22-2016, 10:43 AM.
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