A lot of people have no idea that the technology behind compact discs dates back to the 1970s. Other than a few minor tweaks, the CDs that we buy today work on technology that’s more than 40 years old. And it’s been really hard to update things, because if we did, people would have to buy all kinds of brand new gear and that wouldn’t work. However, there have been other attempts at making things better.
For example, there was something from Japan called SHM CDs, which were developed by JVC and Universal Music Japan. “SHM” stands for “super high material” and was a spin-off from research done into making better LCD screens. The material used makes the data side of the disc more transparent, which means it can be read more accurately by the laser. SHM CDs are only available mainly in Japan–but I’ve bought a couple and you know what? They DO sound better than the standard CD. Really.