Those who are starting out on hires music downloads should take advantage of free high-quality music currently offered by numerous companies.
These downloads come in MP3, 16-bit ALAC, AIFF or FLAC, and 24-bit FLAC or WAV formats.
I have been surfing around and found several websites to explore listed in Kent Poon's blog and Weiss Engineering's home page www.weiss-highend.ch.
Several of these offer hires downloads for free. I have in my hard disk tracks from Bowers & Wilkins, reference recordings (24/176.4 HRx!), blue coast records, linn and others.
It is a great way to start a downloaded hires music library so that budding computer audiophiles can compare the quality of the downloads with their CDs and enjoy great music before going all the way and start paying for downloads of individual tracks or the entire album.
Music downloads have shot up even as sales of CDs has gone down. The trend is very obvious...
For the benefit of audiophiles, I have listed the websites below. You will have to surf around to check out the offers.
Websites for uncompressed music downloads and/or hires media: