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Old 08-17-2007   #7
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Default Re: A Blueprint For the Future of High-Resolution, 5.1 Music

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Apple own the stereo download space because they are the champions of creating superior user interfaces, in this case in the form of the iPod. When iPod became uber-popular, iTunes ruled the industry.

For surround music there is no iPod, no other user interface than your browser, a library S/W and your surround music system. That is why I believe there is a play here for anyone willing to make the investment. Create the download market space, start the revenue, relief the music labels of making elaborate surround music albums and grow the audience. Hit Play!
In addition to a user-friendly interface, the "niche" that apple has filled is one of a "convenience listener": people who want to quickly download music to put on their portable player (as you say, the iPod started this service) or play back on their small iPod-boom-box or PC speakers for friends.

A 5.1 listerner isn't jogging. He/She isn't going to get 5.1 out of a boom-box. The 5.1 listerner is sitting in a chair in the middle of a 5.1 speaker array, typically in a high-end audio system. This consumer isn't convenience/portable oriented; he/she is quality oriented and is most likely a "collector" rather than a mere "consumer" of music. I doubt that there's a strong need/market for downloading among such a group.
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Old 08-17-2007   #8
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Default Re: A Blueprint For the Future of High-Resolution, 5.1 Music

YES !!! I DO believe that if people could hear the music they love (if they truly care about their music first), they WILL invest in "their music" again. I can tell you a story about myself and this scenario. I'm a disc jockey at the classic rock station in Kansas City. I've been on the air for 31 years here in town. So when I get home from work...the LAST thing I wanted to do is turn on more music. But when I discovered 5.1 surround sound, DTS style or DVD-Audio style, I was entranced !! For the first time, a high quality music format BROUGHT ME BACK TO THE MUSIC. And that was tough for someone like me to do.

Jerry and I have written back and forth many times about the slow death of DVD-Audio. It makes me sick...and I honestly think we didn't do a good enough job of educating the consumer about how awesome this format really is. I also think it's a total shame that DTS and severely cut back on producing audio discs-they are truely fantastic-I have many at home that I STILL enjoy listening to.

Instead of chronicalizing the slow death of high resolution music, we should be blazing the trail and forging the new direction for the future of high resolution music. Can we insure that it won't die all together????
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Old 08-17-2007   #9
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Default Re: A Blueprint For the Future of High-Resolution, 5.1 Music

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Originally Posted by Gerben Van Duyl View Post
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For surround music there is no iPod, no other user interface than your browser, a library S/W and your surround music system. That is why I believe there is a play here for anyone willing to make the investment. Create the download market space, start the revenue, relief the music labels of making elaborate surround music albums and grow the audience. Hit Play!
Yet another flaw in this arguement. I don't think people REALLY want to be tethered to their computers to listen to music. I know that I surely don't. As has been discussed in the past, when all of those hard drives start crashing and people have to repurchase their entire iTunes collections, the wave of digital downloading will come to a sceetching halt. (Just happened to me recently, fortunately I have an external drive to back up that 2 year old hard disk that crashed.)

The future of which you speak sounds very much like the pay to play days of DIVX and DVD. Fortunately, the DIVX model failed (who has a spare phone line near their entertainment system to plug their DIVX player into anyway)

I think the opportunity is here for anyone who can convince the idiots at the labels (and probably more so - the artists and publishing companuies themselves) that licensing High Def music to companies who are willing to manufacture SACDs or DVD-As makes sense. Some $ is always better than none, especially when it is a market that the labels themselves aren't really willing to play in. It's really no different than the iTunes model (except for the low def quality of the iTunes product), license the material and let someone else worry about marketing and selling the product. All the labels and artists need to do is sit back and take in their %.

Finally, I believe the consumers will come if they are shown the benefits. I admittedly was a late comer to High Def music as I did not build out my home theater system to support 5.1 until 2 years ago. Up until then, I couldn't justify the expense of new/additional speakers, new receiver, and new Universal Disc player. Once I made the leap, it made perfect sense to be not only be able to use the system for a great home theater system but as an excellent home music system. Despite the current state of SACD and DVD-A, I have managed to purchase 70+ titles in the last year alone. My system is by no means top end, but everyone who has heard it clearly hears the difference/advantages of high def and MCH surround music.

Bill
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Old 08-17-2007   #10
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Smile Re: A Blueprint For the Future of High-Resolution, 5.1 Music

We want more surround product in DVD-A or SACD because we have the equipment and the space to enjoy them. We don't need an iPod per se, perhaps that is just a buzzword here that the format needs an attention getting killer app:

I submit that the killer application is the Led Zeppelin catalog on DVD-A for example. The Beatles - Love DVD-A *must* have turned a few heads as to what is possible! Wow....5.1 music! Everything is in place, we just need access to catalog masters so that passionate engineers can create what we want.

With the demise of many audio stores and the cluelessness at retail, we might as well bypass brick & mortar for the most part and go direct.

Everyone here should know that Warner has quietly created becausesoundmatterscom. This week it started being populated with Warner related DVD-Audio titles so you might some that you missed back at the retail store that didn't even know where to file them.

I'd like to see everybody with DVD-A passion get over there and buy at least one DVD-A right now to show we are ready for more.

My personal goal is that we get the 5.1 mixes that were completed but never issued like Paul Simon - Graceland and Chicago - Chicago X, plus more catalog surround mixes as we go forward.

It's a glimmer of hope for high resolution surround so let's all get behind it!
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Old 08-17-2007   #11
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Thumbs down Re: A Blueprint For the Future of High-Resolution, 5.1 Music

Why all the talk about back catalogs? Granted the people who would be most interested in re-purchasing Pink Floyd, Queen, and Jimi are well established, but they, in general, do not make up the bulk of music buyers, at least not in the US. Even though they have the means doesn't make them (us) the best target.

I'm fairly certain that the music industry, what's left of it, lives and dies based on new releases. The number of new releases in either SACD or DVD-A was patheticly low. How could they ever have expected it to take off like that? Even without digital rights management that model sucks.

They might be successful if they focus on new releases and make it simple (HDMI?). The previous Hi Def audio formats we way too complicated and expensive and the media was far too limiting to be of much value or interest.

I hope someone comes up with a viable Hi Def audio format and media distribution system that we can all live with. I have my fingers crossed.

Michael K. Craghead
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Old 08-17-2007   #12
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Default Re: A Blueprint For the Future of High-Resolution, 5.1 Music

[QUOTE=mcraghead;2027]Why all the talk about back catalogs? Granted the people who would be most interested in re-purchasing Pink Floyd, Queen, and Jimi are well established, but they, in general, do not make up the bulk of music buyers, at least not in the US. Even though they have the means doesn't make them (us) the best target.

I'm fairly certain that the music industry, what's left of it, lives and dies based on new releases. The number of new releases in either SACD or DVD-A was patheticly low. How could they ever have expected it to take off like that? Even without digital rights management that model sucks.

------

I must disagree here.

Back catalog sales are HUGE for the music business. No cost to produce and they make up the VAST majority of sales.

Also re: new music versus back catalog - consider what Bose does so well. Yes, people SLAY them for their sound of their speakers but to me their stength is MULTI-CHANNEL-MARKETING. I don't mean selling 5.1 speakers. I mean their ability to sell clock radios in the NY Times or speakers at Circuit or on an infomercial or at an outlet mall. They are everywhere. Music is sold online and by the download. Fewer and fewer ways to fewer and fewer people. I think the music industry would be well suited copying Bose and sell music a lot of different ways. HELL, it might not be them. Perhaps you let other companies take your masters and resell it. Tell me if Mobile Fideilty put out the Led Zeppelin collection - you would wouldn't buy it in 24/192? ESPECIALLY if it was a limited edition? I would.
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