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Comment DAC Sound Card (Score 1) 245

I don't know why anyone would use a cheap sound card when you can get the same functionality from a quality DAC. Just plug it into the USB and plug your headphones into that and you are set. If you want to output to something else, just use the Coaxial or Optical outputs and keep everything digital. My NuForce uDAC has been my primary PC audio interface for years and it works beautifully.

Comment Re:Justifying shinies (Score 1) 237

Yes, but the problem with e-readers like Kindle and Nook is that they have smaller screens that can't easily display PDFs or retain the formatting of word documents. Try reading a PDF on the regular kindle and you'll see how terribly clunky it is. Try sending any document with special formatting to a regular size kindle and watch as the formatting is all completely lost in the conversion.

The better solution would be to hand out Kindle DXs to everyone because of the larger size and ability to display the full page of a PDF or any other document. It would also be more business oriented because it doesn't also double as a full computer with games and other applications.

Comment Re:Article overlooks the stupidly obvious (Score 1) 182

But by now most users are used to google and would simply change the default if it was something else. By now Bing is unfamiliar to the majority of the population and Google is considered the best search engine by most. It is going to take quite a lot more than setting Bing as the default to change that in people's minds.

Comment Re:See, people won't ALWAYS pirate (Score 1) 301

Well yes most people only by singles because they aren't heavy music listeners. Plus most of those people listen to a type of music that the music industry has constantly provided where an album has one or two decent songs and the rest are horrible. One key difference between movies and music though is that heavy users listen to the same album multiple times. Thus, I buy numerous albums every year because I buy music in genres where if the music is good, usually the whole album is good. Most metal and rock bands you either like the entire album or none of it, give or take a few mass-market oriented bands. That is because most metal bands have an artistic vision of some sort and tend to provide cohesive albums. There are a few exceptions where only one song is good but I have decided to buy either the full album or nothing and thus not give any money to bands that can't write good albums.

I also buy tons of movie soundtracks and the occasional classical recording. I've found that quality movie soundtracks, the ones that are worth purchasing, are worth listening to multiple times over the years. Even some soundtracks I bought way back when I first started collecting, I pull out occasionally and listen to completely because the music is that good.

Netflix on the other hand is perfect for movies because the average user, and even in many cases the heavy user will watch a movie once and move on to something else. Those who want to watch a movie multiple times can always go out and buy a DVD or Blu-Ray if they want to own a copy for repeat viewing. Even on netflix streaming there is nothing to prevent someone from watching the same streaming movie multiple times.

Comment The true American diet is multi-cultural (Score 1) 362

Funny, as a born and raised white American, I rarely eat American food. I probably eat primarily Italian and Middle-Eastern style food with Mexican a large part as well. I also eat Japanese and Chinese food on occasion. To me the most American diet should be multi-cultural like this, not focused on fatty-ass cheap burgers.

Comment Re:The problem with USPS is ... (Score 1) 398

Just to be clear, UPS does ship to low population areas, but if you are doing air shipping they charge you a LOT more to ship to that small town than you would to ship to a major city to compensate for their own overhead costs. It is precisely because USPS charges the same for everyone that they are losing money.

Comment Re:Compatibility (Score 1) 550

But FLAC doesn't need to be compatible with your player. You can always convert directly to ALAC for an iPod or WMA Lossless for a Zune or any other silly lossless format your player supports. You still have lossless files because there is no loss between the two. Also if you are thinking about the future, you may want to store your lossless downloads until you get a system that can properly play the files. Wouldn't it be hugely annoying if a few years down the road you buy a quality speaker system or set of headphones and you start to hear the difference between lossless and lossy and you can't go back and listen to it in lossless?

Comment Re:A warning shot for the industry. (Score 1) 507

I agree completely. Every company seems to want to release fancy mp3 players that do more than playing music and as a result don't really give me much reason to ditch my Zune and upgrade to some $300 monster that has less storage capacity but can also play movies on a tiny screen and ditches buttons for a touch screen. Hell I'm still using a SDTV and plan to do so for quite some time. If it dies, I have access to hundreds of perfectly good TVs people are getting rid of while they upgrade to HD for next to nothing. I care about 3D in my TV even less than I care for HD.

Comment Please ditch the avatars (Score 1) 403

I realize advancement is important and all but could we please get rid of the ugly avatars that showed up with recent xbox updates? I don't want to be represented in a digital environment by such an ugly thing. Characters I created for online games years ago looked better than the avatars we have now on xbox.

Comment Re:Call me a troll but .... (Score 1) 375

Well the people who are streaming stuff for free, possibly a large portion of the consumer base, are the sorts who don't care about owning music. They just want to have something going and it doesn't matter if its one band or another. I think the sad reality is that a good portion of people just want to be able to listen to music for free and will jump on the easiest way possible. On the other hand, you have people who want to buy music but those people also care about the quality of what they buy. It's only natural for those people to flock to the same free avenues in order to filter through the crap because there is only so much money available that any one consumer can spend on music. The availability of legal samples is not the same among each genre. I'm a huge fan of metal but the problem is that there are way too many bands out there releasing new metal albums constantly. Sure I could just stick to the bands I know and buy their albums but then I wouldn't buy as many albums or get to listen to as many artists. Of course, the best way to expand my purchasing habits is to download stuff to try before I buy. Rather than having labels who post samples on their website with new releases, i have to rely on the band to post a couple of tracks in order for me to sample something legally. Too few bands even bother to post a single track.

Comment Re:TFS is subtly misleading (Score 1) 633

Well for every new release posted there are a ton of out of print albums posted or albums that are expensive imports. If somehow media companies would provide better audio samples for new releases we wouldn't have so many people who feel they need to send samples to friends to help them decide if it is any good. 90% of the time people I know download not so much to save buying anything but to avoid buying stuff that turns out to be shit. Before the internet, it was common to buy stuff based on friend's recommendations and familiarity with the artist but people now want to expand their horizons and try before they buy. And if the only thing stopping them from doing so is a threat of a low probability of getting sued for downloading, they do it in a heartbeat. Sure there are people out there who don't want to buy ANYTHING but give them a year or two of downloading stuff and they will realize that they should support the creators and will eventually do so when they have money. Every person I know who now buys as much as they can afford used to download indiscriminately and eventually wised up and decided to start buying the content. Then we would instead have filesharing limited to the stuff that is hard to buy new and/or sold out completely and only available on the secondary market. This material should be shared freely because it is better to download it for free than pay far more than retail price for it.

Comment Re:Wow. (Score 2) 794

Why would I stop using a great service that provides me moderate protection in my online transactions simply because they do something I don't like? That is like ignoring movies of an actor you enjoy just because he does something stupid in his private life. The two are completely unrelated and to deprive yourself of the pleasure in protest makes no difference but simply makes you feel better.

Comment Re:Don't listen to, or view recorded media? (Score 1) 376

The funny thing is you can still buy singles for the most part in Japan and most artists have at least four singles out before each album. The majority of these singles are featured in anime shows so it is easy to get a taste of the new direction a group is going down before the new album is released. Of course in Japan you can rent a CD from a store like blockbuster to listen to it before you buy it if you wanted. It is only because we don't have such a system in the US that we are forced to download stuff first. I buy most of my music from small soundtrack labels putting out old Hollywood scores and metal bands in Europe where they still write good music. Some bands blow me away with their samples posted from a new album enough that I buy it but most of the time I wait to listen first. These bands don't do the mainstream fail of one or two decent songs per disc and if I like the band I like the full albums. I've bought the occasional American metal/rock album as well but the bands good enough to support are few and far between.

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