Wednesday, Aug 17, 2022, 15:19 Hardware

40 Years Of The CD – A Relict From The Worlds Of Music & Data Storage

40 years ago, a new medium was produced en masse for the first time, leading to its ubiquitous popularity. Originally used as the successor to traditional vinyl records, the CD also became a medium for the computer field in the 90s. The initially high prices fell such that almost anyone could now store their data on external media or burn their own music CDs. Due to constantly increasing data traffic, however, the CD has long since outserved its role as a primary storage media – even DVDs are on the retreat due to the increasing rarity of optical drives.

74 Minutes For Furtwängler & Beethoven
Legends surround the origin story of the CD's standardized size and capacity. Sony and Philips were allegedly preparing Ludwig van Beethoven's ninth symphony, which amounts to 74 minutes, which is why the CD's maximum play time stands at 74 minutes and not the planned 72 minutes. The basis for the recording was conducted by Wilhelm Furtwängler, although whether the entire story is real or not is still fought over today.

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Production Begins In Germany
After the presentation of the CD in 1979, it still took some time until the medium was purchasable. At the beginning of the 80s, the time had finally come: The small silver plate's victory march had begun and gradually replaced other playback methods. The first mass-produced CD was ABBA - The Visitor, and production occurred in August 1982 at Polygram in Langenhagen, in Germany near Hannover.

On Heavy Retreat For Two Years
A quick look back at the history of the CD as a medium for music reveals two major events: Firstly, the rise of Napster led to a massive increase in sales – although the introduction of the iTunes Music Store in 2003 sorted for a constant, gradual decline in the number of CD users. Now, the age of streaming and its trend – which managed to reverse the rapid decrease in music sales, has led to an even further decrease in the CD's relevance in the modern world. According to the most recent numbers, the CD only accounts for 12.8% of the music market – which is only double that of traditional vinyl albums.

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