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Vinyl sales are beating downloads, but which does it say more about?

A dramatic renaissance in the popularity of vinyl and the decline in digital music purchases has resulted in a previously unthinkable anomaly… last week, the former brought in more money than the latter.

Official figures showed vinyl sales were worth £2.4 million in the UK, compared to the $2.1m amassed from digital downloads.

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The stat represents a dramatic turnaround as this time last year vinyl raked in revenue of £1.2m compared to £4.4m in digital music sales.

In the meantime, subscription streaming services have become far more mainstream, while supermarkets and other high-street stores have jumped on the vinyl bandwagon.

Experts believe there’s no secret regarding the timing of the landmark, with the festive giving season rapidly approaching.

We have a new generation buying vinyl, lots of teenagers and lots of people under 25, who now want to buy their favourite artists on vinyl and have something a bit more tangible, a bit more collectible,” Kim Bayley, head of the  Entertainment Retailers Association told the Guardian.

“People have become keen to support their favourite artists by buying into that ownership concept. It’s very difficult to demonstrate your love of an artist if you don’t have something to hold on to.”

However, just because vinyl is raking in more cash and has stretched its growth streak to eight straight years, it doesn’t mean records are outselling downloads just yet.

Whereas an iTunes download might cost £9.99, the vinyl equivalent is often upwards of £20.

“The mark-up on vinyl now is ridiculous” said Sean Forbes of the iconic Rough Trade record store in London.

Although, the resurgence “makes a change from all the people visiting London who always come in just to buy The Clash London Calling on vinyl, which personally we think is a bit moronic,” he added.

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Have you joined the vinyl revolution or simply stopped buying digital music downloads in favour of Apple Music et al? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

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