I noticed with interest that in James Jolly's article "A basic guide to downloading", the following was mentioned:
‘I’ve a huge CD collection which I still want to listen to…’
Most people’s MP3 players contain a combination of music that they’ve ripped (ie transferred from CD to their computer’s hard-drive) and music that has been downloaded (the proportion is invariably a single-figure percentage of downloaded music). It makes sense to load your computer (especially if you are planning to take your music with you) with your favourite recordings and then supplement them with downloads as necessary. If you’ve a laptop, why not store some music there, then you’ll always have something for those unplanned-for delays when music is the only balm!
I thought it worth mentioning that there is a common misconception regarding UK copyright laws. Many people are under the impression that it is perfectly legal to copy music from one format to another, if it is for personal use only. Unless the law has changed very recently, and the Government's IPO website (link below to the FAQ) has not been updated to reflect this, the law still states that it is not legal to copy music from one source to another. In other words, you are breaking the law if, for example, you rip music from a CD on to your hard-drive, or on to your MP3 player, or you make another copy of the CD for your car stereo.
I'll admit that until recently, I was one of the many people who were under the impression that this sort of copying of music was legal, and this practice is so common place that it's not something that I imagine would rarely, if ever, result in a prosecution under the UK copyright laws. The fact that this method of copying music is suggested in a Gramophone article does not actually surprise me, considering how widespread this misconception about the copyright law is, but I thought I should mention this point as I don't believe that Gramophone would want to be suggesting that their readers should endulge in illegal activity!