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CD Players

2010 Views 40 Replies 22 Participants Last post by  apricissimus
I know everyone is going digital these days, and I do use streaming music services, but I am wedded to my CDs and have no intention of getting rid of them.

My question is about CD players and their built-in error correction facility. I seem to remember that when CDs were first produced, one of the selling points was their longevity and how most CDs could ignore any surface scratches and still play the CDs. I have a Cambridge Audio CD player, which I've now owned for around 10 years. Recently it has refused to play certain CDs, even when I can't see any scratches on them, though it's a bit temperamental (sometimes it will, sometimes it won't) probably meaning that the error correction facility has stopped working.

Modern CD players don't seem to be as good as old ones and indeed I remember that when I purchased this one, it was a replacement for a model that didn't support gapless playback. Nothing in the technical specs prepared me for that and none of the specs for many of the CD players I am looking at now say anything about error correction. I can't afford anything high end. Does anyone have any suggestions?
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Perhaps I've become an old fart that refuses to embrace new technology, like some old grandpa on the sidewalk yelling at the mailbox, but I'm frustrated with the transition to STREAMING services.

We are encouraged to RENT services to provide music to you, and discouraged from OWNING copies of music.

Of course, with a streaming service, I cannot listen to songs or music that are not connected with that "service", and there are plenty of artists and music that these "services" do not "carry".

Same with computer software: the new tech model is to subscribe to the software rather than simply have it stored on one's personal computer. I've seen this happen with ProTools. One can no longer "buy" it, one subscribes to it.

Or news sources. Or entertainment sources such as Hulu, Netflix, Disney, Paramount, etc.

$9.99/month each. It adds up.
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One thing about CDs; they actually DON'T last forever. They degrade. We like to think that because they're a "digital" medium they are forever. But just as your computer hard drive can occasionally end up with a corrupt file here or there, CDs go "bad". Not as quickly as tape, but they degrade.

And it's sometimes referred to as "Disc rot". Lovely.

CD-Rs and CD-RWs have the shortest predicted lifespan (five to 10 years).

CDs have a lifespan of 20-100 years.
I burned CD-R's over 20 years ago that still play without issues. I do always burn at the lowest writing rate.
It's likely you take good care of them.

Humidity, temperature, poor handling, and direct sunlight are "bad" for CDs and DVDs. Poor storage conditions can create 'bronzing' (or CD rot).

The outer plastic coating of the CD erodes, leaving a silver layer exposed. And when you leave silver exposed, it tarnishes.

But there is no "average" lifespan for CDs, because there is no average disc - There were a lot of different standards of manufacturing, depending on the year and the factory.

Many of them can actually last for centuries if they're taken care of. The fastest way to destroy CD collections is to leave them in their car over summer, which a lot of people do.

Sadly, your favorite CDs — the ones you've played a lot — are often the ones that are most likely to be damaged.
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