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Coming soon to your cd player - MP3

Taking the audio world by storm

By Emma Kae - 3rd January 2001 - Back to News

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An MP3, for anyone who is not in the know, is a compressed, internet-transferrable audio file. Despite its small size, the MP3 has taken the world by storm.

Huge sparks have been flying over ownership rights. Controversial arguments began when it became known that copyrighted songs are sold and distributed illegally off web sites.

Tempers flared within the music industry. With today’s technology, musicians may distribute their music via their website - eliminating the need for record companies. Consumer costs would fall whilst artist royalties would be on the rise.

Using the MP3 file format, a user can fit approximately 200 songs per disc, compared to old world CD-audio’s 15 to 20. With the compression comes some degradation in sound quality, but most are quite acceptable, with little noticeable change.

Despite the ambivalence surrounding the MP3s, they are simply so easy to obtain and use that ongoing growth is inevitable, opening the doors for a very real new industry.

Today, unless you are a supporter of MP3, you will be lost in the crowd. The companies who previously brought you all of your audio needs are cashing in on a trend that is here to stay.

MP3 functionality will soon be added to all CD players at a minimal cost. The hip new gadgets of the year will be the portable MP3 players and hybrid CD/MP3 home and walkman players.

What are these new creatures? In appearance, they look to be the same as any CD player on the market today. They are merely regular CD players with an in-built function of extra circuitry control for decoding the files.

There are stereo versions, walkman styles, desktop programs and even in-dash players for your car, all appearing on the development horizon.

For now, the only mass-produced players that will easily integrate into your stereo system, are the Apex Digital AD-600A DVD/CD player and the Samsung DVD-812 DVD/CD player.

As for portables on the market, your range is much wider and includes many choices. The list is led by Phillups with its eXpanium CD portable player. Others include the MPTrip Discman, the Genica, the Tagram Mambo X, and the Novasonic 786.

Imagine car stereos with 300-disc-45,000-song jukeboxes. At around three minutes per song, that's more than three months of non-stop tunes. You’ll be able to buy one soon. In the meantime, start building your collection with find enough music to fill it!


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