Automatic Record Changers: We used to like them


Have you ever run across a set of records
where something seems a little… off? Take a look at these. This album is across three
discs. Here’s disc one, side one. And on the back is side… six. The fu–? Side two is on the next disc? Alright then
I suppose we should find side five on the back of this one and… yeah. Sure enough,
we do. Only this last disc has any semblance of normalcy. It seems like it ought to be
disc two, seeing that it has sides 3 and 4, but no! This is disc three. Did they just suck
at numbers in the ‘60s? Well a few people did, I’m sure, but in
fact this apparently bizarre numbering scheme is quite logical. You see, this record set
was designed specifically to be used in an automatic record changer. Arranging the sides
like this was often called automatic sequencing. Now, as someone who lived until the age of
13 or 14 before ever using any sort of record player, the idea of a record changer seemed
laughable. See, I had grown up with one of these things (those shiny things are called compact discs, they held music on them, and this is a compact disc changer, it’s pretty neat I did some videos on these things, oh look a card) so when I heard of record changers I envisioned some really giant version of this. But in
fact record changers were nothing more than an ordinary looking phonograph save for two
modifications; an extraordinarily long and funky spindle, and a weird floating arm thing. These things are certainly not rare by any
means, in fact they were pretty standard fare in homes from the 1940’s through to the
1970’s. They eventually fell out of favor, and Audiophiles HATE them! but in this video
I’d like to pay tribute to the cleverness that is the automatic record changer. Let’s start with a field trip to the 1920’s.
By this point we had already decided that cylinders were the Betamax of sound formats
and were all in on disc. Only trouble was that the 78 RPM records of the day could only
hold between 3 and 5 minutes of music per side. So, having just settled in listening
to your favorite set of tunes, you’d quickly have to get back up and do some good ‘ol
fashioned disc jockeying. Well that’s no good, is it? So, we humans,
ever looking for problems to solve, set to work on enabling a more leisurely experience.
If this website I found is to be believed, the first record changer with a design similar
to this was invented by Eric Waterworth of Hobart, Australia in 1925. However, his invention
never made it to market, likely due to difficulties in getting records to play upside down. The first record changer to really find a
groove was the Automatic Orthophonic Victrola, by our friends at the Victor company. This
design, from 1927, used a rather precarious looking arrangement of stacked records held
at an angle. A weird hoop thing would rise up, grab a disc from the stack, place it gently
on the turntable, then it would be played once. And then the hoop thing would pick it
back up and not-so-gently drop it down a padded chute. I mean, it worked. But yikes! To give you an idea how desperate we were
for automated record playing, the Victor VE 10-50, the first and most basic model with
the automatic changer, retailed for $600, which is worth about $9,000 in 2019 money.
And if you think nobody bought them, you’d be wrong, as an estimated 12,000 of these
things were produced in 1927 alone. We wanted automation and we wanted it yesterday. But let’s fast forward a few decades. Throughout
the 1930’s, ‘40s, and 50’s, record changer development continued at a breakneck pace.
Plenty of clever innovations made their way into the hands of consumers, as well as plenty
of duds, but by the 1960’s (and especially into the ‘70s) we had pretty much settled
on this design. This Glenburn changer is one of many, many copies of the infamous BSR changer.
If you bought any sort of stereo in the late sixties to mid ‘70s, odds are it had something
really similar to this in it. I have heard both that Glenburns were considered cheap
knockoffs and that they’re better than your average BSR, so take that as you will. So. How does one use this clever contraption?
Let’s compare this rather standard turntable from Sony with our miraculous Glenburn. The Sony is a no-surprises affair. You put the record on the turntable, and you put the stylus on the disc. That’s about it. But this record player…. There’s, there’s
more to consider! There’s this … thing. And look at all these selector levers! I don’t
know, Winnifred, this looks pretty complicated! [in a 1960’s instructional demo voice]
Have no fear, as with a little knowledge and training, you’ll find a record-listening experience
that’s automatic beyond belief! First, lift the record stabilizer arm out of
the way. Next, be sure to select the appropriate diameter of the disc you’ll be playing.
This standard LP is a 12 inch disc, so we’ll set it to 12. Then, double check the speed
setting. 33 and a third and how! Now that we have all the settings dialed in, we can
place our record on the spindle. Uh-oh! It’s all wonky! Not to worry! Reposition the record
stabilizer, and we’ll be just one step away. With our record sitting neat and pretty, simply
switch on the turntable by moving the selector from Stop to Start, and then to Auto. It will
spring back to the Start position, but don’t worry! Automatic operation is underway! Now your record automatically drops into place, and the tone arm travels to the outer edge
to play it. Beautiful! When your record is over, the record player automatically returns the tone arm to the resting position, and even turns itself off! Plus, it secures the
tone arm in place. What marvels we enjoy today! But… wait. That’s just a real Rube Goldbergian
way to play a record automatically. What was the point of holding them up in the air like that? I’m glad you asked! The notched spindle
prevents the disc from falling until this actuator moves to the left. This action both
decreases the effective diameter of the spindle, allowing the disc to fall, and it also pushes
the disc past the lip it was resting on. But – and here’s the real kicker – thanks to
this second piece, we can place another disc on top! When the bottom record is pushed off
the ledge, the very piece that does the pushing prevents the disc above it from falling, too!
The result is a machine that will play a stack of discs automatically one-at-a-time! But… last time the record player stopped
when it was done playing. What’s to keep it from doing that again? Why, the record stabilizer, of course! Notice
how it rests higher-than-usual when braced against a record. This tells the record player
that there’s another disc to play! After the last disc has fallen, the lever drops
down, and now it knows it’s time to stop after this disc is done. It’s just like
magic! Well it’s not really like magic. Ha ha,
it sure is! The recor– No. Stop it. We’re done with that. This is actually one of the
most basic designs of record changer, as they really peaked in performance in the late 1950’s
and early ‘60s. After that, many of their more advanced features dwindled away. For
instance, many record changers could automatically determine the diameter of the discs, negating
the need for this selector. Some did this by using the tonearm to deliberately bump
into the edge of the disc it was about to play to determine its size. Other methods
were used, too, though a common theme with those machines was that mixed sizes of discs,
if they were supported at all, had to be stacked largest to smallest. Not always, but usually. Can you see now why this record set has the
sides in such a strange order? With this record player, it’s not weird at all! If you stack the three discs like this, with side one on the bottom, 2 in the middle, and three on
the top, then it will play each of those sides in that order. Then, flipping the entire stack
over plays the opposite sides in reverse sequence, so it will play side 4, then 5, and finally
6. Automatic sequencing of records goes back pretty much as far as record changers have been available. These rather delightful Looney
Tunes children’s sets are auto-sequenced, and, uh, they’re from 1948. But certainly
not everything was, awkward pause as I reach for another set of records, these selections
from Gilbert and Sullivan’s H.M.S. Pinafore are sequenced as normal. By the way, these
things – they’re called record albums. They’re like photo albums, but they hold records.
Before the advent of long-play records, a group of songs was sold in one of these record
albums. And that’s where the name comes from. Fun fact. The most clever thing about these machines,
at least from my perspective, is that their automatic functions are achieved using the
same motor that spins the turntable. This record changer, along with the vast majority
of others, is entirely mechanical. The tone arm’s movement, along with the dropping
of the next record, are driven off the turntable itself. In fact, with the record player unplugged,
we can make it go through its automatic routines by simply turning it by hand. Thanks to the miracle of precarious rigging,
we can watch what the mechanism does as it changes a disc. It’s all just a bunch of
cam drives, pushing on this and pulling on that. This piece here is attached to the tone
arm, and you can see how changing the size selector changes where the tone arm will stop. It’s really a fascinating bit of engineering cleverness. The designers were aware that any sort of
drag on the turntable is likely to introduce some wow and flutter, so the mechanism is
effectively disengaged from the turntable unless some sort of automatic function is
being performed. Of course it’s kind of impossible to convey this over video, but
I can definitely feel that it’s difficult to spin the turntable as it does its rigamorol,
but as soon as the tone arm settles to where it would be playing a disc, the mechanism
diesengages and it becomes much easier to rotate. In fact, there’s so little drag on
the turntable, pretty much just the friction of the motor and idler wheel, that it takes
a fair while to come to a stop. But, as soon as the tone arm makes it to the center, it
re-engages the mechanism, and now the turntable no longer spins freely. Actually, I suppose
I can convey this over video. Here. It’s spinning nice and fine but as soon as it starts
moving the tone arm… it quickly comes to a stop without the help of either my hand
or the motor to keep it along. Of course one of the downsides of this approach
is that the speed of the changing is impacted by the RPM of the records you’re playing
(in nearly all of these turntables). The movement is fairly graceful with long play records,
but introduce some 78s like those Looney Tunes ones we saw earlier into the mix and it
gets real herky jerky. These discs, by the way, are 10 inch discs so I’ve put the selector into the 10 position. And of course, if you happen to have a set of spoken-word or other records that play at the rather uncommon 16 and ⅔ RPM speed, the once-graceful movement
becomes annoyingly slow. Finally. And now let’s talk about why Audiophiles HATE them! First, let’s address the simple truth that some audiophiles apparently are incapable of appreciating. Most humans will happily make sacrifices to quality for convenience. I feel that needs repeating with greater emphasis. Most humans will *quite* happily make sacrifices
to quality if the experience is more convenient. If you value quality over all else, that is
fine. We salute you in your pursuit of perfection. But do not judge your fellow humans for tastes
that be different to yours, and do not try to convince us that our standards are too
low. Also–what is convenient is in the eye of the beholder. That deserves consideration, too. Alright, now that I’ve checked that off
my list, let’s start with the more tenuous concerns regarding record changers. Notice
that as more records get stacked, the angle of the tone-arm changes. This makes the angle
at which the stylus sits in the groove not-quite optimal, which may impact the quality of the
sound coming from the cartridge. Blasphemy! Let’s see how bad it really is, though.
Here’s what a record sounds like being played resting directly on the turntable. [Music
plays] Alright, and now stacked on top of 5 other records. [Music plays again, with
no appreciable change in quality. Even in person before the digitizing and compression that I and then YouTube did to it these sounded identical. Seriously, I think I have pretty good ears, and these two recordings in their uncompressed nature are indistinguishable in person through some pretty great headphones. But obviously my ears are just not good enough to enjoy music correctly] [Wow I didn’t know you could fit that much in one caption] I’ll even switch back and forth
repeatedly. Spot the difference! [A different track plays, with the recording switching
back and forth at random. It’s completely unnoticeable. But then again, I’m no audiophile (I just play one on TV)] Did you see that ludicrous display last night? Yeah, I can’t hear it either. OK, then the other, slightly more legitimate
concern is that the act of stacking discs is just plain bad for them! I mean, you don’t
want to just go around touching the surface of a vinyl record. Surely letting them rub
together when the stationary disc falls on the rotating one will result in a disaster! Well, not really. I mean, think about this for a second. The sound recording on a record
isn’t ON the surface of the disc. It’s below the surface, between the grooves. Sure,
in theory, a big piece of dust or other debris might cause cause some sort of a scratch during
the brief period of acceleration from stopped to moving, but generally discs rubbing against
each other proved to be pretty harmless. Again, the only parts that touch, under normal circumstances
anyway, are the tops of the groove walls which… don’t actually contain any of the sound. The one bit of damage that was known to occur
(and quite frequently, mind you) was a bit of chewing up on the label right around the hole,
especially for the discs on the bottom of a tall stack. You might potentially have the
weight of 4 or 5 vinyl–or even shellac–records resting on just this little shelf, and when
the disc gets pushed off of it, that might do some nasty things to the label. But I mean,
when you imagine a record as a delivery medium for the day’s popular music, and not a fragile
collector’s item to be protected, who cares? No seriously, now you’d shout bloody murder
over the wearing down of the center hole, but back when this was popular… not so much. Nevertheless, the general public did eventually
grow to view these as less-than-ideal for the preservation of their discs. It took a
great long while, though, as remember until the 1970’s a record changer was more-or-less
the norm. I think a few things contributed to their demise. First was the fact that the
truly elegant designs of the ‘50s and ‘60s were standardized into these cheaper, ineloquent
hunks of OK I guess. By the 1970’s, record changers had become pretty mediocre. Sure, they worked fine, and honestly this one sounds very nice (aside from the fact that it runs
ever-so-slightly too fast which infuriates me) But by the 1970’s, changers just weren’t
very good record players. And very good record players, almost without exception, weren’t changers. Additionally, the market was moving away from
monstrous console systems which these would fit nicely into, to more compact bookshelf
and component systems, meaning that the extra height and bulk of the changer suddenly became
a disadvantage. And lastly, and I’ll admit this is just me musing about human tendencies,
I think they just went out of style. Ya gotta admit this Sony unit is a whole lot sleeker
looking than its Glenburn counterpart. Yeah, it’s quite a bit newer, but without a tall
spindle and the extra depth required for the mechanism, it could save quite a bit of space
in the Z dimension. But regardless of who or what killed the changer,
I hope we can appreciate its cleverness for a little while longer. I especially like the
automatic sequencing, in my eyes it’s almost like a hack. And, one other thing I didn’t mention
about that–even on a manual turntable, assuming you’re willing to stack your records, it’s
arguably more convenient. Play side one, then put two on top of it, then three on top of
that. Flip the top record over to play four, flip the top two to play 5, and flip the whole
stack to play six. I suppose though if you’re unwilling to let the vinyl get a little cozy
with its partners, then yeah it’s a pain in the ass. Oh, and although we shunned the idea of stacking,
turntable automation didn’t die out completely. Fancier turntables could start a record automatically
with the press of a button. And while that’s a little advanced for this guy, he’s still
happy to return the tone arm for you and shut off. And of course, it also uses the movement
of the turntable to provide movement of the tonearm. Thanks for watching, and I hope you enjoyed
this video. Now comes the time where I thank the fine folks who support the channel on
Patreon, with a special thanks going to the people scrolling down your screen. Your support
has really been a life changer, and it’s making sure there’s always another video
waiting to drop. If you’d like to join these people in supporting the channel, check out
my Patreon page. Thanks for your consideration, and I’ll see you next time! ♫ sequentially smooth jazz ♫ That was real! YES!!! Ha ha ha! On the word
“Drop!” No video fakery this time, ha ha! I promise, that was actually real! I’m
so.. Yeah if you can’t tell by the smile on my face… uh. YES!! Let’s compare this rather standard turntable…
I used the hand motion wrong Other methods, other… ugh that was a really
good take and then we screwed it up. Then it will play each of those di – [stares
intensely at the camera] Should have thought that through, Jared. That’s
right, Clover. “You’re just coming up with names on the spot!” No I’m not! “Yes
you are!” Yes I am.

100 Replies to “Automatic Record Changers: We used to like them”

  1. Do not judge non-audiophiles

    Unless they listen to Apple AACs. In which case, judge the hell out of them because they are uncouth philistines who should be shunned from polite society.

  2. on the topic of where the word 'album' came from, its a pet peeve of mine when people think that 'album' only refers to vinyl records. there was a time in middle school my english teacher said something along the lines of "do you guys know what albums are?" referring to vinyl records

  3. Problem with spotting the difference is that this is after youtube has had its way with the audio.

  4. SUFJAN AND THEY MIGHT BE GIANTS hell yeah Tech Connect i was just revisiting factory showroom yesterday!

  5. Such flow, very narration. I don't know how you do it, man. Do you do continuous takes for all your explanations, or are you super-good at smoothing it out with transitions?

  6. My mom had a Sony all-in-one system back in the 70's when I was a kid (yes, all-in-one turntable/cassette (or 8-track!)/radios with speakers in the kit was a thing; I had one for myself from Radio Shack later on, loved it). Her turntable had a 5-disc changer that worked like the one you showed. It lasted all the way through from the late 60's (I think it was my dad's 1st wedding anniversary gift to her) to the late 80's or early 90's, I forget now. But try to make anything last that long these days! It was my first introduction to Sony, and from then I was hooked on Sony products, from the Walkman to the Trinitron TV's to the CD players, AV receivers, you name it (except I preferred Panasonic for my VHS VCR's). Anyway, toward the end of its life, that Sony all-in-one started having mechanical problems with the auto-return of the tone arm and things like that, so eventually my mom unfortunately had to finally give it away.

    Now that I've gotten my deep nostalgia out of my system, you forgot to mention one other key reason record changers stopped being made. People over the years got more and more mobile and busy with their lives, working longer hours and so forth, with less time to listen to music at home (hence less reason to listen to multiple records at once). In fact, I'm probably going to be blasted for this, but I'm very surprised that vinyl even made a comeback, since it's the only medium that really requires you to sit and listen to it, or at least be anchored at home even if you're doing household chores, to listen to records. I RARELY get a chance to really listen to music at home, especially with family always wanting to watch something or do something else. I would venture to say that most people listen to music ON THE GO – in the car, on public transit with earbuds or headphones, jogging, etc. A lot of people are too busy to just sit and listen to music at home (which is sad because it's a nice way to pause and decompress), although they might listen to ONE record at a time. Probably not five in a row.

  7. The main disadvantage of record changers is with each drop of a different record onto the platter the tonearm’s VTA (vertical tracking angle) changes unless you have a sophisticated turntable that can adjust for that. I have never seen one. This is one main reason audiophiles like myself hate them.

  8. Ooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooh. Album.. Very fun fact.
    I suppose that's why my dad always yells at me whenever I refer to an LP as an Album. To be pedantic. That's why.

  9. Did the SONY Both Sides Play Linear Tracking Turntable play both sides, a slight amount of wow and flutter.

  10. I had a Radio Shack combo unit: tuner, tape deck and record changer. It worked well, and sounded good to my teenage ears. Well, it worked until the piano key tape deck controls started breaking off. But yeah, it was a monster.

  11. There was actually a way that you could theoretically and quite possibly play a record in the reverse position called the Seeburg 1000

  12. Of course Technology Connections uses DiscoVision as his test track. (For those don't know, DiscoVision and LaserDisc are the same)

  13. Any "audiophile" who complains about a small loss in quality on vinyl is a moron. Using vinyl is by definition, a loss in quality. Vinyl is for the experience, the love of "mechanical" audio. Hating a fun and interesting idea for changing records because of a tiny difference in sound is quite literally, going against the whole idea of vinyl in the modern era.

  14. I've restored quite a few of these in the past year, and I'm surprised at how many people didn't know they existed, or if they did, how to work them.
    One of the things I have noticed is that they don't like at stack of the newer, heavy grade vinyl records. The drive just isn't designed for the excess weight, and so, if you're stacking more than one heavy gauge, or a heavy gauge with some lighter records, you start getting speed issues further down the stack. Quartz lock didn't exist back when these were popular.

  15. Very neat. I have a Bang and Olfson one from the 80s that you dont have to touch the arm, just push 33 or 45 and the turntable will adjust the speed appropriately and drop the needle exactly where it would need to go. There is (depending on model) an adjustment knob on the end of the arm that allows you to set the pressure and balance. After playing a record with a bad groove that I didnt notice it threw the tracking off and made me think that the needle was damaged. Luckily this adjustment knob fixed it and saved me from having to buy a $200 replacement needle, because you cannot use any aftermarket needle on a Bang and Olfson

  16. HMS Pinafore. Pronunciation: You pronounced it "peen-a-four", which is no surprise given where you live. Try "pin-a-four" for a more accurate representation of it's country of origin.

    Also.. just once, please pronounce it "lee-ver" not "le-ver" 🙂

  17. I suppose that I may be an audiophile, but I can still appreciate the changers.
    How about both sides play decks?
    Changers probably made more sense for singles (45 or 78), so as more people started listening on LP their popularity dwindled.
    Regarding most people preferring convenience, I would say that is true as it was the cassette that ousted LP's from the top spot before CD's came along.

    I once had a single (45) only changed that had a fat spindle that expanded to prevent slip.
    The arm would also rise for each record and it could play a stack of about 20 singles.

    Normal changers would often slip on the third record.
    Some records had grippers on the edges on the edge of their labels to try to prevent slip.
    I think that in the end, simple record decks were easier to use and more reliable, although I do like auto stop myself.

  18. In my memories we only ever use these for 45's and my dad had some interesting 78's that he would use the old mono record changer for as well, but for more serious 33 listening we got a completely manual Golding Lenco gl75. Sounded wonderful, it would play anything but only one at a time.

  19. I think the record that sits on top seems to be at a slightly higher pitch, But not enough to be noticeable in most circumstances.

  20. I hate to sound like a snob, but I legit hear more bass on the bottom disk than on the one stacked on 6 others

  21. You did a GR8 job there! Someone who has never seen or heard of an automatic record changer is transformed into an expert! Like MP3's of today, changers were not intended for audiophiles of the day. The teenieboppers loved using the toilet paper roll 45 rpm adapter to stack their 45's! Since most were "one hit wonders", flipping the whole stack over and playing the "flip side" was like…eww…what is this! 😝 Exception being the Beatle's. If the song on side one was #1 this week, the song on side 2 would be #1 the next week! You got a bonus!

  22. "Chastise audiophiles" – check! LOL 🙂 I really like how you can take a seemingly simple concept (a mechanical record changer) and explore it in such an interesting and fun way as to make it a fascinating journey of discovery. Great work – one of your best (and funniest!) videos yet.

  23. Fascinating video! This is a clever device. "Chastise Audiophiles" made me laugh out loud.

    I would personally not use one of these *nowadays*. However, if we were still in the 70s, and vinyl was my primary means of listening to music, I probably would have appreciated the convenience that this offers.

    That "Retro Grooves" record is really cool.

  24. What's truly impressive about auto-changers, and it's a pity you didn't show it, is what their insides look like whilst they're operating. All the ones I've seen, stunningly, are ENTIRELY mechanical – not electro-mechanical, mind you, just plain MECHANICAL – every last one of the complex, intermittent, carefully timed interacting motions is actuated entirely by springs, cams, ratchets, linkages, dash-pots and, basically, lots of greasy, incredibly-cunningly-shaped bits of metal rubbing against each other – all roughly punched and formed for cheap mass production, yet remarkably reliable. The only electrical component is the motor that turns the platter (and, occasionally, maybe ONE solenoid or microswitch to do something-or-other).

    The kind of brain that can create something like that is really quite awe-inspiring – perhaps more so even than watchmakers, because mechanical watch design evolved over centuries, whereas these things came and went within about two generations.

  25. Ehh the reason you couldn’t hear much difference is your complete system is low fi.
    The grooves are damaged eventually by distortion as well as scuffing the surface of the disc just looking rubbish.
    The automation is noisy and the parts wore fairly quickly especially the idler wheel.
    Wow and flutter levels were very ordinary
    Even back in the hey day of this major manufacturers like Garrard’s best models 301-401were single disk manual devices

  26. Oh if only you could see the look on my face when i realized that the record player we had when i was a kid was an automatic and i could never figure out what the arm and notch on the spindle were for.

  27. Thanks sir, for such a wonderful presentation of those good old pieces of hardware. And thanks again, this time for this fine taste in music that make us discover very good vibes. 🙂

  28. I had one of these as a 1970s child. Loved it. And love this channel which I only recently discovered. I'm hooked.

  29. After watching this video with English captions on, I wonder what other gems I've missed in all the other videos I've watched without captions…

  30. I am not an audiophile by any means, but when the audio was switch back and forth between the stack of 6 and stack of 1

    The audio sounded just barely more muddled in the stack of six then in the stack of one. The stack of one sound slightly more clear

    But I only heard the difference in like 2 out of the like 10 flips back and forth of the stack sizes.

  31. Omg why did I just burst out laughing when he was like "here is disk one side one and on the back is side six? The f*ck?! "
    The "the f*ck" was so incredibly authentic, my god😂😂😂😂

  32. I found the history of the term "album" to be interesting. I had always assumed it came from the fact that an LP (aka "album") would play many songs (one might call such a collection an "album") as opposed to the 45's which played only one song.

  33. I never liked changers therefore I used my Gerrard Autoslim( all I could afford as a teen) as a manual turntable only.

  34. Back in the 1970s I must have been the only person who disliked these record changers, because EVERY decent turntable I saw was equipped with one.

  35. To me when you remove the small effort it takes to say use a turntable by replacing it with digital memory players you don't appreciate the music as much.

  36. The main reason these changers are hated by audiophiles — in addition to the records "touching" — is the brutish way in which the additional height of stacking the records was handled by the manufacturer of turntables like the one in this video. Instead of adjusting the height of the tonearm to correct the stylus geometry as more discs are added to the stack, these did…pretty much nothing.

    On most single-disc turntables, the tracking force is set via a counterweight at the opposite end of the tonearm. With too little force the stylus will pop out of the groove, and with too much force the sound becomes distorted in some way. The way most cheap automatic changer turntables handled this was by eliminating the counterweight and setting a static tracking force which was high enough to keep the needle in the groove of the topmost disc, meaning that the discs underneath were played with a much higher effective tracking force. Depending on how much force was being applied, this could eventually destroy the groove on your records, especially if the stylus wasn't angled correctly.

    Coincidentally, that wear to the center label is one of the things most audiophile collectors look for when buying used vinyl. It's a quick giveaway that the disc spent a lot of time on an automatic changer, and might have been tracked too heavily.

  37. The first album I had to deal with having weird sides was Tommy – and I didn't notice well into Side 4. As a concept album, I was completely confused by the story's inconsistency.

  38. Was that a reference to the "IT crowd" squeezed in to the captions after the switching back-and-forth of tracks? Very nearly missed that!

  39. I have one of these!
    A late family friend left it to me.
    A Soundesign #6501. Record changer, AM/FM, and 8-track.
    The 8-track hasn't been used in probably 20 years, I'd be impressed if it still works.

  40. Audiophiles are some of the dumbest people in the world, you could fry something in the amount of snake oil those idiots buy into.

  41. I'll say this: Anders Enger Jensen's music really shows how 'modern' vinyl record quality is still pretty superb! Also with the retro style, cassette and records are oh so wonderfully appropriate. Makes me wish there was still a market for truly high quality cassettemechs and turntables today, the few remaining makers of both absolutely suck, even if you're not an audiophile.

  42. We used to like record changers when we bought a lot of singles. When albums (LPs) became more popular than singles, record changers went away. Playing singles on a single play turntable is a real pain.

  43. Concerning the sound difference between a single record and 6 I can hear a subtle difference but only if I close my eyes and focus.

  44. I keep blocking this channel videos and they keep showing grrrrr. He can not speak basic correct English but I would expect nothing less from a yank

  45. 17:06 – speaking of phonographs that can "see" the tracks, no discussion of changers is complete without a nod to the changer's last gasp, BSR-ADC's RubeGoldbergesque triumph, the Accutrac+6. From its superstack dust cover to its brick of a remote to the baseball-sized silver mushroom remote receiver (check out the "computer font" Accutrac logo on that in video #2) to the array of buttons on the turntable body itself, it was audio tech wretched excess at its finest. You gotta see it to believe it, so check out the demonstration videos below.

    #1 Lower grade video but a better exposition of the feature set: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aCKHef6F6Rk

    #2 A better look at the turntable in HD, with a less complete demonstration of features: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KIj1EGeU9TY

    Video #1 illustrates the central concept most vividly – you could play whatever tracks you wanted from the stacked album sides (it couldn't flip them) IN ANY ORDER, because the turntable could LIFT UP dropped records to regain access to those lower in the stack. I don't think anyone else pulled this trick off – it's burned into my memory more vividly than any audio gadget aside from Nakamichi's "Unidirectional Auto Reverse" cassette flipping mechanism (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eRSDp1JI5BQ).

  46. I really like the ingenious mechanism of those machines…BUT…
    Seems I must to consider my self an audiophile for never wanting to place my beloved records onto one of those abominations 😉 (and I do feel chastised)
    I'm less concerned about the audio quality when the tracking angle of the stylus changes. It's more about the treatment of the records. Given I clean my records before each and every playback while already spinning on the turntable without the stylus lowered, it would be even more inconvenient doing that with the changer.
    I only just (re)started listening to vinyl records since a couple of years now because of the inconveniences it brings along. those force me to be more conscious about the whole process of listening to music. It's providing an extra physically tangible layer of experience for more senses than just the ear. So for me it's not because of the audio quality of vinyl (which may indeed be inferior to the quality of CD or other loss less digital formats) but more of the different textures, layers and flavours and in the end the emotions the whole experience brings along. But emotion is what's music all about, isn't it?
    And even though the quality is not the unique selling point of vinyl for me, I'd still do almost everything to get the best possible quality out of my setup. So I'm treating everything and especially my records with some extra care for longevity and hopefully quality. Letting them fall for a couple of centimeters and crash onto each other feels to go against that 😉

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