Rock and Roll Hall of Fame honoree Neil Young has been focusing on high-definition music for some time. At the News Corp. D: Dive Into Media event yesterday, Young said that he had been in discussions with Apple personnel -- including the late Steve Jobs -- about ways to improve digital music quality.
Young and others had been in discussions with Apple about improved digital music file formats, ways to download the much larger files that would result, and creating devices that would play the high-def files. Digital music is currently "packaged" in either AAC or MP3 formats, which create small, easy distributed files, but also lose a lot of the nuances that are found in masters or live performances. High-def music files would be much larger than those currently in distribution, so downloading and storage would require more resources.
Jobs was a rabid music fan his entire life and arguably had more impact on the digital music industry than any other executive. According to Young, however, "When he (Jobs) went home, he listened to vinyl." Young believes that without Steve's passion for music, Apple as a company has lost any ambition it may have had to rally behind high-def music.
Musicians and recording industry execs might both get behind high-def music, since it would allow the industry to sell a higher-quality product at a premium price. Whether or not Apple will be at the forefront of the move to high-def music is up to the current executive team.
[via The Mac Observer]