Good News about itunes and DRM free music!

Apple announced at macworld that they are introducing DRM free music, for a cost of course. If you pay 30 cents for every song you already have, you can remove the license, and then you can put it onto your fuze. This is a rip off but at least now you can get music from itunes to other mp3 players

Die DRM die! lol

Message Edited by ChimaI on 01-06-2009 11:30 PM

i agree. whats nice is i think you can have drm free movies, but idk if drm is even for movies, if it is that would be sweet

The Fuze doesn’t play AAC (even without DRM), so you’ll have to convert it to MP3 (newer versions of iTunes will do this). But sure, it’ll work. Now it makes more sense than ever for the Fuze to support the ISO standard AAC format.

yea, itunes also has a built in mp3 converter

I don’t know if one should really think of it as good news, but more of the same disappointing news.

Let’s face it, those who are purchasing music legally are getting hammered for another third of a dollar, to play what they already have, while the kiddies continue a free feeding frenzy on p2p.

The music should have cost thirty-nine cents in the first place.  There’s a price point below 99 cents that just may spawn more willingness to purchase versus, let’s be honest, steal.  Yet they press the price up, and feed us with this cannon fodder of “oh, sweet happy and new, just because we love you!”  Let go of my tail, I’m not buying it.

An MP3 is a facsimile, a compressed lossy image of the real thing, what you can buy off the original CD at the going rate of just under a dollar a track.  As long as the masses mindlessly follow iTunes’ bull, the price will climb, sure thing.  Great.

Time to throw up.  Wake up- it’s not really good news.

Bob  :angry:

I don’t think it’s all that great.  Especially at 30 cent more. 

And it’s just apples way of trying to keep people at itunes.  i think the apple is browning and people are looking elsewhere for better products (in fact 2 coworkers are trying to find a podcast she lost on itunes–yes 2 people and have been there for 5 minutes and are still going).  They don’t want to loose the market share (but will eventually).

@neutron_bob wrote:

 

An MP3 is a facsimile, a compressed lossy image of the real thing, what you can buy off the original CD at the going rate of just under a dollar a track.  As long as the masses mindlessly follow iTunes’ bull, the price will climb, sure thing.  Great.

 

T

 

That takes us back to the other issue, that buying CD’s often means paying less per track but getting many tracks you wouldn’t buy singly if you had a choice.

 

On the other side, I’m sure some of the labels are complaining that Apple is twisting their arm to allow non-DRM online sales.

@neutron_bob wrote:

 

An MP3 is a facsimile, a compressed lossy image of the real thing, what you can buy off the original CD at the going rate of just under a dollar a track.  As long as the masses mindlessly follow iTunes’ bull, the price will climb, sure thing.  Great.

You’re only telling half the story, though - some of the music prices are going up, some are going down to 69¢. The 33% charge for “upgrading” current kind of stinks, though. Its not as if people have to upgrade “to play what they already have”; the old stuff still works the same as it always did. I suspect Apple wants to keep as much proprietary music on peoples’ computers as possible.

The 2008 music sales data show a significant trend toward digital singles, and away from albums. Major labels still command 84% of music sales, and their model is typically ‘two good songs and 8-10 tracks of filler’.  Now people have a choice of paying the (increased) price of $1.29 for the two tracks ($2.58), or paying $16 for the CD.

I don’t really listen to that kind of music (and the music I like is more album-oriented), so it doesn’t interest me that much. There are cases where lesser-known artists will make deals with iTunes, and its either that or a pricey import CD. I’ll be happy to be able to purchase those at 256kbps AAC…sure its lossy, but with such a high bitrate and good codec, I doubt I could tell the difference.

Apple is playing catch-up to www.Amazon.com.  Its pure ignorance as to why people have been purchasing songs from iTunes over Amazon.

All of the songs on Amazon are DRM free, 256kbps MP3 files and range in price from 79 cents to 99 cents.  Nothing over 99 cents like the $1.29 Apple will charge for some songs.

And its not just obscure songs available for .79 cents.  For example, Viva La Vida by Coldplay and Love Lockdown by Kanye West are both 79 cents on Amazon while Apple sells them for 99 cents.

Whole albums on Amazon also tend to be cheaper than on Apple.  For example, Taylor Swift’s Fearless album is $8.99 on Amazon while it sells for $11.99 on Apple.  Exact same album containing 13 songs.  Apple does have the advantage though that they include a digital booklet of the album when you purchase the whole album.  Its a digitized version of the booklet that you would have received if you purchased the CD.  So the extra $3 might be worth it to some people to receive the booklet.

And all devices including Apple products support the MP3 file format that Amazon uses.  Not all devices support the AAC format.  For those who say just convert from AAC to MP3 you may not realize that will degrade the quality of the MP3 file because you are compressing a song in the MP3 format that has already been compressed when it was converted to the AAC format.

Now that iTunes offers DRM free songs check the price on Amazon and buy whichever is cheaper assuming your device supports the AAC format.

Message Edited by Rocker7 on 01-07-2009 12:46 PM

Message Edited by Rocker7 on 01-07-2009 12:52 PM

@rocker7 wrote:

 

Now that iTunes offers DRM free songs check the price on Amazon and buy whichever is cheaper assuming your device supports the AAC format.

 

…but this is a Fuze forum! Our device doesn’t support the AAC format! That would be the biggest downside. Songs have to be converted to MP3.

That conversion theoretically will degrade the quality, but the important question is, can you hear the difference? You’re going from a higher-quality codec to a lower-quality codec, so most of what is “lost” in this conversion may be data that MP3 wouldn’t have retained in the first place. Converting from lossless to MP3 is also going from a higher-quality codec to a lower-quality codec, so the difference between the two end results may not be as much as people speculate. I used to wave the “don’t convert” flag too, but I stopped after listening to several conversions and they are usually pretty good as long as the source is equal or better quality.

Still, it would be better not to convert it…not just from a quality perspective but from a content management perspective. You end up having to maintain two copies of the same songs, and often the copies end up in the same directory so getting the supported ones on the Fuze without also copying the unsupported files (wasting space on the Fuze) can be a challenge. But we have to live with that until the Fuze supports AAC. Sansa is just a laggard in that department; Sony and Zune already support AAC…so does my car stereo and DVD player!

I don’t want to downplay the Amazon MP3 store, though. It is still better than iTunes, because its the most compatible (and usually the most economical). Although they’re in MP3 - a lower-quality codec than AAC (again, theoretically) - ABX tests between the AAC codec that Apple uses and the MP3 codec that Amazon uses have shown no noticeable difference. ABX scores between the codecs are less significant at higher bitrates.

My recommendation would be to check Amazon first, and unless iTunes has it for a good bit less (which is unlikely), buy from Amazon to avoid the format hassles. My order of preference is:

  1. eMusic

  2. Amazon

  3. CD (unless I want a very high-quality version; then this is #1)

  4. iTunes

@rocker7 wrote:

Apple is playing catch-up to www.Amazon.com.  Its pure ignorance as to why people have been purchasing songs from iTunes over Amazon.

 

All of the songs on Amazon are DRM free, 256kbps MP3 files and range in price from 79 cents to 99 cents.  Nothing over 99 cents like the $1.29 Apple will charge for some songs.

 

And its not just obscure songs available for .79 cents.  For example, Viva La Vida by Coldplay and Love Lockdown by Kanye West are both 79 cents on Amazon while Apple sells them for 99 cents.

 

Whole albums on Amazon also tend to be cheaper than on Apple.  For example, Taylor Swift’s Fearless album is $8.99 on Amazon while it sells for $11.99 on Apple.  Exact same album containing 13 songs.  Apple does have the advantage though that they include a digital booklet of the album when you purchase the whole album.  Its a digitized version of the booklet that you would have received if you purchased the CD.  So the extra $3 might be worth it to some people to receive the booklet.

 

And all devices including Apple products support the MP3 file format that Amazon uses.  Not all devices support the AAC format.  For those who say just convert from AAC to MP3 you may not realize that will degrade the quality of the MP3 file because you are compressing a song in the MP3 format that has already been compressed when it was converted to the AAC format.

 

Now that iTunes offers DRM free songs check the price on Amazon and buy whichever is cheaper assuming your device supports the AAC format.

Also Amazon has their $5 albums Fri-Mon.   And a daily deal (upper left hand corner).  I’ve gotten several from $1.99 - $2.99 (most are obscure or older but one was the Twilight sound track before the movie came out).  And in December  Amazon had a free Christmas song for 25 days.

I’ve also got one album off walmart mp3 but they don’t have a lot of choices, so now I just use amazon.

Just Google M4P to MP3 converter. There are several that claim to be legal. Most I’ve seen are around $20 for the converter but that may be much cheaper than 30 cents a song depending on how many songs.

I got Queens News of The World for 1.99 a few months back… Talk about deep in the catalogue

I’m just glad to see that there is some reasonable competition out there.  It hurts enough to pay a dollar a track, just to see them offer a gimmick for considerably more, in terms of percentage increase.

Can you tell that it struck a nerve this morning?  It made me think of the book 1984, when something less was offered for more.  I prefer Rhapsody’s 256kpbs MP3 for purchase, no DRM, 99 cents currently.  Good thing to see Amazon offering a similar deal.  It’s just that iTunes is the 500 pound gorilla out there, and I wince at the thought of increased prices for MP3 based media.

At least, with the Fuze, I have the option of listening to the raw music as FLAC or OGG, ripped from CD.

Bob  :smileyvery-happy:

500 pound gorilla is not sufficent to describe what Itunes does to the world of music.

This is slightly more sufficent.

Ah, snap!  I can’t see the image.

Bob  :dizzy_face:

@neutron_bob wrote:

Ah, snap!  I can’t see the image.

 

Bob  :dizzy_face:

I could fix that but I am tired and hungry. So instead here http://www.cineclub.de/images/2005/12/king-kong-p.jpg 

Its King Kong

@neutron_bob wrote:
I prefer Rhapsody’s 256kpbs MP3 for purchase, no DRM, 99 cents currently.

I thought about mentioning Rhapsody as another option, but I didn’t really see the point. Its the same bitrate as Amazon, costs the same or more than Amazon, has a much smaller selection, and is encoded with RealJukebox (which uses the mediocre Xing codec).

I use iTunes and not Amazon MP3 because Amazon MP3 is not available in Germany. I like the AAC compression, because I would convert to OGG 128kbit anyway, and in this case the better the source quality the better the result. The music I buy from iTunes has no DRM and 256kBit, which is perfect for my needs. btw. I started using iTunes with the Fuze. I don’t like Apple, but at this time they have the best offer for me. I hope that changes soon and Amazon MP3 comes to europe