Minidiscs look too interesting for a format that is not visible during playback

Oct 28, 2017
11,924
#1
edit: I should specify I'm talking about the range of diversity in the format (shown below) not simply the format itself

Feels like a disproportionate amount of design effort when into this format considering they are essentially invisible for most of their use. AFAIK there isn't a single even remotely clear MD player, portable or not, and the packages themselves usually weren't clear so fighting for shelf space attraction is also a no. They look too interesting for things that would generally go unseen and it's obviously more work than a simple CD label change or whatever. 💽🤔💽





















Images from here
 
Last edited:
Oct 27, 2017
2,045
#5
I had a minidisc player that got like two dozen hours of play on a single AA battery. It was obsolete by the time it came out in the US, but it was a neat little device
 
Oct 25, 2017
4,213
#8
Have a bunch of these in the loft but no player any more. What’s the easiest way to get the music off and into my computer
 
Oct 25, 2017
2,317
#10
I *loved* my Minidisc player so much, and I loved how great the discs themselves looked.



I spent so long making playlists, then plugging my player into my PC via the stereo mini cable and "recording" my mp3s what an insane setup but I loved every second.


I had mainly the coloured Sony "premium" discs and a dozen TDKs in a variety of colours, but damn those Maxell mono tone ones and the Chums are amazing.
 
Oct 25, 2017
4,144
Columbus, OH
#11
did any of you guys ever go to japan during the height of MD? it was really neat. there were kiosks/vending machines in train stations/electronics stores/music stores that would have the ranked singles of the week/month or certain albums and you'd put a re-writable minidisc into the machine and get your song for a hundred yen or so.
 
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signal
Oct 28, 2017
11,924
#12
Actually thinking about it for more than like 10 seconds, maybe the obvious answer might be that different manufacturers combined with the lack of labels made these design changes required for differentiation, even at the disc level and not just the package or case level.

That said, that probably could have still be achieved in way more subtle / lower effort ways, so thankfully they took this route.
 
Oct 27, 2017
3,434
#13
lol they just look like a CD in a jewel + a 3.5 floppy hybrid. Nothing new honestly but a few of those designs up there are pretty cool to look at.
 
Oct 26, 2017
1,564
Seattle
#14
A guy in my high school Japanese class did a foreign exchange and came back with a Mini Disc player. The thing looked awesome but it was years later until I ever saw one here.
 
Oct 25, 2017
3,799
Toronto
#15
I loved the convenience of my iPod, and now my iPhone, but I'd be lying if I said I didn't miss my MiniDisc.

If Sony hadn't been so dumb with it it could have ruled the '90s.
 
Nov 1, 2017
1,898
#16
I had 2 of these back in the day. First A cheap one that took AA Batteries first, then a nice slim one that had a rechargeable battery.

I graduated from that to a Zune HD.
 
Oct 27, 2017
992
#17
I always loved minidiscs. I always thought they were cool as hell and loved everything about them, the old Sony players, choose cool remotes with the onscreen display etc etc etc...

...everything except SonicStage and trying to transfer music from pc to the player -- yeesh... Software really wasn't Sony's strong point back in those days (but tbh the same was true for most companies at the time).
 
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signal
Oct 28, 2017
11,924
#18
lol they just look like a CD in a jewel + a 3.5 floppy hybrid. Nothing new honestly but a few of those designs up there are pretty cool to look at.
Its the diversity of design not the base format look itself I'm talking about.
 
Oct 27, 2017
3,434
#19
Its the diversity of design not the base format look itself I'm talking about.
In that respect, I agree. I've only ever seen and had a few as a kid. The ones I had were lackluster lol I was always a fan of the players myself!
 
Oct 25, 2017
4,144
Columbus, OH
#21
A guy in my high school Japanese class did a foreign exchange and came back with a Mini Disc player. The thing looked awesome but it was years later until I ever saw one here.
my dad bought me one in like 95/96 and it came bundled with the player that mounted in your stereo system. which you also would record to/from, and the portable player. i used it to copy CDs over optical cable lol
 
Oct 27, 2017
503
#23
i had one in the between period of cds and mp3 players

was a good compromise

sounds quality was great, no skipping, insane battery life, easy digital recording (hooks right into a mixer)

Awesome device for its time
 
Oct 25, 2017
493
#24
I don't miss ATRAC3 or any of the headaches that Sony tried to force upon their consumer-grade units, but I loved Minidiscs otherwise. Had the satisfying physicality of cassettes but the conveniences of CDs and mp3 players. The last model I had featured a color screen with support for album art and a front facing camera to snap pictures on the go with. Still have a stack of unused MD/Hi-MD somewhere...
 
Oct 27, 2017
1,316
#26
I had a minidisc player and thought it was so cool, but the iPod was already out and by the time the mini/nano came out, minidisc was dead. Happy I was able to sell mine to a friend at a time to use the money towards an iPod 😂
 
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signal
Oct 28, 2017
11,924
#27
I don't miss ATRAC3 or any of the headaches that Sony tried to force upon their consumer-grade units, but I loved Minidiscs otherwise. Had the satisfying physicality of cassettes but the conveniences of CDs and mp3 players. The last model I had featured a color screen with support for album art and a front facing camera to snap pictures on the go with. Still have a stack of unused MD/Hi-MD somewhere...
MZ-DH10P maybe? That device looked bizarre as hell with the camera. A taste of things to come with the weird vaio communication devices or whatever.

Also the hi-mds are worth a bit now if you want to sell them lol.
 
Oct 28, 2017
1,646
#32
agree. the colourful transparent ones always looked like something out of star trek to me.

my dad had a minidisc set up - home stereo system and portable player - so i spent quite a bit of time playing with them when i was a kid, even though they never really reached the mainstream over here.
 
Oct 27, 2017
1,312
#33
I *loved* my Minidisc player so much, and I loved how great the discs themselves looked.



I spent so long making playlists, then plugging my player into my PC via the stereo mini cable and "recording" my mp3s what an insane setup but I loved every second.


I had mainly the coloured Sony "premium" discs and a dozen TDKs in a variety of colours, but damn those Maxell mono tone ones and the Chums are amazing.
Are we the same person? Middle school for me, got that silver Sony one for Christmas, made sooo many playlists from my CD’s. I fucking loved the thing until right before summer vacation started some piece of shit stole it from my backpack on the bus, never found it or who did it but parents weren’t gonna buy me another one and I never saved up $200 for one so it was the end of an era. Loved that thing though, one of my favorite pieces of childhood tech.
 
Oct 27, 2017
1,127
Edmonton
#35
They are neat.

I remember using CD caddies for some old Mac at school, which is basically the same concept I guess. Just a pain in the ass with CDs in comparison.
 

Vark

Member
Oct 27, 2017
93
#36
I have a MZ-R35 portable recorder and a deck somewhere back in my family home that I intend to rescue over Christmas this year. Those discs sound real bad these days but the nostalgia factor is there.
 
Oct 26, 2017
1,564
Seattle
#37
my dad bought me one in like 95/96 and it came bundled with the player that mounted in your stereo system. which you also would record to/from, and the portable player. i used it to copy CDs over optical cable lol
One of my good friends had a Mini Disc recorder setup that we’d use to record concerts. MD and DAT were the formats of choice in live show recording circles back then.
 
Oct 26, 2017
1,315
716
#38
I had a Sony player I loved that was toast when I dropped it one and only one time.

Was a shame, but MP3 players exploded like, that same year so... it was fine I guess.
 
Oct 28, 2017
563
#43
minidiscs were so cool but did anybody actually release music on the format? i got the sense it died because it was mostly a pirate medium
Gescom's album "Minidisc" was designed for the medium using the then unique feature of instant gapless song access. The album is comprised of 88 short tracks and was written to be listened to in any order, you were supposed to set your player to 'random' so it would be different every time you listened.
 
Oct 27, 2017
447
#44
I miss this format so much.

My father took me on a business trip to Japan in the early 2000's and bought me one. Riding the bullet train and listening to music on these players was so oddly futuristic at the time.
 
Oct 25, 2017
3,821
#45
did any of you guys ever go to japan during the height of MD? it was really neat. there were kiosks/vending machines in train stations/electronics stores/music stores that would have the ranked singles of the week/month or certain albums and you'd put a re-writable minidisc into the machine and get your song for a hundred yen or so.
Ya, I did. I remember buying all sorts of accessories and stuff in Japan for my MD player since there was just so much selection there.
 
Oct 26, 2017
1,935
#46
I had two over the space of a few years, great little devices. I held out for a while but eventually the convenience of MP3 players won me over. They had a fantastic mechanical feel to them and sliding the MD in then snapping the device closed felt really cool.
 
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signal
Oct 28, 2017
11,924
#49
The remote was amazing at the time in my opinion. I was envious of those that had a remote with a display. Look at that beauty:
It was bad in some designs like the extremely thin / minimal walkmans and maybe discmans / md players as well since some of the functions were only available on the remote so if you lost it then rip
 
Oct 25, 2017
5,903
#50
I think the mini-disc cases were meant to be looked at. the mini-disc itself is about as featureless as it gets. The cases are pretty for a reason, frend.