San Francisco, Calif. (Oct. 27, 2012) — The Recording Academy® Producers & Engineers Wing® recently announced that, in partnership with the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA), it is launching www.qualitysoundmatters.com, an online portal that promotes enhanced consumer awareness of higher-quality sound for music. The site, which is scheduled to go live in Q4 2012, will offer music consumers information about how they can enhance their enjoyment of their music by seeking out today’s higher-quality digital file formats and using listening and storage products that help retain the sound of the music as the artists and engineers intended. The site will help mark a turning point in the evolution of digital music technology from a time when convenience and ubiquity were primary factors in consumers' music technology choices, to a new era when the pursuit of sonic quality becomes equally important.
CEA research shows that 34% of consumers consider themselves audio enthusiasts and 9 in 10 say sound quality is the most important component of a quality audio experience. More than 70% of self-described audio enthusiasts report a willingness to pay extra for high quality audio electronics and more than 60% are willing to pay for high quality content. As a Billboard magazine article from June 2011 states, we are "Back From the Audio Abyss" and there are compelling arguments that consumers are turning their attention to quality audio.
"We're now entering a time when consumers want to focus on the sonic quality of music, not just its convenience," states Maureen Droney, Sr. Executive Director of the P&E Wing. The P&E Wing is the ideal organization to spearhead this timely initiative, as its members have been at the forefront of an effort to keep quality integral with the development of digital music technology since the beginning of the digital transition. "As music moved further into the domain of computers, handheld/mobile devices and software, manufacturers of consumer electronics products worked to create new systems that consumers would find valuable in their everyday lives, sometimes at the expense of fidelity," says Droney. "But with increased bandwidth and more readily available hard drive space, it is now possible to merge these conveniences with the world of high-resolution files. Producers, engineers and mixers have always made the most of digital audio's benefits, like improved signal-to-noise ratio and dynamic range, to make recordings that reflected what recording artists heard in the studio. Now those benefits are becoming available to consumers as well."
Droney also noted developments such as the growing popularity of premium headphones over the poor quality earbuds of the past and the embrace of multichannel music through a new generation of audiophile labels and websites. "It's clear that we've turned a corner in how consumers want to experience their music," says Droney. "Now, that experience is going to include a far greater emphasis on sonic quality along with artistic quality. And we're happy to be able to join with the CEA in helping consumers find their way into this new expanding universe of music quality."
Photo File: QSM_HomePage.JPG
Photo Caption: The home page for www.QualitySoundMatters.com. Photo courtesy of The Recording Academy® © 2012.
The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) is the preeminent trade association promoting growth in the $206 billion U.S. consumer electronics industry. More than 2,000 companies enjoy the benefits of CEA membership, including legislative advocacy, market research, technical training and education, industry promotion, standards development and the fostering of business and strategic relationships. CEA also owns and produces the International CES – The Global Stage for Innovation. All profits from CES are reinvested into CEA’s industry services. Find CEA online at www.CE.org, www.DeclareInnovation.com and through social media.
Established in 1957, The Recording Academy is an organization of musicians, producers, engineers and recording professionals that is dedicated to improving the cultural condition and quality of life for music and its makers. Internationally known for the GRAMMY Awards — the preeminent peer-recognized award for musical excellence and the most credible brand in music — The Recording Academy is responsible for groundbreaking professional development, cultural enrichment, advocacy, education and human services programs. The Academy continues to focus on its mission of recognizing musical excellence, advocating for the well-being of music makers and ensuring music remains an indelible part of our culture. For more information about The Academy, please visit www.grammy.com. For breaking news and exclusive content, follow @TheGRAMMYs on Twitter, "like" The GRAMMYs on Facebook, and join The GRAMMYs' social communities on YouTube, Tumblr, Foursquare, GetGlue, and Instagram.
Currently more than 6,000 professionals comprise The Recording Academy Producers & Engineers Wing, which was established for producers, engineers, remixers, manufacturers, technologists, and other related creative and technical professionals in the recording field. This organized voice for the recording community addresses issues that affect the craft of recorded music, including the development and implementation of new technologies, technical guidelines and recommendations, and archiving and preservation initiatives. For more information, please visit www.producersandengineers.com.