CD players on the way out?

Page 2 - Seeking answers? Join the What HiFi community: the world's leading independent guide to buying and owning hi-fi and home entertainment products.

matthewpiano

Well-known member
Nov 23, 2007
494
330
19,270
the_lhc:matthewpiano:CD players aren't on the way out. There may be fewer of them going forward but, given the massive collections people have put together, there will always be a market for decent quality machines on which to play them.

Can't help thinking a number of you are completely missing the point, I've got a load of CDs and most of the ones bought in the last 3 years have never seen the inside of an audio CD player (I don't own one). It's still the format I buy the music on but they get ripped straight to a NAS (no viruses, no blue-screens, no screen!) and played through Sonos (never had a wireless drop-out).

It doesn't matter how many CDs people still own in 5, 10, 20 years time, you don't need a CD player to play them NOW.

Fair enough, but I WANT to play my CDs in a CD player so that I have the physical packaging, album art, and liner notes to hand. For me there is absolutely no advantage to ripping them to a hard drive. It is just as easy to play them straight from the disc in a CD player.
 

Red Dragon

New member
Jan 9, 2011
34
0
0
Having had an external hard-drive linked to my AV amp playing iTunes for some time now, I must admit that I haven't played a CD in about a year ! I own about 300 CD's (all ripped to my hard-drive) and enjoy the convenience and accessabilty of the digital format, especially when linked to my TV so artwork can be shown on the screen.

However, saying all that, I still miss the buzz of buying a vinyl album and reading through the sleeve notes etc...it's just never been the same for Cd's for me. I do think that the CD player will become a high-end or novelty item, probably going in and out of fashion as the turntable has over the last 20 years.

With Spotify and all the other ways to access digital audio (and video) files on the internet, it's only a matter of time that multi media players become the prefered hardware device in the home, although I think digital audio formats will have to be standardised and formalised so that all players accept all formats without question.

I think the days of the CD as the most popular mainstream choice of format are numbered, and therefor the demand for CD players on the high street will also fade but not disappear completey as I said above. And I can't say I'll be too sad to see them go to be honest..
 

Ragworm

Well-known member
Jul 24, 2007
28
0
18,540
One thing that I find disappointing is the reaction (or lack of one) of the music industry to changing technology and people's listening habits. It's almost criminal how they're sitting on enormous back-catalogues that are getting harder and harder to access in any format.

Something I'd like to see, and which might prolong the life of the CD, is packages containing a traditional red book CD together with MP3 and maybe even lossless or high bitrate versions of the same songs. However, I suspect that the music companies would just view this as making things easier for the pirates.
 

gbhsi1

New member
Mar 5, 2008
237
0
0
chebby:
They certainly are on the way out.

I expect there will be none on sale by about 2020 or 2025 or maybe 2035 or...

Just look what happened to vinyl and turntables!

and they are making a comeback..? why get rid of cd's...don't think that will happen for a very very long time.
 

6th.replicant

Well-known member
Oct 26, 2007
292
0
18,890
matthewpiano:Sorry, but CDs aren't rubbish at all. I love the format and always have done. Furthermore CD players have got incredibly good these days. My CDs sound involving, dynamic, detailed, and musical and I thoroughly enjoy listening to them. I also love the physical aspect of having the packaging with the liner notes etc. and being a big fan of classical music I have a real soft spot for some of the excellent box sets that are coming out these days.

CD players aren't on the way out. There may be fewer of them going forward but, given the massive collections people have put together, there will always be a market for decent quality machines on which to play them.
 

simon3102000

New member
Oct 1, 2010
48
0
0
I dont get why people think ripping music to a computer is more conveniant that just popping a cd on??? Yeah for portable music like ipod its heaven sent but for in the home i cant be bothered to faff around with computers etc and tryna get a descent lossless file blah blah dac this dac that, easier to select a cd and pop it on a descent cd player, sit back and enjoy.... I dont get why cd's have suddenly become the badguy in all this hi-fi shizzness, cd's are awsome! I love my cd collection and often look at my 400+ cd colection on my shelving units and think to myself - thats awsome dude! Keep the dream alive!
 

6th.replicant

Well-known member
Oct 26, 2007
292
0
18,890
simon3102000:I dont get why people think ripping music to a computer is more conveniant that just popping a cd on??? ... i cant be bothered to faff around with computers etc and tryna get a descent lossless file blah blah dac this dac that, easier to select a cd and pop it on a descent cd player, sit back and enjoy.... I dont get why cd's have suddenly become the badguy in all this hi-fi shizzness, cd's are awsome! I love my cd collection and often look at my 400+ cd colection on my shelving units and think to myself - thats awsome dude! Keep the dream alive!
Agree.


There seems to be much faffage with this computer-based music via a DAC lark: too many file formats and variable quality; too many expensive cables and USB-adaptors required if you want full-fat 24bit/192kHz; too many odd noises and "clicks 'n' whirrs"; downloading 24/192 or 24/96 takes a freakin' age; too few sources for decent quality DLs; too much 'preferences' re-setting.


And it all seems a tad 'precious'. Already beginning to lose interest/patience ...
 

Tonestar1

Moderator
Nov 4, 2008
234
85
18,870
I think within 5 to 10 years low/mid range will have ditched them so it will only be very high end or surercheap argos all in one players that will be providing them. Same way as minidisk and vihs for me. There is no reason for them. Vinyl will continue as its a pure format that cannot be compromised. So will always have a following.

CD is a compromise which is now no longer necessary. It can be replicated at lower price points which are so much easier and cheaper to obtain.It can be surpassed by other formats costing roughly the same. It will die. It was a great format in its day, no doubt, but the dog days are over!

I'msure the manufacture of discs will continue a lot longer so people can either rip from them or listen to directly in old school kit.
 

6th.replicant

Well-known member
Oct 26, 2007
292
0
18,890
Tonestar1:... There is no reason for them [CDs]. Vinyl will continue as its a pure format that cannot be compromised. So will always have a following...
Or in one fell swoop the industry could phase out the Red Book CD, render vinyl's 'non-compressed' attribute as superfluous and let the geeks get on with their computer-based faffing.

How? Simple, by adopting the audio-only Blu-ray disc (BD) as the CD's successor and make all future CDPs Blu-ray compatible. (And if I may pre-empt: no, sorry, some of us don't want a multi-format AV BDP's compromised audio playback as a hi-fi source.)

In fact, I'm surprised that What HiFi? doesn't campaign for the BD to replace the CD - surely BD audio would be sufficiently hassle-free for the hi-fi dilettante, while the non-compressed aspect satisfies even the most demanding audiophile?
 

Tonestar1

Moderator
Nov 4, 2008
234
85
18,870
It's aready been tried wth HDCD and SACD didn't work then. Vinyl will always have a place as it's completely analogue and provides a medium that no other format can compete with. It also makes good money as it is sold as a premium product. I really cant see the companies going for BR audio making a big impact in the market, The Film industry has the forced marketing spot on. They bombard you with marketing about BRbeing the latest and greatest format available before everymovie you watch. Maybe record companies could follow suit and advertsie HD audio at the start of every new CD. Would be a pain to listen too but if the gereral public arent fully aware then they aint going to buy it.

My whole issue with this is that CD is now a middle of the road product in every sense, it's not the best sounding, not the cheapest and requires relatively expensive kit to get the best out of it. What exactly does it have going for it?

T
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
I agree with ToneStar. It's neither here nor there, atleast for that part of the work that is advanced enough to have the money to spend on turntables and has connectivity, or will have connectivity.

For the rest of the world, I really don't know for sure. My guess is as good as yours. They've got other problems though (Clean water, for instance).
 

Helmut80

New member
Jan 8, 2011
27
1
0
being completely ignorant re: vinyl, why is vinyl considered 'pure'? Because it's an analogue recording?
 

matthewpiano

Well-known member
Nov 23, 2007
494
330
19,270
I enjoy listening to vinyl but I get fed up with the way in which it is lauded as being somehow superior. Like every format it has its strengths and weaknesses and I'm really not sure how it can be described as 'pure'. Over time I've found that the set-up and maintenance demands of vinyl can very easily get in the way of enjoying the music in a way that you just don't find with CD, and these days most good quality CD players compare favourably with a good quality turntable.

I'm all for a higher definition disc replacing CD, as long as future machines are back-compatible. A Blu-ray Disc audio format or even a better stab at promoting SACD would work fine for me, but so does the status quo. I'll bet there are lots of people out there who aren't getting the best out of CD, never mind higher resolution formats. If your CDs are getting scratched then I'm afraid you just aren't looking after them properly. Keep them in their case and store them upright, handles them with the same care you would give a vinyl LP, and they'll be fine. I've got some discs that are 20+ years old and they still play like new.
 

The_Lhc

New member
Oct 16, 2008
1,175
1
0
matthewpiano:It is just as easy to play them straight from the disc in a CD player.

Hmm, I'd have to question that, if you're just playing one album maybe but more than that you're up out of your chair everytime you want to listen to something else or if you only want to listen to a couple of tracks on an album. A CD player can't compete if you want to a "shuffle all" on your entire collection either, that's the biggest advantage for me.

And really, how often do you actually need to look at the album art and liner notes? Every time you listen to the album?
 

The_Lhc

New member
Oct 16, 2008
1,175
1
0
Ragworm:Something I'd like to see, and which might prolong the life of the CD, is packages containing a traditional red book CD together with MP3 and maybe even lossless or high bitrate versions of the same songs. However, I suspect that the music companies would just view this as making things easier for the pirates.

Not necessarily, a lot of new vinyl is sold with codes for downloading a digital version (usually mp3). There's not much point with CD though as it takes only a couple of minutes to rip a CD to lossless anyway.
 

The_Lhc

New member
Oct 16, 2008
1,175
1
0
6th.replicant:simon3102000:I dont get why people think ripping music to a computer is more conveniant that just popping a cd on??? ... i cant be bothered to faff around with computers etc and tryna get a descent lossless file blah blah dac this dac that, easier to select a cd and pop it on a descent cd player, sit back and enjoy.... I dont get why cd's have suddenly become the badguy in all this hi-fi shizzness, cd's are awsome! I love my cd collection and often look at my 400+ cd colection on my shelving units and think to myself - thats awsome dude! Keep the dream alive!
Agree.


There seems to be much faffage with this computer-based music via a DAC lark: too many file formats and variable quality; too many expensive cables and USB-adaptors required if you want full-fat 24bit/192kHz; too many odd noises and "clicks 'n' whirrs"; downloading 24/192 or 24/96 takes a freakin' age; too few sources for decent quality DLs; too much 'preferences' re-setting.


I don't do any of that? I buy a CD, stick it in the laptop, two minutes later it's on the storage in lossless (16-bit there's no point ripping CDs to 24-bit) ready to be played with everything in my collection. No odd clicks or whirrs, the music's just there, whenever I want it, pick up the remote, play anything I want, without even getting out of the chair.

And it all seems a tad 'precious'.

I've no idea what you mean by that.
 

Big Chris

New member
Apr 3, 2008
400
0
0
There must be some unlucky people out there. I've got around 600 Cds, and had my earliest purchases for over 20 years.

I've never had a problem with a CD which wasn't a direct result off it being damaged by human error. None show signs of disc rot, none refuse to play,

I'm not saying CD is perfect, but I shall always continue to buy them (availability permitting). Downloads/MP3s/etc, etc holds no interest for me in any way.
 

The_Lhc

New member
Oct 16, 2008
1,175
1
0
Big Chris:I'm not saying CD is perfect, but I shall always continue to buy them (availability permitting).

So will I, I just won't be playing them on a CD player.
 

shooter

New member
May 4, 2008
210
0
0
Probably over time they will go, how long it will take who knows and i'm pretty sure when it does audiophile and hi-fi enthusiasts wont put up much as a fight as they have with vinyl. The purists out there who can afford and listen to hi end CD playback only regard a player with any seriousness if it sounds as vinyl does, smooth, organic and well, analog.

The resolution you get from a download can be higher thad red book so why limit the experience by using CD when you can have better.

Over time download will be normal and folk who don't have access to the internet at home will be able to walk into booths in every town and city across the UK and download there favourite music directly on to their pod's or USB or whatever whilst browsing and listening to potential buy's for free. This maybe going on around the world already with the likes of Japan, but i do know. It will surly cut the overhead's of and music supplier like HMV (or independent's) as no stock would have to be had and only minimal staffing. But that's another thread completely.
 

matthewpiano

Well-known member
Nov 23, 2007
494
330
19,270
the_lhc:matthewpiano:It is just as easy to play them straight from the disc in a CD player.

Hmm, I'd have to question that, if you're just playing one album maybe but more than that you're up out of your chair everytime you want to listen to something else or if you only want to listen to a couple of tracks on an album. A CD player can't compete if you want to a "shuffle all" on your entire collection either, that's the biggest advantage for me.

And really, how often do you actually need to look at the album art and liner notes? Every time you listen to the album?

I guess a lot of this relates directly to how we each listen. 99% of the time I listen to complete discs from beginning to end and I can't remember the last time I used the programming or shuffle features of a CD player. I am very much of the school of thought that believes albums are made to be listened to in full and that classical works should never be split up into bleeding chunks and that is probably why I'm quite happy with CD as a format.
 

lonely boy

New member
Apr 19, 2008
56
0
0
As much as I like listening to music from my computer, I'd echo Matthew's views. I listen to a lot of (dare I say it) serious music and I don't really see much of a benefit playing it from a computer really.

Also I think that I find it more it personal and easier to concentrate just listening to CDs, or SACDs for that matter.
 

BillDay66

New member
Nov 30, 2010
36
0
0
My kids get a cd for xmas, rip it and throw it under the bed with the rest of their rubbish, wont see it agin until Mrs D goes on the warpath! Thats the way things are going and cant see any problem with it really (apart from the mess!)

The physical CD is after all only a storage medium, and how you play / extract such medium will move with the times, wether any of us likes it or not.

Compact discs are not exactly a sexy format either are they, I totally get the physical media / liner notes angle, but a plastic box doesnt do it for me. I do like a nice cardboard retro package, shame theyre not a big bigger though, say about 12" diameter? ....hang on a minute


The argument in favour of cd that I have with my son is why on earth would you pay for a poor bitrate download, when you can have the cd for the same money, to do what you like with?
 

RodhasGibson

Well-known member
Oct 10, 2008
190
7
18,595
Big Chris:

There must be some unlucky people out there. I've got around 600 Cds, and had my earliest purchases for over 20 years.

I've never had a problem with a CD which wasn't a direct result off it being damaged by human error. None show signs of disc rot, none refuse to play,

I'm not saying CD is perfect, but I shall always continue to buy them (availability permitting). Downloads/MP3s/etc, etc holds no interest for me in any way.
Same here BC, must have got 500 or so myself left now.How do you sell on a down load if you tire of it, alright you can delete it but I prefer to sell my unwanted cd"s which I have in the past on amazon.They go pretty quickly too so that must say something.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
matthewpiano:I guess a lot of this relates directly to how we each listen. 99% of the time I listen to complete discs from beginning to end and I can't remember the last time I used the programming or shuffle features of a CD player. I am very much of the school of thought that believes albums are made to be listened to in full and that classical works should never be split up into bleeding chunks and that is probably why I'm quite happy with CD as a format.

I guess you're spot on, it does come down to your listening habits. I for one find that even some of my favourite albums have a song or two that I don't like that much and usually skip. And then there's dozens of albums on which I actually like only a couple of songs. There are some respected artists out there who release absolutely beautiful songs next to what can only be described as space fillers on the same CD. That's why I do use the program function quite often (rather than skipping tracks in mid listen) and regret that some of the great systems nowadays come without it.
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY

TRENDING THREADS

Latest posts