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* Posts by Pristine Audio

46 posts • joined 31 May 2012

Neil Young touts MP3 player that's no Piece of Crap

Pristine Audio

Re: We don't need no steenkin' PonoPlayers

>All that Neil needs to do is to persuade music download sites and app stores to supply uncompressed audio.

Try Qobuz.com - they sell non-lossy downloads in a multitude of formats (compressed and uncompressed, CD quality and higher) and have a streaming service that lets you choose between 320kbps MP3 and CD-quality FLAC. They've been around here in France for a while - they launched in the UK last December, apparently.

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Pristine Audio

Re: Am i being a numpty

>or isn't FLAC lossless???

The FLACs I play on my Galaxy Note 3 certainly are.

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Samsung brandishes quad-core Galaxy S5, hopes nobody wants high specs

Pristine Audio

I took my Note 3 skiing on Sunday. Fortunately I wasn't water-skiing.

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App to manage Android app permissions

Pristine Audio
Pint

Thank you for posting this...

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Oh My GOD! Have the TORIES ERASED THE INTERNET?*

Pristine Audio
WTF?

I'd say the Guardian's headline is rather less ridiculous than the present article suggests:

>Conservative party deletes archive of speeches from internet

>Decade's worth of records is erased, including PM's speech praising internet for making more information available

Come on, Andrew, the Tories can fight their own battles. You don't need to win the next election for them...

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Apple CEO Tim Cook v Microsoft's Ballmer: Seconds out, round two!

Pristine Audio

Re: 2/3rds running iOS7

100% of iPads here are runnign iOS5 - but then they're both iPad 1s and never even got the chance to see how slowly they'd run on iOS6...

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Samsung Galaxy Note 3: Once, twice, three times - a Very Large Phone™

Pristine Audio
Facepalm

Re: Three Note 3 Fails

I was planning to use the FM Radio on my Note 1 for English commentary at the Spanish Grand Prix this year. Then I remembered I was using Bluetooth headphones...

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Pristine Audio

Re: Speedy!

I think it depends on the Gallery's "Content to display" settings - you can set it up to open online libraries (e.g. Dropbox, Facebook, Picasa) as well as locally held files. This may slow things down a bit...

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Pristine Audio

Re: Note to Note 3, no thanks!

> I ran into the "Insufficient Storage available" error once too often for my liking.

Not a problem any more - the Note 3 treats all the phone's internal memory as one, rather than dividing it between Phone and Internal SD RAM. The old phone needed a lot of manual relocation of apps into SD RAM if you were a prolific installer - this no longer applies. My apps go straight into the full 32GB of available space, and I keep my data on an external 64GB card. All runs very smoothly

> When I hover over the screen, it thinks I'm writing. It is far too sensitive.

Stylus settings have improved significantly since the Note 1...

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Pristine Audio

Couple of things I found buried in the Note 3

Not mentioned in this review but useful to me: it has ANT+ connectivity, which turns out to be very useful for gadget-minded cyclists - the self-same folk who'll also appreciate a setting buried deep in the set-up menus that allows you to increase screen sensitivity so you can use it whilst wearing gloves. These two things alone, coupled with the brighter screen, have been put to good use when I'm out and about with the phone, which in my case is an upgrade from the Note 1.

As for the size of the thing, as a grown man I've yet to find the trouser pocket too small for a Note. And when you get to my age, the screen size really helps you to read the damn thing!

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Here comes Windows 8.1! Microsoft grits teeth, pushes upgrade to world

Pristine Audio

Re: Still not enough

>Users don't just want the Start button back. They want the start MENU back.

Not bloody likely, thanks. After using Windows 8, going back to a Win7 installation is horrible - especially the crappy Start Menu!

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Universal's High Fidelity Pure Audio trickles onto Blighty’s Blu-Ray hi-fis

Pristine Audio

Re: Solution looking for problem

That'll be the psychoacoutsically-shaped dither noise that lowers the effective noise floor (to human ears) of 16-bit recordings to something closer to 19-20 bits then? It's put there for a reason, and you almost certainly can't hear it, any more than you can tell a well-prepared 16-bit recording from the 24-bit master it originated from in just about any studio listening test you care to try.

There's a huge amount of bollocks talked around sample rates and bit depths and it's increasingly a meaningless numbers game. You can read some of that in this thread, alas.

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Pristine Audio
FAIL

HQ audio: the demand is there - but the format is all wrong here

We sell 320kbps MP3, 16-bit FLAC and 24-bit FLAC downloads. The music is generally classical (there's a little jazz and blues too) and the recordings are all over 50 years old. FLAC has for a long time been the favoured format for our download customers, with very few opting for MP3 when they have the choice. (If I had a pound for every Mac user struggling to play FLACs in iTunes and e-mailing me about it... but that's another story.)

24-bit downloads have definitely seen strong growth - people are either getting high quality DACs on their computers or burning them to DVD-R for their Oppo "plays-everything-you-can-throw-at-it" decks. But they don't need another new disc-based format, and CD sales continue to fall.

IMO the major record companies need to wake up and smell the coffee: lossless downloads at higher resolutions (even if just about none of their customers can hear a difference) could be the 80s CD boom all over again and make them a fortune. But sticking the likes of the first Velvets album - one of the worst-recorded classic albums of the 1960s - on yet another new high-resolution format just shows how disconnected from the real world the suits at Universal are.

Massive fail, heading to a closed-down record store near you...

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Samsung DENIES benchmark CHEATING, despite evidence

Pristine Audio

Re: as a geek

>So I can type quickly and accurately on the iPhone's screen. Once the distances get a little larger (Nexus 4) I have a hard time moving my fingers that far with the same level of accuracy. Actually sometimes I have to move my entire hand, depending on how I'm holding the phone. Result is that I can't type nearly as fast on the bigger screen as the smaller screen.

So install Swype then. Leave the iPhone's typing speed in the dust...

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Tracking the history of magnetic tape: A game of noughts and crosses

Pristine Audio

Re: 1996 data storage on video cassette

More commonly PCM digital recordings were made using Beta rather than VHS (better picture quality = greater reliability), with different PCM units built for PAL and NTSC systems. (I believe 44.1kHz was chosen as the sampling rate for CDs as it divided equally well for use on both 50Hz and 60Hz systems, just as 78rpm or thereabouts was judged a suitable compromise for records decades earlier).

If you view one of these tapes what you see is a series of bar-code-like stripes on the screen across a number of columns. Digital data, stored visually in the analogue domain. You've got to love it!

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Decks and plugs and rock and roll: Tascam CD-A750 cassette and CD combo

Pristine Audio

Re: Interviews

Hard to edit, aren't they! Especially when recorded on both sides...

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Pristine Audio

Re: Aye, them days is gone...

Certainly potential sound quality was better from cassette than it was from the awful cartridges we used to use for jingles and so on - but they could be cued up and were designed for broadcasting, unlike the cassette. Horses for courses - the jingles had ended up largely on MiniDisc by the late 90s; quicker to cue and much better sound quality, but lacking the quick-fire one-jingle-in-a-big-plastic-box appeal of the cart. Steve Wright (in the Afternoon) was a brilliant cart operator!

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Pristine Audio

CD data discs, such as those with MP3s on them.

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Pristine Audio

Re: Aye, them days is gone...

Studer A710 cassette decks were the standard BBC installation for radio studios, certainly in the main London broadcast centres in the 90s. Studer and Telefunken reel to reel machines were found in studios, but not Revox - these were the "domestic" products (most commonly the PR-99) that radio producers got to play with in their offices, alongside domestic hi-fi equipment (from the usual suspects).

Personally I prefer the sound of my Nakamichi DR-2 to anything I ever heard from the Studer decks, but they were reliable workhorses, required to make two copies of everything we broadcast for legal back-up and archiving, so the decks in the main studios in Broadcasting House certainly put in a lot of hours.

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Happy 50th birthday, Compact Cassette: How it struck a chord for millions

Pristine Audio

Re: SONY Elcassette

I've ended up with an Elcasette recorder that used to be Mike Oldfield's portable recorder of choice. It has a single tape marked "Sea Shanties" which still plays. Can't say I've ever tried recording with it, but it's a nice thing to have in the "museum" of odd formats I've built up: alongside the Nakamichi, the DCC, the 1974 Pioneer quadrophonic 8-track cartridge player/recorder, the Tascam 8-track cassette multitrack, various Studer, Revox and Ampex monsters, an open-reel dictation machine that once belonged to Hammond Innes... - all designed to use the miracle format that is rust-on-plastic...

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Samsung Galaxy Note 8: Proof the pen is mightier?

Pristine Audio
Pint

Undocumented feature?

I got a Note 8 last week (I've been using a Note 1 phone for about 18 months) and bought a leather cover/stand thingy from Amazon to go with it.

Very nice and all that, but when I close the cover the Note 8 switches itself off automatically (well, screen off, you know what I mean), and when I open the cover it switches itself back on. The cover doesn't touch the on/off button, and I can't replicate the behaviour with pieces of paper/card held over the screen and/or front-facing sensors.

I don't know how it's sensing it, but it's useful, and I've not seen it referred to in any of the reviews I've read so far.

Beers all round at Samsung HQ...

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Apple at WWDC: Sleek new iOS, death of the big cats, pint-sized Mac Pro

Pristine Audio

Re: It's not when they came out, it's when they stopped selling them.

>*cough* the final version of iOS available for the iPad 1 is 5, not 6.

Agreed. An iPad is not a phone - subject to annual or two-yearly updates by the users. Not here, anyway: two iPad 1s still going strong and no great reason to update yet as far as I can see. I just wish I'd stuck to iOS 5.0...

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Microsoft: All RIGHT, you can have your Start button back

Pristine Audio
Happy

Re: Once again...

I get along fine without it, but if it comes back ill use it ha!

That's what I thought. Then I installed one of those third-party start-button mods only to find I never actually use it. I've got into the habit of launching and controlling things the W8 way and, frankly, prefer it. Didn't think I'd say that at the time...

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British bookworms deem Amazon 'evil'

Pristine Audio
Pint

Re: What sort of cretin buys a Amazon Swindle anyway?

"I tend to buy and read fiction. I can count on one hand the number of books I've ever wished to read more than once. I have metres of shelves full of books I've read and will never open again."

Then why on earth aren't you using the library? If you only want to read something once, then check it out, read it, and return it. That's exactly what I do with books I don't suspect I'll want to reread.

Simple: because I live in France and prefer to read English books. These are not generally stocked in our local libraries.

For anyone living in another country where their first language isn't generally spoken the coming of the Kindle (and its like) is manna from heaven. You used to find us at airports scanning the meagre selection of overpriced English paperbacks on the small sections of shelves dedicated to foreign-language books, or carrying suitcase-loads of books back from Blighty. Not any more. Thank you, Amazon - have a drink on me.

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Pristine Audio

Re: What sort of cretin buys a Amazon Swindle anyway?

"Nope, when all the books they buy from amazon automagically disappear from the device."

I tend to buy and read fiction. I can count on one hand the number of books I've ever wished to read more than once. I have metres of shelves full of books I've read and will never open again. AFAIR there's only ever been once instance of Amazon removing a book from Kindles remotely, and I've already read that one. I really wouldn't care as long as I wasn't in the middle of it when I was reading it.

This is where books are, for many people, not like music. You don't read the same one over and over and over again like you'd listen to a favourite album a thousand times. (I'm the same with movies - rarely do I ever wish to watch something twice.) Yet all too often they seem to get get lumped together as "digital files" as if people with therefore have the same relationship with them. I don't. Once I've read a book on my Kindle Amazon is welcome to take it back.

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Vinyl sales reach 15 year high, Blighty becomes No. 3 music buyer

Pristine Audio

Re: Face it, vinyl sucks

joeW - Vinyl has a greater dynamic range than CD-format digital recordings...

Don't fall for this nonsense! Vinyl has a dynamic range at its very best of somewhere around 65-70dB, though it's rarely achieved outside of the most expensive audiophile pressings (and to be honest some of these are very ropey, especially given their ridiculous prices).

On the other hand every bog standard 16-bit CD has a dynamic range of 93dB. Though whether music producers choose to use that dynamic range is a different matter...

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Pristine Audio
Thumb Down

Re: So

The charts were always only ever based on a snapshot of sales at a selection of record shops around the country. They were never an absolutely accurate representation of precisely how many records were sold, merely an extrapolation of sample data.

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Google Translate for Android adds offline translation option

Pristine Audio
Thumb Up

200MB for French, 156MB for Spanish.

As someone living in France and often visiting Spain this will be a real help - my French is OK but occasionally a particular word is outside my vocabulary. Google Translate has often helped, but sometimes mobile reception lets me down - especially in some large shops when I need to ask for something!

Meanwhile I get hit for data roaming charges in Spain, and my Spanish is poor, so I know this is going to come in very handy...

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Review: HTC One

Pristine Audio
FAIL

No swappable battery, no sale

It would probably be the battery rather than memory issue that would kill it for me.

I've just ordered a 5000mAh battery for my Galaxy Note to enable it to carry on displaying maps, tracking my location, monitoring my heart rate, playing music over Bluetooth and so on for far longer than the stock 2500mAh battery gives me when the phone's clamped to my bike's handlebars for 3-4 hour cycle rides in bright sunlight with the display brightness at 100%. When I get home with a depleted battery I can drop in a fully-recharged spare and carry on using it, rather than having to plug the phone in and wait hours for a decent charge before its usable again.

For the kind of uses I've put my phone to, I can't imagine ever wanting one where the battery couldn't be swapped out quickly and easily. It's a simple option that really ought to be standard when these devices have so many possible uses.

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This week's BBC MELTDOWN: Savile puppet haunts kids' TV

Pristine Audio
Coat

Re: aghhhhhhhhhhhhhh

You know you've spent far too much time watching The Tweenies when you start to find Judy an attractive proposition. Thankfully I was able to leave this lot behind a long time ago...

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Bob Dylan's new album is 'Copyright Extension Collection'

Pristine Audio
FAIL

Re: I don't understand this

NYT: "And there’s a catch, a “use it or lose it” provision: recordings cannot benefit from the 20-year extension unless they were published before the 50-year term expired."

This clause was dropped before the bill was passed through the European Parliament. Someone at Sony, it would appear, missed this small but vital detail. The release of this material in this way is therefore pointless unless the use-it-or-lose-it clause is reinstated as per the original draft bill.

NYT: "The change is not yet in effect but will be by 2014."

It's projected to come into effect in November 2013, thereby protecting all recordings from 1963. Recordings issued ("published" to be precise) in 1962 went into the public domain last week.

It strikes me this is a "belt-and-braces" approach from Sony based on a misinterpretation of the law passed and requiring ratification by each of the 27 member states of the EU by November. They could just as easily have made a proper release of the Dylan material, but chose to be bloody-minded about it instead, effectively encouraging piracy among those who just have to have it. Says a lot about the Sony mindset, doesn't it?

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Review: Mio Cyclo 300 cycling satnav

Pristine Audio
Happy

Re: I'm just wondering how you can cycle far enough to need a bleedin satnav...

I live in a rural area of France that's a warren of poorly signposted lanes and back roads. Getting a handlebar mount for my Galaxy Note and a copy of the MapMyRide app has opened all of these up to me. If I know where I'm going I just leave the screen off and record the ride for posterity (and to check my times), if I don't I'll follow the map on the screen - or plan the route in advance on the PC and send it to the phone, then follow it on the display. It's pretty spot on as far as GPS accuracy is concerned and uses Google Maps as the basis of the operation.

I found a Chinese website selling waterproof sleeves for the Note which still allow touch-screen operation, which works a treat when it starts to rain, though the Note is surprisingly capable of surviving a shower. It's also survived a couple of falls at speed when I hadn't got it properly attached with little more than a scratch. Most impressed!

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TomTom for Android with hands-free kit review

Pristine Audio
Happy

Re: Maybe it is good maybe it isn't

"I tried Sygic / Copilot and found them awful."

I've been using Sygic since June and much prefer it to my hardware Garmin sat-nav on my Galaxy Note. Nothing awful about it IMHO - gets you there and avoids hold-ups, whilst looking lovely on the screen. What more do you want?

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Oprah Winfrey too late to save Microsoft's Windows 8

Pristine Audio
WTF?

Re: Having tried win7 & win8 side by side

"I do not want to know the weather the other side of the world and ONLY the other side of the world"

So you never considered setting the location on the weather app?

Sounds a bit like rejecting an otherwise nice new car because you could only find a map of Australia in it, rather than an A-Z of London...

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Pristine Audio

Re: First impressions were not great

"To get to the desktop form the Metro interface, you click on the large (double width) button, which has the desktop wallpaper as its background. The button is labeled "Desktop", by default, IIRC, it's in the bottom left of the tile array when you first start/logon."

Or press the Windows key on your keyboard...

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Pristine Audio
Thumb Up

Re: I'm Sorry But I like Windows 8

"you can get to the traditional desktop in seconds"

You can get to the traditional desktop by a single press of the Windows key on the keyboard. And back again. In a very small fraction of a second...

I like Win8 too, BTW. I also like the fact I've been able to upgrade several XP machines to Win 8 Pro 32-bit or 64-bit for less than €30 each before Microsoft stops supporting XP.

I wonder how many online upgrade sales Microsoft has had? It's not all about new PCs and tablets, surely - but to read articles like this you'd think that was the sole measure of the success or otherwise of the OS. Anyone going through the upgrade procedure from Windows 7 (or other) is likely to be immediately impressed with the simple matter of what feels like a major hardware upgrade - for me it was worth it for that alone to begin with.

Each to their own - but we now have 6 of our 8 PCs on Windows 8 and everything's running very smoothly. (Of the others, one's a netbook with a screen resolution too low for Metro last time I checked, the other is the wife's laptop, and I'm not going anywhere near that!)

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The Big Debate: OK gloomsters, how can the music biz be FIXED?

This post has been deleted by a moderator

XBMC coders acquire TVonics brand

Pristine Audio
Pint

Love my Pulse-Eight CEC adaptor

It's the gizmo that pulls the entire XBMC experience together for me - with the PC under the control of the TV remote.

Good luck to them with this!

And a pint to the boss

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Samsung Galaxy Note 2 review

Pristine Audio

Re: Voice and Handwriting - again

I can write faster using Swype on my Note 1 than I can type on this keyboard. Voice recognition on the latest ICS incarnation of the Note 1 is also much improved, though I still prefer to Swype.

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Samsung Galaxy Note 2 hands-on review

Pristine Audio
Thumb Up

Re: Great device

I've been using my Note mounted on my bike - coupled with the free Map My Ride app it's perfect. Bike plus GPS in a rural area with loads of little lanes and tracks means no more getting lost on longer rides.

After a couple of outings where the rain started to fall (without any ill effect on the Note, BTW, despite me getting soaked) I managed to find a waterproof cover for it from a Chinese website which still allows touch control through the clear panel on the front - but thanks to a cycling-unrelated broken rib a month ago I've yet to get onto the bike on a wet day and try it out for real. Fingerless gloves, mind...

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Asus Transformer Pad Infinity 64GB Android tablet review

Pristine Audio
Pint

You think six hundred quid's expensive? Pah!

I don't know why people are whinging about the price in the UK. Here in France Amazon have it on sale at €59,079.10. It's those last 10 centimes that tip it just outside my price range...

http://www.amazon.fr/25-7cm-Asus-Transformer-Infinity-Amethyst/dp/B008EJJSR0/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1345024158&sr=8-1

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PayPal is bleeding market share and it's all eBay's fault

Pristine Audio

No alternative to PayPal here

Outside of the USA and UK it's PayPal for small online business or nothing. Here in France Google Checkout has never been available for merchants. As for the rest...

Crap as PayPal frequently are, at least they could be bothered to see beyond their own national borders and set up a proper international system that, by and large, seems to work most of the time. Where I live there's simply no viable alternative.

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Top US Senator to Apple, Google: 'Curb your spy planes'

Pristine Audio
Thumb Up

Re: 4 inch resolution...

My Dad already appears naked in his garden on Google Earth - but fortunately not a 4-inch resolution!

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Songkick Concerts

Pristine Audio
Coat

Hmmm

So as a Miles Davis fan in rural SW France should I give this one a miss?

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Ten... dual-band wireless routers

Pristine Audio
FAIL

Why not the Netgear N900?

I'm surprised you picked the slower N750 from Netgear - I've been running the N900 (wndr4500) for a few months now and getting excellent results on both 2.4gHz and 5gHz, with 450 Mbps available on both channels, unlike the slower model you've reviewed here.

If you're going to review high performance wi-fi routers it's surely better to review the high performance model from each manufacturer, rather than the next one down, isn't it?

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Digital music sales beat discs for first time in UK

Pristine Audio
Facepalm

Digital?

"Digital music sales beat discs for first time in UK" - and here's me thinking all those CDs we sell alongside our downloads and online subs were digital too!

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