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The Rise of "Hybrid" Vinyl-MP3s 258

Posted by kdawson
from the rejoicing-DJ dept.
Khyber writes to let us know that First Word Records, a U.K.-based record label, is now selling vinyl records that come with codes that allow you to download a 320-kbit MP3 of that record's content. The article mentions another independent label, Saddle Creek, that also offers DRM-free downloads with some vinyl records. The co-founder of First Word is quoted on why they didn't DRM the download: "Making a legal, paid-for version of the file less useful than a copied or pirated one doesn't make sense."
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The Rise of "Hybrid" Vinyl-MP3s

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 15, 2007 @05:39PM (#19137431)
    What is this vye..null?
  • by powerpants (1030280) * on Tuesday May 15, 2007 @05:39PM (#19137443)

    If the MP3s are coming straight from the record label, maybe they could be encoded straight from the master mix, rather than a down-sampled 24-bit, 44.1kHz CD. My understanding is that CDs go up to 20 kHz (which is pretty close to the highest pitch humans can hear), but that the bit-depth is somewhat course at that range.

    Is there an audio engineer around who can explain if there's much to be gained this way?

    • by Tuoqui (1091447) on Tuesday May 15, 2007 @05:44PM (#19137525) Journal
      I'm not an audio engineer but from a telecom course I took the basic idea is that you sample at twice the highest frequency (IE. 20kHz frequency would require 40k samples a second).

      For the most part humans focus on the 300Hz-3.3kHz range which is why the phone companies only give you about 3k Bandwidth and sample at about 8k samples a second over POTS.
      • by Mattintosh (758112) on Tuesday May 15, 2007 @06:11PM (#19137909)
        Yes. Nyquist. There's a Theorem, a Limit, and a Guy that discovered these, all by the same name.

        A 44.100kHz sample rate will theoretically get you up to a 22.050kHz max frequency in the audio signal. Humans can focus on any part of the audible spectrum, but voices won't typically fall outside the 300-3300 Hz range. Thus aLaw (US) and mu-Law (outside the US, a.k.a. "uLaw", since the Greek mu looks like a u with a tail) are typically 8000 Hz sample rate, 8-bit-sample, monophonic (who has a stereo telephone?) signal when digitized.

        The GP was worried that the bit depth is "coarse". This is not the case. Bit depth "distance" is constant for a given depth.

        CD's are 44.1kHz, 16-bit, stereo. Always. So there are always 44100 samples per second per channel. There are always two channels (stereo, one left, one right). And each sample in each channel is always 16 bits. A 16-bit integer can represent numbers from 0-65535 (2^0-1 through 2^16-1), and since there's no need for negative numbers (this is Pulse Code Modulation, or PCM, so no, you don't need to represent a +/- of a waveform) you get the full 0-65535 swing. From there, the value is directly translatable into a DC voltage that goes to the speakers. (Most of the heavy lifting is done in the A/D phase, D/A phase is a simple value-to-DC conversion.) The change in DC voltage over time is what causes the magnets to move, which moves the speaker cones, which moves air, which moves your tympanic membrane, which blah-blah-blah... eventually you hear sound.

        So there's no need to worry. Nothing gets coarse. Nothing loses fidelity. Nothing loses audible quality. This is why vinyl fanatics get laughed at by people who know how and why digital audio works. The limits of even now-mundane CD audio are far above the possible limits of even hypothetically perfect human hearing. Nobody can hear 22kHz. Nothing below 22kHz is misrepresented in CD-quality audio. For mastering work, where effects will be applied later, higher quality recordings are wonderful, since you can guarantee that it will stay high-quality when downsampled to CD-quality, but other than that (and "economies of scale" where better parts are just as cheap to produce), there's no need for anything better.
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by [Marvin] (46773)
          Actually, the max. frequency that can be sampled is 22kHz, not 22.050kHz - what the Nyquist theorem states is that in order to construct a signal accuately, you need to sample at twice the maximum frequency + a little more, because then you can also deduct the phase of the original signal.
          • by darkain (749283) on Tuesday May 15, 2007 @07:19PM (#19138835) Homepage
            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CD#Audio_format [wikipedia.org]

            "The sampling rate of 44.1 kHz is inherited from a method of converting digital audio into an analog video signal for storage on video tape, which was the most affordable way to get the data from the recording studio to the CD manufacturer at the time the CD specification was being developed. A device that turns an analog audio signal into PCM audio, which in turn is changed into an analog video signal is called a PCM adaptor. This technology could store six samples (three samples per each stereo channel) in a single horizontal line. A standard NTSC video signal has 245 usable lines per field, and 59.94 fields/s, which works out at 44,056 samples/s/stereo channel. Similarly, PAL has 294 lines and 50 fields, which gives 44,100 samples/s/stereo channel. This system could either store 14-bit samples with some error correction, or 16-bit samples with almost no error correction."
        • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

          by serginho (909707)

          "This is why vinyl fanatics get laughed at by people who know how and why digital audio works."

          There's only problem with this: vinyl lovers are not worried about signal-to-noise ratios or the frequencies that are audible to the human ear. It is simply a matter of taste.

          Vinyl records, if played in a decent setup (good turntables, good capsules, good speakers - but by no means audiophile gear), do sound different to CDs. They sound warmer, with more presence. That's what vinyl collectors are looking for.

          • Vinyl records, if played in a decent setup (good turntables, good capsules, good speakers - but by no means audiophile gear), do sound different to CDs. They sound warmer, with more presence. That's what vinyl collectors are looking for.
            CDs sound different if played with digital filters. Don't tell me nobody's come up with a "reduce bandwidth and introduce artifacts so this CD sounds like vinyl" filter.
        • . Nothing below 22kHz is misrepresented in CD-quality audio.

          Bullshit. A 22kHz sine wave will be a 22kHz square wave when recorded onto a CD. They don't sound the same. Of course, humans can't hear that high, but the point is that if you're quantizing a wave you won't get the exact same thing out at any frequency. However, 22kHz is far enough above the limits of our hearing and even moreso above the limits of what is interesting to record that the effects are limited.

          But the higher the frequency, the

          • by Bassman59 (519820)

            . Nothing below 22kHz is misrepresented in CD-quality audio.

            Bullshit. A 22kHz sine wave will be a 22kHz square wave when recorded onto a CD. They don't sound the same. Of course, humans can't hear that high, but the point is that if you're quantizing a wave you won't get the exact same thing out at any frequency. However, 22kHz is far enough above the limits of our hearing and even moreso above the limits of what is interesting to record that the effects are limited.

            But the higher the frequency, the more it's going to look like a square wave after it't digitized.

            I have to call bullshit on your call of bullshit.

            You, and many other people, seem to forget exactly how sampling and reconstruction actually works. You do NOT draw a straight line between the samples!

            Dan Lavry has an excellent paper [lavryengineering.com] that clearly explains how sampling and reconstruction work.

            What's also interesting is that many audio editing programs, including ProTools, don't properly display waveforms. If you load a delta function [latke.net] (the sample at time t=0 is infinite, all other samples zero, but we r

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by tuba_dude (584287)
          "...no need for anything better." I beg to differ, but I will preface this with the fact that I haven't studied the engineering or the physics behind it. It could just be the fact that I'm an audiophile and musician, but there's an audible (very subtle, yes) difference between a 24-bit/96KHz (or higher) recording and a CD-quality recording. Some people are better tuned for listening than others. It's like sitting some people in front of a CRT. Some will be able to tell the difference between refresh ra
        • by Lorkki (863577)

          A 16-bit integer can represent numbers from 0-65535 (2^0-1 through 2^16-1), and since there's no need for negative numbers (this is Pulse Code Modulation, or PCM, so no, you don't need to represent a +/- of a waveform) you get the full 0-65535 swing.

          Well, not exactly so. The Red Book [wikipedia.org] standard explicitly specifies that the format is 44.1 kHz, two channels, with 16-bit signed samples. How you choose to represent the zero amplitude level in a PCM format is only a question of definition. Higher bit depth net

        • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

          by SimonBelmont (1089255)

          Nothing below 22kHz is misrepresented in CD-quality audio.

          Wrong. The Nyquist Theorem states only that a sample rate of double the highest expected frequency is the minimum required to avoid aliasing. Meaning that, if you sample 22kHz at 44kHz, it won't come out sounding like something other than 22kHz. But you could theoretically be sampling at the 0 every time. The Nyquist Theorem isn't really about faithful reproduction.

          And in reality, there's no such thing as a perfect low-pass filter. This is wh

        • by Gordonjcp (186804)
          This is why vinyl fanatics get laughed at by people who know how and why digital audio works.

          I know how and why digital audio works. I even use and write digital audio software. I still think vinyl sounds better. Note that I'm not saying it's a more accurate reproduction - it sounds *better*, not more accurate. It's much the same way that a valve guitar amp makes your guitar sound better than a hifi amp.
      • by mangu (126918) on Tuesday May 15, 2007 @06:27PM (#19138161)
        I'm not an audio engineer but from a telecom course I took the basic idea is that you sample at twice the highest frequency


        You are correct, the Nyquist theorem states that you must record at a sampling rate that's above twice the higher frequency in your recording.


        All this debate over vinil is rather tiresome. Anyone who has studied electronics engineering like I did knows that vinil records have a rather low signal-to-noise ratio. I did a course on "Probabilistic Models in Electric Engineering" where we learned how to calculate noise due to the fact that electric charge is quantized. Now, get this vinil fans: ELECTRIC CHARGE IS QUANTIZED. There is no such thing as a charge smaller than an electron, which is 1.6e-19 coulomb.


        There are no such thing as analog values in this universe, everything is quantized. You cannot possibly have an electric signal that's totally free of noise, what you get is a number of "clicks", one for each electron that goes by. The same way, you cannot even hear a sound without noise, what you get is a number of "plocs", one for each air molecule that hits your eardrums.


        Now, I know people will say, "sure, but these effects are very small". Well, think again. Human hearing evolved to be as sensitive as it physically could be. Inside an anechoic chamber you can hear the blood flowing through your veins. The sensitivity of our ears is just short from hearing individual molecules hitting the eardrum. In any analog pick-up, be it moving coil or moving magnet, human ears are sensitive enough to hear the noise due to the quantization of electric current.


        Digital equipment have much better signal-to-noise rations because they have high currents in low-impedance circuits, the effect of charge quantization is diluted by averaging a large number of electrons. In analog vinil pick-ups either the impedance is relatively high for moving magnet models or the voltage is very low for moving coil types.


        And all this is considering only the most fundamental effects, not to mention problems as dust on the record. The cleanest cleanroom specified in the ISO-14644 standard has 12 particles per cubic meter. The lowest spec in ISO-14644 allows over 40 million particles per cubic meter. Does the room where you do your listening conform to an ISO "cleanroom" specification?


        Digital sound standards were created to be as good as they need to be. CDs have all the bandwidth and dynamic range one needs in the final recording. It's only when you are going to mix and resample the music that you may need better quality to avoid round-off error in the processing. Because of this, professional equipment normally use something like 24 bits @ 192 kbps. The widespread acceptance of MP3s show that the CD standard has actually a better quality than the majority of people need or want.

        • by Cadallin (863437)
          Better is subjective. Do you deny that CDs sound different from Vinyl? As you point out, human ears are very, very sensitive, thus the noise and distortion on compact disc can be distinguished as different from the noise and distortion on Vinyl. Whether one measures better than the other is irrelevant. Some people, due to conditioning, random chance, etc find that they prefer the sound of Vinyl to the sound of Compact Disc. For them, Vinyl is "better." There are also people that prefer the sound gener
          • by Endo13 (1000782) on Tuesday May 15, 2007 @07:09PM (#19138693)
            No, "better" in this case is not subjective at all. I think you entirely missed his point. His point is that you can create any sound you want with digital. Any sound at all. If you wanted to make a digital version of a track that sounded like it did on vinyl, you could do that and put it on CD. The issue here is that CD audio is a lot closer to the original live audio. Therefore it's a better reproduction. Just as 3.141592653589793238462643383279502884197169399375 10 is a better representation of Pi than 3.14 is. So the question isn't so much "do you like CD or vinyl better". The question is "do you like live music or vinyl better". Because with CD, you've basically got the exact same sound as if you were actually at the concert.
            • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

              by colanut (541823)

              The question is "do you like live music or vinyl better". Because with CD, you've basically got the exact same sound as if you were actually at the concert.

              That is BS. CDs are no where near "live". First tracks (as in individual instruments) are recorded separately and then mixed together, edited in production and then eventually mastered for final encoding. There are many steps between recording and pressing and at each step there is loss/enhancement.

              If CDs were so perfect, why was there a need to spec out

            • by Cadallin (863437)
              Your claim that CDs are as good as live audio is just outrageous, and that's even ignoring poor mastering techniques.
        • by neomunk (913773) on Tuesday May 15, 2007 @07:11PM (#19138737)

          There are no such thing as analog values in this universe
          You tell that to my friend pi and his buddies. But be careful, I understand they can be quite irrational.
        • Human hearing evolved to be as sensitive as it physically could be.
          This is incorrect. Human hearing evolved to be as sensitive as it needed to be. Evolution does not gear toward perfection but toward good enough. There are many animals out there that have the same basic sound set-up we do but hear much better because their survivability depends on it to find food or avoid being food. Human hearing is actually pretty mediocre compared to a lot of animals. We have found other ways to accomplish what som
          • by mangu (126918)
            Human hearing evolved to be as sensitive as it needed to be

            And how sensitive is that? Think of a deep, very quiet cave. Three living beings are inside. One of them has saber teeth. Of the other two, which one lived to leave descendants? The first one to hear the sound of padded paws, of course. Multiply that by a thousand, ten thousand, generations.

            Human hearing is actually pretty mediocre compared to a lot of animals

            Care to cite sources for that affirmation? As I mentioned, human hearing is so good that

      • by c_fel (927677)
        You're right. But still, the higher sampling frequency, the better it sounds, even when it's over 40kHz. It's because two near frequencies form a beat frequency that is the difference between these two frequencies. So even if you reproduce two frequencies that are not audible by humans, their beat frequency often can be eared.

        But you have to have a very high fidelity sound system to reproduce these frequencies, so for most consumers, the sampling frequency of a CD is Okay.

        It is also true that for most pe
        • by Mr2001 (90979)

          So even if you reproduce two frequencies that are not audible by humans, their beat frequency often can be eared.

          But you have to have a very high fidelity sound system to reproduce these frequencies, so for most consumers, the sampling frequency of a CD is Okay.

          I think the more likely explanation is that if you own a "very high fidelity sound system", it means you've spent tens of thousands of dollars trying to get a slight improvement in sound quality, and you'll think you hear a difference whether it's actually there or not... because you know that if you don't hear a difference, you're just a sucker.

    • by Hao Wu (652581)
      I wonder -- what is the real ability of a vinyl record to store digital data?

    • by iangoldby (552781) on Tuesday May 15, 2007 @06:10PM (#19137895) Homepage

      My understanding is that CDs go up to 20 kHz ... but that the bit-depth is somewhat course at that range.

      You are probably thinking of 'one-bit' (or bitstream) digital to analogue converters. (Wikipedia article [wikipedia.org].) It gets around the problem of producing 16 bits of resolution with a single bit by switching at a frequency many times that of the sampling frequency and averaging over time.

      In its purest form, it would switch at 2^16, or 65536 times the CD sample frequency. If one CD sample value is 0, the DAC would be off for 65536 DAC output samples. If the CD sample value is 65535 it is on for 65536 DAC output samples. For intermediate values it is on for the given proportion of the time. In other words, the CD sample value determines the duty-cycle of the output from the DAC. The one-bit on/off output is then averaged over time. This results in a conversion with almost no non-linear distortion of the signal.

      Unfortunately a frequency of 65536 * 44.1 kHz would be in the THz range, so the actual frequency that a 1 bit DAC operates at is somewhat lower. For lower frequency audio signals the averaging process is still very accurate, but it loses some accuracy for the highest frequency audio tones mostly when there are rapid transients in the high frequencies. You might refer to this as a 'coarsening of the bit-depth'.

      A full 16-bit DAC doesn't suffer from this problem because each sample from the CD is converted straight into a voltage proportional to that sample value in a single step. But it is very difficult to make a completely linear 16-bit DAC, so the non-lineararity of the DAC introduces its own distortions. But these distortions do not depend on frequency as they do with a 1-bit DAC.
      • a frequency of 65536 * 44.1 kHz would be in the THz range

        Fortunately, this can be solved with feedback. Wikipedia has a rather good article (there's a link in the article you mentioned) on what's called Sigma-Delta, or Delta-Sigma [wikipedia.org] modulation. This picture [wikipedia.org] shows how you can overcome the infinite sampling frequency problem. By a clever application of feedback, the sampling noise can be shifted upwards, out of the band of interest.

        This is an interesting feature of what's called "quantization noise". Because i

    • by Kamineko (851857)
      They should give you the vinyl, a listen to-able MP3, and a hyper-master-mix (or unmix. Bung the tracks on there too.) FLAC version.
  • by linguae (763922) on Tuesday May 15, 2007 @05:41PM (#19137475)

    I guess I will be looking forward to playing my hybrid vinyl records in my hybrid Toyota soon.

  • by Echo5ive (161910) <echo5ive@gmail.com> on Tuesday May 15, 2007 @05:41PM (#19137477) Homepage
    http://pulseblack.com/ [pulseblack.com]

    They've been doing this for a long long time with CDs. Very nice record label.
    • This is the future (Score:5, Insightful)

      by tentimestwenty (693290) on Tuesday May 15, 2007 @05:53PM (#19137655)
      As silly as it sounds with Indie Rock, Hip Hop, Jazz and to an extent, Classical, the sales of vinyl are growing at a quick rate and CDs are slowly massively. People value the sound quality and physicality of the vinyl and generally download the tracks from file-sharing to use portably or in the car. While I don't personally care too much for the free downloads, it will save a lot of people a lot of time and it keeps them "in-tow" with the record label's marketing. Everyone wins.
      • by mrdaveb (239909)
        I do occasionally buy music on vinyl and attempt to download a digital copy for use on the move, so yes I agree that is possibly a growing market.

        But unfortunately, vinyl sales as a whole are still decreasing, although of course not disappearing... I really wish I could find a link to the stats, I remember seeing BPI figures a while back, but I can't easily google them up now. Anyway, LP and 12" single sales were down a bit quite a few % compared to the previous year, although for some odd reason sales of 7
        • by digitig (1056110)

          I do occasionally buy music on vinyl and attempt to download a digital copy for use on the move, so yes I agree that is possibly a growing market.
          Hmm. I'm an avid collector from the vinyl generation, but I would only buy vinyl now if I couldn't get it on CD, and the first thing I'd do would be rip it to MP3.
    • With CDs? What, you buy the CD and they'll let you download mp3s? If I have the CD, I'll encode it myself...
  • Funny coincidence (Score:3, Insightful)

    by 50000BTU_barbecue (588132) on Tuesday May 15, 2007 @05:44PM (#19137523) Homepage Journal
    I just bought a turntable as an impulse purchase, a Pionner PL-516 for the curious. I have about 30 LPs lying around. I saw that HMV (a music store) had some new vinyl titles in stock, so I grabbed one at random, "The Arcade Fire". An abominable album to be sure, but it was just to hear how new vinyl sounds. Sounds pretty good. Got this famous coupon in there as well.

    My conclusion is that this is how things should work. Obviously there's a demand for vinyl, and the convenience of digital is undeniable. Somehow, music companies got this right.

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by LiquidCoooled (634315)
      The most impressive thing I have ever seen with vinyl disks was a friend saying "you have to listen to this" and searching the disk for a particular pattern and dropping the needle on it.
      Deadly accurate and spot on.
      You could see the entire album and know where quiet sections are and how much to skip to to get past the annoying interlude or whatever.
      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by TenBrothers (995309)
        I must be old to see this comment as cute and quaint.
      • There was a guy I saw on TV once that could tell you what a record was by looking at the grooves (at about 12inches away). They tried him with about 5 or 6 classical albums and he was 100% correct.
    • What do you have against The Arcade Fire? One of the better bands I've seen in a while, and the album is excellent. It's enough of a sea-change in style that it takes some getting used to, but it's entered my personal high-rotation list.
  • by ProppaT (557551) on Tuesday May 15, 2007 @05:47PM (#19137573) Homepage

    I'm in a small minority, but I'm a rabid music collector. Often times I'll buy both the cd and the vinyl versions of an album (the vinyl to listen to at home, the cd for the car or to rip to portable player). Basically, this allows me to only buy one version of the album (vinyl, the version I really want anyway) and just burn a copy for the car and drop one on the mp3 player. The only way this could get better is if they start supporting flac...then I can convert that to whatever format I want. This is great news for the indie / record junkie scene, though.
  • Codes to access an MP3 is so lame. I thought they were resurrecting the audio data file format used in early home computers that read data to and from a normal cassette tape recorder.

    If they're going to go retro with vinyl, they might as well go retro on the computer formats too.
  • DRM - no sense (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Skadet (528657) on Tuesday May 15, 2007 @05:51PM (#19137637) Homepage

    "Making a legal, paid-for version of the file less useful than a copied or pirated one doesn't make sense."
    And herein is the best anti-DRM argument there is. Just this sentence and no further. If I were writing a thesis on DRM, this would be my main point.

    Of course, expading the "doesn't make sense" part is important. It's also critical for the surely-to-be analogizers below to realise that this has no usefulr real world (as in, tangible) comparison. If three clicks of the mouse provides you with something far more useful than something you've shelled out your hard-earned cash for, something is wrong. Lax enforcement -- not to mention the difficulty of enforcement -- and fuzzy laws make this so.

    It's not as easy as saying, "Stealing a car has more utility than buying one, we should all steal cars!" since enforcement and history are so vastly different. See, the car analogy is wrong! Ha!
  • I know I've seen various rekkids put out by Merge and Matador Records that had stickers on the front offering exactly this sort of thing. The thing is that I saw those albums about 1-2 years ago. This isn't exactly new...
  • The Fools! (Score:5, Funny)

    by zmollusc (763634) on Tuesday May 15, 2007 @05:55PM (#19137695)
    Don't they realise that evil hackers will make multiple copies from the vinyl to audio cassettes and listen to it on portable tape players? Home Taping Is Killing music!
    • We must outlaw candles immediately, since pirates can use the wax contained in them to make copies of these vinyls. Only a pirate would own a candle!
  • Somewhat pointless (Score:4, Interesting)

    by 11223 (201561) on Tuesday May 15, 2007 @06:03PM (#19137791)
    Given that I can buy totally unmolested WAVs from Beatport [beatport.com], what's the point? I find it hard to believe that there are vinyl purists who want MP3s, or that those who would work with an MP3 wouldn't rather deal with a master-quality WAV which can be manipulated even more.

    Lossy compression is just as insidious as DRM when the bandwidth for CD-quality uncompressed audio is available.

    And to those who say you can't hear the difference, if you slow the track down by 50%, you can. If you don't know why you would do that, ask a DJ.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by TeknoHog (164938)

      Lossy compression is just as insidious as DRM when the bandwidth for CD-quality uncompressed audio is available.

      And lossless compression like flac [sf.net] makes even more sense.

    • wouldn't rather deal with a master-quality WAV which can be manipulated even more.

      if you believe in vinyl you believe that analog reproduction is better than whatever sampling rate you've set your WAV to.
  • someone gets it (Score:3, Insightful)

    by timmarhy (659436) on Tuesday May 15, 2007 @06:07PM (#19137853)
    "Making a legal, paid-for version of the file less useful than a copied or pirated one doesn't make sense."

    BINGO, YES why can't the rest of them understand this?

  • by Anonymous Coward

    320kbit/s CBR mp3 encodes are the ultimate "I have no idea what I'm doing" sign in the audio coding world. All the downsides of mp3 (lossy, huge files) with none of the benefits. "I'll just turn all the knobs to 'highest' and hope that's good".

  • by CheeseTroll (696413) on Tuesday May 15, 2007 @06:17PM (#19137981)
    Perfect, now audiophiles can look cool with their 'retro' collections of vinyl (even if they never listen to them), and still get easy access to the far-more-functional digital copy.
  • the original, rental model, of DRM!*

    -
    *Yes I know what the D stands for.
  • ...distribute the MP3 files on vinyl [artsci.net].

  • by Opportunist (166417) on Tuesday May 15, 2007 @06:28PM (#19138173)
    Making a legal, paid-for version of the file less useful than a copied or pirated one doesn't make sense.

    Someone selling content realizes the "value" of DRM? Excuse me for a moment, I gotta check for flying pigs. And could someone who has his number call the big red guy and ask him if the temperature in his home is still cozy?
  • by hurfy (735314)
    Sounds great....now if they only had some records to sell :(

    There seems to be one album and 11 (sidebar says 8) singles.

    That was a waste to follow that link :/

    I did the same as another poster and grabbed new vinyl at random just too play a new one. Next time i'll be more careful, hehe. Full blown vintage Pioneer system with 4-channel 8-track player/recorders :) My buddy never realized we were listening to an 8-track mix tape ;)
  • How is this different from Serato Scratch Live [rane.com] or Torq [torq-dj.com]?

    The double-headed approach makes sense for several reasons. DJs and audiophiles will always want the top end of quality, so they will buy physical media, but for convenience you can't beat a digital file.

    Yes, it's an analog record playing a digital song. I don't think it's as the highest quality from playing a true record that has the real song imprinted in it.

    Otherwise, Torq is amazing and I really like it.

  • Making a legal, paid-for version of the file less useful than a copied or pirated one doesn't make sense.
    It is a pity we can't mod that +5 insightful for the other guys in that industry...
  • by PPH (736903) on Tuesday May 15, 2007 @07:46PM (#19139121)
    Its not a true hybrid until they figure out a way to get MP3s to skip and warp if you leave them in a hot car.

    They do have MP3 turntables you can use to 'scratch' recordings.

  • 'digital' vinyl (Score:2, Interesting)

    by hack slash (1064002)
    When I first saw the heading I thought the mp3s were stored on the actual vinyl and wondered how they'd be retreived from them, nothing so fancy but it reminded me of the plastic flexi-disc I have stored away with my miniscule vinyl collection, the flexi-disc in question having a couple of Sinclair ZX81 programs on them whereby you use a turntable instead of a tape recorder to load the programs in.
  • I have a vinyl copy of that album from 2000, it came with a 'Daft Club' membership card which let me download all sorts of exclusive audio content. In this case though it was DRM protected, unlike these mp3's

    I wish I had the time to DJ out and about these days.
  • What's the point? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Daishiman (698845) on Wednesday May 16, 2007 @12:19AM (#19141229)

    What's the point of a vinyl of a digital master?

    As I've mentioned on a previous thread, I'm a huge fan of classical jazz and I have invested very seriously on a pile of records from the time, and I'm of the opinion that mastering was done more carefully back then and made to sound well with the way vinyl colors the sound.

    But sheesh, if you're going to master an album digitally then why add noise of the line by converting it to a physical medium with a low S/N ratio?

  • by ajs318 (655362)
    By feeding the signals from my direct-drive [wikipedia.org] (it's only a 4-pole motor -- I'm saving up for a 16-pole one :) ) turntable into two of the inputs of my Alesis MultiMix 8 USB mixer [maplin.co.uk] using RCA-to-6.3 adaptors [maplin.co.uk], panning one full-on to the left and the other full-on right, cranking up the gain (you've already lost 6dB what with it being unbalanced and another 20db from it being the jack and not the cannon, but the too-low impedance of the latter will distort things worse) and then adjusting the tone controls (t

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