Neil Young: iPod inventor Jobs preferred vinyl

January 31, 2012

Neil Young wants a convenient digital device to play music — like an iPod — but with higher-quality sound than consumers hear now with digitally compressed files.

The rock legend — whose ‘Heart of Gold’,  ‘Old Man’ and many others are still top-sellers on iTunes — said he had discussed the idea with late Apple CEO Steve Jobs, and that he and Jobs were working on the issue before he died.

Although Jobs was “a pioneer in digital music and his legacy is tremendous, when he went home he listened to vinyl,” Young said on Tuesday at a conference sponsored by the Wall Street Journal’s All Things Digital blog. “You’ve got to believe if he lived, he would have done what I’m trying to do,” Young added.

Now that Jobs is dead, “not much” is going on in that area, and development will be up to “some rich guy” who sees the need for crisper music from a device that fits in your pocket, he said.

Consumers hear just a fraction of what musicians create in the studio but deserve 100 percent, he added.“People should not associate high resolution with inconvenience.”


We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see

What is he talking about? Vinyl has nowhere the frequency range and dynamic range of a well converted MP3 or Apples ac4 digital files. Records never did low frequencies well and channel seperation was poor. Maybe a multi-track studio tape but not vinyl records.
Now those single channel thumping subwoofers shiould be the issure. They have no channel seperation and do nothing more than thump at a narrow frequency range and annoy the neighbors. Put the $ into a good pair of speakers.

Posted by R.D. | Report as abusive

Big fan of yours Neil, right from the time when you were all togather as CSNY, you created some beautiful harmonies vocally and instrumentally as well so yes, we would like to hear the full band playing in Hi Def. would be fantastic “old man” I would like to hear “Dark Star” in it’s full spectrum.

Posted by politicaljunkie | Report as abusive