What will it take for SACD to win mass acceptance?

What will it take for SACD to win mass acceptance?
Lower player prices
8% (25 votes)
More available titles
7% (21 votes)
A combination of lower player prices and greater software availability
50% (160 votes)
A massive PR campaign
2% (7 votes)
Celebrity endorsements
1% (3 votes)
Proselytizing by audiophiles
1% (2 votes)
Consumer boycott of lo-rez formats
1% (3 votes)
Here's my suggestion:
12% (37 votes)
Nothing will help. The masses don't care about audio quality.
13% (43 votes)
We already have hi-rez audio: the LP.
4% (14 votes)
Multichannel music
2% (6 votes)
Total votes: 321

Last week we asked about the relatively low-resolution MP3 format. Now let's get your opinion on ultra-hi-rez: the Super Audio CD.

R Bikos's picture

Not only do the player prices need to be lower, the software must also be competitive in price with CDs. Most people will accept the higher quality, but they don't really want to pay for it.

Kirk Thomas's picture

SACD will only gain acceptance as people hear music they like played back in the format, something that is much more likely to happen with more available software. Hearing a demo disc is noteworthy, but not compelling to the point of purchasing. If you had a choice labelled More Titles AND Cheaper Titles, that's what I would have picked. They need to retail for $19.95.

Walt Thompson's picture

In addition to lower prices and greater software availability, SACD needs to add multichannel capability. The delay in marketing DVD-A due to the hacking of CSS gives Sony and Philips a window of opportunity. According to reports I've read, the release of DVD-A will be delayed six to nine months. If Sony and Philips move quickly to incorporate multichannel as well as introducing a low-cost, under-$1000 player, then I believe that SACD will become the dominant high-resolution format.

Paul Jensen's picture

The new format will have to totally the existing CD format. I don't think music stores will be willing to carry both formats, much less three (DVD-A). Even if the newer players are backward compatible, the general public won't be buying the new machines, so stores will have to carry all formats. This just doesn't seem like a plausible scenario to me.

Steve Huber's picture

A one-box player that will play all formats: SACD, CD, DVD, DVD-A, DVD 24/96, AC-3, DTS, etc.

Fat Al's picture

Can we please find a hi-rez digital standard and move on with saving the planet? We must focus on our future.

Craig Ellsworth's picture

When player prives are between 1 to 1.5K, I'm buying in.

Glenn Bennett's picture

All the masses care about is video and home theater. The only thing that will fly would have to play in a DVD player.

Dave Borda's picture

More Quality software and proper marketing i.e...put the player in the High End shops; not in the mid-fi arena!!

Dan Brauser's picture

There's alot of great Contempory Christian music that puts secular recording quality to shame. Maybe it's time to consider this source of great music for SACD.

Jim McBride's picture

Player compatibility with other media formats. Player should support DVD-Video, DVD-Audio, and CD-Audio.

Jeff S.'s picture

in addition - there needs to be more titles and a big marketing push to drive the trend for sacd

Luis Solis's picture

Lower cost all across the board i.e. electronics+software. You might think that MP3 or something similar didn't exist when CD was launched so there's a different competition turf. That's why the number of players if cost is lower won't be high enough for it to catch on. Sales figures of DVD tell you Home theater is here to stay and is an easy sale on a family budget to get a DVD than a dedicated audio like SACD.

TheMassesAreNotEarlyAdopters's picture

Certainly lower prices and software availability are important steps. IMO, the big bang will occur when SACD proves that it's not just more road kill, like Divx and Betamax.

ira b.  barcan's picture

have the sony scd-1 player also have 40+ titles. sacd puts me there live! i feel that i'm at the recording sessions when listening to sacd

Julian Storey's picture

plenty of software.

Tom McGuire's picture

As soon as they have a sub-$1000 player, I'm there. A steady stream of new releases (under $20, please) will help too.

Eric.Caulley's picture

I see SACD simply as a replacement for the HDCD specialized audiophile format. With DVD-Audio being a replacement for the current CD format. SACD will never get the acceptance of the masses.

Jim B.'s picture

Most people think CDs sound great; the promise of better sound won't be enough to generate mass consumer sales. Multichannel may be enough of a hook. In any event, continued format wars could kill the whole thing—we need cheaper universal players.

I.  Meijer's picture

The major software suppliers have already made up their minds: DVD-Audio will vaporize SACD. Think again, Sony!

Ray Hall's picture

There cannot be mass acceptance without mass market players that the masses will buy. That is, ones priced like consumer machines but which differentiate themselves sonically sufficiently from the current CD format as to be an improvement over the current CD formats which is clearly and immediately discernable by mass market consumers. Without a significant mass market acceptance, the SACD will remain an audiophile only medium, and will eventually fail due to the economics of manufacturing a product which is higher in cost than the current, competing product, and which is produced for a very narrow market. Unfortunately the success of SACD depends less on the high-end audiophile than the mass narket consumer music buyer.

Steve Roberts's picture

When I hear something of higher quality than my current discs, then I will switch, IF many titles and players are available at reasonable cost (comparable to current technology). Multi-channel sound would be a key feature; the 74-minute playback time would not need to be increased, but I wouldn't be averse to smaller (3") discs if the players remained backward-compatible.

yc's picture

We need universal players that can play all formats. Since we are going to get them, I think SACD can survive. As to whether it'll do well, it probably has as much chance as DVD-audio since the masses don't seem to care about sound quality.

Jeffrey L.  Starr's picture

I think it will take a combination of lower prices (players and software), and a wide assortment of software. I think the best bet for success will be universal players—that is, units that will play SACD, DVD-A, DVD-V, and, of course, CDs. Unfortunately, I don't think it will ever be the predominant source. But one can hope.

giff largey's picture

If the price dropped rapidly and surround was added all before dvd audio gets its feet on the groundit would dominate the market but for now the masses won't adopt it just because it sounds better although they should.

Chris Forister's picture

As DVD-Audio goes back to the drawing board to develop security against pirating, they are wasting time getting the product out to the public. Only an extreme small amount of people will fill their whole hard drive to copy 1 movie over a day. SACD should jump at this opportunity

Michael Hackett's picture

It's true, the "masses" don't care about audio quality. But Sony can probably make them buy it anyway! They have a huge back-catalogue to draw on, lots of "hot" new artists, and an enormous marketing budget. Before long, Sony's DVD players will likely all support SACD, and when manufacturing costs come down, they can phase out CDs in favour of hybrid SACDs. Whether the average consumer cares or not, they will be buying SACD hardware and software. And I expect the surround-sound aspects will become a draw for many. Last of all, Sony has a lot at stake financially, because their royalty agreements on the CD format run out shortly (or so I've read), and they want the royalties from SACD to replace that lost revenue stream. As far as I can see, =that= is the real reason for them pushing a separate format.

Jim's picture

The prices are way too high right now and there is really no software that the masses will purchase

Talat Hameed's picture

I miss the sound of the LP, so I hope this catches on.

Henry N.'s picture

The prerequisite for the SACD to win popularity would have to be a wider selection of titles. This, combined with lower player prices, should do the trick. Since the SACD format is compatible with the CD format, there should be no reason why the popularity of the SACD shouldn't win ground. Eventually, more and more titles published in SACD format should raise the awareness of the masses, leading to a greater number of SACD players being bought, leading to an increasing number of titles released in SACD format, leading to . . .