Author Topic: The Classical Download Thread  (Read 257498 times)

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Offline Fëanor

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Re: The Classical Download Thread
« Reply #620 on: June 16, 2009, 04:58:46 AM »
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/8100394.stm

Yes, remarkable.  A music purveyor actually willing to enterain the notion that lower prices  :o might reduce piracy.

On the other hand it's part of the trend to extract a certain amoung of money from people's pockets on steady and predictable basis.
« Last Edit: July 25, 2009, 07:46:03 AM by Feanor »

Offline Brian

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Re: The Classical Download Thread
« Reply #621 on: July 08, 2009, 10:07:32 AM »
Well, eMusic has driven me away. They have just absorbed Sony, RCA, and Columbia into their catalog, bringing in artists like Eugene Ormandy and Leonard Bernstein, but the deal also brought in a wealth of hassles:

- My account was changed from 40 to 24 downloads per month at the same price tag.
- Full albums from most labels now cost 12 "tracks" even when there are fewer than 12. For instance, Karel Ancerl's Shostakovich 7th on Supraphon costs 12 points even though it is 4 tracks long.
- Almost all 20 of my wishlist items now cost 12 downloads, meaning they will now take me 10 months to download whereas, previously, they would have taken just 6.5 months.
- Although it was stated that all albums with more than 12 tracks would be reduced to a "price tag" of 12, this change has not been made.

However, I am wise enough to see that cutting myself off from eMusic would also cut myself off from the chance to download music by Bernstein, Ormandy, Munch, Szell, Ancerl, and others which are drifting out of print, plus Paavo Jarvi's Beethoven cycle. So I have adopted a compromise. I just upgraded my account to super-connoisseur, meaning I get a gajillion downloads per month for the fee of $42. I will finish off my entire wishlist by September and cancel my account.

EDIT: And that's another sticking point. They've omitted Paavo Jarvi's Beethoven cycle.
« Last Edit: July 08, 2009, 10:19:53 AM by Brian »

Offline Coopmv

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Re: The Classical Download Thread
« Reply #622 on: July 25, 2009, 06:28:37 AM »
Yes, remarkable.  A music purveyor actually willing to enterain the notion that lower prices  :o might reduce piracy.

On the other hand it's part of the trend to extract a certain amoung of money from people's pockets on steady and predictable basis.

This logic is a no-brainer.  Microsoft has drastically slashed prices on its Office software in China where some 90% of its software products are pirated copies.  Sales have gone up a few hundred percent since MS made that pricing move.

Offline Opus106

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Re: The Classical Download Thread
« Reply #623 on: July 30, 2009, 07:55:33 AM »
Just registering at Zig-Zag Territories' website gets you 5 Euros' worth of store (download) credit. And most albums go for about 10.

Although their website claims that "[t]he downloaded files on PC/Windows are in WMA format and require a Windows Media Player 8 or superior to be played on your computer. You can burn 5 copies of the downloaded titles to listen them on your Hifi or in your car or on your Ipod compatible WMA" and that "a specific format is provided for mac users," what I downloaded were MP3 files encoded @ 128 kbps. But I'm using Linux and I don't know if that made a difference.
« Last Edit: August 01, 2009, 07:13:57 AM by opus106 »
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Navneeth

Offline Valentino

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Re: The Classical Download Thread
« Reply #624 on: August 01, 2009, 12:10:04 AM »
Did you buy claimed WMA quality, but what you got was mp3@128kbps, or did you listen to the 90s samples?
We audiophiles don't really like music, but we sure love the sound it makes

Offline Opus106

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Re: The Classical Download Thread
« Reply #625 on: August 01, 2009, 07:12:51 AM »
Did you buy claimed WMA quality, but what you got was mp3@128kbps, or did you listen to the 90s samples?

I downloaded 4 tracks and accordingly my credit went down after each download. All the files contained complete movements.
« Last Edit: August 01, 2009, 07:14:31 AM by opus106 »
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Navneeth

Offline Coopmv

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Re: The Classical Download Thread
« Reply #626 on: August 01, 2009, 10:01:18 AM »
Did you buy claimed WMA quality, but what you got was mp3@128kbps, or did you listen to the 90s samples?

How much better is WMA SQ compared with mp3@128kbps?  All CD's I have added to my desktop via my WM Player were ripped at 192 bits.

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Re: The Classical Download Thread
« Reply #627 on: August 01, 2009, 10:03:41 AM »
Well wma @ 64kbps is equivalent to mp3@128kbps, but as you go to higher bitrates they both become transparent and the differences between become neglible.  But wma@128kpbs will be much, much closer to transparent than mp3 at that bitrate, it's just much more efficient at low bitrates.  The same goes for vorbis, mp3pro, atrac and others.

Offline Coopmv

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Re: The Classical Download Thread
« Reply #628 on: August 01, 2009, 10:07:31 AM »
Well wma @ 64kbps is equivalent to mp3@128kbps, but as you go to higher bitrates they both become transparent and the differences between become neglible.  But wma@128kpbs will be much, much closer to transparent than mp3 at that bitrate, it's just much more efficient at low bitrates.  The same goes for vorbis, mp3pro, atrac and others.

So there are not much audible improvements going from wma@128kbps to wma@192kbps?

Offline Lethevich

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Re: The Classical Download Thread
« Reply #629 on: August 01, 2009, 10:35:34 AM »
Whatever they're offering, if it's lower than 192kbps in any format, it's shockingly poor value... :-\
Peanut butter, flour and sugar do not make cookies. They make FIRE.

Offline Coopmv

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Re: The Classical Download Thread
« Reply #630 on: August 01, 2009, 10:37:17 AM »
Whatever they're offering, if it's lower than 192kbps in any format, it's shockingly poor value... :-\
 

But the download is not exactly dirt-cheap?

DavidW

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Re: The Classical Download Thread
« Reply #631 on: August 01, 2009, 10:42:08 AM »
So there are not much audible improvements going from wma@128kbps to wma@192kbps?

Well you can test that for yourself by doing an abx comparison.  Personally I'm only interested in a minimum of 192kbps if I'm paying for it.  In other words, I agree with Lethe.

Offline Coopmv

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Re: The Classical Download Thread
« Reply #632 on: August 01, 2009, 10:46:33 AM »
Well you can test that for yourself by doing an abx comparison.  Personally I'm only interested in a minimum of 192kbps if I'm paying for it.  In other words, I agree with Lethe.

I just do not believe in download ...


DavidW

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Re: The Classical Download Thread
« Reply #633 on: August 01, 2009, 10:55:28 AM »
I just do not believe in download ...

cds are cheap enough that if you don't want to, don't bother, that's what I say.  I only buy mp3s when it's significantly cheaper than buying the cd (new or used), or the cd can't be found.  There are still so many holes in digital download I really don't think plunging into the digital world is worth it yet, cds will still be around for along time to come. :)

Offline Coopmv

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Re: The Classical Download Thread
« Reply #634 on: August 01, 2009, 11:01:50 AM »
cds are cheap enough that if you don't want to, don't bother, that's what I say.  I only buy mp3s when it's significantly cheaper than buying the cd (new or used), or the cd can't be found.  There are still so many holes in digital download I really don't think plunging into the digital world is worth it yet, cds will still be around for along time to come. :)

I agree and this has been exactly my reasoning.  I have seen CD's by the likes of Gustav Leonhardt, big-name artists going for the equivalent of $1 per CD with these box sets.  How much cheaper can the downloads be for these recordings?
So unless space is an issue, go for the CD's.

Offline Tapio Dimitriyevich Shostakovich

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Re: The Classical Download Thread
« Reply #635 on: August 13, 2009, 05:33:34 AM »
Well wma @ 64kbps is equivalent to mp3@128kbps, but as you go to higher bitrates they both become transparent and the differences between become neglible.  But wma@128kpbs will be much, much closer to transparent than mp3 at that bitrate, it's just much more efficient at low bitrates.  The same goes for vorbis, mp3pro, atrac and others.
The first is the MS bullshit claim. Second, wma standard is not wma pro. Two different codecs. WMA standard is pretty crappy at bitrates less than maybe 160 kbps. I did some wma standard testing once, I was pretty surprised how bad it is. WMA pro instead is maybe as good as modern codecs like aac, vorbis, mpc and such. But close to zero hardware support.

But hey we've got Terabyte hard disks today. Get lossless and be flexible in what you do with it. Feel free to convert things to what your current needs are and feel free to drop the lossy into the recycle bin again.
I wouldn't invest a single penny in lossy.

DavidW

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Re: The Classical Download Thread
« Reply #636 on: August 13, 2009, 06:39:13 AM »
The first is the MS bullshit claim. Second, wma standard is not wma pro. Two different codecs. WMA standard is pretty crappy at bitrates less than maybe 160 kbps.

I don't think you need to use language that harsh to make your point. ::)  I'm not confusing wma standard with pro, BOTH are superior to mp3.  It's not bs, it's common knowledge.  ABX for yourself, wma is not "pretty crappy" as you so eloquently put it.

But hey we've got Terabyte hard disks today. Get lossless and be flexible in what you do with it. Feel free to convert things to what your current needs are and feel free to drop the lossy into the recycle bin again.
I wouldn't invest a single penny in lossy.

Well it's your loss then.  Lossy can be downloaded on online stores, haven't seen lossless yet for downloads.  Also lossless is inconvenient for flash players.  Last time I checked flash players had a few gigs of memory and not terabytes.

Offline Tapio Dimitriyevich Shostakovich

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Re: The Classical Download Thread
« Reply #637 on: August 14, 2009, 06:28:19 AM »
I tested WMA with "-a_codec WMA9STD -a_mode 2 -a_setting Q50_44_2" and Q75 and after a few quick listens it showed weaknesses close to mp3 cbr. I was immediately disappointed, I thought it would be an alternative to mp3 for my Cowon iAudio7. It wasn't. The Cowon had a bad firmware (which is now fixed) which played ogg vorbis files awfully bad. I won't test wma std. again because of no need.

And from what I remember from Hydrogenaudio.org listening tests we had two groups of encoders: wma std. and mp3 as the lower quality codecs. wma pro, mpc, vorbis, (nero) aac as the modern and better ones. Here's a wma vs. mp3 listening test: click.

Well it's your loss then.  Lossy can be downloaded on online stores, haven't seen lossless yet for downloads.

I'm not losing anything, I've got it all. On the legal side, Chandos has a ton of lossless downloads for you.

Quote
Also lossless is inconvenient for flash players.  Last time I checked flash players had a few gigs of memory and not terabytes.

As I said. "Feel free to convert things to what your current needs are". lame.exe, neroaacenc.exe, oggenc.exe exist. Even as drag and drop programs for the computer illiterate. (lamedropxpd, oggdropxpd). foobar2000.org, rarewares.org, convert and throw away as often as you feel like.
« Last Edit: August 14, 2009, 06:58:04 AM by Wurstwasser »

Franco

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Re: The Classical Download Thread
« Reply #638 on: August 14, 2009, 06:33:19 AM »
Running iTunes on a Windows system does not import FLAC songs (at least as far as I know).  There are workarounds for a Mac, but I'm not sure and doubt that the iPod will play the songs even if you can on iTunes.


Offline Tapio Dimitriyevich Shostakovich

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Re: The Classical Download Thread
« Reply #639 on: August 14, 2009, 06:59:04 AM »
Running iTunes on a Windows system does not import FLAC songs (at least as far as I know).  There are workarounds for a Mac, but I'm not sure and doubt that the iPod will play the songs even if you can on iTunes.
"You get what you pay for" :D Stay away from proprietary Hard- and Software!