Can you just buy MP3s these days?

You know, without them being tied to ownership on a specific platform or whatever?



Pretty limited to who is on there though, right?

I often buy digital albums from because they’re often quite cheap if you select 192kbps. Even cheaper if an album has less than 10 tracks. They don’t have everything though.

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yeah I guess, you can’t buy MP3s of anyone who isn’t that’s true. Is emusic still going? I quit a couple of years ago as their range of titles had dropped considerably.

You’ve still got Boomkat (again not comprehensive), and Amazon (boo).

7digital are still kicking around but feels a bit like they’re in their death throes sadly. The homepage hasn’t updated in a very long time and I think a few artists have disappeared.

And some record label websites will sell their own mp3s directly.

It’s just v infuriating that albums I own physically, that aren’t on Spotify, seemingly can’t be listened to properly unless I’m listening to the physical version. Galling

You could make your own mp3s like we used to in the old days


Or just play your physical media of choice

What? Just rip your CDs and put them on your phone or listen through your computer. Same as always been.

You can still buy MP3s from Amazon and iTunes too. And use them on any media player you want. Amazon still does autorip too so if u buy a physical album you get the digital version too.

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Computers don’t have CD drives these days a lot of the time (also, the physicals are vinyls and I am in a “listen on headphones whilst working” position)

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You can get a USB external DVD drive for about a tenner,. Got one on my desk just in case.

So the issue is you wanna listen to albums you own on vinyl digitally that aren’t on Spotify? Either buy the album on iTunes then, pirate it, or find a way to rip the LP.

iTunes MP3s haven’t been tied to Apple media players since 2007 I think

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This is helpful knowledge, thanks

All my modern records came with a card inside to get the MP3s.

TBH mate you’re living in the past if you think MP3s that are bought are locked into something. That hasn’t been true in well over 10 years I think and even then it was basically only ever that iTunes put copy protection on stuff like that.

When I was buying MP3s I’d buy from Bandcamp if possible but otherwise from Google Play Music (now YouTube Music), 7Digital or

With Google and Amazon they try to scare you a bit by claiming you can only download them twice but you can get them via a ‘full download’ of your entire music library any time, it’s just twice you can do it conveniently, but that’s enough because you just copy them everywhere the first time (and then you automatically have them in ‘the cloud’ for Amazon or YouTube so if you can be bothered having multiple apps you use them). I do recall leaning more heavily on the Google purchases if not Bandcamp because it was easier with my setup.

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Buying mp3 (plus WAV, FLAC etc) is still the way I consume 95% of my music. I use Bandcamp, Boomkat, A****n, Apple, Juno, Beatport, Bleep… whatever’s best for that particular album (Bandcamp is usually my first port of call, to get as much $ to the artist as possible). I don’t stream, buy vinyl for stuff I really love, and occasionally buy a CD 2nd hand or new if it’s the only format a new release comes out on (I’m looking at you, Julian Cope)


Sadly not always the case, I’ve had to go to naughty places to get downloads of records I’ve paid for more times than you’d expect. But yeah most should have them obv.


How easy is this nowadays? When I was at uni it was hilariously simple. Just googled the name of an album and the word zip or mediafire.

I used to do this until recently with varying levels of success but it was getting harder and harder to find non-expired or non-dodgy results. Saw other disers mention Soulseek so I use that for it now.

(If Sean’s lawyers are reading this I’d like to stress that this is only after I’ve bought the vinyl)

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I’ve got 50 or so albums I’ve ripped to my computer for this reason, or I try to find them on Youtube - but yeah, coming across an album every now and again which isn’t on Spotify is irritating