The CD turns 30 today

Oct 1, 2012
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Exactly 30 years ago, the first commercially-released CD album hit store shelves. On October 1, 1982, Billy Joel's sixth studio album, 52nd Street, was re-released to the public. The album was originally launched in 1978, but it was selected for re-launch on the all-new digital compact disc to coincide with the release of the first CD player, the Sony CDP-101.

Research and development of the compact disc actually began well before 1982. Beginning in 1974, electronics company Philips wanted to create a whole new audio platform that was both small in size and better quality than vinyl records and cassette tapes. Three years later, the company finally established a lab where they would make CDs and CD players. They called them "compact discs" to follow along with their other naming conventions that they had, like the "compact cassette".

At the time, Sony was also developing their own CD technology, but the two companies eventually merged their efforts and partnered up for the official consumer launch of the CD in 1982. Of course, CDs were met with a ton of skepticism at first. It wasn't until several years later that CDs began to actually take off. Heck, I was still using cassette tapes in the 90s.

Even though the percentage of people in the world that use CDs is continually going down, you can't deny that the format made a huge impact on the music industry. Even though nothing really outperforms the quality of a good vinyl record, newer platforms like CDs and MP3s are still extremely popular and are the go-to format for most music listeners these days.

[via The Next Web]

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