• 05-28-2009, 04:06 PM
    luvtolisten
    The beginning of the end of CD?
    I was in Walmart today, I went back to the electronics section to check out the CD's. I noticed there were less CD's but next to them on a wall, there were CD's on SD cards (same price as CD's). With them was an SD card player, with ear buds for $20. I was wondering if anyone has heard any of these SD cards, and what their sound quality was like? I have noticed more and more stores carrying less CD's these days. Think this could be the replacement? If not then what?
  • 05-28-2009, 04:09 PM
    02audionoob
    1 Attachment(s)
    Back when I got my Creative Nomad II music player with a 64MB SD card, I figured that little memory card was destined to replace CDs. I've been amazed the CD has had as much staying power as it has.
  • 05-28-2009, 04:30 PM
    kexodusc
    Given the sheer number of CD sales, I don't think we're in for any radical changes anytime soon, but eventually it will start to slide significantly, giving way to new formats.

    I don't get the appeal of the SD cards...seems like you should be able to get the music cheaper without the hardware by downloading from iTunes or somewhere. Unless they're targeting impulse buyers or something? I've seen them, I've never seen anyone buy or use them though.
  • 05-28-2009, 05:49 PM
    Kevio
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by kexodusc
    Given the sheer number of CD sales, I don't think we're in for any radical changes anytime soon, but eventually it will start to slide significantly, giving way to new formats.

    Kex, you should bookmark this comment and and come back and have a look at it in 1 year. I guarantee it will look strange. For those who missed any of the latest CD sales figures, we are in the midst of a radical change.
  • 05-29-2009, 12:20 AM
    pixelthis
    1 Attachment(s)
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by luvtolisten
    I was in Walmart today, I went back to the electronics section to check out the CD's. I noticed there were less CD's but next to them on a wall, there were CD's on SD cards (same price as CD's). With them was an SD card player, with ear buds for $20. I was wondering if anyone has heard any of these SD cards, and what their sound quality was like? I have noticed more and more stores carrying less CD's these days. Think this could be the replacement? If not then what?

    The begining of the end for CD was Itunes.
    These SD cards are a reusable medium, and you can just plug them into a MP3 player with a SD slot.
    And depending on if they are lossless files the ssound should be great.
    I have repeatedly said that CD is dead, they don't even have the romantic appeal
    of records.
    A CD is at most 750 MB, CD is rapidly becoming the 3:5 floppy of the 21st century.:1:
  • 05-29-2009, 03:08 AM
    3db
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by pixelthis
    The begining of the end for CD was Itunes.
    These SD cards are a reusable medium, and you can just plug them into a MP3 player with a SD slot.
    And depending on if they are lossless files the ssound should be great.
    I have repeatedly said that CD is dead, they don't even have the romantic appeal
    of records.
    A CD is at most 750 MB, CD is rapidly becoming the 3:5 floppy of the 21st century.:1:

    To be replaced by SD cards containing low res music, no cover art what so ever is less appealing and more of a shock then when CD displaced LPs.
  • 05-29-2009, 04:30 AM
    02audionoob
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by 3db
    To be replaced by SD cards containing low res music, no cover art what so ever is less appealing and more of a shock then when CD displaced LPs.

    Back when I thought the cards would overtake CDs, I figured we were just waiting for the memory technology to get to where the card could contain lossless music. Now the capacity of these cards has increased by a multiple of 1000 and they come with low res files? Odd.
  • 05-29-2009, 05:02 AM
    luvtolisten
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by 3db
    To be replaced by SD cards containing low res music, no cover art what so ever is less appealing and more of a shock then when CD displaced LPs.

    These SD cards do have the cover art. Of course you would need a magnifying glass to read the song titles.:) I wonder what format they used (lostless etc.). I would think they would since the price is the same as CD's. It would cost less I would think to make one of these vs.CD's just for the packaging alone. But then again, CD's were suppose to cost less than LP's, after a year or so, but the cost of the CD never really went down, the LP's went up as they became a specialty item..
  • 05-29-2009, 05:30 AM
    Mr Peabody
    Depending on which articles you read CD may or may not be having sales problems but i can't see CD being replaced by this SD card. As Kex mentioned you can download the album, and cheaper and just load it on your mp3 player so why would any one want this SD card? Potentially, if the storage was there, why couldn't they put liner notes, art and even extra info on the SD card, now that may be some incentive if the SD card offered something you couldn't get any where else. Even with that it wouldn't interest me personally. I was wondering for a moment who would want to add an SD player to their system but I guess if you had a docking system for your mp3 player you would be set. Although I've used the earphone jack to connect my player to a couple different things and I didn't like the results. Maybe an impedance issue or the sound being designed for headphones opposed to a home system. The car the interface isn't as bad but the compression is noticeable. Using lossless would cure that though. This is one issue I'm not going to be an early adopter, it will be CD and vinyl for me until something comes out that really gives me a reason to switch. It would be weird if CD disappeared and I had to go back to buying new releases on vinyl.
  • 05-29-2009, 05:57 AM
    Feanor
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by 02audionoob
    Back when I thought the cards would overtake CDs, I figured we were just waiting for the memory technology to get to where the card could contain lossless music. Now the capacity of these cards has increased by a multiple of 1000 and they come with low res files? Odd.

    Not so odd, maybe. It's so idiots can mindlessly copy them to their computers, then copy them back to mobiles, (not necessarily their own).

    Of course I'm assuming the files aren't DRM'd which they might be -- I don't know.
  • 05-29-2009, 07:01 AM
    3db
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by 02audionoob
    Back when I thought the cards would overtake CDs, I figured we were just waiting for the memory technology to get to where the card could contain lossless music. Now the capacity of these cards has increased by a multiple of 1000 and they come with low res files? Odd.

    The capacity of a SD card plays no relevance of what the music distributors are filling them with. Even if teh capacity is well over the Gig, it doesn't mean that the distributiors are suppling the music in a lossless format. Thats what I'm driving at.
  • 05-29-2009, 07:17 AM
    E-Stat
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by 3db
    The capacity of a SD card plays no relevance of what the music distributors are filling them with.

    Agreed and I seriously doubt that they are using 1 GB cards required to provide a Redbook copy.

    rw
  • 05-29-2009, 08:05 AM
    Kevio
    Anyone actually know exactly what they're putting on these pre-programmed SD cards?
  • 05-29-2009, 12:52 PM
    DRM & Low-Quality???
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Feanor
    Not so odd, maybe. It's so idiots can mindlessly copy them to their computers, then copy them back to mobiles, (not necessarily their own).

    Of course I'm assuming the files aren't DRM'd which they might be -- I don't know.

    DRM & low-quality compressed? That would be another deal-breaker for a lot of people.

    I don't shop at Walfart. Are they available anywhere else? Target maybe? I might just buy one just to check it out.
  • 05-29-2009, 01:19 PM
    Woochifer
    The death of the CD has been pronounced many times, yet they still continue to constitute the vast majority of sales and outsell downloads by a sizable margin. The issue for the music industry has more to do with the simple lack of buzz in the industry. It has been nearly two decades since we've had any transformational transitions with the music itself, and the audience could only take so many derivative acts and repackaged baby boomer albums before sales started to decline. It's new releases that drive the industry, and at the moment, there's not much on the market that's generating excitement or potentially spearheading new musical directions.

    From what I've seen of these SD card readers, they are designed to be disposable. This is not a serious effort to dethrone the CD format, but just another way of repackaging low end electronics. Unless these SD cards are sold by themselves without the card reader, it's nothing more than a gimmick to move a bunch of cheap media players that would not have sold much by themselves. I mean, what albums are getting packaged as SD card/reader bundles?

    New formats come and go all the time. Just in years since the CD's introduction, you've had the MiniDisc, DCC, DAT, SACD, and DVD-A. All of these formats had varying degrees of support from the record companies, and none of them gained any sizable foothold against the CD format. Every format has its heyday, but the CD has had remarkable staying power.
  • 05-29-2009, 08:34 PM
    agentsteel
    I hope CDs will always be around and artists still release all their stuff on CD, Vinyl is cool but has its hassles...and digital downloads I just can't stand, good for sampling stuff before you buy but thats it. In other words I hope there will always be some kind of a hard copy of music releases with cover art/lyrics etc.
  • 05-30-2009, 05:04 AM
    luvtolisten
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Woochifer
    Unless these SD cards are sold by themselves without the card reader, it's nothing more than a gimmick to move a bunch of cheap media players that would not have sold much by themselves. I mean, what albums are getting packaged as SD card/reader bundles?

    These SD cards were packaged separately. Right next to the CD's. The ones I saw were the top ten Country, and POP/Rock. Same cover art etc. as a CD, only package in those hard to open clear hard plastic covers which I hate. I doubt it's a threat. But I wouldn't surprised if soon you'll see AVR's coming out with card readers as PC's do. I like CD's, but my gut feeling is they will be hard to find in 3 years. My guess is there soon will be a format of downloading, that everyone will agree is better than CD as far as sound. Then they'll be an "all in one" AVR. You'll be able to order music, either by Internet, cable or satellite, and be able to download it and store it. Order music as you would a movie. Right from your couch. And have the option of ordering a video to go with it for the HT fans. I do think software and music servers with massive memory will be the future. CD's will go the same route as vinyl and SACD's have. The SD card will be a simple way of transporting that music, whether it be to your car, work, or personal device.
  • 05-30-2009, 07:57 AM
    Kevio
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by luvtolisten
    ...The SD card will be a simple way of transporting that music, whether it be to your car, work, or personal device.

    All good up until this last point. Wireless networking and cloud computing/storage will make memory cards unnecessary.
  • 05-30-2009, 02:08 PM
    luvtolisten
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Kevio
    All good up until this last point. Wireless networking and cloud computing/storage will make memory cards unnecessary.

    I'm old school, I rather have a format I can play in my car. Anything wireless has fees, which I have a feeling would cost far more downloading to a card.
  • 05-30-2009, 03:14 PM
    Kevio
    How about you park car within range of your WiFi and your car stereo syncs to your home media server. Or would you like to play music or load files from your BlueTooth phone. No charges apply.
  • 05-30-2009, 06:20 PM
    Woochifer
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by luvtolisten
    These SD cards were packaged separately. Right next to the CD's. The ones I saw were the top ten Country, and POP/Rock. Same cover art etc. as a CD, only package in those hard to open clear hard plastic covers which I hate. I doubt it's a threat. But I wouldn't surprised if soon you'll see AVR's coming out with card readers as PC's do. I like CD's, but my gut feeling is they will be hard to find in 3 years. My guess is there soon will be a format of downloading, that everyone will agree is better than CD as far as sound. Then they'll be an "all in one" AVR. You'll be able to order music, either by Internet, cable or satellite, and be able to download it and store it. Order music as you would a movie. Right from your couch. And have the option of ordering a video to go with it for the HT fans. I do think software and music servers with massive memory will be the future. CD's will go the same route as vinyl and SACD's have. The SD card will be a simple way of transporting that music, whether it be to your car, work, or personal device.

    The 800 pound gorilla in the audio industry is the iPod, and these SD cards don't fit into that ecosystem. The CD has a spot at the table simply because every computer, every new car, and any one of hundreds of millions of existing devices support the format. The hardware support for SD cards on audio devices is very limited right now.

    Where the industry has moved is docking everything to the iPod. iPod sales are currently more than triple the ENTIRE home audio component industry. Most new car audio systems now include an input jack (and those are in response to iPods, not SD card readers). Many receivers now include connections for iPod docks, as do any number of other devices.

    I doubt that CDs will be "hard to find" in 3 years. They might no longer constitute the majority of music sales by that time, but I don't see them disappearing from the landscape that quickly. Formats as ubiquitous as the CD don't just disappear overnight, and the erosion of the CD's market is not caused by any new physical formats. Many formats have challenged the CD to no avail, and even with downloading steadily growing in sales, its market share is still way behind the CD's. I don't see anything but a niche market for SD cards. Outside of digital cameras, computers, and HDTVs, device support for SD cards is otherwise minimal.
  • 05-31-2009, 10:40 AM
    luvtolisten
    I don't think blank recordable CD's will go away. I do think prerecorded ones will. It's rare you find a CD that you like ALL the songs. Most people up up making compilation CD's anyway.
    So if there was a SD card, with the same sound quality, maybe you or I wouldn't go for it, but I think the younger folks would, and they are the ones who drive the market.
  • 05-31-2009, 11:08 AM
    Woochifer
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by luvtolisten
    I don't think blank recordable CD's will go away. I do think prerecorded ones will. It's rare you find a CD that you like ALL the songs. Most people up up making compilation CD's anyway.

    But, you run into the same issue with SD cards, given that they are sold as complete albums.

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by luvtolisten
    So if there was a SD card, with the same sound quality, maybe you or I wouldn't go for it, but I think the younger folks would, and they are the ones who drive the market.

    Younger folks have begun bypassing physical formats altogether. The SD card is a physical format, and one that does not have any significant marketing push behind it on the hardware side. If you look at all the major format transitions that have already occurred, it took many years before support for the dominant format began to disappear, and the clock doesn't even start ticking until the ascendant format reaches majority status. And a physical format cannot even reach majority status until the hardware adoption reaches majority status first.

    Right now, the ascendant format is downloading (in its multiple and often competing/conflicting incarnations, which IMO impedes its adoption as a revenue generating model) and it still has a ways to go before it reaches majority status. But, downloaded media has hardware adoption already in place because of the millions of iPods, iPod-connected devices, and other portable media players already sold. SD cards do not have anywhere near that kind of hardware support on the audio side.

    Retail and record company availability for the CDs won't even begin to drop until it loses its majority status.
  • 05-31-2009, 05:46 PM
    luvtolisten
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Woochifer
    But, you run into the same issue with SD cards, given that they are sold as complete albums.



    Younger folks have begun bypassing physical formats altogether. The SD card is a physical format, and one that does not have any significant marketing push behind it on the hardware side. If you look at all the major format transitions that have already occurred, it took many years before support for the dominant format began to disappear, and the clock doesn't even start ticking until the ascendant format reaches majority status. And a physical format cannot even reach majority status until the hardware adoption reaches majority status first.

    Right now, the ascendant format is downloading (in its multiple and often competing/conflicting incarnations, which IMO impedes its adoption as a revenue generating model) and it still has a ways to go before it reaches majority status. But, downloaded media has hardware adoption already in place because of the millions of iPods, iPod-connected devices, and other portable media players already sold. SD cards do not have anywhere near that kind of hardware support on the audio side.

    Retail and record company availability for the CDs won't even begin to drop until it loses its majority status.


    Good point! Now that you mention it, I hardly see younger folks in the CD section as I once did before the iPod. And the younger folks I do know, all have an iPod or some variation of it .And that younger age range,are the ones spending the most on music and determine which format they want and the market will supply it. If the masses will buy it, the market will sell it. I do hope CD's don't go away, as I said they would 3 years. But the Kmarts, no longer have a CD section, Barnes & Nobles reduced their CD sections as has Walmart and BestBuy (in my area anyway). I may have been a bit hasty by saying in 3 years, but the stores in my area, all have reduced there inventory by at least 30% the last year or so. Have you seen a reduction in your area as well? There just isn't the variety,or number of CD's there once was in stores. This is one case I hope I am wrong. I hope CD's do stay around. Not just for the sound, but also the cover art, as wellas the lists of the supporting artist list, background vocals, songwriters.Some even with the song lyrics as well.
  • 05-31-2009, 07:37 PM
    Woochifer
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by luvtolisten
    Good point! Now that you mention it, I hardly see younger folks in the CD section as I once did before the iPod. And the younger folks I do know, all have an iPod or some variation of it .And that younger age range,are the ones spending the most on music and determine which format they want and the market will supply it. If the masses will buy it, the market will sell it. I do hope CD's don't go away, as I said they would 3 years. But the Kmarts, no longer have a CD section, Barnes & Nobles reduced their CD sections as has Walmart and BestBuy (in my area anyway). I may have been a bit hasty by saying in 3 years, but the stores in my area, all have reduced there inventory by at least 30% the last year or so. Have you seen a reduction in your area as well? There just isn't the variety,or number of CD's there once was in stores. This is one case I hope I am wrong. I hope CD's do stay around. Not just for the sound, but also the cover art, as wellas the lists of the supporting artist list, background vocals, songwriters.Some even with the song lyrics as well.

    Yep, the CD sections are indeed shrinking. But, support for the CD format doesn't become an issue until you see stores no longer carrying new releases or record companies no longer issuing CD versions for new releases. CDs were most lucrative when people were still upgrading their music libraries, and buying CDs to replace their LP and cassette collections. Sales peaked in the mid-90s when the CD format finally passed the cassette.

    Because CDs can be ripped, there's no similar move to repurchase downloads to replace someone's CD collection.

    Retailers will go with whatever product gives them the most revenue for the amount of shelf space they allocate. CDs right now rely primarily on new releases, because everybody who wanted to replace an older title with a CD version has already done so.

    The same thing is now happening on the DVD side. I've been noticing a trend in which the DVD sections are also beginning to get pared back. This is no surprise given that DVD sales peaked almost two years ago, and older titles are now getting downgraded to the discount bins as the market is primarily driven solely by new releases. Difference is that the home video market is getting some new life with the Blu-ray format. You won't see a mad rush to upgrade and populate video collections like you saw when the DVD format first came out, but the growth has been enough to at least make up for some of the sales losses with DVDs.