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  1. #1
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    DRM Free MP3's @ Amazon

    Amazon has just rolled out some competition for iTunes. DRM free music for $.89 - $.99 per download. www.amazonmp3.com. Record labels are EMI, Universal and some indie labels, about 2.3 million songs.

    A nice big knife in the back of corporate greed IMO.

  2. #2
    Da Dragonball Kid L.J.'s Avatar
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    DRM, what is that exactly? Some kinda software in the download that doesn't let you have full control over it, right?

  3. #3
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    Digital Rights Management. You can copy the MP3 to three maybe four devices, but then that's it. A copy protection scheme developed in cooperation with Lars Ulrich from Metallica. Corporate greed at its most noticable!

  4. #4
    Da Dragonball Kid L.J.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rich-n-Texas
    Digital Rights Management. You can copy the MP3 to three maybe four devices, but then that's it. A copy protection scheme developed in cooperation with Lars Ulrich from Metallica. Corporate greed at its most noticable!
    That sucks....I don't do any music downloading (well not anymore), but I just purchased a CD with a sticker on it that said something similar to that.

  5. #5
    Big science. Hallelujah. noddin0ff's Avatar
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    DRM can take many forms. But basically it's code put in the file that restricts your ability to copy the file in some way. I don't think Lars had any hand in developing it, but I believe he did support it's use. DRM can be applied to many types of files but the file type doesn't necessarily have to have DRM applied to it.

    'DRM free' means no code, no restrictions. However, I bet that all the files are tagged in a way that in the event they were mass distributed, the source could be determined.

    I know iTunes offers DRM free music at pretty decent resolution (256kbps) for some titles. Their DRM files are 128kbps; I think they run about 1.29 a song for DRM free. Amazon's pricing is better. Anyone know what resolution the files are at?

    I don't buy music on line myself. I prefer CD's...

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by noddin0ff
    ...I don't think Lars had any hand in developing it, but I believe he did support it's use.
    Agreed. He probably didn't but he sure did make a fuss over the old file sharing sites. Like he doesn't have enough millions as it is.
    Quote Originally Posted by noddingOff
    I know iTunes offers DRM free music at pretty decent resolution (256kbps) for some titles. Their DRM files are 128kbps; I think they run about 1.29 a song for DRM free. Amazon's pricing is better. Anyone know what resolution the files are at?

    I don't buy music on line myself. I prefer CD's...
    That's the $64,000 question. I haven't dug into the Amazon specs on their Mp3's.

  7. #7
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    Tried it last night..

    I'd given up on iTunes for drm and sound quality reasons but tried Amazon's new service last night. The selection is limited at this point but I was still able to find some pretty obscure stuff. The quality is good for mp3's, the price is fair and you don't need special software to download. Amazon's service encourages the user to use their download manager but you can opt out and cleanly download to the location of your choice. All in all, this is a big but intermediate step for online music - the best I've found so far among mainstream, online merchants. With most people using broadband connections now, I'd prefer the option to download uncompressed or lossless files but that will probably be coming. Regardless, I still prefer MP3Sparks and ALLOFMP3. Both are Russian sites that let you buy by the MB for low prices. ALLOFMP3 was shut down in June but is probably coming back due to a legal technicality. If you use either, I wouldn't link directly to a primary account for payment. VISA, for example, will let you generate temporary, single use numbers for online transactions.

  8. #8
    Big science. Hallelujah. noddin0ff's Avatar
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    I looked at some tracks on Amazon. They were 256kbps, MP3, DRM-free, $0.99

    Apple is generally $0.99 for 128kbps, AAC, with DRM

    or ~$1.29 for 256kbps, AAC, DRM-free

    It's generally accepted that AAC is superior to MP3 for sound quality but I've never compared. IF the difference in quality is minimal, it looks like the win goes to Amazon!

  9. #9
    Da Dragonball Kid L.J.'s Avatar
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    Anybody been using Amazon for music downloads? It all seems good enough, just wondering if there were any more thoughts out there.

    I mainly purchase CD's but run across the occasional single I'd like to just download.

  10. #10
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    I purchased a few Pink Floyd tracks recently. These are good quality MP3's IMO @ 256kbps.

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