The compact disc turns 40 YEARS OLD today. The first CDs came out in 1982, they cost more than $20 each, and CD players cost more than $1,000. The "first" release on CD was "52nd Street" by Billy Joel.
To celebrate, here are a few facts about CDs:
1. The very first CD was produced at a German factory in August of 1982. It's unclear what it was so technically, it's possible that it was an early recording from David Hasselhoff, but probably not.
2. The "first" CD to be released commercially came out in Japan in October of that year, 1982. It was "52nd Street" by Billy Joel, which wasn't a new release. It was originally put out on vinyl in 1978.
3. It seems random to suddenly be selling "52nd Street" on a shiny disc no matter how much you like "Zanzibar" but that wasn't actually the case. There were 50 albums released on CD at once . . . "52nd Street" just gets the special distinction because it had the first catalog number.
4. The first commercially produced CD player was the Sony CDP-101. In 1982, it cost about $1,000, although some deluxe players went for more than $1,500. By the mid '80s, the average player sold for $300 to $600.
5. The first CDs cost more than $20 apiece. By the mid '80s, they settled into a range of $11 to $15. Although, that was around $30 in today's money.