Multimedia and the Recording Industry


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CD duplication made music much cheaper, and helped to transform the recording industry. The effects of this change have influenced our lives in many ways, and could even be responsible for ruining our Saturday night TV viewing.

Image Courtesy: Steve Jurvetson

An event to be savoured

In days gone by, buying a record was something to look forward to all week. It would involve a trip into town, a tour of the local record shops, and then the ecstasy of owning your own tiny piece of history.

Further shopping followed until it was time for a break. At last, the new acquisition could be examined in all its glory. The artwork could be savoured and the aroma of the shiny black disc absorbed. On the inside sleeve there was usually an article about how the song was made. There followed a frantic rush home. Multimedia changed all that.

Inflated prices

For the masses, CD duplication wasn’t possible in the early days. With the stunning audio quality of the new media, recording companies were rubbing their hands with glee. Until the late 90s, a double CD could cost up to £30.

Recording companies could also control sales and the charts by withdrawing a song or album from the market at their convenience. Their greed became their downfall.

It was only a matter of time before CD duplication technology became widely available, and with that everything changed.

Suddenly the balance of power had shifted. The recording industry responded by slashing the price of CDs. Millionaire recording artists were not happy.


The multimedia express train shifted through the gears, and moved into the mini disc phase. Now people could record all their favourite songs onto their PC, and transfer playlists onto a small, compact disc. This enabled people to easily carry their music around in their bags, and have a change when it was convenient. Sadly, mini discs were short lived.

People were not satisfied with simple CD duplication any more. With the advent of high speed broadband, music could be uploaded and shared with the entire world. Songs could now be downloaded absolutely free within minutes.

The recording industry again responded, this time giving up the battle with the multimedia revolution. They were forced to reduce their prices to a record low and make available music for download. When technology evolved for playing other multimedia formats such as videos, these could be downloaded too. Now people could see their favourites as well as listen to them.

The inclusion of downloads had a massive impact on the singles charts. The days of one great song occupying the number one spot for months were gone. The summer of 1991 comes to mind. Would Bryan Adams have sustained the top spot for four months if a rival’s appearance on Top of The Pops provoked a flurry of downloads ?

Ultimately, new multimedia and CD duplication have led to the current situation were marketing and being seen are more important than having a great song. Enter Simon Cowell.

Martin Jonson is director of the UK’s leading DVD/Blu-ray/CD duplication company providing exceptional quality at the lowest UK prices. He offers next day delivery anywhere in the UK and will complete your job quickly with the greatest care. You can connect with him on Google+.

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