Universal Music Classics & Jazz is trialling DRM-free downloads.

Visitors to UCJ's official download site, www.classicsandjazz.co.uk can sign up to the new "Dress Circle" section of the service, when enables consumers to buy any UCJ album or single track in the MP3 format.

MP3-files are priced the same as downloads in the existing WMA format, which are still available. Consumers who have already purchased an album from the site will be offered a free upgrade to MP3.

"The online music market is evolving quickly and we want to explore the way forward thoroughly and responsibly," comments UCJ managing director Dickon Stainer, in a statement.

"By making our entire catalog available in an open MP3 format we will have the opportunity to assess the level of demand," Stainer adds, "the effect on the wider music download market and of course whether we will have a problem with piracy."

At the same time, UCJ has launched a points-based loyalty system. Through the initiative, consumers who sign-up to the "Dress Circle" will receive 50 points for each MP3 album purchased. After gathering 500 points, users qualify for a £5 ($10) discount from a future album purchase. Users can also earn 100 points for recommending an album to a friend, who then goes on to buy the set at UCJ's site.

UCJ launched its download service in January, boasting what it claimed was the largest online destination for classical and jazz genre downloads, starting with more than 125,000 titles priced from £0.79 ($1.53) per track.