Buying HDCD

I recently purchased Mark Knopfler’s Shangri-La CD from HMV and when playing it, the HDCD light came on, to my surprise. I have looked at the CD case and without pulling out the inlay card, there is nothing to indicate that it is anything other than a common or garden CD.
Am I missing something here or is it just a lottery in which you can occasionally get lucky? The sound is great, which is pleasing.

Total lottery, unfortunately. Here are some posts I’ve made in the past that might be helpful:

Thanks, Ebor. Another I have to add to your list is The Early Years by Roxy Music.

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Naim CD players supported this encoding, unfortunately, Microsoft bought the rights and then discontinued. There are quite a few titles out there, some clearly have used this and some haven’t! I have about 70 titles, I would say the following are some of the best, any Mark Knopfler, The Doors, Bryan Ferry/Roxy Music, King Crimson, Grateful Dead, Lady Antebellum, Neil Young, Buffalo Springfield, Peter Green, Dave Brubeck(Time Out), Al Di Meola(Friday Night), CSNY, SuperTramp, Talking Heads, Flaming Lips, Beach Boys, Joni Mitchell & Eric Clapton, Fleetwood Mac live in Boston Trio. These started coming out around mid 90’s, real shame new players dropped this, as I felt some of these really made a difference and still some much later titles have this.

And, as I’ve posted before, many discs will light up the HDCD light on a player but won’t necessarily be using any HDCD features at all. Apparently this is due to studios using Pacific Microsonics gear routinely for years but have the HDCD features switched off. It’s possible for HDCD flags to be put on the data and carried through all the way to the final CD without any extra sonic advantage.


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