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DigiCULT
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Info
26
RECORDED MUSIC
IN THE DIGITAL ARCHIVE
- Only the most frequently used records
need to be digitised.
- Emphasis on old and new material
already on CD (and music produced
and owned by YLE).
- Vinyl and shellac digitised on demand,
restoration if required.
`Back catalogue'
- Today there are 40,000 tracks in
the digital archive.
- We intend to `digitise' 40,000 additional
old tracks.
New acquisitions
- Each year we buy 6000 new CDs
(= 50,000 tracks).
- We plan to `digitise' 10,000 new
tracks (20%).
C
apturing music from CDs and mov-
ing it into the digital archive is quite
simple; unfortunately, it does not work
with copy-protected CDs. Unlike recorded
music, practically all the radio programmes
in the archive are unique in the sense that
there are no copies of them in other col-
lections. If we do not take care of them,
they may be lost forever.Yet it is clear
that it is possible and necessary to make
priorities within the 300,000 tapes in
our collection.
THE RADIO ARCHIVE IN BRIEF
- Around 300,000 radio programmes.
- Unique material: if we do not save
them, they will be lost.
- Huge quantity makes selection and
prioritisation necessary.
1. The archival collection
- 15,343 selected programmes from
1935-1970, detailed documentation,
copied on new stock .
2. The music collection
The most popular titles in our library were
broadcast more than 500 times last year.
There is a much larger number of records
which were played several times, and more
than 100,000 titles which were played
once only. On the other hand, 1.4 million
tracks in our library were not used at all
last year, although they may be used in
the future.
F
or the convenience of our producers,
we will naturally attempt to store the
most popular titles in the digital archive so
that they are always available. If a title will
be played only once, and it is available on
a CD, it will be much more economical to
use the original CD.Therefore, for seldom-
used material, digitisation is only necessary
if the title is available only on vinyl or shellac.
A
t the moment we are concentrating
on the music we estimate will be
most frequently used in broadcasts. Most of
this music, even if it is older, is already
available on CD. Hence we have concen-
trated our efforts on converting the most
important part of our CD collection to the
digital archive, and we are happy to report
that we have developed a method that is,
in our opinion, well integrated into our
cataloguing process.The digitisation of
vinyl and shellac records will have to wait.
year. Originally, we planned to preserve
about 5% of them permanently, although
changes in programming schedules and the
addition of another radio station mean that
we may have to revise our plans.
DIGITISING ANALOGUE MATERIALS
(AND CDS)
A
s we have mentioned, there are about
600,000 radio programmes and com-
mercial sound recordings in the YLE
archives. Moving these collections into a
digital archive involves both philosophical
and technical problems. From the practical
viewpoint, each format presents a different
set of problems. From the philosophical
viewpoint, radio programmes and com-
mercial discs are quite different.
T
he YLE record library has about
300,000 different records (many in
duplicate) in various formats. Altogether
these records contain at least 1.5 million
`tracks'.These items are not unique, that is
other copies exist.
L
ast year YLE broadcast more than
800,000 pieces of music. If we study
the frequency of radio plays, we will find
that a relatively small number of `ever-
greens' and `hits' are used daily or weekly.
300
250
200
150
100
50
0
No. of items (thousands)
Analog full-track tapes (19, 38, 76 cm/s)
Vinyl discs
Shellac discs
Analog tape cassettes
Lacquer discs
CDs (red book)
CDRs (orange book)
DAT tapes