Do you actually download digital music anymore?

I have found that, since I bought a Nova and subscribed to Qobuz I have bought only vinyl (and not much of that), and I just realized that I have downloaded exactly zero digital albums in 2 years. Looking back at credit card statements, I used to download $2000-$3000 dollars worth of digital music every year for a few years. I used to argue that I liked to “own” a copy of an album, but I seem to have unintentionally changed my mind!

Anyone else in the same boat? I note that there is a “what music have you downloaded recently” thread on this board. But it has only 1100 posts in 3 years, and 900 of those are by just 24 people. Are most of us content to listen to digital music via subscription only? Given that this group will sometimes argue over whether NAS sounds better than a stream, I figure we are the people most likely to be downloading music as a group.

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I don’t stream online, except using Spotify, uTube etc occasionally to sample new music. For me, having the music I like available available whenever I want and in perpetuity is important - i.e. without commitment to paying a subscription, regardless of internet reliability, regardless of internet service providers’ catalogue changes, licensing changes etc. I wouldn’t enjoy living with the risk of my favourite music not being available whenever I want to play it. So yes, I download music, or buy CDs and rip.


I used to download from both Qobuz and buy Amazon cd’s as a download. Now with Amazon HD I have downloaded just two cds in two years, but have listened to more new music than I ever have done before.

Last download was around 7-8 years ago :scream:

Streaming only since then…


I download all my albums, and don’t stream at all. I just like to have them on my NAS. It’s probably stupid, but the vast choice on Qobuz confuses me.


Yes. I don’t stream due to the artists not being paid properly. Streaming is killing music due to the current payment structure. If they changed it so artists get paid more for under a certain number of streams it would be fairer and make a significant difference to smaller artists, then I might be more likely to start streaming. At the moment, I prefer to buy downloads from Bandcamp and buy vinyl from there or record shops, preferably independent ones.


Qobuz plus the odd vinyl purchase, plus all my cd collection bought pre qobuz ripped to flac. I bought a cd last month, the first cd purchase in 3 years. I dont recall ever purchasing an album as a download.

I’m the same and just stream from Qobuz or buy records. I have all my ripped CDs available to play from a HDD but find that the SQ via streamed Qobuz is just as good since I bought the ND555. I have neither the inclination, nor the funds, to pursue the high-end server solutions out there either. So far, I haven’t found a single release I’m interested in hearing, suddenly disappear from Qobuz.

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Probably one or two purchased downloads a month for things I want to add to ipod to ensure availability when out and about or from bands that I like to reward their efforts better than streaming payments.

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I listen to vinyl, my ripped CD’s on a Naim Core and subscribe to vinyl. The only downloads I purchase and local releases from sites like Band Camp or directly from artist sites.


I am still downloading everything. I still prefer the quality of having it locally and playing it in Wav as well…., and I find the streaming not reliable from a content perspective, so I just use it to explore new albums….
Still download for thousands of euros a year….


Yes! I also buy CDs and the occasional LP.

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I don’t stream, only buy downloads from Bandcamp or Qobuz, generally the tracks I like, sometimes a full album. It costs me around 40 euros per month.
I listen also to my lps and buy maybe 10 records per year, max.


I also since mid of last year buy every now and then second hand CD’s for ripping and getting a more complete collection. Currently total 26.700 album. A mix of high res and ripped CD’s.


I rip/download what I listen to. The streaming services are to frustrating to deal with when you want something specific. They buy into the large libraries of the large companies and anything outside can be very difficult/impossible to find. And it takes too much time. So I prefer having it local on a good musicserver where I also get a much more engaging sound quality. I am a bit old-school.

And I feel a bit of resistance investing a lot of money in expensive equipment dependent on some flakey streaming services on the net. Is any one of them actually making any money? Sooner or later their investors want some return (or they need to start paying their loans) and they need to start selling ads in the streams to survive.

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I download 2 or 3 albums a month - mostly classical. I stream considerably more, but those are generally albums I would never have bought in the first place - i.e. I have no expectation of multiple listenings.

The disappearance of physical media is what I actually see as a problem. Especially for classical and anything outside mainstream.

I live in europe with many small countries and there have been many small record companies now gone bust. But the physical media they sold is still around. I can search it, buy it second hand.

But if their product is a digital library it disappears. Will be removed from the streaming services for legal reasons. Depending on licenses and contracts even someone willing to buy the library may not be able to do so.

I have CD:s not old at all where the only source now is buying second-hand. So if you enjoy stuff on Bandcamp etc. make sure not only to enjoy the music (obvious :-)) but save it carefully.


I don’t purchase or download any digital audio. I used to purchase high-res audio but no longer do. What CDs I have were ripped a long time ago. I use Roon to stream that and also content from Qobuz.

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I’m with the OP here, Radio paradise, qobuz and for artists / albums that really grab me I’ll buy vinyl but that is much less since qobuz / Innuos.

To be fair with the volume of CD’s / vinyl I have if I played one a day I would need to live to about 290 to play them all.


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I guess it’s made me more discerning if that’s rage right word. Offspring uses Tidal and Spotify and streams only. I use Qobuz and Tidal to stream but if I hear something I believe I couldn’t live without then I’m happy to buy it from either Qobuz, Amazon, 7Digital or BandCamp. I’m struggling to remember the last time I did so. I’ve probably played the Fenne Lily and Boygenius albums sufficiently to justify owning a copy so I do need to actually physically go and sort that out.