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Jon Iverson's editorial on SACD in S'phile (1 Viewer)

John Kotches

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I'm curious if anyone else has read Jon Iverson's opinion piece (the "As We See It" column) in the latest (April 2003) issue of Stereophile.

He has interesting commentary, and I'd like to know what others think about it.

Regards,
 

John Kotches

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Keith,

Not having the editorial directly in front of me, I'm doing this from recollection.

Iverson's point of view (paraphrased):

Sonics come a distant 3rd in reasons for SACD to exist...

He feels that developing a new revenue stream of royalties, and copy protection were the most important aspects of the release of SACD as a commercial product.
 

KrisM

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If copy-protection was that important to the release of SACD, somebody should be out of a job. The average person stealing music doesn't give a rat's ass about high rez. We are talking about people who think poorly encoded mp3s are the same as cds. True copy-protection is simply not available. I realize that an SACD or DVD-A layer cannot be copied, but through the analog domain any of these discs can be copied over and over to a cd layer.
I would think the higher quality and new revenue streams would be the most important. And not in that particular order.
Just my 2 cents.

Regards
KrisM
 

Rachael B

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Ultimately SACD has no copy protection. The analog MD's and CD's I've made from SACD's are simply awesome for their respective formats. Next move rook to queen 7...;)
 

Brian-W

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Sonics come a distant 3rd in reasons for SACD to exist...

He feels that developing a new revenue stream of royalties, and copy protection were the most important aspects of the release of SACD as a commercial product.
Not surprising....I'll bet the same way for DVD-A.

In fact, this generally is true of ALL new formats. Sure, they want to give the public a better product, but if they (companies) can't find a way to make money off of it, what's the point?

Look at DVD. It's already been cracked. But I think studios want HD to go away (on optical mediums) for a while so they can milk DVD for everything they can get out of it. Then, when DVD is on life support, come back and sell you a 'new' product that is obviously better than the last, and hopefully a new revenue source to justify their existence.

I read the Editorial last night, and while not surprising, certainly not shocking either. If I ran Sony (or any other company), I'd try and do the same too. Don't take the editorial and make Sony look like the bad guy, EVERY company is guilty of trying to establish a new format they can collect royalties from.

What was shocking was that $34,000 SACD 2-channel player. F' that!
 

John Kotches

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Brian,

The royalties for DVD-A are spread much further across the board than SACD, so no one company is going to reap particularly huge benefits.

There were either 8 or 10 companies to which DVD-A royalties were to be spread across.

It's only a matter of time before the hacking community figures out a way to hack the copy protection schemes for both format. But why bother for the moment, when the market penetration of both formats is practically nonexistent?
 

Brian-W

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The royalties for DVD-A are spread much further across the board than SACD, so no one company is going to reap particularly huge benefits.

I understand, but that still doesn't change the fact that DVD-A is in the same boat as SACD: A new revenue stream for music companies.

This isn't an "SACD is bad DVD-A" is good argument. Both formats are backed by music companies who claim to want to provide better quality to consumers, which is true. But no company would do so unless the revenue stream (potential or realistic, now or in the future) was going to be there.

A new source of revenue, whether in addition or to replace current music (i.e. CD or otherwise) is the goal of music companies.

That is irregardless how many share in a revenue pool of royalties.

Whether SACD beats out DVD-A, stays competitive with it, or dies out completely, Sony still wins given they are in the DVD Forum revenue pool for royalties.

And yes, I agree, it's only a matter of time before some hacker(s) crack the SACD encryption scheme. But it's obviously an appealing factor to record companies to release SACD given there isn't anything publicly available to circumvent SACD copy protection (yet). Record companies don't want to see a repeat of 7 lines of code on a paper napkin that circumvented DVD-Video CP.
 

Sathyan

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Brian,

Could you post the manufacturer/model # of the 2-channel SACD player that was mentioned? (The column is not online)

thanks
Sathyan
 

Brian-W

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Sathyan,

I don't remember what the model was, but I think the manufacturer was DCS.

I didn't buy the magazine.
 

Lee Scoggins

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Don't take the editorial and make Sony look like the bad guy, EVERY company is guilty of trying to establish a new format they can collect royalties from.
So true. There are many benefits to be reaped from establishing a standard. :)

I think sonics were not a third consideration of this format. Based on conversations with both recording engineers and the Super Audio team, this all started as a new archiving format where sonics were important and new professional line revenue was important. It was later extended to the consumer realm as Sony realized they had created something that high end consumers of all stripes would be interested in.
 

John Kotches

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Brian,

It was 3 pieces from dCS:
  • Verdi (Stereo SACD/CD transport)
  • Purcell (CD --> DSD conversion/upsampler)
  • Elgar Plus DAC

Combined the price tag was ~US$35K for a stereo source.

Fairly pricey, by any stretch of the imagination.
 

Kevin Farley

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The more I think about investment in SACD/DVD Audio (rip?), the more I think about going more into vinyl. Software costs (rebuying albums...), need new home cd player, new processor to decode, new car cd player, new computer software, new everything, just to get even closer to vinyl. bah. The Rega P3 is looking better and better now...
 

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