DRM-Free Classical Music: Deutsche Grammophon Launches Online MP3 Store

Apparently Universal Music Group – which has been dipping its toes into DRM-free waters this year – is none too worried about music pirates getting into classical music. Deutsche Grammophon, a German classical music company founded in 1898 and owned by Universal, will be launching on Wednesday an online store for MP3s called DG Web Shop.

The store will offer 24,000 albums and box sets encoded in a delectable 320 kbps (over the more standard 128-192 kbps). Six hundred of these albums are no longer available on CDs.

Albums will cost between $/€11-12 and tracks will be priced at $/€1.29 each, making purchases peculiarly cheaper for Americans. The site will be available in 42 countries and offer other things like album booklets, promotional videos, and tour information.

It may be worth noting that classical music receives less legal protection than contemporary music because only its recorded performances, not its compositions, are still under copyright.