The death knell for optical media? I don't know.. I would hope not.
Apple iTunes and other digital music retailers are negotiating with record labels to offer professional quality, 24 bit audio tracks, CNN reports.
Although recording studios have captured music in 24 bit formats for almost a decade, record labels compress songs into 16 bit audio files for distribution online and through CDs. Then Apple, along with most online music stores, may compress these tracks even more to complement mobile devices like the iPod and iPhone.
However this process could change as record labels and even musicians hope to offer retailers higher-grade recordings.
In an interview with CNN, Jimmy Iovine, chairman of record label Interscope-Geffen-A&M which falls under Universal Music Group, said his parent company was working with Apple and other digital music services to offer 24 bit formats, requiring Apple to retool its mobile devices. "Some of their electronic devices are going to be changed as well," Iovine said. "[We] have a long road ahead of us."
Iovine's disclosure shouldn't come as any great surprise to those who paid close attention to HP's WebOS live blog, however. There, Iovine highlighted the "Beats" technology used in the HP TouchPad, and noted his frustration with the industry's downsampling of professionally-recorded audio into a format with less fidelity.
Earlier this month Radiohead launched its latest album "King of Limbs" album online. The rock band tiered the price according to audio quality: $9 for the 320 kilobits per second, mp3 sound quality album and $14 for the uncompressed WAV file.
Edited by azure, 23 February 2011 - 02:11 PM.