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Going fully digital for music

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Poll Question: Would you do it?
Poll Choice Votes Poll Statistics
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3 [42.86%]
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adg211288 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote adg211288 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Going fully digital for music
    Posted: 21 May 2020 at 8:57am
So here's a debate (and poll) for you. Would you go fully digital for your music collection? Or have you already?

This is something I've always been very against, but I'm started to feel swayed more toward the digital format recently. 

There are some pros and cons I see to the argument of physical verses digital. Some of these apply to be personally, possibly not to you, but could do if we're in similar situations.

Physical:

+ Feel more like you own it.
+ Artwork and liner notes.
+ (CD) Can be ripped to digital for backup. Some other retailers may give digital for free as well. So you get both.
+ Can be sold on, if you choose to.
- Takes up house space. Becomes a real issue when your collection starts getting up toward 1000 or more.
- Gathers dust (I have a dust allergy). 
- Can get broken, discs scratched or in one case of mine, completely stop working without any visible damage.
- Can't play them in the car due to no CD player, only USB port. 
- Haven't found a decent, non expensive CD that worked for long for years (I play my CDs currently through my blu-ray player and TV, which uses two lots of electricity so isn't ideal). I more often find myself playing music through my PC anyway. I don't remember when I last played an album I own from the actual disc.

Digital:
+ Often cheaper than physical when new (but not always).
+ Instant delivery.
+ Wider availability of the music I like. Too many great albums I've wanted to own are not in my collection due to hefty import charges.
+ Doesn't take up physical storage space. 
- Can't be sold on if you don't like it/go off it.
- Potential for loss. 
- (Amazon) may not receive the best quality mp3 files. Also no guarantee of getting mp3 not another format (last digital album I got, accompanying a CD purchase that I had to wait for, arrived in wav files that wouldn't play in the car). 

Thoughts? My current inclination is to have my favourites on CD and sell some stuff I don't like so much (because storage space is an issue). 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Bosh66 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 May 2020 at 9:44am
The danger s that itโ€™s a slippery slope that leads to Spotify and the like ๐Ÿ˜‰ Iโ€™ve moved from physical only to a combination of physical and digital. It would make sense to go fully digital but Iโ€™m struggling to make the leap. Too scared Iโ€™ll lose everything.

Edited by Bosh66 - 21 May 2020 at 9:45am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 666sharon666 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 May 2020 at 11:17am
While I do have some digital music, mostly stuff that's only on digital (but that's no exclusively the case), I'm going to say never on this. The thought of going digital only makes me squirm (so says the woman who between her and her husband have so many CDs a lot just sit in boxes and haven't seen the light of day since before we moved into our current house). 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Unitron Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 May 2020 at 11:20am
I'd never go fully digital, half digital, or anywhere close to it. Only things I've ever bought digitally are from Bandcamp when there's no CD and my money goes directly to the artist for the most part. Otherwise, I never have and never will buy anything digitally from anywhere else. The biggest issue that I have with digital is that with having anything digitally, you never really own it, even if you back it up on CD or something. Modern technology and burnt CD copies are too prone to failure, so who knows how long a hard-drive will last and what if the websites where you bought the download go down? There's no way of ever getting it back if you lost the files.

Physical copies, be it CD, cassette, vinyl, DVD, VHS, game disc, I have it forever as long as I take great care of them. There's a reason that there's so many old copies of old albums that still play great, because they've been taken care of. Plus I can buy used and can get well-cared for albums for cheap or cheaper prices, you can't get used digital copies. 

Also, nothing beats going into a record store and browsing the aisles waiting to see something you know or have an album cover catch your eye. Digital music takes away from the personal experience of buying an album.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Vim Fuego Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 May 2020 at 11:37am
Digital is more convenient, for sure. Before the lockdown, I was a heavy Spotify user, because it's easier than using CDs or loading shit on my phone. It means I can't always listen to exactly what I want, but there's shitloads more which I don't own that I can explore.

During this lockdown, I have been exploring both my physical (CD) and digital (downloaded and ripped) collections, and they are reasonably extensive. I have been culling out digital shit I don't really like, since I got a huge share of digital music from my younger brother.

Personally, it's horses for courses. If I'm home in front of my computer, physical media is fine. If I'm in the car or at work, Spotify is far easier, and there's more than enough to keep me entertained. I still love buying CDs, but the offerings at physical music stores these days are pretty pathetic, so I don't buy many. If they were easier to find, I'd buy more. However, that's not going to stop me checking something out on the internet if I can't find it.

I remember a Tool fan complaining at the release of their most recent album that they weren't going to listen to it until they could find it on CD or vinyl - and it wasn't initially physically released like that in New Zealand. The last two CDs I bought were Sacred Reich's Awake and Acid Reign's compilation. I had heard both before on Spotify. That wasn't stopping me from buying either, because I value those bands' music.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Triceratopsoil Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 May 2020 at 12:14pm
I am 99% digital but I still like buying LPs
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Nightfly Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 May 2020 at 3:20pm
I'm old school so the answer is never. I'm a bit of an audiophile so sound quality is a big part of it. I like to listen on my hi-fi for serious listening. My PC just can't compete. For starters you've got all that fan noise and a ยฃ300 PC has no chance against my Naim amp, Monitor audio speakers, Roksan CD player and Clearaudio record deck. I also like the physical aspect of it as well, especially vinyl.

I do use Spotify though but mainly to see if something is worth buying.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote adg211288 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 May 2020 at 9:37am
Just for a bit of illustration, this is my CD storage area. A few gaps visible is because my Dad has a stack of my albums right now. That gap at the end of the bottom shelf is my cap for display purposes. That's why the idea to go digital for some popped into my head. I couldn't ever get rid of my favourites but there's a ton I could probably live with as digital only and it might make sense to sell on the physicals. I know if I start regulating to boxes after that last gap is filled it'll just create a new problem...I already overflowed on my movie shelves and have been getting rid/selling a lot on. 


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Nightfly Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 May 2020 at 3:07pm
Can't see the photo Adam.

I should think more like you but every time I run out of space I always manage to find another slot to fit a few more in.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote adg211288 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 May 2020 at 3:09pm
Not sure why, it's definitely there. 

Try the direct link to Dropbox, I could upload it here, but getting the site to accept is a pain in the arse.



Edited by adg211288 - 22 May 2020 at 3:14pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Nightfly Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 May 2020 at 3:12pm
Strange, just tried a different browser and still can't. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote adg211288 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 May 2020 at 3:16pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote adg211288 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 May 2020 at 3:25pm
Trying on another host:

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Nightfly Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 May 2020 at 3:27pm
No, get a message saying the folder/photo doesn't exist. Sounds like the problem is at my end.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Nightfly Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 May 2020 at 3:27pm
Oh now I can see it.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TheHeavyMetalCat Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 May 2020 at 11:06am
I stream it, I like it, I buy the CD.

I stream, I don't like it (or at least not that much), I don't buy the CD.

Simple.

The only music I have on my PC that I don't own on CD is because the download was free and legal, which usually means it isn't on CD.

I like to have the CD. It might be a genre thing because the music I like tends to have really good artwork. My friends outside of those who also like rock/metal tend to like commerical music where the average artist's idea of an album cover is their own picture, pretty much every time. I don't see that there's much joy to owning the physical like that. But since I like metal when effort is put into artwork the physical is a must.

So Never on the poll. I also can't imagine selling anything I currently own.


Edited by TheHeavyMetalCat - 23 May 2020 at 12:09pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Nightfly Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 May 2020 at 5:24pm
Originally posted by adg211288 adg211288 wrote:

Trying on another host:


Looks like you could squeeze another shelf under there. That'll keep you going a while. Wink
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Vim Fuego Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 May 2020 at 8:25pm
Originally posted by adg211288 adg211288 wrote:

Trying on another host:



A lot tidier than mine!

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Triceratopsoil Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 May 2020 at 1:56am
My CDs all get packed in boxes as soon as I rip them on my computer.  I don't think I even have a cd player anymore


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote adg211288 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 May 2020 at 2:08am
I'd love a CD player, but finding one that works long term has been so hard these days I've stuck with first my DVD player and then my blu-ray player...but my blu-ray going wrong and needing to be replaced has really put the wind up me over playing certain CDs now. 

When it went wrong it was because it completely lost power. It had a disc stuck inside of a film I'd literally bought that morning. It was only then I found out that the player was designed with no mechanism to manually eject the disc tray and this be able to retrieve the disc. I had to send it away for repair with the disc still inside. I went wrote a note to alert the technician about that, sent the disc's case with the player and asked them to retrieve my disc no matter what, providing my email address if the postage cost to return it was an issue.

They just threw it all away with no response. I was livid. I actually came out on top because Amazon fronted me an insane amount of credit to replace the movie (which I ended up doing with a digital copy and then still had credit to spare), but it got me thinking. What if I'd not been watching a DVD at the time but listening to a CD? Especially a CD that it would be difficult if not impossible to replace? 

This is the most expensive CD I've ever bought:



It cost me around ยฃ30. It shouldn't have done, because Royal Mail whacked a near ยฃ10 import fee on it, because the sender, the artist himself, declared the customs forms incorrectly (it should have been a $15 2CD plus a FREE poster, but it was declared as a $15 2CD plus a $10 poster). Anyway, this was a crowd-funded release, so copies were very limited even without considering that it had to be sent from the US and as it came out in 2016 and this happened in 2019, three years down the line meant that there was no copies available anymore.

It is the very definition of irreplaceable. So when my player went wrong and I was unable to get my DVD back, it really got me thinking over what could have been done if I'd happened to be playing this or something else rare at the time?

I've barely played any CDs from the disc since that day. 

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