Vinyl and CD sales top $1.5 billion, beating downloads in United States

The stacks of wax hit $395 million in sales for 2017 in the United States.

The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) has crowned physical copies of music king of the US market for 2017 with a report just released showing that sales of LPs, and CDs hit $1.5 billion, versus $1.3 billion for digital downloads (all prices in USD).

The breakdown is thus: $395 million for vinyl (up 10 per cent), and $1.1 billion for CDs (down six per cent).

The report also revealed that online streaming services – or as I call it ghost music – account for 65 per cent of the market in the United States, with $5.7 billion in revenue for 2017, up from $4 billion in 2016.

So, it seems that while music lovers are still slapping down those dollar bills for the hard discs, they are also putting their credit cards where their hard drives used to be, and ponying up for non-physical formats.

Check out the entire 2017 RIAA report here.

–Rafe Arnott




About Rafe Arnott 389 Articles
Editor of InnerFidelity and AudioStream


  1. Not surprising to me. That little shiny disc and LP still sound better than any download we ever heard.
    Give me 44.1 done right and a dedicated transport any day of the week.

  2. I can’t say I’m surprised. I haven’t bought a CD since I installed/joined Roon/Tidal (I own well over 2k from the “old days”). I was never much for downloads, though I do have a few high-rez downloads floating around my SSD. Those numbers pretty much match my experience/preferences.

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