How do you access your music: purchases or streaming services?

I almost exclusively purchase. Mainly because I buy in HiDef. DSD sounds best on my system. A well recorded red book can sound awesome too. MQA is just a lie that needs to die.

Ironically I exclusively stream video. Mainly because I tend to watch a film once or at most twice.

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Had a similar problem. I now copy all my new albums to two drives, one of which is also synced with Google Drive (but I have less than 1TB).

Google Drive is a little expensive but well worth the peace of mind.

When I travel, I can also download albums from Google Drive, as an added bonus.

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I purchased the bulk of my collection in CDs and vinyl over many years. All CDs have now been extracted to disk. Anything new, or a recording I particularly want to hear in very high quality, I purchase from HDTracks. I have no interest or need for streaming other than NPR.

Mostly download, some purchased CD’s lately and ripped, some SACD’s and some LP’s

Good question!

I rent most movies except masterpieces but much more systematically, I purchase music recordings. The simplest reason is that it’s like choosing to rent or buy anything else, it firstly depends how frequent your usage is.

It’s only a rare few movies that I would enjoy viewing more than once, and even fewer more than 5 times. For music, it is quite the opposite, there are hundreds of musical pieces that I have enjoyed more than 10 times and continue to enjoy. Convoluted musical lines in the hands of Heifetz, Rubinstein, Davis, Hendricks, one can dive into it again and again, and map our thoughts to the genie of music.

Then I aim at quality rather than quantity also for music, combining CD purchase with downloading for CD format, and only downloading for High Res. Thanks to Internet music stores one can pre-listen and get a taste of what is most interesting.

I am quite sensitive to both out-of tune and timing errors in music, and “smoothly accurate” timing is an issue for digital audio: for I have long been using Rosita streamers on WiFi, that have a special streaming engine embedded for warranting perfect timing flow, fluid and jitterless. Deactivating and going to normal AirPlay is an instantaneous step back. This is achievable much more easily in a local WiFi from a local disk than by remote streaming, where there is no control on the instantaneous flow rate to fill the buffers.

Stepping aside iTunes, I now use Roon (and HQplayer, or combine with Rosita Engine) all are excellent on timing and I use them on local sources with great pleasure, better than any physical drive and so convenient (although Roon playlist are not up to iTune”s yet). Occasionally I use this setting on streamed material but only as an incidental thing. Perhaps psychologically I do not feel comfortable with the type of Internet settings I have, for streaming large data flows without any temporal glitch, so I don’t relax as easily with streamed music.

And streamed music is not available for true HiRes - although in my opinion the recording and mastering quality matter more than the format - today’s computer technology applied to CD brings so much to this format that when properly done, the gain of HiRes, lthough audible, might be over-rated, . Many systems, and especially CD drives, fail to fully extract the juicy part out of the old format, that had been designed by Philips and Sony in a very reasonably fit-for purpose compromise for high quality audio: Thanks to Roon and HQplayer for being so good at that! And I don’t say this by lack of system resolution.

I believe that with today^s technology and other aspects, aiming for repeated quality rather than casual quantity, perhaps also active listening rather than passive hearing, streaming is not the best choice for me.

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With me it is very easy. I started some times ago with Tidal. So when I go out, I hear a new song, I Shazam it. Going back in my car starting tidal and listen to the album. When it was good in the car, I listen to it at home. If it then is good enough, I bookmark it in Roon. When it is a record I need to have, I buy it on vinyl

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I buy, mostly CD, but some vinyl. Streaming services are to discover what I want to buy. There will come a time in retirement when the pennies will matter, and paying for streaming services will have to stop. My music collection will still be there.

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Qobuz and Spotify for music discovery, Tidal for streaming (will replace everything with Qobuz, once available through Roon) and buy only vinyls now.

despite having a friend rip some 1gb of music for me recently, and my own small supply of cds,
i definitely like the ease and convenience of (Tidal) streaming.

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I own a lot of music and it is still by far the main source for music that I listen to. I like Tidal a lot and appreciate the huge selection but I tend to listen to music I already know compared to new music.

Only local music here. I have tried Tidal twice (actually Wimp before it was re-named, then Tidal recently) Gave it up after a short time on both occasions as I had to search for everything I wanted to listen to. Nothing Tidal suggested was interesting to me…
My smallish library is around 50% rips of my own CD collection and the other half is purchased downloads, mostly highres. I have a nice vinyl collection, but I’m not playing any as I use room correction and I am waiting for Roon to introduce ‘the input device’ so I can digitise on the fly and do RC.

Interesting to read all your different stories and angles, thanks for sharing! Still haven’t disclosed my own habits completely, so here I go. I used to mock digitalised libraries and cherished my cd’s. However, after the second Roon trial, I was convinced and it just got better since. Roon is great!

By now, I have almost digitalised all my cd’s and I haven’t played a single physical disc since. I store everything on local HDD’s and backups. So I’ve made the switch from physical music to digital music. Roon just offers so much more convenience than my cd-player.

That said, I’m still not ready for the next step: streaming. I use Spotify (I know, mp3!) to discover new music, although this too is replaced more and more by Roon (more specific, this great forum with my favorite thread: “What are you listening to now”. So I still miss out on MQA and infinite addition of albums to my library (through Tidal), due to budget limitations. On the other hand, I’m always in control, not some nasty Neil Young suddenly withdrawing his catalogue from streaming services, for example.

But then… I was shocked to read the thread about a lightning strike, destroying a complete music collection. And I wondered: what would I do if that happened to me? It cost me almost my whole life, and an awful lot of money, time, effort, love and care to build my collection. I remember vividly, crossing the entire country (and other countries) as a student, collecting music. I can never invest the same amount of time and money again. So if (let’s hope not…) this would happen to me, I think I would also switch to a Tidal account (or whatever streaming service is leading in hi-res by then), and purchase unavailable albums separately.

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That depends, if you are 10 years old it’s doable :joy:

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If I were 10, I guess I’d have a completely different taste in music, Dick! :rofl:

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Bandcamp out of preference. Gives me lossless and unlimited downloads. Failing that CDs, but they are such a pain to physically deal with (and heavy, carrying a box of CDs sucks!).

TIDAL is too limited, Deezer is better, but I like Roon, so that’s a bit tricky.

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When I was 10 (back in the very early 60s), my choice was to a) listen to a transitor radio, b) listen to my parent’s music or c) save my allowance to buy 45s. The transitor radio was my ‘Tidal’ in terms of being exposed to new music, but all three had value and impacted the influence music had on me growing up.

If I was 10 today, choices would be different, but perhaps not fundamentally so … likely between internet streaming and/or whatever my parent’s choice of music listening is. But I cannot imagine a scenario where kids buy much music today.


The problem today was exposed on BBC Radio 4 where they discussed very poorly attended venues for major artists. To the point where free tickets were given out and existing holders had upgrades to fill the venue.
A poorly attended venue looks bad on the DVD. The kids can only afford one gig at a time when three or four of their favourite artist are on tour. The expectation for the show means shows are expensive to produce and the artists, who earn less from streaming and sales can now expect to earn less from touring.
The race to the bottom looks like it could be approaching the ground impact quickly. Music isn’t and cannot be sustainably Free…

I stream from my ripped cd collection and Tidal.
I don’t buy cd’s anymore,only vinyl.

Just interested: do you play your newly purchased vinyl on a turntable outside of Roon, or do you digitise it right away to play it through Roon?

I play it on a turntable,most albums are also available on Tidal so there is no need to digitize them.
I listen to new music on Tidal and when I like an album i buy it on vinyl.
My last purchase was Buddy Guy’s new album.

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