All the popular labels here,Hypnos,Atmo,Databloem,I have both pressed CDs and CD-Rs,and I would say,to my ears,that all the CD-R products are missing something compared to the pressed CDs, sonically, not to mention that some have become distorted pieces of plastic,not all but many.There is something to be said for mastering studios and manufacturing plants though I understand this is not feasible for most indy labels.I question whether MP3s are better sonically than cassette,and certainly,CDs are no better than LPs,so to me,
Well, I think we've probably had this discussion before, Jordan, but its hard to believe you can hear a distinction between CD and CDr ... provided what's put on both is the identical Master disk, and the CD was well-pressed and the CDr was burned at a reasonably slow speed. My experience of CDs is that both CDr and pressed CDs last equally well ... in fact I've had more trouble with pressed ones going bad in my collection (though its statistically insignificant). Where what you say rings true, and LOUDLY so, is in the realm of mastering. There can be a seriously significant difference between a pro mastered album and an amateur job. And clearly, with everyone and his dog releasing albums that receive absolutely no mastering attention on many web labels it is clear why many CDr releases might sound not so good. When money is put into a pressed release it is likely that more time is put into it too, to get it right. To justify the expense. I know that some labels just put out what an artist hands them ... no changes. This is like thinking everyone is a recording and mastering engineer. Or can become one overnight. Its crazy. Its a skill, and one that requires practice and time ... it isn't just a matter of "normalizing" to the max. So yep, a lot of music in our realm is not produced well, and it's more than likely the material on CDr or mp3 (which is probably the majority). But this is not to say because its CDr it can't be as good as pressed, only that the chances are it is not produced as well.
That's how I see it.