Thursday, March 23, 2006


Most people seem to think that MiniDisc's day is done. They are probably right.

I have an old Sharp MiniDisc player which I've used for recording stuff here and there. It's easy to use and does make good recordings; but transfering the audio to the computer is a bit of a hassle. Some time ago, Sony took steps to improve the transfer of audio from the computer to their players, but they limited the transfer the other way (allegedly to stop bootleggers.)

I went off and bought a CompactFlash recorder (it's so much easier to transfer files to the computer from a CompactFlash card) but the MiniDisc is appealing because you can leave the original files on the disc as a backup.

Sony has tried to pump new life into the MiniDisc with the Hi-MD format, and they now have announced the MZ-RH1 which will transfer audio to your computer using USB 2.0, and it will work with Macs. Woot!

But it's probably too late. MiniDisc never was that popular and has always been a bit of a niche product. As much as it makes sense - and it does make sense for some applications - I think it will get steamrollered by all the solid-state devices that can record audio.

Probably just as well. I don't need to be spending $360 on another recording device.

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