GMG Classical Music Forum

The Music Room => General Classical Music Discussion => Topic started by: Guido on March 19, 2009, 03:49:33 AM

Title: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Guido on March 19, 2009, 03:49:33 AM
It's sort of miraculous that this works:
http://www.spotify.com/en/

I'm not sure if it's available in all countries, but it certainly is in the UK. As I say - there's an enormous amount of music on here (many record labels have their complete catalogue on there), and its completely free and legal. I recommend that you get it now. Quality is the same as itunes.

For instance this morning, I had not heard of the Fitzwilliam Virginal book, so I just searched spotify and found five different artists playing pieces from it. Simple. As. That.

As you can tell I am pretty excited!  ;D ;D
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: MDL on March 19, 2009, 04:07:05 AM
Spotify is brilliant. The selection can be a bit erratic, but I've spent many a happy evening noodling around on it. I'm amazed at how quickly files are accessible. Listened to a few recordings that I once owned but gave away in my big teenage clear-out (when I decided that I would listen to nothing but post-war avant-garde music), including Ansermet's Rite of Spring. Also listened to Lachenmann's Little Matchgirl, which encouraged me to give the CDs another go.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: MDL on March 19, 2009, 04:16:34 AM
Also listened to Maazel's VPO Bolero to see if he does that AWFUL thing he did at the climax of his New Philharmonia recording (ie, he holds up the tempo twice, once at the key change and again before the percussion onslaught). He does do it again. Why?! It's so ugly.

Also listened to Barbirolli's Mahler 2 (Stuttgart, I think), which was a bit ragged but often amazing in its craggy splendour.

You get the idea. Sign up to Spotify and you too will spend the next fortnight glued to your computer, dribbling takeaway food on the keyboard and wondering if getting a commode might be a good idea.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: karlhenning on March 19, 2009, 04:45:17 AM
N/A in the US. (Just saying.)
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Guido on March 19, 2009, 04:53:31 AM
OK, I feared as much Karl... For the reasons above you should be both thankful and quite thoroughly miffed.  :-\
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: karlhenning on March 19, 2009, 04:59:52 AM
My friend, but I am very pleased on your behalf!
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Keemun on March 19, 2009, 05:43:55 AM
N/A in the US. (Just saying.)

Officially, it's not available in the U.S., but if you access the website through a UK proxy, it is.  Enter the URL here and you're on your way:  http://privama.com/ (http://privama.com/)

FYI, when you create an account, it asks for a UK postal code.  Because I don't have one, I used the postal code for the House of Commons: SW1A 0AA   ;D
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Dr. Dread on March 19, 2009, 05:45:03 AM
Officially, it's not available in the U.S., but if you access the website through a UK proxy, it is.  Enter the URL here and you're on your way:  http://privama.com/ (http://privama.com/)

FYI, when you create an account, it asks for a UK postal code.  Because I don't have one, I used the postal code for the House of Commons: SW1A 0AA   ;D

You, sir, are under arrest.  $:)
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Keemun on March 19, 2009, 05:50:44 AM
You, sir, are under arrest.  $:)

Nuh uh!  I'm just listening to streaming music from the internet.  I'm not copying, downloading or distributing it, or otherwise infringing on the intellectual property rights of others.   So THERE!  :P
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: karlhenning on March 19, 2009, 05:57:32 AM
(Dave is the Fuzz?)
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Keemun on March 19, 2009, 05:59:12 AM
(Dave is the Fuzz?)

Just look at his avatar. . . .  He's clearly using a listening device on a stake-out.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: karlhenning on March 19, 2009, 06:01:08 AM
It's The Conversation all over again!
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Keemun on March 19, 2009, 06:11:44 AM
Well, I just reviewed their End User Agreement (something I rarely do) and determined that the legality of accessing Spotify from the U.S. is questionable.  Alas, I won't be using it.  :'(   Dave, can I call my bail bondsman now?  :)
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Dr. Dread on March 19, 2009, 06:15:42 AM
Well, I just reviewed their End User Agreement (something I rarely do) and determined that the legality of accessing Spotify from the U.S. is questionable.  Alas, I won't be using it.  :'(   Dave, can I call my bail bondsman now?  :)

I'm not squeaky clean, brother.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Keemun on March 19, 2009, 06:24:48 AM
I'm not squeaky clean, brother.

So you're a crooked copper?  8)
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: 71 dB on March 19, 2009, 06:30:28 AM
My former working pal sent me a Spotify invitation week ago. I have been listening to it a lot!  0:)


Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Dr. Dread on March 19, 2009, 06:41:10 AM
So you're a crooked copper?  8)

(http://farm1.static.flickr.com/9/14788318_dca6b7a1ac.jpg)
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Keemun on March 19, 2009, 06:42:25 AM
(http://farm1.static.flickr.com/9/14788318_dca6b7a1ac.jpg)

 :D
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: (: premont :) on March 19, 2009, 07:20:39 AM
This is what I got when I tried to access the page. Trees do certainly not grow into heaven by themselves:



Get started
Spotify free is currently in an invitation-only beta, which means you need to have received an invitation token to access the service

Not invited?
You have two options. If you just can’t wait, you can pay to become a Spotify premium member and get immediate access

Otherwise, sign up here if you would like us to send you an invite as soon as we are able to.

 

 
 
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: sul G on March 19, 2009, 02:45:31 PM
Odd - I didn't get anything like that. I just clicked, downloaded and explored it. Looks fun...
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Diletante on March 19, 2009, 05:24:19 PM
I didn't get that message, either. Maybe it's your country? Have you tried accessing through the proxy mentioned above?
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Tsaraslondon on March 20, 2009, 04:48:37 AM
I signed up to it about a week ago. What a fantastic resource! And even if you prefer to have music on CD, what a great way to try before your buy. The search feature is geared towards pop music (isn't it always?) and there's quite a lot missing (I could only find one or two Universal issues, and many of the smaller labels are poorly represented), but plenty of EMI releases, including new ones, like the Pappano Madama Butterfly. My pc speakers aren't particularly good, but if I once find a way of linking the pc to my usual sound system, I'm sure I'll be buying a lot fewer CDs than I used to.

Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Renfield on March 20, 2009, 04:22:01 PM
I signed up to it about a week ago. What a fantastic resource! And even if you prefer to have music on CD, what a great way to try before your buy.

Exactly! I love it too, for that reason. :)
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Frumaster on March 20, 2009, 05:42:46 PM
Just get it permanently, free, and lossless.  Go ahead, download it 'illegally'.  I'm doing society a friggin service by listening to classical music....as would we all.  The law can shove it.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Guido on March 20, 2009, 07:42:33 PM
Just get it permanently, free, and lossless.  Go ahead, download it 'illegally'.  I'm doing society a friggin service by listening to classical music....as would we all.  The law can shove it.

lol!
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: 71 dB on March 20, 2009, 11:19:37 PM
I'm doing society a friggin service by listening to classical music....

What service?  ???

The law can shove it.

Even when the law happens to be on your side?
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: AB68 on May 29, 2009, 08:14:55 AM
I just discovered Spotify, it's ingenious!
You can find almost anything, and best of all.. it's free.
I'm listening to Beethoven op.127 with the Tokyo SQ right now...
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Siedler on July 29, 2009, 03:27:03 AM
A wonderful service!  8) There are a lot of classical records by Virgin, EMI, Naxos, Naïve and Chandos. Too bad most of DG's catalogue isn't there and that the search function is frustrating (and some of the classical albums are badly labelled).
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: MDL on April 01, 2010, 01:35:24 AM
I found out last night that Spotify has recently uploaded a huge swathe of recordings from Decca, DG and Philips!
I was hopping around from one recording to the next like a demented spacehopper... So much stuff! Too much choice!

Complete Mahler sets from Chailly and Solti, Colin Davis's Concertgebouw Stravinsky, Boulez's Berlin DG Ravel and so on. I can't wait to get home tonight to dig around some more.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Tsaraslondon on April 01, 2010, 12:06:37 PM
Indeed if this goes on, and they keep expanding the labels and music available, I might subscribe (in order to get rid of the ads) and give up buying CDs altogether. But, ultimately, is it going to be a good or a bad thing for the classical music industry?
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Est.1965 on April 01, 2010, 09:18:16 PM
Indeed if this goes on, and they keep expanding the labels and music available, I might subscribe (in order to get rid of the ads) and give up buying CDs altogether. But, ultimately, is it going to be a good or a bad thing for the classical music industry?

You would give up buying CD's?  ???

There is nothing more satisfying than going to your music shelf(ves), choosing what you want to put in your head, putting it on and reading about it in covernotes.  You are free to come and go with whatever you want, you have the solid manifestation of the music in your hands and on the shelves, you have right to OWNERSHIP of the discs and the listening experience and the right to say if what you are listening to is good or bad...you will own physical evidence of amazing works, and they can travel with you in life.
It is better than installing some software and listening to streamed music.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: MDL on April 02, 2010, 12:55:51 AM

There is nothing more satisfying than going to your music shelf(ves), choosing what you want to put in your head, putting it on and reading about it in covernotes.  It is better than installing some software and listening to streamed music.

I agree. I recently bought the complete Schnittke symphonies on BIS, even though the recordings are on Spotify, and I am sure I will be adding CDs to my groaning shelves until I fall off my perch.

But I love being able to sample stuff for free. I have four complete sets of the Mahler symphonies and hundreds of individual performances, so I don't need to add any more. But I am curious to hear other recordings, and that's where Spotify is useful.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on April 02, 2010, 07:18:19 AM
I would rather rent than buy music, I'm glad to see that renting has come about again.  I also prefer renting movies, but guess what?  I also buy, I just don't want to buy something just to hear it, just as I don't want to buy a movie just to watch.  I think it's funny that the record industry is finally over the past few years is allowing us to rent again, when the movie industry has gone the opposite direction restricting new release rentals (warner's deal with netflix and redbox).

As far as I know I can't do anything like rhapsody and other services on the ipod, but at least I can get ideas by listening to Pandora and last.fm. :)
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: opel on April 03, 2011, 09:33:19 AM
So I recently came across this Swedish software called Spotify. It's free and has a huge library of classical music. Link > www.spotify.com

This is how spotify descibe themselves:
Spotify is a new way to listen to music

Any track you like, any time you like. Just search for it in Spotify, then play it. Any artist, any album, any genre - all available instantly. With Spotify, there are no limits to the amount of music you could listen to. Just help yourself to whatever you want, whenever you want it.


Sound good, i know, there is more:

Think of Spotify as your new music collection. Your library. Only this time your collection is vast: 10 million tracks and counting. You can create as many playlists as you like from this collection - just drag and drop the tracks you want.

And because the music plays live, there’s no need to wait for downloads and no big dent in your hard drive. You can listen at any time, no matter where you are. Through your computer or your mobile phone.


So basically there is a free version and a premium version (costs 99 swedish krouns/month).
The things you gain with premium is:
- A higher quality music (barely noticealbe),
- No commercials - in the free version there are 10 - 60 second commercials after you listen to about 10 - 20 songs, I'm not really sure how it works.
- Being able to hear prereleased albums (about 1 week before the world premiere), this wouldn't interest many of you though sice there aren't really any composers using this feature.

I'm sticking with the free version, the commercials can be a little annoying somethimes but you don't have to listen to them if you just crank the volume down when they interrupt your listening.

Notice: Spotify does not support some countries, meaning that if you're in one of these countries you wont be able to create an account. This was my problem.
It's actually really easy to bypass this by just entering the website through a proxy server located in sweden or any other EU country.

Have fun!
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Tsaraslondon on April 04, 2011, 09:16:52 AM
You would give up buying CD's?  ???

There is nothing more satisfying than going to your music shelf(ves), choosing what you want to put in your head, putting it on and reading about it in covernotes.  You are free to come and go with whatever you want, you have the solid manifestation of the music in your hands and on the shelves, you have right to OWNERSHIP of the discs and the listening experience and the right to say if what you are listening to is good or bad...you will own physical evidence of amazing works, and they can travel with you in life.
It is better than installing some software and listening to streamed music.

Aside from the having the liner notes, this is just like owning the music myself. I have a very small flat and limited space. I was already running out of places to put more CDs. This is like having a vast library of music at my fingertips, which I can choose from any time I want. I choose what I want to listen to and when, just like choosing a CD from my own shelves. Furthermore I have been able to listen to recordings of works, of which I already had one or two versions without buying another. For instance I already have 4 recordings of Aida, and don't really want to buy any more, but I have listened to several other recordings over the last year or so, recordings that I had been interested in but didn't buy because I didn't want too many duplications in my collection.

When I first downloaded spotify, I was still listening to more CDs. Now I log on in the morning, select something from their shelves (it may be something I own already, or it may be something I haven't heard before). If I want information about the work or the artists I can find it on the internet.

What's more, now that I am a subscribing to spotify, I can have this collection on my phone, so I can take it wherever I go, and, as long as I am on a wifi connection, it won't cost me anytyhing. It is indeed a new world we are living in.

Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Holden on April 04, 2011, 11:38:03 AM
OK, so how do I register via a proxy server?
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Maciek on April 04, 2011, 03:53:09 PM
In case anyone is interested:

Quote from: http://www.spotify.com/int/help/faq/availability/
Spotify is currently available in Sweden, Norway, Finland, the UK, France, Spain and the Netherlands. We hope to launch in more countries in the future.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Chaszz on April 04, 2011, 06:04:30 PM
Officially, it's not available in the U.S., but if you access the website through a UK proxy, it is.  Enter the URL here and you're on your way:  http://privama.com/ (http://privama.com/)

FYI, when you create an account, it asks for a UK postal code.  Because I don't have one, I used the postal code for the House of Commons: SW1A 0AA   ;D

Could you please be more specific? What do I do when I get to privama.com?
So far, whatever I've tried there has not worked, and I still get "N/A in your country" from Spotify.
Thanks.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Mandryka on July 23, 2011, 12:55:07 PM
I've been a bit taken for a ride by spotify and I feel quite disappointed by them, and indeed distrustful. True their catalogue is impressive and the system works. But the sound quality is not good enough. You can't tell what bitrate they stream at: they hide that information and even the Squeezebox doesn't divulge it. But you can hear very clearly that it's not high quality. Not 320kbps. At least not in the handful of recordings I just tested in a like for like comparison with the CDs.

Whether I will feel that the premium service is worth keeping remains to be seen. I suspect not.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on July 23, 2011, 02:24:05 PM
As far as I know I can't do anything like rhapsody and other services on the ipod, but at least I can get ideas by listening to Pandora and last.fm. :)

Seeing this old post I have to say that I'm wrong!  Rhapsody, MOG, Napster, NML are all available on the ipod touch... so take that DavidW you pompous ass!! ;D
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Clever Hans on July 23, 2011, 03:28:20 PM
I've been a bit taken for a ride by spotify and I feel quite disappointed by them, and indeed distrustful. True their catalogue is impressive and the system works. But the sound quality is not good enough. You can't tell what bitrate they stream at: they hide that information and even the Squeezebox doesn't divulge it. But you can hear very clearly that it's not high quality. Not 320kbps. At least not in the handful of recordings I just tested in a like for like comparison with the CDs.

Whether I will feel that the premium service is worth keeping remains to be seen. I suspect not.

It's 160kbps and some tracks 320 for premium subscribers, with more planned in the future, whatever that means. I think it's a good deal for sampling records, and people who listen to pop/indie music can't tell the difference. No gapless though.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Mandryka on July 24, 2011, 03:05:04 AM
It's 160kbps and some tracks 320 for premium subscribers, with more planned in the future, whatever that means. I think it's a good deal for sampling records, and people who listen to pop/indie music can't tell the difference. No gapless though.

Just now  I compared my BBC Legends disc of Baker/ Guilini in Nuits D'ete with the spotify stream played through exactly the same hi fi and the difference is shocking.

Other discs where the difference was palpable were in Arrau's analogue Beethoven Sonatas for Philips (I checked op 101) and some Grumiaux Bach Concertos with the Guller chamber orchestra. Muraro's Ravel was far worse in sometracks than others.

They promised 320 for everything 2 years ago but have not kept the promise. There's some stuff on the web which suggests that 90 per cent of classical goes out at less than 320. The marketing is misleading and they don't publish the quality of their downloads. I suspect they are not a reputable organisation to deal with.

My advice is keep away if quality matters to you. Use youtube to check recordings or their free service.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on July 24, 2011, 07:06:09 AM
My advice is keep away if quality matters to you. Use youtube to check recordings or their free service.

When most (at standard rate) streaming is at 64k, you're saying that spotify offers a much better compression rate of 160k even at standard pay and then you conclude that they don't offer quality sound?  Your expectations are unreasonable.

As for not divulging bit rate, well that does sound a bit dishonest.  But your ears can be your guide.  Does it sound bad?  Then stop giving them your money.  If it sounds fine, then who cares what the bitrate is?
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Todd on July 24, 2011, 07:11:06 AM
I just signed up for Spotify yesterday, and I plan on going for the free option.  I did some browsing of classical, and while some things are obviously missing (no Annie Fischer LvB cycle?!), there are some other gems in there.  I'll be able to hear Andrea Lucchesini play some Brahms, for instance.  I have very low expectations for sound quality, but since it's free, who cares? 
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on July 24, 2011, 07:12:54 AM
Can anyone compare it to the other streaming services-- how is it for content?  Does NML still reign as king?  What labels seem to be on spotify?
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Todd on July 24, 2011, 01:16:02 PM
Can anyone compare it to the other streaming services-- how is it for content?  Does NML still reign as king?  What labels seem to be on spotify?



Spotify supposedly has 15 million+ tracks across all genres, so it's big.  If you do a search on classical big names (Pollini, Andsnes, Rattle, etc), you'll get a lot of titles.  I read that Spotify has the entire catalog of all the majors, but a quick search for Eric Heidsieck's recordings, for instance, show that not to be true (no LvB sonata, no Mozart concertos).  I'd bet that NML is bigger on independent label stuff and Spotify on big name stuff.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on July 24, 2011, 01:37:23 PM
Okay spotify has about the same amount of music as napster (and probably same labels too).  Across all of the major ones (spotify, rhapsody, napster, mog etc) it boils down to how easily you can find things, how good their apps are, bitrate, other features and community.  Hmm...
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Tamsin on July 25, 2011, 05:18:55 AM
What I like best about Spotify is that doing a classical search is considerably less painful than with other services (Rhapsody was the worst!)
I'm using the free plan & the sound quality is much better than I expected. It is great for previewing albums I may want to buy!
My only complaint is that it installs its wannabe-iTunes app on your desktop. I have no desire to use it for managing my offline library/portable devices so it's just cluttered.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on July 25, 2011, 05:28:34 AM
What I like best about Spotify is that doing a classical search is considerably less painful than with other services (Rhapsody was the worst!)

Oh neato I like to hear that!  I'll try it out when I've conquered my unwieldy cd collection.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Tamsin on July 25, 2011, 07:16:51 AM
Oh neato I like to hear that!  I'll try it out when I've conquered my unwieldy cd collection.

I wish I had that problem!
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Mandryka on July 25, 2011, 09:59:58 PM


As for not divulging bit rate, well that does sound a bit dishonest.  But your ears can be your guide.  Does it sound bad?  Then stop giving them your money.  If it sounds fine, then who cares what the bitrate is?

It's hard that one because sometimes you don't know what you're missing until you compare. And what you are missing may be important. In the Baker Nuits d'ete the prominence of singer vis-a vis orchestra was different, very different, on the spotify stream. With Arrau's analogue Beethoven the issues are about the reality of the piano, the overtones, the positioning of the piano in the stereo image. With Muraro the issues are to do with cleaness, crispness -- and background noise (I often hear background noise on my system with mp3, even at 320kbps)

I've calmed down a bit now. I need to pay for the premium service because that's the only way I can pipe it to my hi-fi, using their Squeezebox app. I'm not going to listen to music at the computer. And I've started to value the combination of these music forums and spotify. You know, someone mentions Belcea Quartet's Schubert or Gavrilov's Rachmaninov . . . makes me curious . . .  bish bash bosh I'm listening to it through spotify. That's fun.

Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Tamsin on July 26, 2011, 02:09:15 AM
The paid plan is looking more and more attractive every day

The free plan is supposedly unlimited listening for the next 6 months but when it's time for an ad break you will often get interrupted in the middle of a piece with a louder sound clip of some random song  >:D
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Mn Dave on July 26, 2011, 02:44:26 AM
I listen to music on my computer the majority of the time so Spotify's premium plan is perfect. $10 a month? No-brainer.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Tamsin on July 26, 2011, 03:14:41 AM
I listen to music on my computer the majority of the time so Spotify's premium plan is perfect. $10 a month? No-brainer.

Yeah but I could use the $10 to buy 2 records!
Actually I haven't paid because it doesn't have a Roku app (yet) to properly replace my MOG subscription
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Mn Dave on July 26, 2011, 03:19:02 AM
I'm selling all my CD's! ;)
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Tamsin on July 26, 2011, 03:34:13 AM
I'm selling all my CD's! ;)

:o

Whatever floats your boat man.
Your sig makes me almost want to update my neglected RYM list.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on July 26, 2011, 04:42:22 AM
(I often hear background noise on my system with mp3, even at 320kbps)

Compression doesn't add background noise. You must have a problem with your gear.  Please test each part to find the culprit.  Is it only when you stream from your pc to the squeezebox? Or is it whenever you use the squeezebox?  Or is it even when you play mp3s from another source (i.e. not your squeezebox)?  You're not enjoying the music to the full potential until you resolve this problem.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidRoss on July 26, 2011, 05:27:24 AM
Compression doesn't add background noise. You must have a problem with your gear.  Please test each part to find the culprit.  Is it only when you stream from your pc to the squeezebox? Or is it whenever you use the squeezebox?  Or is it even when you play mp3s from another source (i.e. not your squeezebox)?  You're not enjoying the music to the full potential until you resolve this problem.
Perhaps he's referring to sound artifacts.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on July 26, 2011, 05:32:46 AM
Perhaps he's referring to sound artifacts.

Compression artifacts don't sound like noise though.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidRoss on July 26, 2011, 05:39:12 AM
I just signed up for Spotify yesterday, and I plan on going for the free option.  I did some browsing of classical, and while some things are obviously missing (no Annie Fischer LvB cycle?!), there are some other gems in there.  I'll be able to hear Andrea Lucchesini play some Brahms, for instance.  I have very low expectations for sound quality, but since it's free, who cares?
Yep.  I just use web downloads and streaming to preview anyway.  Rhapsody used to work fine for that (and torrents), letting me hear enough to decide whether to buy a recording or not.

Compression artifacts don't sound like noise though.
Some do.  Granted, I've never heard anything that sounds like what I think of as background noise--i.e. tape hiss--but have heard much that someone else might characterize that way, akin to the pops and clicks of ill-cared-for vinyl. 
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on July 26, 2011, 05:45:01 AM
Some do.

Nope. It just sounds either congested or lacking in detail.  Mp3 compression never adds noise.  In fact the high frequencies are filtered, and the lower the bitrate the more aggressively they are filtered so you'll never hear anything like noise.

Quote
Granted, I've never heard anything that sounds like what I think of as background noise--i.e. tape hiss--but have heard much that someone else might characterize that way, akin to the pops and clicks of ill-cared-for vinyl.

Pops come from ripping a cd unsecurely and it hit a scratch, and you can hear it in the wav before it is compressed.  It's not due to poor compression, it's due to poor cd ripping.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on July 26, 2011, 05:51:29 AM
Wireless cards can and do interfere with many sound cards and produce pops and other noise.  So much so that for most professional audio recording applications it is recommended to disable your wireless connection while recording music. 

I've had that happen on my laptop, and I bet that is the issue.  I get pops and noise and it's terrible.  I found a plugin for foobar and winamp that increases the buffer the soundcard uses and eliminates the problem entirely... but I can't remember the name, I'll post it when it comes back to me.

Quote
I don't know if this effects streaming audio in the same manner, but I do know it will effect music as you are recording it into Pro Tools or Cubase.

It does indeed effect it exactly like you described. :-\
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on July 26, 2011, 05:56:54 AM
It's called Asio!  There is another one called wasapi which I have not used.  But there are asio plugins for winamp and foobar.  There is a plugin to use asio all of the time for all apps under windows called asio4all, but I couldn't get it to work.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidRoss on July 26, 2011, 06:16:27 AM
Nope. It just sounds either congested or lacking in detail.  Mp3 compression never adds noise.  In fact the high frequencies are filtered, and the lower the bitrate the more aggressively they are filtered so you'll never hear anything like noise.

Pops come from ripping a cd unsecurely and it hit a scratch, and you can hear it in the wav before it is compressed.  It's not due to poor compression, it's due to poor cd ripping.
Apparently we still occupy different worlds.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidRoss on July 27, 2011, 10:52:27 AM
I'd like to give spotty a try.  Would any of our members in Europe care to send me an invite?  Thanks!
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Todd on July 27, 2011, 11:01:07 AM
I'd like to give spotty a try.  Would any of our members in Europe care to send me an invite?  Thanks!



You can go the web-site and sign up for your own invite.  Took less than a day for mine.  You can download the software from ninite.com anytime.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidRoss on July 27, 2011, 11:21:51 AM
Thanks for the info, Todd. 
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Mn Dave on July 28, 2011, 07:14:12 AM
I'm beginning to question the sound quaility on some recordings, but for ten bucks a month, it's still pretty much a no-brainer.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidRoss on July 28, 2011, 07:51:16 PM
Hmmm...the free service sucks with interruptions after every movement featuring one or another particularly loud, badly recorded, and unmusical example of what's worst about popular culture.  It might be worth paying for if there's enough good stuff available, but it seems that the cataloging of classical was done by a team swilling torpedo juice and using darts and dice to determine tagging.

Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Mn Dave on July 29, 2011, 03:20:59 AM
Hmmm...the free service sucks with interruptions after every movement featuring one or another particularly loud, badly recorded, and unmusical example of what's worst about popular culture.  It might be worth paying for if there's enough good stuff available, but it seems that the cataloging of classical was done by a team swilling torpedo juice and using darts and dice to determine tagging.

It's pop oriented of course and there is no gapless playback (not that I've found).

But still, ten bucks...
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on July 29, 2011, 03:48:19 AM
but it seems that the cataloging of classical was done by a team swilling torpedo juice and using darts and dice to determine tagging.

That's what I found for all of the mainstream streaming services.  I use those kind of services for pop, I use nml for classical.  Also these non-nml streaming sites don't really offer that much content for classical, sure they represent the major labels, but other than that they really can't come close to the breadth and depth that nml has.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Mn Dave on July 29, 2011, 03:52:46 AM
What the hell is NML?
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Mn Dave on July 29, 2011, 03:54:24 AM
Also these non-nml streaming sites don't really offer that much content for classical...

Are you including Spotify?
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on July 29, 2011, 04:08:44 AM
Are you including Spotify?

Why not?  It's not like it offers oodles more than Rhapsody.  This thread is really overhyping a service that provides the same content at the same price as all of the other popular ones.  It's as if nobody here used streaming services before.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Mn Dave on July 29, 2011, 04:11:48 AM
Well, just from browsing, you can't use Rhapsody on a Mac and the sound quality is lower.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Mn Dave on July 29, 2011, 04:18:22 AM
What the hell is NML?
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on July 29, 2011, 04:18:36 AM
Well, just from browsing, you can't use Rhapsody on a Mac and the sound quality is lower.

You don't need to use the program, you can use the website.  Rhapsody is just one.  Napster is also out there, and they have the billboard charts, plus their is in app for them on my tv.  And then we have mog which allows 320k downloads on ipod touch, iphone and android phones.  They also have shared playlists, which is very cool because they have some famous artists on there, you can listen to music David Bowie what thinks is cool for instance.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on July 29, 2011, 04:20:23 AM
What the hell is NML?

Naxos Music Library, expensive but it has an amazing catalogue for classical, beating all other services by far with the one weakness that they don't have major labels.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Mn Dave on July 29, 2011, 04:26:59 AM
I haven't delved much into the classical side of Spotify, but it has a lot of it, although on some recordings a track or two can't be played for some reason. I saw a Cedille album on there; haven't checked much for other smaller labels.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Mn Dave on July 29, 2011, 04:48:07 AM
It was rather amusing last night when the music stopped playing through my laptop and I discovered my wife had pulled up my account to listen to a song on her phone. Learned something there.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Mn Dave on July 29, 2011, 04:58:24 AM
I also learned something - last night when I got home I installed Spoify on my home computer and imported my iTunes library - now I can play any song in my iTunes library that is on Spotify, which sseems to be most.  This is definitely a good feature not available on last.fm or Pandora.

Yep, I wonder if I can do that on my phone. Probably.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Mandryka on July 29, 2011, 05:00:28 AM
Compression doesn't add background noise. You must have a problem with your gear.  Please test each part to find the culprit.  Is it only when you stream from your pc to the squeezebox? Or is it whenever you use the squeezebox?  Or is it even when you play mp3s from another source (i.e. not your squeezebox)?  You're not enjoying the music to the full potential until you resolve this problem.

I first noticed it whed I downloaded Ugorsky playing Davidsbuendlertaenze at 320kbps a while ago and was annoyed by the background hiss. Anyway I dumped it and gor a lossless format but I did check briefly on the web and it is a problem which other people experience. It could be a hardware thing as you're suggesting though.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Todd on July 29, 2011, 06:46:10 AM
It's as if nobody here used streaming services before.

Well, I for one have not, so the free Spotify service will let me know if it’s worth spending money on.  I’ll be taking multiple factors into account, like sound quality, selection, advertising annoyance factor, etc.  Though I got all set up last week, I have yet to listen to a single track.  Perhaps that’s an omen of things to come.


Naxos Music Library, expensive but it has an amazing catalogue for classical, beating all other services by far with the one weakness that they don't have major labels.

That’s a pretty big weakness.  Not a few reasonably good artists have recorded for majors.

Spotify does have the majors’ catalogs.  Sort of.  Spotify’s catalog is not as robust as I would have thought it would be.  A whole lot of Wilhelm Kempff’s discography is missing, for instance.  Ditto Zimerman and a few others I’ve searched.  Part of the attraction of streaming is to be able to hear the recordings I can’t buy.  I’m not seeing that here.

Here’s what I’m looking for in a streaming service: 1.) At least CD quality sound, and high res when available, 2.) a comprehensive catalog that includes all classical recordings that have been converted to digital.  I’d be willing to pay decent money each month for such a service or combination of services – $100 to $125, say, maybe more – which would save me quite a bit from what I currently spend on CDs.  However, I do not see any service or combination of services that do this.  Maybe next year.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on July 29, 2011, 08:03:35 AM
That’s a pretty big weakness.  Not a few reasonably good artists have recorded for majors.

The lack of both breadth in the major services is also a big weakness.  There are glaring problems with every streaming service.

Quote
Spotify does have the majors’ catalogs.  Sort of.  Spotify’s catalog is not as robust as I would have thought it would be.  A whole lot of Wilhelm Kempff’s discography is missing, for instance.  Ditto Zimerman and a few others I’ve searched.  Part of the attraction of streaming is to be able to hear the recordings I can’t buy.  I’m not seeing that here.

They're all like that sadly (rhapsody, napster, mog etc).

Quote
Here’s what I’m looking for in a streaming service: 1.) At least CD quality sound, and high res when available, 2.) a comprehensive catalog that includes all classical recordings that have been converted to digital.  I’d be willing to pay decent money each month for such a service or combination of services – $100 to $125, say, maybe more – which would save me quite a bit from what I currently spend on CDs.  However, I do not see any service or combination of services that do this.  Maybe next year.

Yes that would be great!  I would pay quite a bit for a service like that, because I could simply replace cd purchases with streaming.  Maye in the future. :)
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Mn Dave on July 29, 2011, 08:04:45 AM
I can replace plenty of my CD's with streaming. Not the Beatles though.  ;D
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on July 29, 2011, 08:10:24 AM
I can replace plenty of my CD's with streaming. Not the Beatles though.  ;D

Yeah never the Beatles!  And there are a few other bands that will never show up on streaming, but yeah most of them are there.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Mn Dave on July 29, 2011, 08:11:25 AM
Pink Floyd's not on there, but I don't really care about them anymore. Peter Gabriel's not on there, but I'm sick of him anyway.  ;D
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on July 29, 2011, 08:25:37 AM
Pink Floyd's not on there, but I don't really care about them anymore. Peter Gabriel's not on there, but I'm sick of him anyway.  ;D

Oh I didn't know that Gabriel wasn't there!  That's strange about Pink Floyd because they are on mog, all of their albums.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Mn Dave on July 29, 2011, 08:32:04 AM
Seem to have all of Genesis though, or most of it.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on July 29, 2011, 09:08:03 AM
Leon there are a couple of things you should consider for your playing your music since your ipod broke:

(a) an external portable hd, fit in your pocket and you'll be able to carry 500 gigs of music in with you to work.
(b) a cloud service, such as amazon, then you can play all of your music library without having to pay a monthly fee.  It has a built in player so you can play the music without needing to download.

I think that the first is the better choice, but amazon does give 5 gigs for free. 

Edit: Amazon has any paid cloud account gets *unlimited* space for music, where music is defined as mp3 and aac files.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Mn Dave on July 29, 2011, 09:30:35 AM
15 million tracks is a lot of music...

Indeed. :)
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on July 29, 2011, 09:48:23 AM
Leon I didn't mean instead of using spotify, I meant so that you could listen to your own music library again at whatever bitrate floats your boat with perhaps superior tagging.  You don't need itunes, just use windows media player which is already installed.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Todd on July 29, 2011, 09:57:51 AM
(b) a cloud service, such as amazon, then you can play all of your music library without having to pay a monthly fee.  It has a built in player so you can play the music without needing to download.

I think that the first is the better choice, but amazon does give 5 gigs for free. 

Edit: Amazon has any paid cloud account gets *unlimited* space for music, where music is defined as mp3 and aac files.


I wouldn't mind leveraging a cloud service but for one thing, the size of my collection.  Storing as wav files, I figure I'd need at least 4 TB of storage, which means between 400 GB - 1TB or so compressed, depending on format and bit rate.  I just wonder if free storage is truly a permanent thing, or what the caveats may be.  And I don't have the time to do all that ripping.  (And I would not send my collection off to have a company rip it all.)  Looks like I may be stuck with physical media for a while.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Mn Dave on July 29, 2011, 10:10:17 AM
We need a great recordings on Spotify thread.  ;D

Maybe.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Tamsin on August 01, 2011, 01:06:58 PM
We need a great recordings on Spotify thread.  ;D

Maybe.

Well this one was started but didn't catch on  ;)
http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,18380.msg539480.html
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Mn Dave on August 01, 2011, 04:48:12 PM
Well this one was started but didn't catch on  ;)
http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,18380.msg539480.html

Thanks. It must be where I got the idea since I posted there not too long ago.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Mandryka on August 09, 2011, 07:56:44 AM
I have just noticed that my squeezebox server computer interface is giving me information about the quality of spotify albums played through their 3rd part app.

Muraro's Ravel and Jumppanen's Ponthus's Boulez and the Janet Baker/Giulini CD with Nuits d'ete all showed up at 320kbps.

That's very encouraging.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on August 09, 2011, 09:10:35 AM
That's really lousy Leon!  Why would they do that?  If they have the license for the album, all the tracks on it should be available.  That sucks.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Mn Dave on August 09, 2011, 01:45:40 PM
My main complaint with Spotify is that the number of tracks not available for playing seems vaguely higher than one might expect from a paid service.  I have found the Hagen Mozart Quartets, for example, and about half of the tracks from the late works are missing.  This is also the case with other recordings and is frustrating to have two movements of a piece but not the 1st and 4th.

Yes, very odd. I wonder how that happens.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: starrynight on August 12, 2011, 02:37:21 AM
I think it had (maybe still does) the Minna Keal symphony which I had wanted to hear for quite a while.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidRoss on August 13, 2011, 06:48:04 AM
Yes, very odd. I wonder how that happens.
I suspect the record company licenses only a sample for free distribution.  That seems to be the case with even paid dl services where only certain tracks are available to dl on a per-track basis, but others are available only if you buy the complete album.  Gielen's DLVDE, for instance, which doesn't permit purchase only of Der Abschied.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on August 13, 2011, 06:57:46 AM
I suspect the record company licenses only a sample for free distribution.  That seems to be the case with even paid dl services where only certain tracks are available to dl on a per-track basis, but others are available only if you buy the complete album.  Gielen's DLVDE, for instance, which doesn't permit purchase only of Der Abschied.

It might be only spotify though, there is no such problem on mog:

http://mog.com/albums/mn53148763/michael-gielen/mahler:-das-lied-von-der-erde (http://mog.com/albums/mn53148763/michael-gielen/mahler:-das-lied-von-der-erde)

I had already checked the ones that Leon mentioned and they are available in completion on mog as well.  Maybe later I'll check if that's also the case on rhapsody and napster.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidRoss on August 13, 2011, 07:33:07 AM
It might be only spotify though, there is no such problem on mog:

http://mog.com/albums/mn53148763/michael-gielen/mahler:-das-lied-von-der-erde (http://mog.com/albums/mn53148763/michael-gielen/mahler:-das-lied-von-der-erde)

I had already checked the ones that Leon mentioned and they are available in completion on mog as well.  Maybe later I'll check if that's also the case on rhapsody and napster.
I tried to scope out mog but had to register in order to get any real info.  I trust you're using the service, Dave?  How's the selection? And the quality?  $5/mo is a bargain to test drive "new" recordings if it's decent.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on August 13, 2011, 08:29:04 AM
I tried to scope out mog but had to register in order to get any real info.  I trust you're using the service, Dave?  How's the selection? And the quality?  $5/mo is a bargain to test drive "new" recordings if it's decent.

It has the smallest selection out of the streaming services with only 11 million tracks.  In comparison I believe spotify and rhapsody have around 15 million tracks each.  Sad but true.  If you look at the top right corner you'll see the search engine and you'll be able to search for things without needing to register.  I think the biggest hit is in esoteric music.  Say you want to hear the complete works of Norgard, I found that nml had pretty much everything, and mog had only a select handful (last year I was listening to a bit of Norgard). But if you look at more mainstream classical, it's pretty good.

The sound quality at 64k is awful, but the 320k option on pc streaming, and mobile downloads is awesome.  You don't have to pay extra for bitrate if I remember, I think $10 is just for mobile access... don't need it then use the $5 plan.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidRoss on August 13, 2011, 08:43:12 AM
It has the smallest selection out of the streaming services with only 11 million tracks.  In comparison I believe spotify and rhapsody have around 15 million tracks each.  Sad but true.  If you look at the top right corner you'll see the search engine and you'll be able to search for things without needing to register.  I think the biggest hit is in esoteric music.  Say you want to hear the complete works of Norgard, I found that nml had pretty much everything, and mog had only a select handful (last year I was listening to a bit of Norgard). But if you look at more mainstream classical, it's pretty good.

The sound quality at 64k is awful, but the 320k option on pc streaming, and mobile downloads is awesome.  You don't have to pay extra for bitrate if I remember, I think $10 is just for mobile access... don't need it then use the $5 plan.
Well I suppose it's worth a try, just to hear the full Gielen DLVDE if for nothing else.  I found him variable--extraordinary when he's good but either nothing special or just weird (the 7th) when he's not.  What I've heard of DLVDE sounds worth getting, but the test is Kallisch in the last movement and I want to hear that before springing for the CD.  Thanks for the tip!
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on August 13, 2011, 09:10:09 AM
His approach is pretty eccentric.  I connected with it, but many don't.  He was my favorite for awhile, but the more moderate Bertini replaced him for me.

Now that pandora has only 40 hrs per month and last.fm maybe not far behind paying for streaming might be the future...

Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Ataraxia on November 10, 2011, 02:25:09 PM
http://www.spotifyclassical.com/
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Ataraxia on January 13, 2012, 10:49:51 AM
Say, does anyone who uses Spotify know how to tag an album for future listening other than starring it (where it ends up lumped in with a bunch of other crap)?
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Tsaraslondon on January 24, 2012, 01:15:20 AM
Say, does anyone who uses Spotify know how to tag an album for future listening other than starring it (where it ends up lumped in with a bunch of other crap)?
You could create a playlist - call it something like "Albums for future listening". Once the play list is created you can add or delete tracks whenever you want.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Ataraxia on January 25, 2012, 07:05:05 AM
You could create a playlist - call it something like "Albums for future listening". Once the play list is created you can add or delete tracks whenever you want.

Thanks.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: MishaK on February 01, 2012, 10:10:56 AM
Yo!

Any Spotify users out there? What do you think of the service? I've been using it now for a month and have been enjoying it quite a bit. Due to a toddler at home with a restrictive sleep schedule I now do most of my listening at work through Spotify. I find sound quality very good and the service eliminates the need for cumbersome loading of music onto iPhone from CD onto laptop via iTunes. The selection is pretty good, apart from the annoying habit of Universal of not making all tracks if an album available. Otherwise I'm enjoying listening to lots of CDs I've been considering buying but hadn't so far. I now know I need Skrowaczewski's Bruckner but can easily live without Vänskä's Beethoven. ;)
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: North Star on February 01, 2012, 10:22:21 AM
I use it, great for discovering new pieces/recordings/artists - before buying recordings.
Sound quality is good enough for listening on the computer.


http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,11726.msg595280.html#msg595280
http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,19051.msg566275.html#msg566275
http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,18380.msg539480.html#msg539480
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on February 01, 2012, 10:53:08 AM
I'm sure we already have a huge thread on this merge, merge, merge! $:)

I now know I need Skrowaczewski's Bruckner but can easily live without Vänskä's Beethoven. ;)

I agree with this assessment. :)
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: nesf on February 01, 2012, 04:02:23 PM
Good for auditioning music. Of course some technical trickery is needed to listen to it in Ireland (despite it being available here when the service launched and despite Ireland and the UK being linked for nearly all licencing deals due to British corporations having such strong presence here). They've been "coming soon"/"coming back" for 2 years now. I'll pay for it as soon as they release it officially here, again. This whole geographical boundaries on the Internet annoy me quite a lot, especially when it comes to countries as linked (for better and worse) as the UK and Ireland are. Most of this of course, comes from being in a country that's a tiny media market so it gets messed around a lot with these services. It's almost as if they don't want to take my money from me or something.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on February 01, 2012, 04:44:53 PM
I don't use streaming services for auditioning as much as I do for scratching an itch.  Listen once, twice whatever and then never again. :D  Sometimes though I do buy... but mostly not.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Ataraxia on February 26, 2012, 05:50:59 AM
Yo!

Any Spotify users out there? What do you think of the service? I've been using it now for a month and have been enjoying it quite a bit. Due to a toddler at home with a restrictive sleep schedule I now do most of my listening at work through Spotify. I find sound quality very good and the service eliminates the need for cumbersome loading of music onto iPhone from CD onto laptop via iTunes. The selection is pretty good, apart from the annoying habit of Universal of not making all tracks if an album available. Otherwise I'm enjoying listening to lots of CDs I've been considering buying but hadn't so far. I now know I need Skrowaczewski's Bruckner but can easily live without Vänskä's Beethoven. ;)

I'm very happy with it. $10 a month is nothing for all this music at 320 kbps, which is good enough for my listening habits and good enough for 99% of the music listening population I would guess. I'd pay twice as much or more (don't tell them I said that) for this fine service.  :)
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: nigeld on March 03, 2012, 10:11:06 AM
Yo!

Any Spotify users out there? What do you think of the service? I've been using it now for a month and have been enjoying it quite a bit. Due to a toddler at home with a restrictive sleep schedule I now do most of my listening at work through Spotify. I find sound quality very good and the service eliminates the need for cumbersome loading of music onto iPhone from CD onto laptop via iTunes. The selection is pretty good, apart from the annoying habit of Universal of not making all tracks if an album available. Otherwise I'm enjoying listening to lots of CDs I've been considering buying but hadn't so far. I now know I need Skrowaczewski's Bruckner but can easily live without Vänskä's Beethoven. ;)


Using the premium service to stream through Squeezebox server at 320kbps through hi-end audio system.  Very impressive indeed.  A bit fiddle to set up but seriously worth it

I have set up a couple of playlists with music from the Gramophone Editors choices for 2012 so far and also the IRR Outstanding recommendations for 2012 so far. Between a half and two thirds of the recommended discs are available.  10 IRR discs and 13 Gramophone recommendations

This is the future.  Really




Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: flyingdutchman on March 03, 2012, 02:38:44 PM
I love it.  I can listen to music I would have bought before and then later regretted because I found the music not to my liking.  Also found some things I must have now on SACD or even RBCD.  It is the future, but they will need to get to a higher rez...320 kbs is not good enough for decent quality listening.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: nigeld on March 05, 2012, 01:16:07 AM
It is the future, but they will need to get to a higher rez...320 kbs is not good enough for decent quality listening.

Couldn't let this one pass I'm afraid.

I am one of those sad people who read audiophile magazines and have enjoyed building up a pile of audio hardware over recent years that does a decent job in serving my needs.  I have ripped the majority of my cd collection to hard drive (lossless files of course) and use squeezebox server software to stream music through my system.  I do still spin cd's also.

Anyway, I did a blind test at the weekend just for fun streaming a recent Natalie Dessay disk of excerpts from Handels Gulio Cesare from spotify at 320kbps and comparing that to the cd itself.

I was able to switch backward and forward between the two sources as I have my cd player and squeezebox receiver both feeding the same DAC (Benchmark DAC1) which is the source for an Audio Research pre/power amp combo and a pair of Sonus Faber speakers. 

I'm embarassed to say it was pretty well impossible to differentiate.

I would guess that 99% of Spotify users will be listening through a small pair of active speakers attached to pc and that is fine.   However, sound quality here will always be way inferior to even a modestly priced cd/amp/speaker set up.  This is absolutley not comparing like with like though.

Find a way to feed a decent audio system with a 320kbps stream and you will be amazed!















Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Ataraxia on March 05, 2012, 04:43:20 AM
I'm embarassed to say it was pretty well impossible to differentiate.

I would guess that 99% of Spotify users will be listening through a small pair of active speakers attached to pc and that is fine.   However, sound quality here will always be way inferior to even a modestly priced cd/amp/speaker set up.  This is absolutley not comparing like with like though.

Find a way to feed a decent audio system with a 320kbps stream and you will be amazed!

Yeah, most people can't tell the difference I'll wager.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on March 05, 2012, 05:07:40 AM
Yeah, most people can't tell the difference I'll wager.

+2  I find the extreme setting to be pretty darned cool.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: flyingdutchman on March 10, 2012, 01:16:19 PM
Yeah, most people can't tell the difference I'll wager.

I can and so can many discerning listeners.   I still buy CDs, but focus a lot on SACD quality sound.  Compression and the increase in noise via MP3 does not make a recording better nor equal to higher resolution, friends. 
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on March 10, 2012, 02:09:03 PM
I can and so can many discerning listeners.   I still buy CDs, but focus a lot on SACD quality sound.  Compression and the increase in noise via MP3 does not make a recording better nor equal to higher resolution, friends.

Compression artifacts don't sound like noise.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: flyingdutchman on March 10, 2012, 02:33:22 PM
Compression artifacts don't sound like noise.

No, they don't, but what's your point?  I used the word and for a reason.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on March 10, 2012, 02:40:08 PM
No, they don't, but what's your point?  I used the word and for a reason.

My point is that mp3s are not noisy.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: flyingdutchman on March 10, 2012, 02:45:14 PM
And my point is that increased loudness is noise.  Increased loudness amounts to noise and lack of clarity and resolution.  Loudness, noise and fatigue is a constant complaint among listeners today.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on March 10, 2012, 02:50:07 PM
And my point is that increased loudness is noise.  Increased loudness amounts to noise and lack of clarity and resolution.

You're talking about dynamic compression, which is NOT what mp3s do.  They compress in the frequency range, but not the volume range.  Also a compressed dynamic range only results in noise if it hits the maximum peak which only occurs in poorly mastered pop music, and has nothing to do with mp3 vs other forms of compression.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: flyingdutchman on March 10, 2012, 02:55:05 PM
You're talking about dynamic compression, which is NOT what mp3s do.  They compress in the frequency range, but not the volume range.  Also a compressed dynamic range only results in noise if it hits the maximum peak which only occurs in poorly mastered pop music, and has nothing to do with mp3 vs other forms of compression.

This engineer says it best:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Do1FJ5BcqSY

And classical music is not immune to poorly mastered recordings, but the compression found with MP3s increase loudness (noise) to the point that you are losing resolution, clarity, and increasing listener fatigue.  It happens to me whenever I listen to an MP3 of any music.  Higher resolution SACDs improve in all aspects of clarity, musical beauty, and eliminate listener fatigue. 
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on March 10, 2012, 03:05:05 PM
The loudness war has nothing to do with mp3 compression, you either misunderstood what you've seen or the presenter in the link misspoke.  I'm not going to watch the link because I already understand both the loudness war and how mp3 compression works.  You are simply confusing two types of compression.

Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: 71 dB on March 11, 2012, 12:46:43 AM
My point is that mp3s are not noisy.

As a matter of fact they are noisy because of information compression. The noise is just hopefully completely masked by the music itself. That's the whole idea of lossy audio formats.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on March 11, 2012, 07:19:26 AM
As a matter of fact they are noisy because of information compression. The noise is just hopefully completely masked by the music itself. That's the whole idea of lossy audio formats.

I'm more alert now so I'm going to try this again... and hopefully add enough information that others will find it useful.

Mp3 compression is based off of removing parts of the music that is masked by other parts to be inaudible.  The scheme does not mask noise, it is removing parts of the waveform that are not audible to the human ear.  The result of overly compressed music is not noise... it's lack of detail.

Another way that mp3 compression works is by filtering out high frequency (treble) and low frequency (deep bass) because our ears are much less sensitive to those ranges as compared to mid range, and we are less likely to miss it.  And again the result is lack of detail, lack of sparkle and oomph.  It sounds less detailed and lively... but it doesn't sound noisy.

So what is a compression artifact?  When trimming the waveform at too low a bitrate too much is removed and the sound is distorted.  Not noisy but distorted.  A concrete example that most are familiar with is cell phone conversation compressed at 32 k.  Good enough to make out what is being said and who you are talking to, but the voice doesn't sound natural, it doesn't sound noisy just a bit distorted.

Alot of streaming music is at 64k and you sometimes hear this distortion, but mostly it just sounds lacking in detail and dull.

At 128k many people start to hear the sound as transparent-- sufficient detail and lacking in these kinds of transients that you can hear at 64k.  Not as dull either but it could still sound better.  You need better gear to need better bitrate (as opposed to earbuds on mobile devices).

Many blind tests put 160-192 range as reaching transparency even on quality headphones, amps, speakers. 

Now if you want to develop a discerning ear, stop listening to 320k mp3 and pretending that it sounds bad (it sounds great and nobody has ears good enough to distinguish between 320k and flac).  Start listening to really low bitrate mp3s and work your way up.  I really think that when people talk about mp3s sounding noisy they are just picking up the noise floor on their crappy phone.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Leon on March 11, 2012, 07:30:28 AM
I'm more alert now so I'm going to try this again... and hopefully add enough information that others will find it useful.

Mp3 compression is based off of removing parts of the music that is masked by other parts to be inaudible.  The scheme does not mask noise, it is removing parts of the waveform that are not audible to the human ear.  The result of overly compressed music is not noise... it's lack of detail.

Another way that mp3 compression works is by filtering out high frequency (treble) and low frequency (deep bass) because our ears are much less sensitive to those ranges as compared to mid range, and we are less likely to miss it.  And again the result is lack of detail, lack of sparkle and oomph.  It sounds less detailed and lively... but it doesn't sound noisy.

So what is a compression artifact?  When trimming the waveform at too low a bitrate too much is removed and the sound is distorted.  Not noisy but distorted.  A concrete example that most are familiar with is cell phone conversation compressed at 32 k.  Good enough to make out what is being said and who you are talking to, but the voice doesn't sound natural, it doesn't sound noisy just a bit distorted.

Alot of streaming music is at 64k and you sometimes hear this distortion, but mostly it just sounds lacking in detail and dull.

At 128k many people start to hear the sound as transparent-- sufficient detail and lacking in these kinds of transients that you can hear at 64k.  Not as dull either but it could still sound better.  You need better gear to need better bitrate (as opposed to earbuds on mobile devices).

Many blind tests put 160-192 range as reaching transparency even on quality headphones, amps, speakers. 

Now if you want to develop a discerning ear, stop listening to 320k mp3 and pretending that it sounds bad (it sounds great and nobody has ears good enough to distinguish between 320k and flac).  Start listening to really low bitrate mp3s and work your way up.  I really think that when people talk about mp3s sounding noisy they are just picking up the noise floor on their crappy phone.

This reflects my own understanding of compression.  The mp3 files downloaded from Amazon are ~256k and for me sound as good as a CD.  I am aware there is a difference in the size of the file and the amount of digital material that makes up the sound, but the end result (which is a product of the equipment I use and age of my ears) is that a 256k mp3 is perfectly satisfactory to me.

I rarely buy CDs anymore for this reason.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: 71 dB on March 11, 2012, 07:38:28 AM
Noise is not just white or pink noise. It's any kind of signal that doesn't belong to the original recording. So, if you have distortion, you have noise.

This is very easy. Take the original uncompressed sound file (rip it from a CD). Then make a compressed lossy sound file from it (e.g. a mp3 file). Then load the original and lossy
versions to a wave editor and subract the other from the other. Everything that is similar with these files is now gone and the difference is revealed. That's the noise I am talking about.
It's not hopefully audible to you but it is there.

Another problem with high amplitude signals is that they may work perfectly uncompressed but when you start removing information the waveform chances it's shape and it might
become "impossible" within the dynamic range available, hence introducing harmonic distortion. People don't know this an so they make distorted mp3s when the amplitude of the
original signal is close to maximum.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on March 11, 2012, 07:46:24 AM
This reflects my own understanding of compression.  The mp3 files downloaded from Amazon are ~256k and for me sound as good as a CD.  I am aware there is a difference in the size of the file and the amount of digital material that makes up the sound, but the end result (which is a product of the equipment I use and age of my ears) is that a 256k mp3 is perfectly satisfactory to me.

I rarely buy CDs anymore for this reason.

Same here, everything from amazon, itunes and eclassical sound fantastic, so only time I'm going to buy cds will be if I can't buy the download (like the Auryn Q). :)
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: nesf on March 11, 2012, 07:57:05 AM
Many blind tests put 160-192 range as reaching transparency even on quality headphones, amps, speakers. 

Now if you want to develop a discerning ear, stop listening to 320k mp3 and pretending that it sounds bad (it sounds great and nobody has ears good enough to distinguish between 320k and flac).  Start listening to really low bitrate mp3s and work your way up.  I really think that when people talk about mp3s sounding noisy they are just picking up the noise floor on their crappy phone.

Pretty much my thinking. Now if downloads weren't on average more expensive than the CDs for me to buy...
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Leon on March 11, 2012, 08:07:37 AM
Pretty much my thinking. Now if downloads weren't on average more expensive than the CDs for me to buy...

I agree.  Used to be you could realize a significant savings by choosing mp3s but today often there is no difference, and I am beginning to see mp3s costing more than the CD.  Pure greed, IMO.

 :)
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on March 11, 2012, 08:08:49 AM
I agree.  Used to be you could realize a significant savings by choosing mp3s but today often there is no difference, and I am beginning to see mp3s costing more than the CD.  Pure greed, IMO.

 :)

I skipped the Krips Mozart symphony set for that reason, it really annoyed me!!
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Ataraxia on March 11, 2012, 08:16:53 AM
I haven't noticed that; I probably haven't been paying attention.

Are you comparing, say, a CD from Amazon marketplace to an Amazon download?
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: nesf on March 11, 2012, 08:19:30 AM
I haven't noticed that; I probably haven't been paying attention.

Are you comparing, say, a CD from Amazon marketplace to an Amazon download?

Well Amazon download isn't available to me being Irish. iTunes and eClassical etc are often more expensive than Amazon and JPG and similar for the equivalent CDs. Especially with boxsets.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on March 11, 2012, 08:25:10 AM
Well Amazon download isn't available to me being Irish. iTunes and eClassical etc are often more expensive than Amazon and JPG and similar for the equivalent CDs. Especially with boxsets.

The itunes $10 per album pricing is really inflexible. 

You should look into google music, it's insanely cheap like wow!  They have albums for a quarter and prices that would make amazon blush for being so cheap.

https://play.google.com/music/listen#start_pl (https://play.google.com/music/listen#start_pl)
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Ataraxia on March 11, 2012, 08:43:03 AM
The itunes $10 per album pricing is really inflexible. 

You should look into google music, it's insanely cheap like wow!  They have albums for a quarter and prices that would make amazon blush for being so cheap.

https://play.google.com/music/listen#start_pl (https://play.google.com/music/listen#start_pl)

What is that?  A streaming service or a dig. file store? It won't allow me to poke around until I agree to their terms.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on March 11, 2012, 08:47:57 AM
What is that?  A streaming service or a dig. file store? It won't allow me to poke around until I agree to their terms.

It works like amazon and itunes-- store + cloud.  They make it sound like streaming, but it's just samples + integration with google+ (where you can post what you listen to just like you can with spotify+facebook).
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Ataraxia on March 11, 2012, 08:50:07 AM
Ah, thanks.

Well, to give an Amazon example where the download is cheaper, last night I downloaded this album instead of buying a CD and you can see why right here:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000MGB1SC/ref=dm_dp_cdp?ie=UTF8&s=music&qid=1331484518&sr=1-2
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidW on March 11, 2012, 08:55:09 AM
Yeah I love it when the cd goes oop but amazon continues to offer the mp3s at a decent price.  I saw that the other day with the Italiano set of Mozart string quartets. :)
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Ataraxia on March 11, 2012, 08:58:35 AM
The mp3 is $75 and Amazon does not offer a CD but a MP seller does for $25.

Yeah, in a situation like that I'll definitely go with the marketplace CD if the seller's ratings are decent.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: nesf on March 11, 2012, 05:53:51 PM
The itunes $10 per album pricing is really inflexible. 

You should look into google music, it's insanely cheap like wow!  They have albums for a quarter and prices that would make amazon blush for being so cheap.

https://play.google.com/music/listen#start_pl (https://play.google.com/music/listen#start_pl)

Not available outside of the US. :(
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: rickardg on March 12, 2012, 11:46:07 AM
[...]
And again the result is lack of detail, lack of sparkle and oomph.  It sounds less detailed and lively... but it doesn't sound noisy.

[...]

Now if you want to develop a discerning ear, stop listening to 320k mp3 and pretending that it sounds bad (it sounds great and nobody has ears good enough to distinguish between 320k and flac).  Start listening to really low bitrate mp3s and work your way up.  I really think that when people talk about mp3s sounding noisy they are just picking up the noise floor on their crappy phone.

A few year ago I did a A/B/X-test with different bitrate AAC files compared to CD-quality FLAC using decent in-ear headphone (Ultimate Ears Studio-Fi 5, IIRC). It turned I could easily identify the 128-kbps files, the software told me it was statistically significant after 5 or 7 tests, I didn't make a single mistake.

Using 256 kbps I had a hit rate somewhere around 60% (ie only slightly better than guessing), I probably could have made it statistically significant, but I didn't have the patience and quit after 15 or so tests. I didn't try 320 kbps but I'm sure I wouldn't have been able to tell the difference.

However, I had to concentrate and actively listen for the lack of oomph and sparkle, I don't think I'd really be bothered by 128 kbps files. I guess if you 'know' how it's supposed to sound the brain fills in some of the detail.

The result? Now I usually download 24-bit audiophile FLAC from eclassical even though I'm pretty sure I won't ever be able to hear the difference. What the heck, neither money nor disk space is a limiting factor for me (listening time is), eclassical and the labels can use the money and I might get some placebo gain in sound quality.

On topic:
Spotify is good, it would be great if the tagging was better for classical.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Holden on April 24, 2013, 02:58:39 PM

Another way that mp3 compression works is by filtering out high frequency (treble) and low frequency (deep bass) because our ears are much less sensitive to those ranges as compared to mid range, and we are less likely to miss it.  And again the result is lack of detail, lack of sparkle and oomph.  It sounds less detailed and lively... but it doesn't sound noisy.


This is interesting to me. I have been listening to Deadmau5 on Spotify for a while and decided to buy their "Album Title Goes Here" CD so I could download it to my PC and also my MP3 player. I immediately made a high res 320 kbps (not variable rate) copy and also a FLAC copy. I listend to all four as a comparison.

Some Deadmau5 tracks have some truly deep and clear bass lines and I noticed that on both the CD and FLAC tracks that this seemed to be a bit more enhanced than the Spotify and MP3 tracks. All other aspects of the sound spectrum sounded exactly the same. I tried the same test using a Steely Dan CD and could hear no difference anywhere in the spectrum as they don't go as low as Daedmau5.

So it appears that this compression could be slightly (and I mean very slightly) discernible at top and bottom levels. I think my ears are too old to hear those extremely high notes as clearly as I should yet my hearing range starts at about 18 - 19 Hz at the bottom end. Others with younger ears and more ability to hear the top end might notice the same with a recording that goes that high though it would probably take an electronic instrument to produce it.

Finally, I also listen to NML and it sounds duller than Spotify to my ears. I only use the 'Standard' sound quality choice as I think that to get premium quality that Naxos is too expensive.

Well, I did it, I cancelled my Spotify subscription.

This comes after being pretty happy with the service until about a month ago when a series of "upgrades" were installed.  After the first upgrade the service became very slow and with each successive upgrade I kept hoping that they would correct the flaw and get it back to where it had been.  Never happened.  It got so that each mouse click was taking several seconds, and this was the case no matter what computer I used or the kind of Internet connection, including a T1.

So I added Naxos Music Library and kept MOG for jazz and pop.   While it is more money, NML is an excellent service and well worth the cost.

I cannot understand what is going on with Spotify.

I don't have this issue but I used to. Mine was from my ISP provider and they have now rectified it.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: bigshot on April 24, 2013, 03:58:00 PM
Most streaming services use MP4, not MP3. MP4 above 192 doesn't filter any audible bass, and the treble is filtered above 18kHz which, if you can hear it at all, consists entirely of harmonics on cymbal crashes that are masked by fundamentals and lower harmonics. In short, it doesn't filter anything audible.

There is no reason to use Frauenhofer MP3 any more. LAME MP3 and AAC (MP4) are much better.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Sammy on April 24, 2013, 04:11:59 PM
Finally, I also listen to NML and it sounds duller than Spotify to my ears. I only use the 'Standard' sound quality choice as I think that to get premium quality that Naxos is too expensive.

I don't consider that standard sound choice adequate at all, so I gladly pay for the premium quality.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Johnll on April 25, 2013, 04:50:53 PM
As best as I can tell NML premium is only 128kbps and runs through Adobe Flash. You might as well be listening to you tube in terms of sound quality. MOG is 320 kbps and the desktop version is their own software which is a lot better than the streaming MOG that used Flash. MOGs sound quality is still better than Spotify desktop version per a recent comparison by me. I spend more time hanging out on diy audio boards than I do on GMC and I do not know anyone who thinks differently on this issue. Try the trial version of each and decide for yourself.

There is certainly trouble in MOG land from difficult searches to disappearing albums and I would be happy to pay more if they got their act together but….

Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Sammy on April 26, 2013, 09:48:10 AM
The main problem I have with NML is that US subscribers do not get access to the historical recordings, which is  significant part of their catalog.

Yes, that definitely sucks.

Back to the sound quality.  I have my own standards, and NML premium meets them.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Gordo on April 26, 2013, 12:52:31 PM
Yes, that definitely sucks.

Back to the sound quality.  I have my own standards, and NML premium meets them.

I was a member of the NML for several years, but I slowly began to feel that their prices were a bit expropriatory. That said, Spotify and Deezer are placed a million miles behind NML's sound quality.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Holden on April 26, 2013, 05:22:52 PM
I was a member of the NML for several years, but I slowly began to feel that their prices were a bit expropriatory. That said, Spotify and Deezer are placed a million miles behind NML's sound quality.

Quote from NMLs website

Quote
Sound Quality

Recordings are streamed in near-CD quality (64 kbps). Streaming in CD quality (128 kbps) is also available at a premium.
[/i][/b]

128 kbps seems very low to me unless they are using something other than MP3/4. If I understand things correctly, CD quality is 1411 kbps
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Johnll on April 26, 2013, 06:14:13 PM
I just tried Naxos (free version which I am forced to assume is 64 KBPS since they do not specify) vs Mog and there is no comparison. PLEASE TRY IT FOR YOURSELF. If the assembled will allow me to talk out of the other side of my mouth, some people think lower resolution is even more enjoyable particularly if they have big dollar hardware. I suspect the truth is somewhere in between. This is the survey and so you cannot miss it those with a $6K plus systems loved 320 kbps music more than flac.http://archimago.blogspot.com/
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Mirror Image on April 30, 2013, 06:37:03 PM
I signed up for Spotify last night and am really enjoying it so far. I don't listen to it that much as I have way too many recordings but it's a great way to listen to a recording before you buy it and their selection seems to be pretty decent. In terms of bitrate, Spotify's highest subscription runs on 320 kbps which is great. NML is just too expensive and I don't particularly care for their web layout. Spotify searches are easy and are based on album covers which is much more appealing than just the texts when you bring up the albums for a particular composer or musician.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: knight66 on May 04, 2013, 11:43:05 PM
The search engine on Spotify is far from reliable. You sometimes have to know exactly what you are looking for. If for instance you feed in an artist I usually can see that there are missing recording, so you have to then drill to pieces and possibly other musicians on the same disc to find it.

It has reduced the amount i buy and i have also avoided a number of duds that i would otherwise have wasted money on.

Mike
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Tsaraslondon on May 05, 2013, 12:22:20 AM
The search engine on Spotify is far from reliable. You sometimes have to know exactly what you are looking for. If for instance you feed in an artist I usually can see that there are missing recording, so you have to then drill to pieces and possibly other musicians on the same disc to find it.

It has reduced the amount i buy and i have also avoided a number of duds that i would otherwise have wasted money on.

Mike

Absolutely true.

Like most of these things, it is geared up for the pop market, and it is very evident that whoever has input the data knows absolutely nothing about classical music (for instance the comprimario singer brought in to sing a minor role on a star's recital disc will often be listed as the main performer).

That said, like you, I have found it an invaluable resource. I've been able to listen to recordings I was curious about but never got round to buying. In most cases, I'll be glad I spared myself the expense. It's like having a vast library of recordings at one's fingertips. As in a real library, you might have to dig around a bit, and items may not have been filed where you expected to find them, but a bit of rummaging will get you there.

Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Madiel on May 05, 2013, 02:01:56 AM
Almost all the 'top tracks' for Samuel Barber are from the Barber of Seville.

I'm not kidding.

EDIT: It's worth noting that they make errors in popular music as well. I've spotted a few in my limited use. And one of THE most frustrating things about the system is that there is absolutely no way of communicating with them at all to point these errors out. They seem to presume that the copyright owners will do that, which is a massive presumption for anything other than brand spanking new pop releases, and even then it's somewhat doubtful.

Contrast that with classicalarchives, who not only make it very easy to contact them about errors such as wrong links between pieces and descriptions, but have directly replied to me on the occasions I've raised an error, thanked me and quickly fixed the mistake.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: MishaK on May 09, 2013, 10:32:35 AM
Fun things also with album covers. The Haitink Bruckner 5 with BRSO shows instead the album cover for Naxos' "My First Classical Album".

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51JkP0xBgFL._SX240_.jpg)
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Tsaraslondon on May 26, 2013, 12:17:52 AM
I've just looked up the spotify listing for the new Colin Davis Philips box set.

Composers aren't mentioned once, so we get.

1. 1.Allegro moderato - Allegro
2. 2. Andante
3. 3. Allegro molto
4. 1. Allegro
5, 2. Adagio - Piu adagio - Presto

etc.


Very informative!

Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidRoss on May 26, 2013, 03:12:25 AM
This, along with their better sound quality (initially, at least -- maybe Spotty's caught up?), is why I went with Mog instead. Can you get that in the UK?
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: TheGSMoeller on May 26, 2013, 03:16:27 AM
That is a frustrating aspect of Spotify. Ive had to locate track listings from other sites for many of the box sets.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidRoss on May 26, 2013, 03:31:56 AM
Good morning, Greg!
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: TheGSMoeller on May 26, 2013, 03:39:09 AM
Morning, Dave!

What a walk off win yesterday for the Giants, eh?  ;D
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidRoss on May 26, 2013, 03:45:02 AM
Typical Giants baseball -- keeps 'em in their seats 'til the very end.  ;) 8)

Oh, and did I mention above that Mog is a Bay Area outfit? And despite acquisition by Beats, the service is maintaining its quality so far.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: DavidRoss on May 26, 2013, 05:29:55 AM
"Music On the Go"

It should have been named for their cat.
Title: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: TheGSMoeller on May 27, 2013, 06:16:12 AM
Just signed up for MOG, haven't had a chance to navigate through the selection much, but the sound quality is nice.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Tsaraslondon on May 27, 2013, 07:48:55 AM
MOG is not available in the UK yet
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: knight66 on May 29, 2013, 07:45:24 AM
Sadly, not even Voice of Mog!

Mike
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: mn dave on October 06, 2013, 05:13:23 AM
Only a fool purchases CDs that he might listen to only once or twice while the same music is available on Spotify.

I am that fool.   ;D

*bangs head against keyboard*
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Brian on October 06, 2013, 07:48:28 AM
Only a fool purchases CDs that he might listen to only once or twice while the same music is available on Spotify.

I am that fool.   ;D

*bangs head against keyboard*
Recently Naxos Music Library added a label to its streaming service and I literally wiped out an entire $200 shopping cart worth of stuff I would have bought. But exactly - I was probably only going to listen 2-3 times, and also, this is a 600 sq.ft. apartment and half my CD collection is already packed in boxes, where's all that music gonna go?  ;D
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: mn dave on October 06, 2013, 07:49:15 AM
Recently Naxos Music Library added a label to its streaming service and I literally wiped out an entire $200 shopping cart worth of stuff I would have bought.

Very cool!
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Brian on October 06, 2013, 07:50:09 AM
I don't have Spotify or MOG or any competitors, though. Anybody have experience comparing them?
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Holden on October 07, 2013, 02:21:27 AM
Very little difference in sound quality for the MOG and Spotify premium services. I've stuck with Spotify. Not sure why but I like it.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: mn dave on October 07, 2013, 06:34:54 AM
For me, Spotify is slow at times when pulling up search results. Overall though, it's pretty neat.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Madiel on October 08, 2013, 01:36:34 AM
I don't use Spotify much, and only the free version, but when I came back to it in recent weeks I certainly noticed it had become much slower, or seemed to get stuck altogether.  This was only on the opening pages or searches. Once I had found what I wanted and picked tracks to play it was absolutely fine.

I also have strong suspicions that it is slowing my computer up when I'm not even trying to use it.  I've already discovered a couple of times that it is running things in the background completely unnecessarily, and I've done my best to turn such processes off, but I'm not convinced I've entirely succeeded.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: otterhouse on October 08, 2013, 02:19:24 AM
(posted this on the Gramophone forum, but no answers yet, so try it here!)

Starting with a confession and a question;

As I hardly buy any CD's anymore, it has been more than two years since I last bought a Gramophone magazine... Think it was june 2011, and although I peeked once and a while on this forum, my connection with the magazine was broken. But, since I discovered Spotify, the "need" for a magazine like the Gramophone grew and... I bought the 2013 awards issue. The combination of the Gramophone magazine and Spotify is like an "all you can eat" ticket in a paistry shop... Not only in the reviews (not all recordings are on Spotify *yet*), but also the advertisements make me hungry and explorative... :-)

At the same time, there are many discussions about the benefits (or rather, disadvantages) of Spotify for the music industry. Surprisingly little on the effects it has on the Classical music industry, except short shoutouts like:

 http://www.artsjournal.com/slippeddisc/2013/07/radiohead-quits-spotify-should-classical-artists-pull-out-too.html 

--Question--!
Now, for my own understanding (and for the story below), a question: Does anyone know if classical labels are payed "per track"? Does a short Schumann piece from the Davidsbundlertanze earns a label the same amount of money as a 25 minute Mahler track? Or is there an other arrangement made for that?
-- --

In the early days of CD, large works were devided in separate tracks, even "theme 1, theme 2 development" etc sections. If Mahler of Bruckner symphonies are payed per track, that would be an interesting extra income for classical labels, I guess... ;-)

But wait, did'nt Spotify pay *anything*, or way too less for artists? And does nobody use Spotify for listening to classical music? Well, yes and... no. It's interesting to look at the amount of plays a spotify artist has had. Ok, someone like the now obcure pianist Pierre alain Volondat dit not go above the 1000 plays so far for any of his tracks; but someone like Roland Poitinen has some amazing amount of followers and track listenings...

see -->  https://scontent-b-ams.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-frc3/1379793_10201744600569486_680127183_n.jpg 

Now note, and the label Bis does this quite cleverly, the separate "tracks" come from different re-packagings on Spotify, each with an own trigger to "lure" the listners to the same recording(s), analog to what this article:

 http://www.digitalmusicnews.com/permalink/2013/20130501spotifypackaging 

describes in "what is lacking" in the sense and cleverness of classical labels...

and see, a Scarlatti recital by Yegvreni Sudbin get's over a million trackplays, small pieces by Eric Satie, played by pointinen (again, in different repackaging!!) a multitude of that...!

Again, maybe Spotify does not pay much:

 http://www.sonicscoop.com/2013/07/31/op-ed-spotify-payouts-revisited-how-much-does-it-pay-now-and-how-much-should-artists-demand/ 

but in the long tail thought, all these bits and pieces add up to some nice earnings for "dead" CD's...

A vague stockmusic company called "Cavendish" has around 20 million plays per smartly tagged collections like

 http://open.spotify.com/album/6aDatzcG95hbE4LgkCqB33 

 

and not only for Mozart, also their Bach, Beethoven etc collections let them earn a nice amout of income. And remember, it's not only Spotify, but also comparable services like Deezer, Rhapsody etc and future services like Google play music...

 

So, questions are,

1) do long tracks generate the same amount of money on Spotify as short tracks?

2) Looking at the figures and the future; if you tag your music cleverly (and do that in numurous repackagings so the user can *find* your music ) is a service like Spotify a welcome new source of income for the classical music industry?

PS, Spotify and web-streaming services do not nessicarily have to "replace" other ways of listening to recorded music (over 1000 CD's I'm not throwing away!!), but can be a new way to explore music....

Rolf
http://classical-lp.blogspot.nl/ 
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: otterhouse on October 08, 2013, 02:28:52 AM
Ps, what I like about Spotify is that, in stead of the celebrity driven -bit-and-pieces- programming of our national Dutch radio, I can select a nice program for the morning...
Through a FM cable (tunecast), I can also stream it though my phone on the car stereo...

Here is are a couple of playlists I made, hope you will enjoy them!

http://open.spotify.com/user/otterhouse/playlist/0s8p9rzyZKDBCzcBaGPou2
(for the "bit" adventurous listner)

http://open.spotify.com/user/otterhouse/playlist/7IHpmgdQre6XV88157PdCQ
(last works of composers, sometimes unfinished...)

http://open.spotify.com/user/otterhouse/playlist/3pUTrLuS0d4ECC1wslM558
(translated, "In stead of the morning program of the Dutch radio" :-)

http://open.spotify.com/user/otterhouse/playlist/2O47O7Z7HHWE8aegozcnBm
(Theodore Gouvy CD, the serenades are "cartoon music from the 19th century", not "great" works, but very amusing!)

Greetings,

Rolf
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: mn dave on October 08, 2013, 05:01:12 AM
I’m not sure of the answer to your questions though some labels and artists might consider Spotify a promotional tool and receive what they expect from it.

Thanks for the playlists, Rolf!
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Madiel on October 08, 2013, 06:10:28 AM
It is worth mentioning at this point that the help and support systems for Spotify are a steaming pile of dog's turds. The kind of website that happily tells you a whole bunch of really basic, surface-level information that most intelligent people could work out for themselves, but heaven help you if you have a problem not answered by the FAQs.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: otterhouse on October 10, 2013, 07:17:28 AM
Thanks, looks like it's paid per track and that some companies block the large tracks for that reason...!
Still finding new things on spotify also obscure labels and artists I lost track of...

Rolf
http://classical-lp.blogspot.nl
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: mn dave on December 31, 2013, 10:09:41 AM
My new year will include more Spotify and fewer album purchases.

That's the plan anyway.  0:)
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: MN Dave on October 30, 2017, 11:50:34 AM
My new year will include more Spotify and fewer album purchases.

That's the plan anyway.  0:)

Hahahaha!!!

[well, I'm back on Spotify this month, anyway.]
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Omicron9 on November 03, 2017, 05:42:43 AM
Not so fantastic for artists. 

https://www.digitaltrends.com/music/how-spotify-and-pandora-are-hurting-artists/ (https://www.digitaltrends.com/music/how-spotify-and-pandora-are-hurting-artists/)

Quote:
"Spotify pays out $.006 to $.0084 cents per stream. How much an artist makes will of course depend on their success, but if you’re not a top-tier act with a huge draw, you’re not making much. After all is said and done, the average artist needs around 150 Spotify streams to equal the payout of a single 99-cent download. Why so low? Because 75 percent of Spotify’s 60 million members listen for free, and free doesn’t pay very well. Spotify made just $90 million from its ad-based service last year, compared to a whopping $897 million from its much smaller pool of paid subscribers."

Look closely at those royalty figures.  It's thousandths of a cent.  No wonder more and more artists are boycotting allowing their work to be available on Spotify.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Madiel on November 11, 2017, 04:37:26 AM
There are lots of online platforms to get high quality, legal, free, streaming music. You can easily download any kind of music according to your requirements.

Streaming and downloading are fundamentally different things.
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on February 12, 2018, 12:17:22 PM
Apple Music may finally have the muscle to knock off Spotify (https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/business/wp/2018/02/12/apple-music-may-finally-have-the-muscle-to-knock-off-spotify/?hpid=hp_hp-more-top-stories-2_apple-1230pm%3Ahomepage%2Fstory&utm_term=.f1d5d24eb1ea)
Title: Re: Spotify - high quality, legal, free, streaming music.
Post by: Madiel on February 16, 2018, 12:57:21 AM
Apple Music may finally have the muscle to knock off Spotify (https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/business/wp/2018/02/12/apple-music-may-finally-have-the-muscle-to-knock-off-spotify/?hpid=hp_hp-more-top-stories-2_apple-1230pm%3Ahomepage%2Fstory&utm_term=.f1d5d24eb1ea)

Given Apple's complete inability to properly synchronise podcasts between my phone and my computer, I'm not excited. They don't deserve any more management of my media than they already have.