How long do you expect record labels to continue releasing CDs?

Clearly, plenty of readers are still committed to CD for one reason or another. How long do you expect record labels to continue releasing CDs?

How long do you expect record labels to continue releasing CDs?
For another 20 years at least
33% (125 votes)
10–15 years
21% (79 votes)
5–10 years
27% (105 votes)
3–5 years
14% (53 votes)
A couple of years
4% (16 votes)
Up to a year
1% (2 votes)
It ends this year
1% (4 votes)
Total votes: 384

Mike Agee's picture

Forever, so I checked 10-15 (21st century) years. I have a beautiful 55-year-old dial phone in my kitchen and guess what? It works better than my cell phone and, no lie, the conversation is usually better. A phone guy told me there's so many old emergency dial phones in remote locations that new systems will always be compatible. CDs in the 22nd century? Just maybe.

EP's picture

I hope they never stop because I don't want to download my music. They may produce fewer CDs at this point, but I think that they can have it both ways and still be profitable.

Chris's picture

All depends upon the availability of affordable broadband Internet. If broadband is widely available, hi-rez formats will reign. If not, we're stuck with iTunes and the like, and shall look back on the CD as the glorious pinnacle of hi-fi.

Rene Jaeger's picture

44.1/16 will be around for quite some time to come. As for physical media, that's another question.

paul davis's picture

We'll be the only people buying CDs. I'm not buying MP3s come heck or high water.

Kerry Beverly's picture

Perhaps it will be the user unfriendly sticky anti-theft strips that will kill CDs sooner than later.

LABill's picture

I will not buy a new player. I ripped my collection and play it now back with a Linn Akurate DS. The ripped and streamed CDs sound sooooo much better than played on my very good Akurate CD player, clearly demonstrating the superiority of the new technology. My CDs got a new lease on life until high-resolution downloads become widely available.

Lionel's picture

Until they solve the liner note dilemma, I think physical media is going to be around for a while. (Having recently had some ArkhivCDs made, I find that I prefer having physical discs to downloads, even where I may never play the CD after ripping it. I'm 36, but evidently old-fashioned in that regard.

Max's picture

I bought my last CD around 2000. It's an 1982 medium and feels like it. Clunky, heartless, and inconvenient. I've been using either an HD-based system (currently Linn DS) or vinyl the last few years. I don't even own a CD player anymore.

Nodaker's picture

Well into the next decade if they are smart—wait, we are talking about the record companies so who knows?

G.A.'s picture

Record companies need to start releasing mainstream uncompressed FLAC downloads! Preferably at greater than 16-bit 44.1kHz.

Wishful Thinking's picture

For as long as it takes for them to release it all as 24/96 or SACD. Just don't have them go the MP3 or some other compressed format route.

JA's picture

Just a wild guess! But I don't see CDs lasting as long as vinyl, there's just not enough high quality on them.

Stephen Curling's picture

I hope for the sake of quality, CDs keep shipping until downloadable files have the same or better quality (lossless).

theMUSIC's picture

CDs may not remain the formost format, with solid-state storage surpassing CDs, but we'll never give up our peddle powered tube needle cartridge lasers.

Dwayne Hall's picture

Just as LPs are still available, CDs will be sold long after they really need to be. And great audio electronic companies will continue to push the envelope to get more out of those shiny discs. Just as great companies are making the best ever turntables, cartridges, and tonearms. I can see 10–15 years from now “real audiophiles” will all have CD players that comprise of three to five boxes to play CDs on, a master clock, upsampler, transport, DAC, and some other box/device that is not even designed yet, to get the last drop of sound out of the new audiophile CDs. And we are going to pay a boatload of money for all of this. I can see CDs costing $35 to over $100 each. I’ll be in my late 50s by then. I hope I’ll still have good hearing, because I’m going to buy all that crap, LOL.

andy's picture

Well, record stores are all but gone, so you buy online—but then, why wait for the CD to arrive when you can get it in 20 seconds? And yes, there is the quality issue, but surely high quality music will start to appear

Albert-Jan's picture

I hope very long. For me, it is only the music that counts. It's better when there is a dedicated player just for music to have the best quality of sound at a certain price level.

Perry's picture

As long as they are profitable.

michele surdi's picture

For classical, 20 years at least.

df's picture

Maybe there'll be some effort put back into making the content and mastering sound as good as possible. Vinyl is enjoying a resurgence based on sound quality, but probably heavily driven by nostalgia and cool retro kitsch for the younger crowd. A well-recorded/mastered CD on a good deck can sound just fantastic. SACD brings it to a higher level, but Sony has been treating SACD as the ugly stepchild. I think CDs will be with us for quite a while longer.

James W's picture

The CD and LP are true hi-fi A whole generation thinks MP3s sound good through a phone or iPod—very sad indeed.

hogtown's picture

Downloads are the future, along with vinyl for "real" music.

Paul S.'s picture

CDs will be around for a looooong time! It would be very difficult for record companies to market downloads only. What would late night talk show hosts hold up before a band plays on their show? A laptop?

George Flanagin's picture

Major labels, I take it? I think there will always be boutique labels for (SA)CDs just as there are for LPs.

Yoou's picture

CDs are going to be around or a very long time still.

Hiro's picture

The sooner the better!

djl's picture

As long as someone is buying them, they'll keep making them. I'm still buying 'em, so time will tell, I guess!

Anonymous's picture

20+ years. Vinyl records are still produced almost 30 years after the CD came.

Will Floyd-Evans's picture

Even when I get a download from Amazon, I wind up buying the physical CD for music I really love. Even if I only load it on my PC or iPod, I want to pick the resolution I listen at.