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What good are high quality flac files when listened through ear buds or computer speakers?
And audiophiles that have high end components and speakers would most likely
listen to the vinyl albums that they already posses or buy remastered vinyl.
I think the Pono is gone-O.

 

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What good are high quality flac files when listened through ear buds or computer speakers?
And audiophiles that have high end components and speakers would most likely
listen to the vinyl albums that they already posses or buy remastered vinyl.
I think the Pono is gone-O.

The quality of earbuds have improved considerably. The last buds that came with my iPhone are excellent and I was quite surprised at how good sounding they are. I still use my headphones most of the time but it may be a question of time before the buds equal the cans!
 

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What good are high quality flac files when listened through ear buds or computer speakers?
And audiophiles that have high end components and speakers would most likely
listen to the vinyl albums that they already posses or buy remastered vinyl.
I think the Pono is gone-O.
Vinyl or one of the lossless formats like FLAC are the preferred choice for audiophiles. I really like SACD but finding discs is getting hard. There was a time when they were being blown out and I got a nice little collection. Because of that, I haven't quite hit the 'computer server' era of lossless hi-fi reproduction. Hey, Bach and Beethoven aren't getting any better than they were 20, 30, 40 years ago.

Pono is a dead issue to this community and people wanting to listen on portable devices or in their car are totally happy with the mid-fi they've got right now.

There will probably be a time when I do go to some form of high res files, but it's still just a cure looking for a disease. Sadly, a lot of my listening isn't critical these days, as I often listen to learn tunes and I use a utube to mp3 converter. And I still listen to a lot of my CD collection, which through a good system sounds pretty good, if not quite vinyl/lossless quality.

And, IMO, most multitracked recordings (compared to live recordings of classical material, chamber or jazz ensembles) don't benefit as much from higher fidelity playback because it was never a real event in a physical space that you are trying to duplicate, but rather a manufactured sonic event, some of which work 3-dimensionally and some that just don't. If you want to hear a song or a band recorded in what is now our traditional 'built-up track-by-track' method, you take what the artist/producer give you and I find CD is as good as any of the higher resolution formats, taking that into account.
 

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I bought a Pono player from Kickstarter. It took a couple of years before I could buy music from the PonoMusic website in Canada, and now I'm disappointed it seems to not be coming back. I'm not at all interested in streaming.

When I got tired of waiting for Pono to sell in Canada, I bought a few Blu-Ray Audio discs, some of which came with download codes for hi-res files. I just bought the latest Pink Floyd album on Blu-Ray yesterday, it should come next week. There are not many Blu-Ray Audio titles.

Pono had said they were going to partner with 7digital, I may buy files from there, and there are other places like HiResAudio and ProStudioMasters. Sony seems to be making a push, too, and having their catalogue in hi-res would help.

I still have a lot of trouble with not having something physical. Like, what about the albums I bought from Pono? I have three copies of them and a receipt somewhere, I guess. One good flood or a nuclear blast and it's all gone.

And the price, you expect that when you're out there alone, but Moore's Law! The size will be trivial soon.

I haven't listened to the Pono player much at all. The radio in my car sounds no better with hi-res files compared to the Apple Lossless files I usually listen to [I gave up on MP3s long ago], and mostly I'm listening to spoken-word podcasts.

But it is a seriously high quality player. I'm using some just pretty good headphones and the differences between the various sample rates and bit-depths are readily apparent. You can't hear those things from an iPod Touch.

I think the Lincoln might have been lost in a fire.

To better days.

 

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There's a bit of irony in this story, if I'm viewing it accurately. The Pono Music Store was launched in the US and then sometime later in Canada with very little content available. Meanwhile, competitors selling online music in downloadable format were already at the trough selling lossless, high fidelity music in various formats. With the launch of the Pono Player and other similar players, those competitors were licking their chops and quite ready to compete head on with Pono Music for the listener's dollar.

With NY's model, an artist (or their respective agent) would sign licensing/distribution agreements directly with Pono that would ensure a fair compensation per download model. Meanwhile, his corporate competitors were unencumbered from such legal entanglements by virtue of existing distribution deals previously made thru labels, thereby allowing them to ramp up content quicker and even undercut Pono Music's offerings as their model was still based on a very low cost per download.

The irony? While NY was trying to stick it to the man, the man was sticking it to him. Don't worry, Neil is no stranger to irony and that LincVolt project is a perfect example - he developed the concept because he wanted to be able to tool around in a massive gas guzzler without feeling guilty about burning so much fossil fuel. I like Neil and all, but hey, if he's really concerned about the issues of pollution and energy conservation, maybe he should drive a Prius, Tesla or some such (Lord knows he can afford anything he wants in that regard).

FWIW, I bought the Pono Player on the initial Kickstarter campaign as I liked the concept in theory and I've enjoyed mine immensely since receiving it. The player's a little crude by today's technology standards in terms of user controls, but the sound is nothing short of superb thru headphones or the auxiliary input of your car's sound system. Thinking back, I never did buy any of my downloads from from Pono Music because they only had a few scant offerings in HD lossless formats at the time I received my Pono Player. While I don't mind spending $20 or more for something in this vein, I'm going to be pretty selective in what I choose and Pono didn't have anything that tickled my fancy. Even once they did, I could still find better value thru other retail channels I'd already opened accounts with as the artist-side "buy-in" to the Pono business model was plenty slow and fraught with challenges. The article presented in the OP is the formal "nail in the coffin" of the original business model IMO.
 
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