For many years the music industry dictated to consumers how they could buy the music that they wanted to hear. Did you like only one or two songs by an artist? Too bad. You still had to buy the whole album or tape. But the power to select the music that we want to listen to, and play it wherever we want, has been ushered in by the digital age, and today even cheap portable mp3 players are capable of some surprising flexibility.
For many years in the past there was no credible way to make copies of the music that was sold. That all began to change when tape cassette recorders began to get popular. At last you had a way to record song tracks onto your own tape and take them with you to play while you were traveling. But tapes are not the easiest medium to work with, and they introduced some unfavorable listening characteristics of their own too. But it was all we had for song portability.
Then along comes the CD and it changed forever the way that music is played and heard. CDs could store the huge files needed for digital sound and so the sound quality improved dramatically. They could also be taken anywhere you wanted to go and played in portable CD players. It wasn't long before folks started figuring out how to convert music files from CDs to digital files that could be played on their computers, and that led to the mp3 revolution that we now have in place.
Today portable mp3 players are quickly becoming the standard for listening to music, because all you need is a source that has the digital music files you want to listen to, and you can then download the files onto your mp3 player and take them with you wherever you go. It's simple, easy, and the best rated mp3 players take up very little room, making them perfect for folks on the go.
Actually MP3 is only one of the digital formats used to encode music, but it has somehow become the moniker for all digital song files. The most popular file format these days is WMA(Windows Media Audio). And there are a handful of others too, but they all seem to conveniently fall under the heading of "mp3 files".
Now you no longer have to buy the entire album if you like to just listen to a few songs on that album. You can download those songs individually, save them to your computer hard drive and then transfer them whenever you want to your mp3 player. And you can make several copies of those songs without losing any sound quality, because they are all in digital format and will always sound the same regardless of how many times they are copied.
So as you can see, portable mp3 players have become a powerful tool in the hands of music lovers everywhere. There are lots of cheap portable mp3 players available these days, so if you haven't joined the digital music revolution already, why not give it a try soon?
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