IA's own music collections are great sources of artwork

This is a bit circular because images uploaded on MB also end up on the IA, but here’s something I just realized that I don’t think is well-known:

The IA has collections of hundreds of thousands of releases, which are mostly available as samples only, but even for those they have complete high-resolution scans of the artwork, and the images are free to download. For freely downloadable releases you can download the images.zip file with the original scans in lossless PNG, but even for those available as samples you can download the jp2.zip file with all the images in JPEG 2000 — still much better quality and resolution than any source I know. The collections are here:

I just found the artwork for a favourite album that I didn’t have in physical form, and it was nice to be able to add all that data. Well worth taking a look if you don’t have the artwork for one release.


Yep; I was talking to @aerozol about this last night.

I am making an effort to go through and grab loads of great data from here when I can but the amount over there is genuinely life-ending levels of commitment! :stuck_out_tongue:

The great thing are those 12" record sleeve scans with no stitching required :open_mouth:

Also don’t forget the 78 RPM shellacs they have available too.

Of course many of the content is going to be US centric releases, but there’s a lot from Europe that appears now and then.


Yeah, even just the ones with downloadable music, I always see so much good stuff I end up giving up…

But I knew that, what I didn’t know is that the full artwork is available to download, even the music isn’t.

That’s definitely true about the downloadable music, very US-centric. What’s surprising to me, and why thought I should share this, is that it isn’t true for the CDs. The CD collection is really wide. The one I mentioned is fado music from Portugal. I also noticed they have a Chinese rare-ish single CD I recently scanned and uploaded to MB. I looked for it before online and didn’t even find the cover.This really impressed me!

With Chinese music, one thing to be careful about is that they seem to be based in Hong Kong and are using traditional Chinese even for releases that are in simplified Chinese, so you won’t find it if you look for the title as it was published. Maybe there are similar issues with other international releases, but there’s definitely a lot of those!