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Thursday, January 27, 2000
Copy protection for Audio CDs annoys customers

"..BMG Entertainment has since short audio CDs in the trade, which is provided with the copy protection Cactus DATA Shield. This mechanism was developed in co-operation with the Israel software enterprise Midbar and Sonopress from Germany. So far the albums " Razorblade Romance " of the group of Him and " My private ones are were concerned " the former Independent Heroen Philip Boa & The Voodoo club.

The copy protection prevents not only the selection (Grabbing) and copying of the audio tracks with PC, but also playing on all CD Rom Drives as well as on older audio CD players. A reader reported that its malfunctioned even two years of old Philips Player with so protected CD. Particularly annoying: Not on the covering, but only on that CD one finds the note to " note: Copy-protected CD - Not at the PC playable! " The warning is to be taken seriously: After approximately 30 seconds the playing process at the PC aborts; also MP3-Data cannot be created.

At present the c't laboratory checks whether the copy protection affects also copying by SPDIF Digital-Output of better CD-Player; possibly it influences the error correction of the Players and with it concomitantly the digital signal. If like that is, that might not be entitled to CD the seal Compact Disc digital audio due to the hurt talk Book standard. BMG confessed certain difficulties " on request of c't " with the copy protection. Until these are cleared, no further new editions provided with it will appear probably for the time being..."

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