Posts Tagged ‘music technology’

Stream-ripping threatens music industry, as companies struggle to make streaming profitable – annotated infographics

April 18, 2017

As if a beleaguered music industry didn’t already have enough to contend with, the rise of streaming services like Spotify, Apple Music, Google Play Music, Pandora, Deezer and Tidal –  yes! even Tidal! – have changed the way many people listen to music. It has also brought about a new form of piracy, known as “stream ripping”.

This new type of copyright infringement has overtaken conventional music download piracy.

Click on the graphic for an expanded view.

stream-ripping-music-piracy

It’s not all days of wine and roses at the streaming companies, either. Spotify is the most successful streaming music service in the world and streaming is the music industry’s fastest-growing revenue source, yet none of the popular services has yet turned a profit.

Spotify has reportedly been in talks to acquire SoundCloud for some months now, but still no decisive action.

streaming-music-services-profits

Orange amps launch orange Orange O Edition headphones at #NAMM2016 Mmm… Orange!

January 21, 2016

Guitar amp dudes are certainly diversifying their product lines in new and unusual ways these days. Marshall has gone sideways in to sunglasses and mobile phones. Announced today at the mammoth musical new-gear bazaar that is the NAMM trade show in sunny Anaheim, California, Orange is now going toe-to-toe (ear-to-ear?) with Marshall’s headphone tie-up with Zounds (the Swedish company behind the UrbanEars range of cool ‘phones) by releasing its own range of skull-shaking ear goggles.

O: super, man

O: super, man

The O Edition Headphones (as no one in their right mind will be calling them when asked where they bought them) have been designed to deliver superior audio performance and comfort, whilst capturing the very essence of Orange.

O: I do like to be beside the seaside

O: I do like to be beside the seaside

According to the press release, “40mm drivers have been engineered for a tight and rhythmic bass response, rich mid-range and an articulate top end. A purposefully neutral EQ response makes for an open and revealing sound stage with detailed layers of separation. With natural noise isolation courtesy of cushioned closed-back earcups, the ‘O’ Edition headphones create a truly immersive sonic experience to suit all musical needs.

Much like Orange’s world-famous guitar and bass amplifiers, these headphones are constructed to the highest specifications, whilst the styling blends British elegance with a reassuring solidity. A subtle black-on-black Orange logo embossed across the padded headband and the iconic Orange Crest etched into the brushed stainless steel headband signify an unwavering commitment to quality.”

In the box are three 3.5mm cables: one with a remote control and integrated microphone (compatible with most smartphones) and a carry case.

O: you!

O: you!

Orange also used NAMM to debut its tangle-free Twister Cable, the guitar cord that won’t bind up on you as you groove your thang.

The patented Twister Module rotates freely and prevents cables becoming knotted. Signal transmission is through the highest grade oxygen-free copper wire, achieving the same performance as Orange’s Professional Cable range.

The Twister Cable also features tough nylon sleeving and Neutrik connectors and is available in ¼” instrument or balanced XLR configurations.

Check ’em all out at the Orange website.

World of un-twist

World of un-twist

#AppleMusic streaming service – details announced – an annotated infographic

June 10, 2015

Apple has unveiled its Apple Music streaming service, designed to challenge rivals such as Spotify, Deezer, Soundcloud, Google and Amazon.

The $10-a-month service combines on-demand listening; Beats 1, a 24/7 radio station hosted by live DJs; and Connect, a forum for artists to give fans behind-the-scenes content from upcoming releases.

E&T news covered this Apple Music announcement in comprehensive detail yesterday.

Click on the graphic for an expanded view.

Apple Music: like music, only more expensive

Apple Music: like music, only more expensive

World goes bonkers for music streaming services – an annotated infographic

February 19, 2015

We never thought we’d say this, but: poor old CDs.

On the one hand, vinyl sales are up, up, up 50 per cent year on year to a near 25-year high – higher sales, in fact, than at any time since 1991, when Nirvana’s Nevermind album first blew up radios worldwide. On the other hand, the majority of folks who never cared much for physical media have turned to streaming music services with a vengeance. No shelf space, no heartache.

Even cassette tapes are enjoying a hipster renaissance, as a subset of the digital-generation music fans dig in to the analogue format archives in search of the ultimate retro-vintage throwback. We’ve got £50 to bet you that 8-track systems and flexi discs will resurface next, if they haven’t already. All of which leaves the humble digital compact disc somewhat forlorn, largely unloved and abandoned.

But you know what? The CD is actually capable of being a pretty decent vessel through which to deliver one’s audio art. It’s not half as bad as some people would have you believe. Naturally, we all hate the ugly plastic jewel cases in which a compact disc is too often obliged to reside – their ineffectual and emminently snappable disc-gripping teeth the cause of much consumer chagrin – but on a top-notch stereo system, a well-produced compact disc is still capable of delivering real quality and an emotional, cerebral and physical experience in sound.

The crucial, killer caveat here, though, is that most people don’t have top-notch stereo systems. A CD on a bad system might as well be an MP3 and if it might as well be an MP3, a listener might as well stream it. And lo, it came to pass.

So, here we are in 2015: vinyl for the purists and collectors, streaming for the rest. And DVD-Audio, Blu-Ray, Pono and HD digital for people who have lost all sense of perspective on this subject, like Betamax enthusiasts grimly hanging on long after VHS had won that particular war. We’re not saying it’s right or wrong, just that the sands have shifted in certain directions.

Click on the graphic for an expanded view.

It's all right Ma, I'm only streaming

It’s all right Ma, I’m only streaming

NASA’s Space Launch System, a giant deep space rocket – an annotated graphic

September 16, 2011

So over at NASA HQ it’s goodbye Space Shuttle, hello Space Launch System. The SLS has been designed to carry astronauts to the moon, to Mars and any other space-type destinations in between.  It will be the most powerful launcher in the world, with a greater lifting capacity than the Saturn V which last carried men to the moon.

Click on the graphic for an expanded view.

NASA Space Launch System (SLS)

NASA Space Launch System (SLS)

Nintendo Wii U controller – an annotated graphic

June 29, 2011

The new Nintendo Wii U is as much about the controller as the console. A touchscreen and motion-sensors allow game play on both the controller or on TV, where new HD graphics put it on a par with its rivals.

Read the E&T news story from earlier this month for more details about the Nintendo Wii U and rival Sony’s Playstation Vita.

Meanwhile, here’s a nice graphic explaining the Wii U.

The Nintendo Wii U console, expected in 2012

The Nintendo Wii U console, expected in 2012

Jetpacks become a reality – an annotated graphic

June 29, 2011

Your boring commute to work could be a thing of the past if New Zealand inventor Glenn Martin has anything to do with it. Forget the car, bus, train or subway – travel to work by jetpack.

Following over 30 years of development, Martin is aiming to have the world’s first commercially viable jetpack on sale within 18 months. The Martin Jetpack has already reached an altitude of 1,500m and is undergoing final testing.

Up, up and away – although you’ll have no excuse for being late for work if you can’t blame the traffic…

Click on the graphic for a larger view.

The Martin Jetpack

The Martin Jetpack

F1 rule changes 2011 and new car features – an annotated graphic

June 28, 2011

With the new F1 Formula One season underway, we thought this graphic might help race enthusiasts get a handle on what’s new and what’s banned from the circuits this time round.

It highlights the major rule changes, such as  the adjustable rear wings and the reintroduction of the contentious KERS, Kinetic Energy Recovery  Systems.

Click on the graphic to view  an expanded version.

F1: Rule changes 2011

F1: Rule changes 2011

Eurocopter X3 hybrid prototype – an annotated graphic

June 28, 2011

Eurocopter debuted the X3 hybrid prototype at the recent Paris Air Show. The X3 is a helicopter with wings, offering the speed of a turboprop-powered aircraft and the full hover-flight capabilities of a helicopter. The graphic below illustrates the concept, comparing the Eurocopter X3 with a Sikorsky X2 helicopter.

Eurocopter's X3 helicopter

Eurocopter's X3 helicopter

New Zealand earthquake: a touch of life-saving engineering

March 1, 2011

Last week, a normal flow of life for many was interrupted by the news of the second earthquake in Christchurch, New Zealand. In my family, we had reasons to be more worried than most: my partner’s close relatives live in Christchurch.

We hadn’t heard anything from  them for several days and were extremely concerned until the following email arrived this morning:

“…To recap, the second earthquake again ripped the power and phone lines from our house and all water stopped. We had water restored on Thursday at low pressure, so no hot water. Friday our power was reconnected to the house but needed an electrician to tape wires in the house before the power went. Saturday, half way through a load of washing, the water stopped again. The gusher over the road was stopped and our water along with it!

A water collection site was set up at the nearest primary school which is very close to us. So we are able to collect and all water we need for hand washing, teeth cleaning and cooking. We have been to friends who have power and water to have a shower every second day.

Yesterday we had our phone restored. As with the power, they had to put extra length into the wires as the earthquake had moved the top of the power pole further away from our house!!”

It all made me think of all those nameless workers and engineers: electrical, communications, sanitary etc. –  there may be the IET members among them too!) who are now working so hard to restore some normality to everyday life in Christchurch. We hear a lot about the heroism of rescue teams, fire brigades, volunteers etc., but not about the seemingly “mundane” efforts of our Christchurch colleagues. They deserve better recognition for their real, life-saving engineering.

If you know any of them, please write to this blog.”

http://eandt.theiet.org/blog/blogpost.cfm?threadid=40006&catid=364