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Encyclopedia > Sound recording

Methods and media for sound recording are varied and have undergone significant changes between the first time sound was actually recorded for later playback until now. Historical records of events have been made for thousands of years in one form or another. ... Playback could mean: Playback singing, a practice in Bollywood musicals. ...

Contents


Technology

Mechanical recording

The first devices for recording sound were mechanical in nature.


In 1796 a Swiss watchmaker named Smooth Nikola described his idea for what we now call the cylinder musical box. This can be considered an early method of recording a melody, although it does not record an arbitrary sound and does not record automatically. "Playback" however is automatic. A musical box (or music box) is a 19th century automatic musical instrument that produces sounds by the use of a set of pins placed on a revolving cylinder or disc so as to strike the tuned teeth of a steel comb. ...


The Player piano was a device that could playback a piano performance which had earlier been mechanically recorded onto a piano roll. The player piano is a type of piano that plays music without the need for a human pianist to depress the normal keys or pedals. ... A grand piano A piano is a keyboard instrument, which is widely used in western music for solo performance, chamber music, and accompaniment, and also as a convenient aid to composing and rehearsal. ...


The first recording of sound waves

In 1857, Leon Scott invented the 'phonoautograph', the first device to record arbitrary sound. It used a membrane (which vibrated in response to sound) attached to a pen, which traced a line roughly corresponding to the sound's waveform onto a roll of paper. Although able to record sound, the phonoautograph was unable to play back the recording; it was of little use other than as a laboratory curiosity. (In one laboratory experiment, a phonoautograph recording was photoengraved onto a metal plate, creating a groove, which was then played back). 1857 was a common year starting on Thursday (see link for calendar). ... Edouard-Leon Scott de Martinville (1817–April 26, 1879) is best known for inventing the phonautograph, the earliest known sound recording device (which, unlike Edisons similar and later invention, was unable to play back the recordings it made). ...


The phonograph and the gramophone

The phonograph built expanding on the principles of the phonoautograph. Invented by Thomas Edison in 1877, the phonograph was a device with a cylinder covered with a soft material such as tin foil, lead, or wax on which a stylus drew grooves. The depth of the grooves made by the stylus corresponded to change in air pressure created by the original sound. The recording could be played back by tracing a needle through the groove and amplifying, through mechanical means, the resulting vibrations. A disadvantage of the early phonographs was the difficulty of reproducing the phonograph cylinders in mass production. Edison cylinder phonograph from about 1899 The phonograph, or gramophone, was the most common device for playing recorded sound from the 1870s through the 1980s. ... Thomas Alva Edison (February 11, 1847 - October 18, 1931) was an inventor and businessman who developed many important devices. ... 1877 was a common year starting on Monday (see link for calendar). ... A right circular cylinder In mathematics, a cylinder is a quadric, i. ... Tin foil or tinfoil is a thin leaf made of tin. ... This article is about the chemical element. ... Wax has traditionally referred to a substance that is secreted by bees (beeswax) and used by them in constructing their honeycombs. ... Styli used in writing in the Fourteenth Century. ... A schematic representation of hearing. ... The earliest method of recording and reproducing sound was on phonograph cylinders. ...


This changed with the advent of the gramophone (phonograph in American English), which was patented by Emile Berliner in 1887. The gramophone imprinted grooves on the flat side of a disc rather than the outside of a cylinder. Instead of recording by varying the depth of the groove (vertically), as with the phonograph, the vibration of the recording stylus was across the width of the track ( horizontally). The depth of the groove remained constant. Berliner called this audio disc a "gramophone record", although it was often called a "phonograph record" in U.S. English. American English (AmE) is the dialect of the English language used mostly in the United States of America. ... A patent is a set of exclusive rights granted by a state to a person for a fixed period of time in exchange for the regulated, public disclosure of certain details of a device, method, process or composition of matter (substance) (known as an invention) which is new, inventive, and... Emile Berliner (May 20, 1851 - August 3, 1929) was an inventor, best known for developing the disc record gramophone (phonograph in American English). ... 1887 (MDCCCLXXXVII) is a common year starting on Saturday (click on link for calendar). ... A gramophone record, (also vinyl record, phonograph record, LP record, or simply record) is an analogue sound recording medium consisting of a flat disc with an inscribed modulated spiral groove. ...


Early disc recordings and phonograph cylinders had about the same audio fidelity (despite the cylinder's theoretical advantages of constant linear groove speed and greater dynamic range of the hill-and-dale groove geometry). However, disc records were easier and cheaper to mass produce. From the beginning, the flat disks were easily mass-produced by a molding process, pressing a master image on a plate of shellac. Shellac is a brittle or flaky secretion of the lac insect Coccus lacca, found in the forests of Assam and Thailand. ...


Originally, cylinders could only be copied by means of a pantograph mechanism, which was limited to making about twenty-five copies—all of significantly lower quality than the original—while simultaneously destroying the original. During a recording session, ten or more machines could be ranged around the talent to record multiple originals. Still, a single performance could produce only a few hundred salable copies, so performers were booked for marathon sessions in which they had to repeat their performances over and over again. By 1902, successful molding processes for cylinder recordings were developed. This page is about the duplication instrument. ...


The speed at which the disks were rotated was eventually standardized at 78 rpm. Later innovations allowed lower rotations: 45 and 33⅓ rpm, and the material was changed to vinyl. rpm or RPM may mean: revolutions per minute RPM Package Manager (originally called Red Hat Package Manager) RPM (movie) RPM (band), a Brazilian rock band RPM (magazine), a former Canadian music industry magazine In firearms, Rounds Per Minute: how many shots an automatic weapon can fire in one minute On... A gramophone record, (also phonograph record - often simply record) is an analog sound recording medium: a flat disc rotating at a constant angular velocity, with inscribed spiral grooves in which a stylus or needle rides. ...


Both phonograph cylinders and gramophone discs were played on mechanical devices most commonly hand wound with a clockwork motor. The sound was amplified by a cone that was attached to the diaphragm. The disc record largely supplanted the competing cylinder record by the late 1910s. // Events and trends The 1910s represent the culmination of European militarism which had its beginings during the second half of the 19th Century. ...


The advent of electrical recording in 1925 drastically improved the quality of the recording process of disc records. Oddly, there was a period of nearly five years, from 1925 to 1930, when the premiere technology for home sound reproduction consisted of a combination of electrically recorded records with the specially-developed Victor Orthophonic phonograph, a spring-wound acoustic phonograph which used waveguide engineering and a folded horn to provide a reasonably flat frequency response. Electrically-powered phonographs were introduced c. 1930, but crystal pickups and electronic reproduction did not become common until the late 1930s. 1925 (MCMXXV) was a common year starting on Thursday (link will take you to calendar). ... 1925 (MCMXXV) was a common year starting on Thursday (link will take you to calendar). ... 1930 (MCMXXX) is a common year starting on Wednesday. ...


Magnetic recording

Magnetic recording was demonstrated in principle as early as 1898 by Valdemar Poulsen in his telegraphone. Magnetic wire recording, and its successor, magnetic tape recording, involve the use of a magnetizable medium which moves with a constant speed past a recording head. An electrical signal, which is analogous to the sound that is to be recorded, is fed to the recording head, inducing a pattern of magnetization similar to the signal. A playback head can then pick up the changes in magnetic field from the tape and convert it into an electrical signal. Valdemar Poulsen (1869 - 1942) was a Danish engineer. ... Magnetic tape is a non-volatile storage medium consisting of a magnetic coating on a thin plastic strip. ...


With the addition of electronic amplification developed by Curt Stille in the 1920s, the telegraphone evolved into wire recorders which were popular for voice recording and dictation during the 1940s and into the 1950s. The reproduction quality of wire recorders was low, however — significantly lower than that achievable with phonograph disk recording technology. Wire recorders could not prevent the wire from undergoing axial twisting, and hence could not ensure that the wire was oriented the same way during recording and playback. When oriented the wrong way, high frequencies were reduced and the sound was muffled. The hysteresis of the steel material resulted in nonlinear transfer characteristics, manifesting as distortion. There were other practical difficulties, such as the tendency of the wire to become tangled or snarled. Splicing could be performed by knotting together the cut wire ends, but the results were not very satisfactory. Wire recording is a type of analogue audio storage in which the recording is made onto thin steel or stainless steel wire. ... // Events and trends World War II was a truly global conflict with many facets: immense human suffering, fierce indoctrination, and the use of new, extremely devastating weapons such as the atomic bomb. ... // Events and No. ...


Early tape recorders were first developed in Germany. On Christmas day 1932 the British Broadcasting Corporation first used a tape recorder for their broadcasts. The device used was a Marconi-Stille recorder, a huge tape machine which used steel razor tape 3 mm wide and 0.08 mm thick. In order to reproduce the higher audio frequencies it was necessary to run the tape at a 90 metres per minute past the recording and reproducing heads. This meant that the length of tape required for a half-hour programme was nearly 3 kilometres and a full reel weighed 25 kg! Christmas (literally, the Mass of Jesus Christ) is a traditional holiday observed on 25 December. ... 1932 (MCMXXXII) was a leap year starting on Friday (the link will take you to a full 1932 calendar). ... This article is an overview article about the Crown chartered British Broadcasting Corporation formed in 1927. ... In general, a tape recorder, tape deck, cassette deck or tape machine is any device that records a fluctuating signal by moving a strip of magnetic tape across a tape head, which is a strong electromagnet. ...

7" reel of ¼" recording tape, typical of audiophile, consumer and educational use in the 1950s-60s
7" reel of ¼" recording tape, typical of audiophile, consumer and educational use in the 1950s-60s

Magnetic tape recording as we know it today was developed in Germany during the late 1930s by the C. Lorenz company and by AEG . In 1938, S. J. Begun left Germany and joined Brush Development Company in the United States, where work continued but attracted little attention. Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... // Events and trends A public speech by Benito Mussolini, founder of the Fascist movement The 1930s were described as an abrupt shift to more radical lifestyles, as countries were struggling to find a solution to the global depression. ... AEG (Allgemeine Elektrizitäts-Gesellschaft) (English Translation: General Electricity Company) is a German producer of electronics and electrical equipment. ... S. J. Begun, born in Hungary, in 1943 was Vice President of Research for Brush Developmet Company, Cleveland, OH. Brush’s main business was the production of piezo electric phonograph pickups, the least expensive and most widely used pickup of the late 1930’s. ... Brush Development Company’s main business in 1943 was the production of piezo electric phonograph pickups, the least expensive and most widely used pickup of the late 1930’s. ...


Engineers at AEG, working with the chemical giant IG Farben, created the world's first practical magnetic tape recorder, the 'K1', which was first demonstrated in 1935. During World War II AEG engineers discovered the AC biasing technique. A high-frequency signal, typically in the range of 50 to 150 kHz, is added to the audio signal before being applied to the recording head. This means that the magnetization is performed at levels in the most linear portion of the medium's transfer function. Biasing radically improved sound quality and enabled them to develop their recorders to new heights of technical excellence; by 1943 they had developed stereo tape recorders. IG Farben (short for Interessen-Gemeinschaft Farbenindustrie AG) was a German conglomerate of companies formed in 1925 and even earlier during World War I. IG Farben held nearly a total monopoly on the chemical production, later during the time of Nazi Germany. ... Combatants Allies: • Poland, • UK & Commonwealth, • France/Free France, • Soviet Union, • USA, • China, ...and others Axis: • Germany, • Italy, • Japan, ...and others Casualties Military dead: 17 million Civilian dead: 33 million Total: 50 million Full list Military dead: 8 million Civilian dead: 4 million Total: 12 million Full list World War II... Tape bias is a high-frequency signal (generally from 40 to 150 kHz) added to the audio signal recorded on an analog tape recorder. ...


During the war, the Allies became aware of radio broadcasts that seemed to be transcriptions (much of this due to the work of Richard H. Ranger), but their audio quality was indistinguishable from that of a live broadcast and their duration was far longer than was possible with 78 rpm discs. At the end of the war, the Allied capture of a number of German Magnetophon recorders from Radio Luxembourg aroused great interest. These recorders incorporated all of the key technological features of analog magnetic recording, particular the use of high-frequency "bias". When spelt with a capital A, Allies usually denotes the countries supporting the Triple Entente who fought together against the Central Powers in World War I and against the Axis Powers in World War II. For more information, see the related articles: Allies of World War I and Allies of... Richard Howland Ranger (1899-1961) was an American electrical engineer and inventor. ...


Development of magnetic tape recorders in the late 1940s and early 1950s is associated with the Brush Development Company and its licensee, Ampex; the equally important development of magnetic tape media itself was led by Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing corporation (now known as 3M). 1940 (MCMXL) was a leap year starting on Monday (the link is to a full 1940 calendar). ... 1950 (MCML) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ... Brush Development Company’s main business in 1943 was the production of piezo electric phonograph pickups, the least expensive and most widely used pickup of the late 1930’s. ... Ampex is based in Redwood City, California. ... This article is about the American company, for the Russian company involved in a pyramid scheme, see MMM (pyramid) 3M Company (NYSE: MMM) (until 2002 formally Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing Company) is an American corporation with a worldwide presence that produces over 55,000 products, including adhesives, abrasives, laminates, electronic...


American audio engineer John T. Mullin and entertainer Bing Crosby were key players in the commercial development of magnetic tape. Mullin served in the U.S. Army Signal Corps and was posted to Paris in the final months of WWII; his unit was assigned to find out everything they could about German radio and electronics, including the investigation of claims that the Germans had been experimenting with high-energy directed radio beams as a means of disabling the electrical systems of aircraft. Mullin's unit soon amassed a collection of hundreds of low-quality magnetic dictating machines, but it was a chance visit to a studio at Bad Neuheim near Frankfurt while investigating radio beam rumours, that yielded the real prize. John T. Jack Mullin (1913–1999) was an American pioneer in the field of electronic audio and video recording using magnetic tape. ... Bing Crosby Harry Lillis Bing Crosby (May 3, 1903 – October 14, 1977) was an American singer and actor whose career flourished from 1926 until his death in 1977. ... Skyline of Frankfurt (help· info) is the largest city in the German state of Hesse and the fifth-largest city in Germany. ...


Mullin was given two suitcase-sized AEG 'Magnetophon' high-fidelity recorders and fifty reels of recording tape. He had them shipped home and over the next two years he worked on the machines constantly, modifying them and improving their performance. His major aim was to interest Hollywood studios in using magnetic tape for movie sound recording.


Mullin gave two public demonstrations of his machines, and they caused a sensation among American audio professionals -- many listeners literally could not believe that what they were hearing was not a live performance. By luck, Mullin's second demonstration was held at MGM studios in Hollywood and in the audience that day was Bing Crosby's technical director, Murdo Mackenzie. He arranged for Mullin to meet Crosby and in June 1947 he gave Crosby a private demonstration of his magnetic tape recorders.


Crosby was stunned by the amazing sound quality and instantly saw the huge commercial potential of the new machines. Live music was the standard for American radio at the time and the major radio networks didn't permit the use of disc recording in many programs because of their comparatively poor sound quality. But Crosby disliked the regimentation of live broadcasts, preferring the relaxed atmosphere of the recording studio. He had asked NBC to let him pre-record his 1944-45 series on transcription discs, but the network refused, so Crosby had withdrawn from live radio for a year, returning for the 1946-47 season only reluctantly. NBC, formerly called the National Broadcasting Company, is an American television broadcasting company based in New York Citys Rockefeller Center. ...


Mullin's tape recorder came along at precisely the right moment. Crosby realised that the new technology would enable him to pre-record his radio show with a sound quality that equalled live broadcasts, and that these tapes could be replayed many times with no appreciable loss of quality. Mullin was asked to tape one show as a test and was immediately hired as Crosby's chief engineer to pre-record the rest of the series.


Crosby became the first major American music star to use tape to pre-record radio broadcasts, and the first to master commercial recordings on tape. The taped Crosby radio shows were painstakingly edited (by hand) to give them a pace and flow that was wholly unprecedented in radio. Mullin even claims to have been the first to use "canned laughter"; at the insistence of Crosby's head writer, Bill Morrow, he inserted a segment of raucous laughter from an earlier show into a joke in a later show that hadn't worked well. A laugh track or canned laughter is a separate soundtrack with the sound of audience laughter, made to be inserted into TV comedy shows and sitcoms. ...


Keen to make use of the new recorders as soon as possible, Crosby invested $50,000 of his own money into Ampex, and the tiny six-man concern soon became the world leader in the development of tape recording, revolutionising radio and recording with its famous Model 200 tape deck, issued in 1948 and developed directly from Mullin's modified Magnetophones.


Working with the brilliant Mullin, Ampex rapidly developed two-track stereo and then three-track recorders. Spurred on by Crosby's move into television in the early 1950s, Mullin and Ampex had developed a working monochrome videotape recorder by 1950 and a colour recorder by 1954, both created to tape Crosby's TV shows.


The typical professional tape recorder of the early 1950s used ¼" wide tape on 10½" reels, with a capacity of 2400 feet (730 metres). Typical speeds were initially 15 in/s (38.1 cm/s) yielding 30 minutes' recording time on a 2400 ft (730 m) reel. 30 in/s (76.2 cm/s) was used for the highest quality work. // Events and No. ... Since the widespread adoption of reel-to-reel audio tape recording in the 1950s, audio tapes and tape cassettes have been available in many formats. ...


Standard tape speeds varied by factors of two — 15 and 30 in/s were used for professional audio recording; 7½ in/s (19 cm/s) for home audiophile prerecorded tapes; 7½ and 3¾ in/s (19 and 9.5 cm/s) for audiophile and consumer recordings (typically on 7 in or 18 cm reels). 178; in/s (4.76 cm/s) and occasionally even 1516 in/s (2.38 cm/s) were used for voice, dictation, and applications where very long recording times were needed, such as logging police and fire department calls.


Multitrack recording

The next major development in magnetic tape was multitrack recording, in which the tape is divided into multiple tracks parallel with each other. Because they are carried on the same medium, the tracks stay in perfect synchronization. The first development in multitracking was stereo sound, which divided the recording head into two tracks. First developed by German audio engineers ca. 1943, 2-track recording was rapidly adopted for classical music in the 1950s because it enabled signals from two or more separate microphones to be recorded simultaneously, enabling stereophonic recordings to be made and edited conveniently. (The first stereo recordings, on disks, had been made in the 1930s, but were never issued commercially.) Stereo (either true, two-microphone stereo or multimiked) quickly became the norm for commercial classical recordings and radio broadcasts, although many pop music and jazz recordings continued to be issued in monophonic sound until the mid-1960s. Symbol for stereo Stereophonic sound, commonly called stereo, is the reproduction of sound, using two independent audio channels, through a pair of widely separated speaker systems, in such a way as to create a pleasant and natural impression of sound heard from various directions as in natural hearing. ... For the 1979 song by M, see Pop Muzik. ... Jazz is an original American musical art form originating around the early 1920s in New Orleans, rooted in Western music technique and theory, and is marked by the profound cultural contributions of African Americans. ... Monophonic can mean: In music, see: Texture (music). ...


Much of the credit for the development of multitrack recording goes to guitarist, composer and technician Les Paul, who also helped design the famous electric guitar that bears his name. His experiments with tapes and recorders in the early 1950s led him to order the first custom-built eight-track recorder from Ampex, and his pioneering recordings with his then wife, singer Mary Ford, were the first to make use of the technique of multitracking to record separate elements of a musical piece asynchronously — that is, separate elements could be recorded at different times. Paul's technique enabled him to listen to the tracks he had already taped and record new parts in time alongside them. Les Paul (born June 9, 1915) is best known as a guitarist, and as one of the most important figures in the development of modern electric instruments and recording techniques. ... An electric guitar is a type of guitar with a solid or semi-solid body that utilizes electronic pickups to convert the vibration of the steel-cored strings into electrical current. ... The Gibson Les Paul signature model is among the most recognized solid-body electric guitar designs. ... Mary Ford (born on July 7, 1928 with her original name Iris Colleen Summers) was one-half of a husband-wife musical duo; the other half being Les Paul. ...


Multitrack recording was immediately taken up in a limited way by Ampex, who soon produced a commercial 3-track recorder. These proved extremely useful for popular music, since they enabled backing music to be recorded on two tracks (either to allow the overdubbing of separate parts, or to create a full stereo backing track) while the third track was reserved for the lead vocalist. Three-track recorders remained in widespread commercial use until the mid-1960s and many famous pop recordings — including many of Phil Spector's so-called "Wall of Sound" productions and early Motown hits — were taped on Ampex 3-track recorders. Harvey Phillip Phil Spector (born December 26, 1940) is a highly influential American record producer who turned out some of the best-known popular music of the 1960s and 1970s. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Phil Spector. ... Motown Records, Inc. ...


The next important development was 4-track recording. The advent of this improved system gave recording engineers and musicians vastly greater flexibility for recording and overdubbing, and 4-track was the studio standard for most of the later 1960s. Many of the most famous recordings by The Beatles and The Rolling Stones were recorded on 4-track, and the engineers at London's Abbey Road Studios became particularly adept at a technique called "reduction mixes" in the UK and "bouncing down" in the United States, in which multiple tracks were recorded onto one 4-track machine and then mixed together and transferred (bounced down) to one track of a second 4-track machine. In this way, it was possible to record literally dozens of separate tracks and combine them into finished recordings of great complexity. The Beatles were a pop and rock music group from Liverpool, England, who continue to be held in the very highest regard for their artistic achievements, their huge commercial success, and their groundbreaking role in the history of popular music. ... The Rolling Stones are a British rock group who rose to prominence during the 1960s. ... Abbey Road Studios, created in November of 1931 by EMI in London, England, is best known as the legendary recording studio used by the rock bands Cliff Richard and The Shadows and The Beatles. ...


All of the Beatles classic mid-60s recordings, including the albums Revolver and Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, were recorded in this way. There were limitations, however, because of the build-up of noise during the bouncing-down process, and the Abbey Road engineers are still justly famed for the ability to create dense multitrack recordings while keeping background noise to a minimum.


4-track tape also enabled the development of quadraphonic sound, in which each of the four tracks was used to simulate a complete 360-degree surround sound. A number of albums including Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon and Mike Oldfield's Tubular Bells were released both in stereo and quadrophonic format in the 1970s, but 'quad' failed to gain wide commercial acceptance. Although it is now considered a gimmick, it was the direct precursor of the surround sound technology that has become standard in many modern home theatre systems. Quadraphonic sound uses four channels in which speakers are positioned at all four corners of the listening space, reproducing signals that are independent of each other. ... Pink Floyd (formed in 1965 in Cambridge, England) is an English rock band, noted for progressive compositions, philosophic lyrics, sonic experimentation, cover art, and elaborate live shows. ... This article is about the Pink Floyd album. ... Mike Oldfield on the album cover of Amarok (1990) Michael Gordon Oldfield (born May 15, 1953 in Reading, England) is a multi-instrumentalist musician and composer, working a style that blends rock or progressive rock, New Age Music, ethnic or world music, and classical music. ... Tubular Bells is a record album, written and mostly performed by Mike Oldfield and orchestrated by David Bedford. ... Home cinema, also called Home theater, seeks to reproduce cinema quality video and audio in the home. ...


In a professional setting today, such as a studio, audio engineers may use 24 tracks or more for their recordings, utilizing one or more tracks for each instrument played. An Audio Engineer is a person recording, editing, manipulating, mixing and mastering sound by technical means. ...


Magnetic audio tape can be easily and inaudibly spliced. The combination of the ability to edit via splicing, and the ability to record multiple tracks, revolutionized studio recording. It became common studio recording practice to record on multiple tracks, and mix down afterwards. The convenience of tape editing and multitrack recording led to the rapid adoption of magnetic tape as the primary technology for commercial musical recordings. Although 33⅓ rpm and 45 rpm vinyl records were the dominant consumer format, recordings were customarily made first on tape, then transferred to disk, with Bing Crosby leading the way in the adoption of this method in the United States. A gramophone record, (also phonograph record - often simply record) is an analog sound recording medium: a flat disc rotating at a constant angular velocity, with inscribed spiral grooves in which a stylus or needle rides. ...


Analog magnetic tape recording introduces noise, usually called "hiss", caused by the finite size of the magnetic particles in the tape. There is a direct tradeoff between noise and economics. Signal-to-noise ratio is increased at higher speeds and with wider tracks, decreased at lower speeds and with narrower tracks.


By the late 1960s, disk reproducing equipment became so good that audiophiles soon became aware that some of the noise audible on recordings was not surface noise or deficiencies in their equipment, but reproduced tape hiss. A few companies started making "direct to disk" specialty recordings, made by feeding microphone signals directly to a disk cutter (after amplification and mixing). These recordings never became popular, but they dramatically demonstrated the magnitude and importance of the tape hiss problem. The 1960s decade refers to the years from 1960 to 1969, inclusive. ...

audio cassette
audio cassette

Prior to 1963, when Philips introduced the Compact audio cassette, almost all tape recording had used the reel-to-reel (also called "open reel") format. Previous attempts package the tape in a convenient cassette that required no threading met with limited success; the most successful was 8-Track cartridge used primarily in automobiles for playback only. The Philips Compact audio cassette added much needed convenience to the tape recording format and quickly came to dominate the consumer market, although it was lower in quality than open reel formats. Download high resolution version (800x619, 67 KB) Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Download high resolution version (800x619, 67 KB) Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... 1963 (MCMLXIII) was a common year starting on Tuesday (the link is to a full 1963 calendar). ... Koninklijke Philips Electronics N.V. (Royal Philips Electronics N.V.), usually known as Philips, (Euronext: PHIA, NYSE: PHG) is one of the largest electronics companies in the world. ... Typical 60-minute Compact Cassette. ... A Sony TC-630 reel-to-reel recorder, once a common household object. ... A blank 8-track tape The 8-track cartridge is a now-obsolete audio storage magnetic tape cartridge technology, popular from the late 1960s to the early 1980s. ...


In the 1970s, advances in solid-state electronics made the design and marketing of more sophisticated analog circuitry economically feasible. This led to a number of attempts to reduce tape hiss through the use of various forms of volume compression and expansion, the most notable and commercially successful being several systems developed by Dolby Laboratories. These systems divided the frequency spectrum into multiple bands and applied volume compression/expansion independently to each band (Engineers now often use the term "compansion" to refer to this process). The Dolby systems were very successful at increasing the effective dynamic range and signal-to-noise ratio of analog audio recording; to all intents and purposes, audible tape hiss could be eliminated. The original Dolby A was only used in professional recording. Successors found use in both professional and consumer formats; Dolby B became almost universal for the compact cassette, both prerecorded and for home use. The 1970s decade refers to the years from 1970 to 1979, inclusive. ... The Dolby logo Dolby Laboratories, Incorporated (Dolby Labs) (NYSE: DLB) is a company specializing in audio compression and reproduction. ... Dolby NR is a noise reduction system developed by Dolby Laboratories for use in analogue magnetic tape recording. ... Typical 60-minute Compact Cassette. ...


In the 1980s, digital recording methods were introduced, and analog tape recording was gradually displaced, although it has not disappeared by any means. (Many professional studios, particularly those catering to big-budget clients, use analog recorders for multitracking and/or mixdown.) Digital audio tape never became important as a consumer recording medium partially because of legal complications arising from piracy fears on the part of the record companies. They had opposed magnetic tape recording when it first became available to consumers, but the technical difficulty of juggling recording levels, overload distortion, and residual tape hiss was sufficiently high that magnetic tape piracy never became an unsurmountable commercial problem. With digital methods, copies of recordings could be exact, and piracy might have become a serious commercial problem. Digital tape is still used in professional situations and the DAT variant has found a home in computer data backup applications. Many professional and home recordists now use hard-disk-based systems for recording, burning the final mixes to recordable CDs (CD-R's). Sterner hade fel! Elin har rätt som vanligt ...


Recording on film

The first attempts to record sound to an optical medium occurred around 1900. In 1906 Lauste applied for a patent to record sound on film, but was ahead of his time. In 1923 de Forest applied for a patent to record to film. In 1927 the sound film The Jazz Singer was released; while not the first, it made a tremendous hit and made the public and the film industry realize that sound film was more than a mere novelty. The Jazz Singer is a 1927 U.S. movie musical notable for being the first feature-length motion picture with talking sequences. ...


The Jazz Singer used a process called Vitaphone, a process that involved synchronizing the projected film to sound recorded on disk. It essentially amounted to playing a phonograph record, but one that was recorded with the best electronic technology of the time. Audiences used to acoustic phonographs and recordings would, in the theatre, have heard something resembling 1950s "high fidelity." Vitaphone was a sound film process used on several features and shorts produced by Warner Brothers in the late 1920s and early 1930s. ...


In the days of analog technology, however, no process involving a separate disk could hold synchronization precisely or reliably. Vitaphone was quickly supplanted by technologies which recorded a sound track optically directly onto the side of the strip of motion picture film. This was the dominant technology from the 1930s through the 1960s and is still in use as of 2004. 2004 is a leap year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ...


There are really two different types of synchronised film soundtrack, optical and magnetic. Optical sound tracks are visual renditions of sound wave forms and provide sound through a light beam and optical sensor within the projector. Magnetic sound tracks are essentially the same as used in conventional analog tape recording. See also list of optical topics. ... In physics, magnetism is a phenomenon by which materials exert an attractive or repulsive force on other materials. ... This article is about compression waves. ...


Optical soundtracks are prone to the same sorts of degradation that affect the picture: e.g. scratches, copying.


Magnetic soundtracks can be joined with the moving image but it creates an abrupt discontinuity because of the offset of the audio track relative to the picture. Whether optical or magnetic, the audio pickup must be located several inches ahead of the projection lamp, shutter and drive sprockets. There is usually a flywheel as well to smooth out the film motion to eliminate the flutter that would otherwise result from the pull-down mechanism. If you have films with a magnetic track, you should keep them away from strong magnetic sources, such as televisions. These can weaken or wipe the magnetic sound signal. Magnetic sound on an acetate base is also more prone to vinegar syndrome than a film with just the image. Acetate, or ethanoate, is the anion of a salt or ester of acetic acid. ... Vinegar syndrome [= VS] is a problem with cellulose triacetate film, in which it degrades and releases a smell resembling that of vinegar. ...


Unlike the film image that creates the illusion of continuity, sound tracks are continuous. This means that if you cut and splice film with a combined soundtrack, the image will cut cleanly but the sound track will probably produce a cracking sound. Fingerprints on the film may also produce cracking or interference.


Should you wish to use sound, there is of course no reason for employing either a magnetic or an optical sound track. You could use a secondary source to play alongside your images but bear in mind that precise synching may be difficult. If you do use a secondary source, make sure you look after and document it precisely, as you would with the film it accompanies. You might also want to keep yourself informed for the future by looking into the technological information and history of the medium of this other source. This page is a candidate to be moved to Wiktionary. ...


For optical recording on film there are two methods utilized. Variable density recording uses changes in the darkness of the soundtrack side of the film to represent the soundwave. Variable area recording uses changes in the width of a dark strip to represent the soundwave.


In both cases light that is sent through the part of the film that corresponds to the soundtrack changes in intensity, proportional to the original sound, and that light is not projected on the screen but converted into an electrical signal by a light sensitive device.


In the late 1950s the cinema industry, desperate to provide a theatre experience that would be overwhelmingly superior to television, introduced wide-screen processes such as Cinerama, Todd-AO, and CinemaScope. These processes at the same time introduced technical improvements in sound, generally involving the use of multitrack magnetic sound, recorded on an oxide stripe laminated onto the film. In subsequent decades, a gradual evolution occurred with more and more theatres installing various forms of magnetic-sound equipment. The original Cinerama system is a widescreen process which works by simultaneously projecting images from three synchronized 35 mm projectors onto a huge, deeply-curved screen, subtending 146º of arc. ... Todd-AO was a widescreen film format developed in the mid 1950s. ... Cinemascope, or more strictly CinemaScope, was a widescreen movie format used from 1953 to 1967. ...


In the 1990s, digital systems were introduced and began to prevail. Ironically, in many of them the sound recording is, as in Vitaphone, again recorded on a separate disk; but now, digital processes can achieve reliable and perfect synchronization.


Digital recording

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. Within a few years, however, many studios were using devices that encoded the digital audio data into a standard video signal, which was then recorded on a U-matic or other videotape recorder, using the rotating-head technology that was standard for video. A similar technology was used for a consumer format, Digital Audio Tape (DAT) which used rotating heads on a narrow tape contained in a cassette. DAT records at sampling rates of 48 kHz or 44.1 kHz, the latter being the same rate used on compact discs. Bit depth is 16 bits, also the same as compact discs. DAT was a failure in the consumer-audio field (too expensive, too finicky, and crippled by anti-copying regulations), but it became popular in studios (particularly home studios) and radio stations. A failed digital tape recording system was the Digital Compact Cassette (DCC). To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Pulse-code modulation (PCM) is a digital representation of an analog signal where the magnitude of the signal is sampled regularly at uniform intervals, then quantized to a series of symbols in a digital (usually binary) code. ... Sony U-matic VTR BVU-800 A U-matic tape U-matic is the name of a videocassette format developed by Sony in 1969. ... This article needs to be cleaned up to conform to a higher standard of quality. ... Digital Compact Cassette (DCC) was a short-lived sound recording format introduced by Philips and Matsushita late 1992. ...


Within a few years after the introduction of digital recording, multitrack recorders (using stationary heads) were being produced for use in professional studios. In the early 1990s, relatively low-priced multitrack digital recorders were introduced for use in home studios; they returned to recording on videotape. The most notable of this type of recorder is the ADAT. Developed by Alesis and first released in 1991, the ADAT machine is capable of recording 8 tracks of digital audio onto a single S-VHS video cassette. The ADAT machine is still a very common fixture in professional and home studios around the world. This is an article about the digital recording format. ... Alesis is a manufacturer of electronic musical instruments based in Cumberland, Rhode Island. ... Introduced in Japan in 1987, S-VHS (Super VHS) was an improved version of the VHS standard for consumer video cassette recorders. ...


In the consumer market, tapes and gramophones were largely displaced by the compact disc (CD) and a lesser extent the minidisc. These recording media are fully digital and require complex electronics to play back. The Compact Disc logo was inspired by that of the previous Compact Cassette. ... The Sony MZ1 MiniDisc player, the first to hit the market in 1992. ...


Digital sound files can be stored on any computer storage medium. The development of the MP3 audio file format, and legal issues involved in copying such files, has driven most of the innovation in music distribution since their introduction in the late 1990s. A computer file is a collection of information that is stored in a computer system and can be identified and referenced in its entirety by a unique name. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... MPEG-1 Audio Layer 3, more commonly referred to as MP3, is a popular digital audio encoding and lossy compression format invented and standardized in 1991 by a team of engineers directed by the Fraunhofer Society in Germany. ... The 1990s decade refers to the years from 1990 to 1999, inclusive. ...


As hard disk capacities and computer CPU speeds increased at the end of the 1990s, hard disk recording became more popular. At this writing (early 2005) hard disk recording takes two forms. One is the use of standard desktop or laptop computers, with adapters for encoding audio into two or many tracks of digital audio. These adapters can either be in-the-box soundcards or external devices, either connecting to in-box interface cards or connecting to the computer via USB or Firewire cables. The other common form of hard disk recording uses a dedicated recorder which contains analog-to-digital and digital-to-analog converters as well as one or two removable hard drives for data storage. Such recorders, packing 24 tracks in a few units of rack space, are actually single-purpose computers, which can in turn be connected to standard computers for editing. Typical hard drives of the mid-1990s. ... The clock rate is the fundamental rate in cycles per second, measured in hertz, at which a computer performs its most basic operations such as adding two numbers or transferring a value from one processor register to another. ... A hard disk recorder is a type of recording system that utilizes a high-capacity hard disk to record digital audio or digital video. ...


Digital sampling is another type of digital recording. Samples are created with a sampler or with software. Samples are typically short digital recordings used over and over. Digital sampling, PCM sampling, or just sampling is the process of representing a signal waveform as a series of numbers which represent the measurement of the signals amplitude, taken at regular intervals. ... An AKAI MPC2000 sampler A sampler is an electronic musical instrument that can record and store audio signal samples, generally recordings of existing sounds, and play them back at a range of pitches. ...


Technique

The earliest methods of recording sound involved the live recording of the performance directly to the recording medium. This was an entirely mechanical process, often called "Acoustical recording". The sound of the performers was captured by a diaphragm with the cutting needle connected to it. The needle made the groove in the recording medium.


To make this process as efficient as possible the diaphragm was located at the apex of a cone and the performers would crowd around the other end. If a performer was too loud then they would need to move back from the mouth of the cone to avoid drowning out the other performers. In some early jazz recordings a block of wood was used in place of the bass drum. Jazz is an original American musical art form originating around the early 1920s in New Orleans, rooted in Western music technique and theory, and is marked by the profound cultural contributions of African Americans. ... A bass drum is a large drum that produces a note of low definite or indefinite pitch. ...


The advent of electrical recording made it possible to use microphones to capture the sound of the performance. The leading record labels switched to the electric microphone process in 1925, and most other record companies followed their lead by the end of the decade. Electrical recording increased the flexibity and sound quality. However, the performance was still cut directly to the recording medium, so if a mistake was made the recording was useless. An Oktava condenser microphone. ... A record label is a brand created by companies that specialize in producing, manufacturing, distributing and promoting audio and sometimes video recordings (especially music videos), on various formats including compact discs, LPs, DVD-Audio, SACDs, and cassettes. ... 1925 (MCMXXV) was a common year starting on Thursday (link will take you to calendar). ...


Electrical recording made it more feasible to record one part to disc and then play that back while playing another part, recording both parts to a second disc. This is called over-dubbing. The first commercially issued records using over-dubbing were released by the Victor Talking Machine Company in the late 1920s. However overdubbing was of limited use until the advent of analog audio tape. Use of tape overdubbing was pioneered by Les Paul and is called 'sound on sound' recording. Studios thus could create recorded "performances" that could not be duplicated by the same artists performing live. The Victor Talking Machine Company (1901 - 1929) was a United States corporation, the leading American producer of phonographs and phonograph records and one of the leading phonograph companies in the world at the time. ... It has been suggested that Roaring Twenties be merged into this article or section. ... Les Paul (born June 9, 1915) is best known as a guitarist, and as one of the most important figures in the development of modern electric instruments and recording techniques. ...


The analog tape recorder made it possible to erase or record over a previous recording so that mistakes could be fixed. Another advantage of recording on tape is the ability to cut the tape and join it back together. This allows the recording to be edited. Pieces of the recording can be removed, or rearranged. See also audio editing, audio mixing, multitrack recording. In general, a tape recorder, tape deck, cassette deck or tape machine is any device that records a fluctuating signal by moving a strip of magnetic tape across a tape head, which is a strong electromagnet. ... In Music, Audio editing is the process of taking recorded sound and changing it directly on the recording medium. ... Audio mixing is used in sound recording, audio editing and sound systems to balance the relative volume and frequency content of a number of sound sources. ... Multitrack recording (multitracking or just tracking for short) is a method of sound recording that allows for the separate recording of multiple sound sources to create a cohesive whole. ...


The advent of electronic instruments (especially keyboards and synthesizers), effects and other instruments has led to the importance of MIDI in recording. For example, using MIDI timecode, it is possible to have different equipment 'trigger' without direct human intervention at the time of recording. An electronic musical instrument is a musical instrument that produces its sounds using electronics. ... Piano, a well-known instance of keyboard instruments A keyboard instrument is any musical instrument played using a musical keyboard. ... A synthesizer (spelling var. ... Musical Instrument Digital Interface, or MIDI, is a system designed to transmit information between electronic musical instruments. ... MIDI time code embeds the same timing information as standard SMPTE time code as a series of small quarter-frame MIDI messages. ...


In more recent times, computers (digital audio workstation) have found an increasing role in the recording studio, as their use eases the tasks of cutting and looping, as well as allowing for instantaneous changes, such as duplication of parts, the addition of effects and the rearranging of parts of the recording. It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Music workstation. ... A recording studio is a facility for sound recording. ... Cutting is the separation of a physical object, or a portion of a physical object, into two portions, through the application of an acutely directed force. ... For looping in computer programming, see program loop. ...


See also

Dummy head being used for binaural recording; the second microphone is obscured. ... An Oktava condenser microphone. ... This is a list of audio formats, used for the distribution of recordings of music and other audio information. ... High Fidelity is also the title of a book by Nick Hornby and a film directed by Stephen Frears, based upon Hornbys book. ...

Related links

Wikimedia Commons has media related to:
Sound recording
  • Keith Gemmell's Music Technology Site Many excellent resources.
  • WikiRecording is a free guide to audio recording based off of the same engine as Wikipedia.
  • Digital Domain contains some great tutorials by mastering engineer Bob Katz.

Image File history File links Commons-logo. ... The Wikimedia Commons (also called Commons or Wikicommons) is a repository of free content images, sound and other multimedia files. ...

Source

Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to:
recording
  • Middleton, Richard (1990/2002). Studying Popular Music. Philadelphia: Open University Press. ISBN 0335152759.
    • Bennett (1980).

  Results from FactBites:
 
U.S. Copyright Office - Sound Recordings Registration (237 words)
Sound recordings are “works that result from the fixation of a series of musical, spoken, or other sounds, but not including the sounds accompanying a motion picture or other audiovisual work.” Common examples include recordings of music, drama, or lectures (read details).
Copyright registration for a sound recording alone is neither the same as, nor a substitute for, registration for the musical, dramatic, or literary work recorded.
The underlying work may be registered in its own right apart from any recording of the performance, or in certain cases, the underlying work may be registered together with the sound recording (read details on choosing the correct form).
Digital Sound Recording (1380 words)
Sound fills the air all around us, and our ear is working all the time to filter out unimportant sound from our consciousness so we can pay attention to the important information.
The advantages of digital recordings are that the sound can be manipulated computationally, there is no degradation from an original to a copy, and the signal can be sent for long distances over telecommunications links without picking up noise.
A sound recorder may capture sound from a microphone (mic in) or from an audio device (line in).
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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