by Dave Segal
on Fri, Mar 15, 2013 at 3:11 PM
Peter Johansen (disclosure: I worked with him at Everyday Music about a decade ago) has launched his Numeral Nine Music Blog with a post dedicated to defending the rebuked and scorned audio format known as the compact disc. Johansen gives five reasons for his positions and gets deep into mathy rationales in his argument for CDs’ merits, and then couples this audio science with his own well-argued personal preferences for the shiny disc. The man makes some fine points.
Here's one of 'em:
While MP3s are fine for ear-buds, the CD produces an objectively better sound when experienced on any decent loudspeaker or headphone. Using algorithms to remove data that is (hopefully) unnecessary, 256 or 320-kbps MP3s might not be significantly inferior to 1,411 kbps CDs, but few argue against the basic premise that lossless CDs can offer a superior sonic experience over compressed MP3s. The best that computer audio can do is to match CDs in terms of quality. FLAC, AIFF, and other file formats do apparently get there, though they represent only a small fraction of the music downloaded.
I prefer vinyl, but I will never be one of those people who jettison their entire CD collection. I don’t trust the cloud as far as I can throw it. Artifacts! I wanna touch ’em and hear ’em!