“From the consumer standpoint, recorded sound moves from the source (LP, CD, digital download) through player (turntable, CD player, smart phone) through wires, a pre-amp, another wire, an amplifier, another wire, and a speaker system (stereo speakers, P.A., earbuds). The biggest engineering challenges, and the ones that will make the greatest difference in the sound, are the ones that involve things you can touch. Your needle, cartridge, and turntable have to spin precisely and be positioned just so to extract information from the vinyl record. Getting all that to happen in a way that results in quality sound is really, really difficult, which is why you can buy a turntable that costs $90,000. Almost no one can tell the difference between a $100 CD player and a $1,000 CD player, but almost everyone can tell the difference between a $100 turntable and a $1,000 turntable.”
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The Myth and the Reality of the $43 Download | The Pitch | Pitchfork.