Tuesday, April 08, 2008

CD Culling time .... and downloading

Currently having another cull of cds. This happens every so often. In the last few years my cd racks have been getting lighter and lighter as more and more I find myself not really caring whether I have the actual cd to hand.

It's obviously an I-pod thing. After all, if I can have every bit of music I own at my fingertips why on earth do I need all of this packaging lying around.
A few years ago I'd never have dreamt that my mind would be working this way but I love the fact that it's all so beautifully self contained.

I find it very freeing, this lack of material things.

Of course, there is a downside (and you knew there was going to be one didn't you?).
It does mean that I'm increasingly paranoid about backing up data and music.

Currently the entire Ipod gets backed up onto the computer and two separate external hard disks.
Every six months or so the music collection gets backed up onto the school server as well, usually during a training day when it's not so noticeable that the entire network has slowed to a crawl.
On top of this all the ipod music is backed up onto CD-R and I'm going to be replacing that soon by backing it up onto DVD-R.
Then each CD that I'm getting rid of is copied as an audio cd onto CD-R and stored in a little paper sleeve.
Is that complicated enough yet?

Probably not.
I did look, a little while back, at the prospect of getting hold of some cheap 30/60GB hard drives and backing up the entire thing onto those as well. My thinking was that, seeing as 160Gb was the new default for external hard disks and these were retailing at £50, it should be possible to pick old 30/60Gb ones up for just a few quid. It seems not. Because they're all old now there's very few of them about and trying to get hold of them is bloody difficult and the people wanting them are willing to pay for them.
I shall try again in a while and see what the prices are like then.

The other downside of this new audio freedom and no longer wanting to have anything other than the audio file is that I suddenly, somehow have found my 30Gb Ipod, that was so huge when I bought it is suddenly left with a mere 2GB. Ouch. Time to get a bigger one then.

It was a perfectly logical assumption on my part when I got the Ipod that said I'd only need 30Gb. After all, loading every single piece of music onto it from me, Louise and Molly gave me 8Gb space. And at the rate I'd accumulated new music over the course of 2006 I'd never fill that 8Gb.

But that was before finding mp3 blogs and before realising that not only was Bittorrenting easy and (in my experience so far) safe, I could also selectively download stuff to assuage my guilty conscience.

Because I download according to the simple rules:
If it's old music that you wouldn't have bought in a million years - fair game. (I've just downloaded and loved a couple of Yazoo cds and a remix disk. But there was absolutely no way I'd have bought those ever.)
If it's major label music - pretty fair game.
If it's new music and especially if it's a small upcoming band - get the cd.
Until amazon or someone similar start doing a DRMfree mp3 site - then I'll go there if the price is right.
Because it's plainly obvious that downloading music is the future and the now. The simple fact that big record companies refuse to even think about it, or so it seems, means that they'll not be around that much longer in their present form.

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