A sign of the times?


Overheard comment by a young guy trying to impress his girlfriend at a recent HiFi show.
" Downloads will never sound as good as CDs. CDs are just so much warmer."

jolymill
I’m surprised he wasn’t extolling vinyl.  Was his girlfriend bored stiff?
If the alleged editorial comment at the Hifi show was indeed actually uttered, it’s a stupid comment based on its face unworthy of further mention  ..... full stop. 

You hear a lot of stuff................here too.

In this case it makes no difference as long as she was impressed with his superior knowledge. Whether he was right or not is immaterial. 
Probably true, as long as CDs are treated, obviously.
His girlfriend was all agog at the depth of his knowledge. His acne was positively glowing with pride.
@ jolymill, now that got me laughing, a lot. Awesome! :)
jolymill

to my ears, downloads/files have an artificial smear that a CD/SACD disc does not.  A physical disc can sound warmer, yes.  Happy Listening!
I think this is highly amusing, obviously the reference being say 30 years ago it would have been vinyl vs CD with vinyl being warmer.

A sign of the times indeed Where it can be " claimed"a CD sounds warmer than downloads.

Very funny but likely quite true in some circumstances.
It just show how the paradigm has shifted. 
All laughter aside it could be that there is something to this in some circumstances as uberwaltz and jafant point out. I'm sure most of us here are aware of the audible differences between CD players so it stands to reason that a disc played on a good CD player could easily sound different (warmer perhaps?) to an identical downloaded file played on a computer or inferior DAC.

In my own case I use a SACD transport and external DAC with digital downloads being played via the same DAC and I can detect no difference given identical bit/sample rates. 
There are a lot of factors at play.  Was the kid at the show using the same DAC for CDs and downloads?  Are his downloads MP3?  Does he play downloads from a garden variety PC or fom a dedicated renderer?  Has the PC been optimized for audio playback?  Did he wash his hands before playing CDs or does he have a layer of his pimple cream smearing the disc?
  The main point in the OP is that at least among one young Audiophile, CD seems to have the same retro niche that formerly was associated with vinyl.  Personally, I would love it if CDs and SACDs make a resurgence a la vinyl, but I am not expecting it to happen