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Pono And The Hi-Def Audio Debate

SAN FRANCISCO (Hypebot) – Some are predicting that 2015 will be year the year that hi-definition audio takes hold. Neil Young's Pono, Tidal, Deezer and others are all pushing new, more expensive services that promise superior sound. But superior to what? Few would argue that so called hi-def audio sounds superior to traditional mp3, but Neil Young's own engineers at Pono admit that you might be better off sticking with your CDs than paying the extra money, according to a new report.

Product engineers for Pono have privately admitted they are not convinced that high-resolution audio files played on a Pono player have "any significant technical advantage over CD-quality files", sources told the New York Post. “It has been clear throughout that Neil Young himself is all about the hi-res,” one source close to the company told the Post. “There’s no doubt in his mind that it sounds better.”

Pono executives are apparently a little more careful with their opinions, but admit it’s mostly about commerce. “Their take is that the serious audiophile has convinced himself he has to have it,” the Post's source added. “They’re saying, ‘We don’t necessarily believe it, but nobody’s going to buy it if we don’t do it.'”

The Beatles?

A new rumor circulating today has Pono securing the rights to The Beatles catalog in hi-def.