Hi-Fi buffs will still recall the shudder of joy that occurred the first time their ears made contact with the sound of a record played on the Linn Sondek LP12 turntable – one of the finest audio products ever made.
Created by Glasgow-based Linn Products, the turntable set reviewers frothing with superlatives, and set an audio standard which the company has aspired to follow ever since.
It wasn’t until 1993 that Linn introduced their Karik CD player, with the company saying that it took them that long to produce a CD player that offered comparable performance to the mighty LP12.
More vastly desirable – and hideously expensive – CD players followed, none of which we could afford, but the drool came free.
However, our saliva glands can take a rest as the company has just announced that it’s stopping production of its CD player range next year, with future products using music streaming technology instead.
Declaring the move “a testament to the supremacy of digital streaming technology,” Managing Director Gilad Tiefenbrun commented:
While we expected a slow shift from CD to digital media streamers following the launch of our Klimax DS player back in 2007, the truth is that in the past two years sales of CD players actually declined by more than 40 per cent.
Meanwhile, DS player sales surpassed expectations, increasing by over 40 per cent to the point where they now make up almost 30 per cent of Linn’s overall sales.
Shrugging aside some lingering doubts that the internet may sometimes struggle to cope with delivering consistently high audio output, Tiefenbrun added:
I think that the internet is up to the task of delivering high quality audio, the download speeds are there. The main problem is that the major record labels haven’t got their act together yet when it comes to making original studio masters available.
Although CD may be out on its arse, mighty vinyl will continue to play a part in Linn’s future, with Tiefenbrun noting:
We think there’s no reason why the analogue and digital propositions can’t live side-by-side as methods of getting high-quality music. We’re still absolutely committed to vinyl.