Iconic rock musician Neil Young shared a passion for great sounding music with Apple founder Steve Jobs, but Young expressed his dismay at Apple's seemingly disinterested stance on high-definition music since Jobs died. Jobs had wanted to improve the quality of music available on iTunes, but Apple has not made any overtures to that affect since Jobs' death, Young said during an interview at News Corp.'s D: Dive into Media conference Jan. 31.
Steve Jobs was a pioneer of digital music, Young said. But when he went home, he listened to vinyl.
The difference between the vinyl sound (or original recording) and a digital copy is the digital version is compressed to save on storage space and transfer speed. In order to accomplish the compression, the file is squeezed down so much, it ends up being only containing five percent of the sound from the original. Apple had talked to Young and other musicians about a possible project to build a system that could deliver high-definition music, but with Jobs gone, Young said he felt compelled to continued advocating for such a system.
My goal is to rescue the art form that I've been practicing for about 50 years, Young said.
Most people download music today in either MP3 or AAC formats, but Apple had reportedly been working on delivering high fidelity music and appropriate iPods to be compatible with it. Those hi-fi sounds would come in larger file sizes, and Young said a system could be developed to let the music download to a device at night while people sleep. There are Web sites selling these types of files already, but Young went even further.
Piracy is the new radio, Young said.
I look at the Internet as the new radio. I look at the radio as gone.