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History of Sound Recording

  • Period: to

    Analogue Era

  • Edouard Leon Scott First Sound Recording in PhonoAutograph

    Edouard Leon Scott First Sound Recording in PhonoAutograph
  • Edison works to improve Bell's telephone

    Edison works to improve Bell's telephone
    There were quite a few ways that Edison thought the telephone could be improved. In Bell’s telephone, it was only the vibrations made by the human voice that were turned into electric currents and could be heard on the other line. Because of the sounds were very faint, and even fainter over long distances. Edison chose something different; on his machine, the voice made a valve open or close, and this made a better current than the one before.
  • Emile Berliner's Grammophone Patented

    Emile Berliner's Grammophone Patented
  • Valdemar Poulsen's telegraphone patented

    Valdemar Poulsen's telegraphone patented
    Telegraphone = Magnetic Wire Recorder
    <img src="" /> Wire recording is a type of analog audio storage in which a magnetic recording is made on thin steel or stainless steel wire.
  • Edison Introduces inexpensive Phonograph

    Edison Introduces inexpensive Phonograph
    Edison introduced his smallest and lowest cost phonograph to compete with the falling prices, the Gem. This machine cost 10 dollars and could only play records, whereas his earlier models either came with a recording device or one could be purchased for them. A very basic version of the Gramophone came out shortly after the Gem selling for 3 dollars. It was called the Toy.
  • First JukeBox Style Machine

    First JukeBox Style Machine
    The Automatic Entertainer was the first Juke Box style machine. It was created by John Gabel and was produced by the Automatic Machine and Tool Company. The Automatic Entertainer had a magnetic coin detector and was run by a hand wound spring motor. Winding the motor changed the record and needle at the same time. It had twenty four ten inch records which could be chosen by turning a knob. It was encased on three sides with glass. The cabinet was over 5 feet tall with a large horn coming from th
  • Victrola Introduced by Victor

    Victrola Introduced by Victor
    The Victrola was introduced by Victor. This new machine had an internal horn. Its diameter evenly decreased from the largest end to the smallest. The unit was completely concealed and looked like a fine cabinet. The Victrola became so popular that in conversations Victrola was often used to describe any brand of Talking Machine.
  • Pre-20's: Early Recordings

    Pre-20's: Early Recordings
    "At the beginning of the twentieth century, recordings were all made "direct to disc." The storage/playback media were either wax xylinders or shellac disks that were cut live, one at a time. These discs were then played back on one form or another of phonograph (predecessors to the "modern" turntable.)"
  • Devopment of Vacuum Tube Amplifier

    Devopment of Vacuum Tube Amplifier
  • Development of Condenser Microphone

    Development of Condenser Microphone
    he first high quality, wide range
    condenser microphone was developed by E. E. Wente at Bell
    Labs as a measurement standard. In order to
    satisfy the high-quality microphone requirements of the rapidly
    growing radio broadcast and recording industries, Western
    Electric introduced the 394 condenser microphone;
    subsequently RCA came out with the 4AA condenser
    mic. Mic History Resource
  • 78rpm becoming standardized speed

    78rpm becoming standardized speed
    By 1925, the speed of the record was becoming standardized at a nominal value of 78 rpm
  • Period: to

    Magnetic Era

  • First Automatic Answering Machine

    First Automatic Answering Machine
    Mr. Willy Müller invented the first automatic answering machine in 1935. This answering machine was a three-foot-tall machine popular with Orthodox Jews who were forbidden to answer the phone on the Sabbath.
  • Audio Recorded optically onto edge of 35mm tapes

    Walt disney's fantasia in 1939 recorded stereophonically on 35mm
  • Diagram: Audio Setup through the 1940s

    Diagram: Audio Setup through the 1940s
    <img src="">
    Audio Recording Setup through the 1940s. Mics feed individual preamps and level controls, which collectively feed a drive amp and cutting stylus. Still direct-to-disc and mono.
  • LP adopted as standard by entire record industry

    LP adopted as standard by entire record industry
    The LP (Long Play), or long-playing microgroove record, is a format for phonograph (gramophone) records, an analog sound storage medium. Introduced by Columbia Records in 1948, it was soon adopted as a new standard by the entire record industry.
  • Start of Magnetic Tape Recording

    Start of Magnetic Tape Recording
    The late 1940s was the start of Magnetic Tape Recording in the US. It initially was only used as a safety backup to direct-to-disc recording and was also the standard for prerecorded radio broadcast.
  • Audio Recording Setup Through early 1950s

    Audio Recording Setup Through early 1950s
  • Beginning of Stereo Recording

    The beginning of Stereo Recording Caused a need for stereo (ganged) equalizers and faders as well as pan knobs "panpots"
  • Westrex Stereo Disc = American Standard

    The Record Industry Association of America decided to make the Westrex stereo disc system as the American standard.
  • The first stereophonic disc records were released.

    The first stereophonic disc records were released.
  • First Cassette Player

    First Cassette Player
    The first tape cassette player available in the U.S. was a portable model made by the Norelco Company, the Carry Corder.
  • 8 track created

    8 track created
    The Lear Jet Company created an eight track stereo tape cartridge with continuous looping tape. The Motorola Company manufactured them. The Ford Motor Company offered these as an option in their luxury cars. The RCA Company offered the prerecorded eight track tapes to consumers.
  • First Reel to Reel Decks

    First Reel to Reel Decks
    The first digital audio recorders were reel-to-reel decks introduced by companies such as Denon (1972), Soundstream (1979) and Mitsubishi. They used a digital technology known as PCM recording.
  • Creation of CD

    Creation of CD
    Philips was working on a digital audio disc playback system, DAD. Working with Philips, Sony developed an improved method of encoding digital sound. The PCM chip was also used. Their combined work led to the creation of the CD.
  • Walkman Introduced

    Walkman Introduced
    Sony introduced the Walkman cassette player. This player was called the Walkabout. It was a very small battery powered player with little headphones. Other major companies followed Sony into the small personal cassette player market. In the next six years, the Walkman would be much improved upon. The small personal cassette players sold by the millions.
  • The commercial sale of the new standard CD was introduced.

    The commercial sale of the new standard CD was introduced.
    The commercial sale of the new standard CD was introduced.
  • Period: to

    Digital Era

  • CD's outsell vinyl records

    CD's outsell vinyl records
    The compact disc sold slowly. In 1988 CDs finally out sold vinyl records. The cassette tape was still the top seller.
  • DAT invented

    DAT invented
    Sony made DAT, Digital Audio Tape, available to the American public. The Data Discman, a palm sized unit that could play back sound and images, was created.
  • ADAT invented

    ADAT invented
    Alesis Digital Audio Tape or ADAT is a magnetic tape format used for the simultaneous digital recording of eight analog audio or digital audio tracks at once, onto a Super VHS tape that is used by consumer VCRs.
  • DVD format invented

    DVD format invented
    DVD is an optical disc storage format, invented and developed by Philips, Sony, Toshiba, and Panasonic in 1995. DVDs offer higher storage capacity than Compact Discs while having the same dimensions.
  • MP3 Compression Begins...

    MP3 Compression Begins...
    MPEG 2 Audio Layer III, or MP3 is a patented encoding format for digital audio which uses a form of lossy data compression that works by reducing accuracy of certain parts of sound that are considered to be beyond the auditory resolution ability of most people. This method is commonly referred to as perceptual coding. It uses psychoacoustic models to discard or reduce precision of components less audible to human hearing, and then records the remaining information in an efficient manner.
  • Max Matthews Dies at 84 (inventor of MUSIC software)

    Max Matthews Dies at 84 (inventor of MUSIC software)
    Mr. Mathews wrote the first program to make it possible for a computer to synthesize sound and play it back. He also developed several generations of computer-music software and electronic instruments and devices. He was an engineer at Bell Laboratories in Murray Hill, N.J., in 1957 when he wrote the first version of Music, a program that allowed an IBM 704 mainframe computer to play a 17-second composition of his own devising.