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Why produce two versions?

 

Bronze Member
Username: Culp4684

Post Number: 93
Registered: Aug-04
I've noticed while shopping in stores that most record companies that put out SACD hybrid discs also produce a regular CD version. In almost every case, both of these versions are similiar in price. I've even found some places online that sell the SACD hybrid version for less.

Why would these record companies even bother making the regular CD version? Is there any advantage, sonically or otherwise, in buying the regular CD version if you don't have hi rez capability?
 

Bronze Member
Username: Sulfur

Post Number: 62
Registered: Dec-03
IMHO so the retail stores can rip us off and sell the High Res version at 2x to 3x the price.

This is true at least in Canada & parts of Asia I've been to. :-(
 

Bronze Member
Username: Aurora_sandman

Post Number: 27
Registered: Nov-04
> Why would these record companies even bother
> making the regular CD version?

They may cost more to manufacture.

> Is there any advantage, sonically or otherwise,
> in buying the regular CD version if you don't
> have hi rez capability?

I can't think of one. As long as it's a hybrid disc that can still be played in a plain old CD player.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Aurora_sandman

Post Number: 28
Registered: Nov-04
> They may cost more to manufacture.

. . .meaning, the SACD's might cost more to manufacture.
 

Silver Member
Username: Two_cents

Post Number: 386
Registered: Feb-04
If you like conspiracy theories, read on: I've read one reviewer claim that the CD layer on a hybrid disc is usually not as good as the CD-only version. He figures this is a way to "sell" SACD as a superior format by purposely making the CD format sound inferior on the same hybrid disc. I've never done a direct comparison of a CD-only disc and the CD layer of a hybrid disc of the same album, so I can't attest to the validity of the claim.
 

Silver Member
Username: Black_math

Post Number: 196
Registered: Dec-03
The Hybrid SACD releases usually come several months after the red book only ones have been released.
 

Silver Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 366
Registered: Oct-04
Well, gang - we've got several conflicting theories here. When I posted similar questions to reviewers at both the Chi Tribune and NY Times I got this sorta response: "The CD layer on a typical SACD disc should be the same as stand-alone CDs - unlike the new "Dual discs," whose CD side is NOT standard CD quality, but lower.
Cost of manufacture is higher initially, but not enough to warrant a higher price. Indeed, many stores sell the hybrids at same or lower-than-CD price.
One of the main reasons - according to these reviewers - that "regular" CDs are coming out is that many people are afraid of the SACDs, and feel intimidated by them. For most people, taking time to figure out how to play the CD layer on a SACD is not worth it. So they go for the regular CD rack.
Until the general public learns that buying a "hybrid" SACD will allow anyone to play either regular CD or SACD layers, there will be stand-alone CDs on the market.

OK - personally - I have only two performances where I can play CD layer on SACD and stand-alone CD. I can tell no difference. But then, I play classical music and jazz - perhaps in many-mixed pop/rock discs it might be different? No personal knowledge there - sorry.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Culp4684

Post Number: 94
Registered: Aug-04
OK. So far none of these responses really answer my initial questions.

If hybrid SACDs really cost more to manufacture, wouldn't their retail selling price be higher? If you use the argument that it is more expensive because they don't make more of the hybrid versions, I still think there would be a cost savings if they made ALL of them in this manner.

To me, dual discs are a waste of time. It would have been better to make dual disc one side DVD-V and the other side DVD-A.

I have noticed that the newer Dylan and Stones SACD reissues are sometimes put in the regular CD racks. This happens even if the store has a separate SACD/DVD section. Both Tower Records and Best Buy seem to practice this.
 

Silver Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 368
Registered: Oct-04
Robert - there would, indeed, be a cost saving if they made only hybrid CDs - but, as the newspaper reviewers noted, a lot of us are intimidated by SACDs - and wouldn't try them out. There's too little general-audience information about them. So, on with the CDs and SACDs - hoping, I presume, to persuade more switch-overs?
And the "more expensive" comments refer to perhaps three cents a disc. Not huge.
Yes - most record store folk have no clue as to what SACDs are - and just file them under artist, composer, etc. Sigh. I order ALL of mine Online.
And there are now more than 2,600 SACD titles out there for sale - and growing every month.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Sulfur

Post Number: 64
Registered: Dec-03
The biggest reason (and I am sticking to it) is hybrid SACDs do not really play on all CD players like their marketing claims. Two cases in point:

1) My all-region no-name DVD player plays CD/DVD/DVDR/DVDRW without a hitch. But it does NOT play the CD track on hybrids. It recognizes the disc is not a regular CD & tries to read it as a DVD but eventually fails after about 10 sec. I've tried about 6 SACDs & they all failed the same way.

Ok you can say "but that's not a real CD player". My argument is many consumers may not have a CD-only player at home these days. HTIB are selling to the masses.

2) My JVC mini stereo will only play the CD track on some SACDs, some of the time. It has less than a 25% success rate of playing my copy of the latest Diana Krall hybrid SACD for example.

And I haven't even tried any of the hybrids on my car's CD player yet. Any bets on that one? :-)

If I didn't actually have a SACD player I would have returned all those hybrid discs for their regular CD versions long ago.
 

shok
Unregistered guest
They play fine in my car, it has a bose.
 

Silver Member
Username: Arnold_layne

MadridSpain

Post Number: 312
Registered: Jun-04
All my SACD hybrids play in my car (Alpine gear).

One way to resolve incompatibility is, if the car stereo is CD-R compliant, to copy it (slightly illegal, but in this case IMO highly justified.)

Cheers
AL
 

Bronze Member
Username: Culp4684

Post Number: 95
Registered: Aug-04
Slightly OT and probably an old issue, but....

What the heck, I started this thread!

Is it really illegal to copy these if you bought the originals in the first place and are only using such copies as backups? As long as you're not profiting by selling any of these copies or giving them to others, it should be perfectly fine.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Aurora_sandman

Post Number: 41
Registered: Nov-04
That's my understanding.

I make copies to take in the car so the originals don't get scratched.
 

J. Vigne
Unregistered guest

Copyrighted material has been under siege since the days of the VCR wars. The release of DVD was delayed for just the reason of finding an invisible watermark that would make copying virtually impossible. The system used did work for the first few years. Whether you can copy "intellectual material", even when you own the disc, is a matter the courts have not ruled on.

Concerning the price difference; the cost of producing the disc is minimally different between the CD and SACD formats. This is particularly true where the music is a reissue of older material where royalties have been payed down or even expired. You should consider yourself lucky to have SACD's at close to the same price as CD's. But even if the cost was higher for the SACD, there are always manufacturer to store rebates, incentives and deals to be made. Sony is getting aggressive about their marketing of SACD and this may be what you're seeing.


There is some reason for the Redbook CD to sound different than the CD layer of a SACD. If you are familiar with how the DSD recording techniques work, the signal is "upsampled" for SACD if it was not originally recorded in PCM and not in Direct Stream Digital. Just as the high end market claims improved performance from upsampling DAC's, the increase in sampling rate (by conversion to DSD) for the SACD mix should provide better sound quality. If this mix is then downsampled to a 44.1kHz rate, the logic of upsampling dictates a better signal at that point. Unless the DSD mix is also used for the Redbook CD, the CD layer of a SACD that has gone through upsampling to DSD and back to 44.1kHz should have better sound quality. At least that's what the guys selling upsampling technology what you to believe.


 

J. Vigne
Unregistered guest
Copyrighted material has been under siege since the days of the VCR wars. The release of DVD was delayed for just the reason of finding an invisible watermark that would make copying virtually impossible. The system used did work for the first few years. Whether you can copy "intellectual material", even when you own the disc, is a matter the courts have not ruled on.

Concerning the price difference; the cost of producing the disc is minimally different between the CD and SACD formats. This is particularly true where the music is a reissue of older material where royalties have been payed down or even expired. You should consider yourself lucky to have SACD's at close to the same price as CD's. But even if the cost was higher for the SACD, there are always manufacturer to store rebates, incentives and deals to be made. Sony is getting aggressive about their marketing of SACD and this may be what you're seeing.


There is some reason for the Redbook CD to sound different than the CD layer of a SACD. If you are familiar with how the DSD recording techniques work, the signal is "upsampled" for SACD if it was not originally recorded in PCM and not in Direct Stream Digital. Just as the high end market claims improved performance from upsampling DAC's, the increase in sampling rate (by conversion to DSD) for the SACD mix should provide better sound quality. If this mix is then downsampled to a 44.1kHz rate, the logic of upsampling dictates a better signal at that point. Unless the DSD mix is also used for the Redbook CD, the CD layer of a SACD that has gone through upsampling to DSD and back to 44.1kHz should have better sound quality. At least that's what the guys selling upsampling technology want you to believe.


 

Silver Member
Username: Arnold_layne

MadridSpain

Post Number: 314
Registered: Jun-04
True, it is said to be legal to make security backups for personal use. Problem starts when removing anti-copy mechanisms, like CSS on DVDs, which means leaving author's material unprotected. I am not 100% sure this actually happens when copying a CD. But I usually include a "illegal tag" in these kind of posts, because I don't wish the forum to be a place for cracker's discussions. Sorry if I caused confusion in this case, but my intentions were good.

Hasta pronto
AL
 

New member
Username: British_power

Post Number: 4
Registered: Jan-05
Sorry for interupting but type things in Harry Potter and Cast and for Aronald Lanye r u really from Spain I like how u used your spanish.I speak it 2
 

Silver Member
Username: Arnold_layne

MadridSpain

Post Number: 315
Registered: Jun-04
I'm from Sweden but live in Spain, the home country of Mrs. Layne :-)

Cheers
AL
 

Silver Member
Username: Larry_r

Naples, FL

Post Number: 544
Registered: Oct-04
AL - G-day to you, sir! For those of us who are curious - with your background(s), do you thus speak "Swanish?" Jest wunnerin. . .

Long time no hear - come visit us on "Old Dogs" or "Discoveries" in "Music" forums, please.
 

Silver Member
Username: Arnold_layne

MadridSpain

Post Number: 316
Registered: Jun-04
Hi Larry. Yes, and Spanglish Swenglish too :-)

Sort of lost track of those platinum threads, somewhere at the time you were waiting for your Sony. It takes a big effort just to get a grip on what's being discussed at the moment (lol). But I surely be back one of these days...

Hasta pronto
AL
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