Buying music without loss
- Quality - The sound of an MP3 file varies from reasonable to "omg it bruns teh eaers". Seriously. I put up with it when I download free music, but when paying it's not really good enough.
Software and DRM - RealPlayer, Windows Media Player, and iTunes have all improved recently, but not enough for me to use any one of them all the time. I'd prefer a choice.
I also don't want to be restricted by silly encryption that doesn't want me to play my music on the computer upstairs, or burn it to a CD, or listen to it without standing on one leg and reciting the DMCA.
- Songs cost too much - sometimes buying an album online costs the same or more than getting the CD.
The lynnemusic shop is different. Very different. It uses FLAC, Free Lossless Audio Codec.
Number 1 is solved by the "lossless" bit - decompressing the FLAC will give WAV files identical to the original CD master. The downloads are massive, and FLAC isn't very well known, but that doesn't bother me.
Number 2 is solved by the "free" bit. An open standard and many free players means my music does what I want it to do. Record companies, and sometimes artists, seem to be convinced that not "protecting" their music will lead to piracy, but I don't see that. DRM schemes that are annoying enough get cracked. Then the warezmonkey that gets all their music illegally is better off. Great.
Number 3 is debatable, but Bjørn's FLAC downloads are a few pounds cheaper than the physical CDs. I'll probably buy some after Christmas.
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