Best Buy Axing CD Music

FrgMstr

Just Plain Mean
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I just saw where Best Buy is pulling out of the CD business totally. Obviously digital streaming services are eating up this market. I guess I am still one of the old school crowd that still buys CDs. For artists that I want to support, I still buy their CDs, albeit not at Best Buy. I like to be able to rip those to lossless formats for playback later and very high volumes and undistorted by the crappy compression that I so often hear with streaming music. Guess I will have to buy vinyl from here out. Just kidding, I am not a jackass.


Best Buy has just told music suppliers that it will pull CDs from its stores come July 1. At one point, Best Buy was the most powerful music merchandiser in the U.S., but nowadays it's a shadow of its former self, with a reduced and shoddy offering of CDs. Sources suggest that the company's CD business is nowadays only generating about $40 million annually. While it says it's planning to pull out CDs, Best Buy will continue to carry vinyl for the next two years, keeping a commitment it made to vendors. The vinyl will now be merchandised with the turntables, sources suggest.
 

Zarathustra[H]

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I still prefer CD's in theory, but in practice, Spotify is just so damned cheap and easy, and everything is instantly at my fingertips, so it has won out.

I DO go in and elect the alternate extreme bitrate though. I have never noticed any quality problems after doing so.
 

cjcox

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While their DVDs and even Blu-rays are often discounted.... they have *not* discounted their CD's, at least not yet (I'm guessing they'll eventually make room for vinyl. Can we get some 45rpm love though?)

And why are there no cars with record players in them?
 

pendragon1

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And why are there no cars with record players in them?

there were. find one and your hipster level will be infinite.

15-06-03-HDB-Philips-01s.jpg
 

Domingo

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They started seriously downsizing that section in my area recently. Interesting that it's totally gone now. For a store with so much room now, they have mastered making it continue to feel cramped and maze-like.

As far as CD's go, I haven't bought one in years. High bitrate MP3's have served me well going back to the first iPhones. I don't know if I could tell the difference between one and a CD and even if I could I don't think my car or wireless headphones could take advantage of it.
 

haste.

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For a store with so much room now, they have mastered making it continue to feel cramped and maze-like

I went to Ikea with my wife yesterday...

High bitrate MP3's have served me well going back to the first iPhones. I don't know if I could tell the difference between one and a CD and even if I could I don't think my car or wireless headphones could take advantage of it.

You have to have some pretty high end gear to hear the difference. I've done listening sessions (cans and stereo) and the difference is so minimal, as long as it is a very high bitrate, versus lossless rips it's really not worth it anymore. My wife can't tell the difference...
 

cjcox

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FLAC is becoming more commonplace, and yes, it does sound better than compressed (even with my hearing, which isn't very good). But, I like the whole "package", the artwork, liner notes... maybe I'm just weird. Of course, I then get to decide what to do with the content with regards to how I get to it "online". Sure, downloading FLAC works, and maybe that's what I do from now on. I mean I do rip my CDs today to my media server, but I keep all the artwork, etc...

People envy the fact that I have a CD player in my car.
 

Motley

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Yup, just a couple weeks ago I was in my local BB to buy Linken Park Meteora. I couldn't even find the music section, so I asked the employees where it was, being typical Best Buy high school dropout employees took them like 10 min to figure it out. LOL So there music section was like 6 ft. Then one of the employees told me they were stop selling music cds. I remember when Best Buy's music section was almost half of the store inventory!

I'm oldskool just like Kyle, and CDs are the only highest quality music I will listen to. That streaming spotify crap needs to go, I can't believe people pay money for that shit?
 

Armenius

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Yup, just a couple weeks ago I was in my local BB to buy Linken Park Meteora. I couldn't even find the music section, so I asked the employees where it was, being typical Best Buy high school dropout employees took them like 10 min to figure it out. LOL So there music section was like 6 ft. Then one of the employees told me they were stop selling music cds. I remember when Best Buy's music section was almost half of the store inventory!

I'm oldskool just like Kyle, and CDs are the only highest quality music I will listen to. That streaming spotify crap needs to go, I can't believe people pay money for that shit?
Ja, I remember Best Buy's music section being pretty epic, along with their movie section. I remember grabbing Cradle of Filth's entire discography in one outing there back in 2004. One time there was a copy of Tool's Salival just sitting there right in the open to my disbelief, so of course I grabbed it. When all I saw were basically Billboard top 10 artists and albums I knew it was over. Now, mobile devices rule their stores, as it's weirdly still the one thing people want to "try on" before buying.
 

Zarathustra[H]

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As far as CD's go, I haven't bought one in years. High bitrate MP3's have served me well going back to the first iPhones. I don't know if I could tell the difference between one and a CD and even if I could I don't think my car or wireless headphones could take advantage of it.

Most MP3's and OGG Vorbis are fine. I always crank up the bitrate in my own rips and when streaming from just to be on the safe side, but in just about every controlled blind test I've seen on the subject people can't tell a standard compressed LAME MP3 from the uncompressed wav file if allowed to switch back and forth between them, more than 50% of the time (which is exactly the same average you'd get if randomly guessing). And this is utilizing self proclaimed audiophiles as test subjects on their overpriced gear.

MP3's mostly get a really bad rap in the audiophile community due to the fact that many popular early encoders were utter garbage. The Xing encoder was notortious for this. Extremely popular in the early days of mp3, and it did an absolutely lousy job, quality wise.

The human brain is a tricky thing though. Once you plant that seed of doubt in there, that MP3's are going to sound like crap, you are going to hear that crap whether it is there or not.
 

Kdawg

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age old lesson... like cassette, vhs, dvd, zip drive, floppy, all of today's shit will be phased out.
 

M76

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Streaming is OK when I'm on the road. But CD reigns supreme at home. It might be placebo but a good old CD on an old school Compact Disc player just sounds better to me.

Oh and I also have a Vinyl player, but the newest record I have is like 30 years old.
 
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Music, movies and games still on physical media are the walking dead. People should just get used to it.
 

Motley

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Ja, I remember Best Buy's music section being pretty epic, along with their movie section. I remember grabbing Cradle of Filth's entire discography in one outing there back in 2004. One time there was a copy of Tool's Salival just sitting there right in the open to my disbelief, so of course I grabbed it. When all I saw were basically Billboard top 10 artists and albums I knew it was over. Now, mobile devices rule their stores, as it's weirdly still the one thing people want to "try on" before buying.

Yes indeed everything is about mobile phones. However one thing I just can't grasp is... HOW THE HELL do all these kids afford to spend $300-$500 (per year) on a phone? Are all their parents rich? Its complete madness, because when I was a kid all my mom could afford to buy me was cheap $10 toys. Even the homeless people have phones! WTF?
 

SixFootDuo

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Gamestop is also looking for a buyer for the company which is directly related to Best Buys removal of music CDs.

They are trying to get out now before digital downloads crush their business model as well. Best Buy will seriously have to revamp what they do and how they do it to stay in business.

On a side note I remember the exact weekend CD's came out or close to it and or at least for me, the very first time I had heard one. I had a friend that had an older Brother that got a small $750 bank loan ( true story ) to buy a portable Sony CD Player and maybe 5 or 6 cd's. I had a listen and was honestly blown away. This would have been Winter 83/ very early 84. I think I remember the CD Music player costing around $500 or $600 dollars.

Before then we had Columbia Records, buy 1 get 9 free and cassette tapes. haha.
 

Kranium

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I'm an audiophile and have almost 2,000 CDs. I tried Spotify premium and Tidal's lossless streaming and they really are quite good. Tidal had better quality than Spotify and Spotify was only a smidge behind the flacs of my ripped albums. The only real downside to the streaming services is they don't have "everything". They have very robust catalogs but it really annoys me when I get a hankering to hear a specific song and it's just not there.

If only the "universal jukebox" would happen. I'd pay Apple $100-150/month for a service with all movies and music available, and I hate apple. Just need them to buy Netflix and a few movie studios.... Lol.
 

Danny Dawg

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I'll keep going with CDs. . . buy em, rip em, keep em.
No loss on BB. . .Amazon works, Walmart sometimes works and so do used CD stores. If used disks are not 100% perfect, I will send them to Azuradisc for a buff and polish.

I remember Tower Records in So Cal when I lived there- was in Covina right in front of the mall there off I-10. Had records and CDs up the wazoo.
 

NeghVar

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No surprise. I would have expected it sooner. Last full album or soundtrack I bought was Boston in the mid 2000's. Remember when Best Buy had isles and isles of PC games and software. More floor space than all the console games combined. Now all you see are the latest releases of AAA games on a small endcap.
 

Burticus

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I wonder how Best Buy is still in business in general. I was actually in one a week or two ago (killing time) and the place was a ghost town.

Maybe SACD is ready for a comeback as the "ultimate" audophile media, LOL

I think I have bought less than 10 physical CDs in the last decade, most of those were for wifey. They got ripped and put on a shelf to collect dust.
 
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lcpiper

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I'll be looking for the buys.

I killed XFM for my car and I just have some music loaded on a XD card now. Some bargain music on disk would be a welcome investment for me.
 

jnemesh

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Yup, just a couple weeks ago I was in my local BB to buy Linken Park Meteora. I couldn't even find the music section, so I asked the employees where it was, being typical Best Buy high school dropout employees took them like 10 min to figure it out. LOL So there music section was like 6 ft. Then one of the employees told me they were stop selling music cds. I remember when Best Buy's music section was almost half of the store inventory!

I'm oldskool just like Kyle, and CDs are the only highest quality music I will listen to. That streaming spotify crap needs to go, I can't believe people pay money for that shit?

Have you tried listening to Tidal Hifi? Or Deezer? Or Qobuz?
 

jnemesh

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Best Buy's original business model was to pull in customers with media (CDs, software, games, and movies), then those customers would invariably buy a new computer, TV or home theater. They have completely changed their model. They hire fewer BB employees, but lease out portions of their stores to the manufacturers, who also provide staff to sell their products. This keeps BB's overhead low, and enables them to maintain profit. Media sales have been on the decline for years now, and it's not surprising that they are killing off CD sales completely. Most people simply don't buy them anymore. Vinyl on the other hand, has had a resurgence of late, and it's pretty easy for stores to charge higher markups on vinyl than they made on CDs.
 

dyzophoria

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I prefer physical media, though I also to stream or have high quality copies in my storage. I was really hoping the UMD (from the playstation PSP) or something smalle would somehow evolve to replace the original CD. would look and feel cool to have.
 

Joust

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Yes indeed everything is about mobile phones. However one thing I just can't grasp is... HOW THE HELL do all these kids afford to spend $300-$500 (per year) on a phone? Are all their parents rich? Its complete madness, because when I was a kid all my mom could afford to buy me was cheap $10 toys. Even the homeless people have phones! WTF?

I think it's difficult to compare how integrated cellphones (the least of which function is making a phone call) are into the lives of young people today with any other consumer good...ever. People pay for what they want(need? Addiction?) Or steal it if they can't. It's a good reminder to unplug from time to time.
 

M76

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The only real downside to the streaming services is they don't have "everything". They have very robust catalogs but it really annoys me when I get a hankering to hear a specific song and it's just not there.
I hate that too. That's the main reason why I cancelled my spotify subscription.
 
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ZLoth

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Whats going to be more interesting than the discontinuation of physical media is the fact that CD players are also being discontinued in cars, which was also published in February, 2018 at the same time as the Best Buy article. Quite frankly, I'm not surprised by the CD player removal, as it is five pounds of mechanical parts more complex than a CD player that you have at home plus it has to be designed for a harsher environment than your living room (think Alaska/Canadian window plus a hot summer in Phoenix). When I was shopping for a car in 2006, a CD player was one of the consideration. Eight years later (after my car was rear-ended and totaled), it was Bluetooth that was the prime consideration, with the CD player not crossing my mind. Blame the smartphones, but I like to listen to my audiobooks as well as music downloaded from my Plex media server which contains all of my ripped CDs. And some of my CDs (e.g. Anime soundtracks) were never officially available in the United States market, never mind never considered to be carried by Best Buy.
 

webdev511

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I grew up in Minnesota and remember Best Buy when it was called "The Sound of Music" Biggest record store chain in the Mid-West.
 
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Krenum

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Not surprising. They're basically a full blown cell phone store now.
 

Met-AL

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I love my CD collection. I prefer Amazon since they have their Autorip service, where when you buy the CD, you get the MP3 version of the album instantly for free.
 
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