Thursday, May 15, 2014

"Can I Just Mail In Neil Young's New One?"

The Library Of Congress wants to destroy your old CDs for Science.

"If you've tried listening to any of your old CDs may have noticed they won't play," says Adrienne Lafrance, author of this article, which goes on to explain how this particular technology was not created to last.

"If you're willing to part with your old CDs, the library will happily destroy them for you. The Center for the Library's Analytical Science Samples is a laboratory for destruction, a place where researchers can practice "destructive testing" on non-library materials as a way to learn how best to care for actual library collections. 

Fear not, all of you on the receiving end of my homemade Todd Rundgren Rarities CD. In just a few more years, it will have "bronzed" its way into oblivion and the weight of ever having to listen to it will be off your back for good.


William Repsher said...

I tried my Lenny Kravitz Let Love Rule CD the other week, first CD I bought back in 1989 or 1990 ... it still works, as do all my CD-Rs. I've read articles to this effect before, and I still don't know what they're talking about. I still have home-made cassette tapes from the early 1980s back at the house I grew up in that appear to work and sound the same. I know tape degrades, but those things are coming up on 30 years old and still running. Do they really think CDs are going to be less durable than audio tape?

buzzbabyjesus said...

I put together my first computer recording center in 1999. My hard drive was large at the time, but criminally small by today's standards, so I archived onto cd's to make room. I noticed recently that about a third are now useless, and I lost a fair number of files. It was an eye opener. Funny that my old cassettes, some dating back to the '70's are fine.

Bombshelter Slim said...

If your old CDs do NOT play, simply locate a 1980's vintage green felt pen and run it along the edge of the disc. Not only will it play again, but with increased fidelity and headroom! Amazing but true!!

steves said...

"Even CDs made by the same company in the same year and wrapped in identical packaging might have totally different lifespans."

I don't get what are they going to glean by destroying commercially made CDs that they receive?

OTOH, I think the takeaway here may be that vinyl is a superior storage medium, which is more good news for collectors.

A walk in the woods said...

A) all my CDs work fine
B) all my vinyl works even better - even stuff 60-70 years old
C) all my cassettes work awesomely

But what's this about a Todd Rundgren Rarities CD??? Did I miss that one?

charlie c. said...

That felt marker / highlighter thing is as old as CD's themselves . . . gonna try and Snopes that bad boy out! Was shocked to find out that E.J. Korvette's appellation was an urban legend! Grinding a diamond stylus through a vinyl groove will always cause wear and tear. So, records are also designed to age . . .
I distinctly remember ordering my Rundgren Rarities pre-bronzed!