After years of touting the need for a music service that provides higher resolution digital audio, Neil Young has revealed his high-profile project, PONO, will launch in 2014, providing listeners with digital audio files that he claims sound closer to the actual recordings.
In a post on the PONO Facebook page, Young announced that the service is working with British high-end consumer audio company, Meridian Audio, on both a file format and an audio player. Meridian has a history of R&D on both the encoding and hardware sides, notably having developed the mandatory lossless format selected for DVD-Audio in 1998, as well as co-developing Dolby TrueHD, selected for Blu-ray Disc in 2005, with Dolby Labs.
PONO is currently working with artists to use their recordings for the service. Young also said the service will offer portable players to use with the library of downloadable audio files.
“Our mission is also to make PONO just as accessible as any music you buy and listen to today. So we’ll be launching both the PONO portable player—an updated version of the one I showed on David Letterman’s program—and an online library, with all your favorite music available in PonoMusic quality. Everything you need to feel music anew,” Young wrote.
Interested in learning more about the variations of digital audio files and their resolutions? Be sure to check out PSN’s June 2013 cover story, "Evangelizing Sound Quality" [free digital subscription required].
What do you think of yet another digital audio file format? Will Young’s dream project take off or will be PONO be a no-go? Share your thoughts below in the comments!