SACD: Is it time for the funeral?

Discussion in 'Music' started by Brian-W, Sep 10, 2007.

  1. Brian-W

    Brian-W Screenwriter

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    Yep, doom and gloom post, but seriously, other than the few Genesis SACDs, there's been a dearth, literally little to nothing released. In fact, it seems that other than some hardware releases (PS3 support, the recent car players, and a few new home units), there's been no new software. For a platform to survive, it needs content, and SACD seems to finally have breathed it's last breath.

    It's sad - I bought into this format (with no regrets), and it all seems to have dried up. And you get Sony, the formats backer, who is still supporting SACD on a scaled back level with hardware, releasing virtually no software. Argh!!!!

    The PS3 seems to have brought a lot of happiness to SACD owners who can stream digitally (and at 192khz as well if your receiver supports it); Oppo Digital makes players for less than $200 that convert SACD to PCM and offer DSD direct via HDMI to a compatible receiver (Denon and Onkyo are currently supporting this). Plus you have the venerable IEEE1394 capable units (Pioneer) and DenonLink units that pass DSD direct to the receiver.

    And here we are...new hardware for this year, and the software side is not even trickling out - it's a drought, with an occasional 'drop' (Genesis) that manifests itself.

    I love my SACD - always will, and will continue to enjoy it until its ever replaced (no chance thus far - I think BD with uncompressed PCM is the closest), but it's a bummer that there just doesn't seem to be anymore support, especially from Sony which as a format backer is inexcusable. They have the record collection; they have an installed base; and the technology and costs for doing hybrid is significantly cheaper.

    Alas, I think this weekend I'll enjoy some SACD's as I open a nice bottle of wine and 'say goodbye' to what is now (to me) a dead format. At least it outlived DVD-A...
     
  2. KurtEP

    KurtEP Supporting Actor

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    I'm not going to call it dead yet, because there seems to be more classical releases now, quite a lot more.

    Unfortunately, I'd agree that the rock genre has basically died. Sadly, I don't think I'll ever see Pink Floyd's Meddle on SACD. [​IMG]
     
  3. Aaron Silverman

    Aaron Silverman Executive Producer

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    And we didn't even get the Genesis SACDs in the US. [​IMG]

    I think there are still some classical SACDs being released, but they certainly aren't being marketed much.
     
  4. KurtEP

    KurtEP Supporting Actor

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    What has always amazed me about SACD and DVD-A was the almost total lack of marketing. I've only met one person (outside of the internet) other than myself who knew what SACD was before I told them about it. The only real advertising I can recall was a demo disk included in a Rolling Stone magazine a few years ago. Why not include a demo disk with new DVD players with the capability (admittedly, I once briefly owned a player that came with a DVD-A, but that seems to be the exception), why not include a demo with the PS3 if you're going to give it SACD playback? The worst, IMHO, was the ABKO Rolling Stones release on SACD. There was no fanfare that I heard anything about, and I had to have someone in the store check whether they were even SACDs, since there didn't seem to be any external markings on the packages. These were excellent releases, why not market them? It never seemed like either side was truly committed to selling these products. I often wonder why they bothered at all.

    If there's any upside to this, Borders now carries a fairly decent selection of SACDs in the classical selection, which seems to be growing slowly. Some online sources such as musicdirect also have fairly decent selections.
     
  5. Brian-W

    Brian-W Screenwriter

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    Actually Sony did a lot of marketing early on for SACD. The problem was that it was *too early* to market. Players were still 2 channel; players were well past the $1k price mark; and software was still trickling out.

    When software releases picked up, and more equipment came to market, the marketing seemed to stop...
     
  6. Phil A

    Phil A Producer
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    With the exception of classical as noted in the prior posts, SACD releases in the US are for practical purposes not happening. Sony Japan still issues them. While my SACD purchases are at a crawl, probably 80% of what I've bought over the past yr. are imports. I've gone out and bought a good dedicated CD player and will enjoy the software I have and can buy. You'll still some audiophile releases. Sony has seven licensed some to Mobile Fidelity. SACD as a potential for a mainstream format has been dead 2-3 yrs. at least. SACD and DVD-A were really about a fight for royalties on expiring CD patents. They really didn't need a new special format, which also required special new players. They could have used the DVD-V format, the most successful consumer format history to have both surround and hi-rez stereo stuff with mixtures of multiple discs, hi-rez stereo and DD surround, etc. The other issue they were concerned with using DVD-V was copy protection for the studios. So in terms of looking after what the consumer wanted and what the marketplace could sustain, neither hi-rez format looked at that issue closely enough.
     
  7. Danny Tse

    Danny Tse Producer

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    Actually, both July and August 2007 were quite busy months for SACD. According to sa-cd.net, there were 67 releases for July and 74 for August 2007. However, it's also correct that rock/pop releases on SACD in the US have come to a grinding halt. I think this is a reflection of the marketplace for pop/rock.

    However, SACD continues to get released overseas. Japan Sony, which is a separate company from Sony BMG we have in the US, has announced a good number of SACD reissues in September and October for Herbie Hancock and Miles Davis, respectively.

    I remember full-page ads for SACD in mainstream A/V magazines such as Sound & Vision. Don't forget there was that give-away SACD sampler that came with an issue of Rolling Stone magazine. I think SACD marketing could've been done better....such as actually mentioning SACD playback capability at the PlayStation 3 displays found in big-box retailers or in Sony's own ads. But again, this could also be a reflection of the marketplace in which the consumer doesn't care for sound quality.

    I don't think SACD is dying just yet. It's still very healthy, as a niche format, in other markets and for certain types of music.

    BTW, Pioneer Elite just announced a $500.00 2 channel-only SACD/CD (no video) player for the US market at the 2007 CEDIA.
     
  8. Marc Colella

    Marc Colella Cinematographer

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    SACD isn't dead, it's just as niche as you're gonna get.

    The format never stood a chance with the mainstream. The demand for higher quality audio for music was on the decline for quite some time. Noone cares for it.

    I still pick up SACDs from time to time - usually classical discs that are cheap (ie. RCA Living Stereo series). I've managed to acquire a few in trades, but it's rare since it's hard to find anyone who has SACDs let alone are trading them.
     
  9. Aaron Silverman

    Aaron Silverman Executive Producer

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    Hell, I own a PS3 and wouldn't know that it played SACD if I didn't read it in passing on this board!

    I suppose if you're going to pay $500 for a CD player in 2007, it might as well include SACD playback. (I paid $150 for a Pioneer DVD player almost 4 years ago that plays multichannel SACD *and* DVD-A.)
     
  10. Rachael B

    Rachael B Producer

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    600+ titles.....I don't need a priest but maybe a therapist?
     
  11. Brian-W

    Brian-W Screenwriter

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    600 SACD titles Rachael? Damn...

    I guess I was hoping for more pop/rock releases. I like classical and jazz, but er more on the side of pop/rock.
     
  12. Phil A

    Phil A Producer
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    Same here - I think I just have a mere 230 SACDs and about 60+ DVD-As. Damn - I feel underprivileged[​IMG]
     
  13. KurtEP

    KurtEP Supporting Actor

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  14. Rachael B

    Rachael B Producer

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    I have about 20 classical titles. The rest are split pretty evenly between jazz and rock/kuntry. I have alot of relatively rare rock titles from Europa like: America Live, RPWL, and Golden Earing. I scanned zee wurld por rock Sack-Dee's. I have every rock title that Mofi did...maybe they'll do a few more?

    I know.....I need a 12 step program! Well, maybe not due to lacklustre suppourt!
     
  15. Rachael B

    Rachael B Producer

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    Call social services and they'll hook you up to the SACD audio bank.
     
  16. Brian-W

    Brian-W Screenwriter

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    Rachael is to SACD what I was to Hi-Vision.
     
  17. Phil A

    Phil A Producer
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    They told me they're working on an experimental drug similar to Viagra for ED that will solve my horrid case of SACD (Super Audio Compact Disfunction). I understand once you solve that and have lots of SACDs to play, attacks can last more than four hours and there's a need to seek immediate medical attention[​IMG]
     
  18. Rachael B

    Rachael B Producer

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    LOL!!!
     
  19. Blair G

    Blair G Second Unit

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    Rachael,

    I've been thinking about getting the Kiki Dee "Almost Naked Live" SACD.

    Have you heard it?
     
  20. Rachael B

    Rachael B Producer

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    No, I've stopped hunting like I did for years. Now you have me tempted to start back my old ways! Would I see it at Amazon U.K. or France?
     

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