A 128-year-old recording of Alexander Bell's voice appeared on the web
Not so long ago, I already published the news about the recording of a lecture by Albert Einstein, where the scientist's voice is perfectly audible. This time I’m publishing the news about the recording of the voice of all of us known Alexander Bell. The Smithsonian Institution was able to digitize Bell's earliest recording. The inventor himself made the recording.
Looking ahead, you can listen to the recording here (by the way, Firefox required me to install the Apple QuickTime plugin, and this plugin did not want to be installed automatically, so keep in mind). This record is 128 years old. By the way, here are some more digitized records of that time, information about which was already published on Habré.
The sound of the voice of the inventor is recorded on a cardboard disc, which is coated with wax. It is worth noting that when testing the newly invented recording technology, Bell tested various materials, including metal, glass, cardboard / paper, foil, wax. Previously, all this was not reproduced due to fear of damage to the discs. To play the voice, scientists have now used a high-resolution optical scanner.
At the Smithsonian Institution, other discs with music and voices recorded also at that time (the 1880s) are also stored. By the way, there are about 400 such disks (and cylinders) handed over to the Institute by Bell. Some of them were also restored (not the disks themselves, but the records stored on them). An interesting point is that we have discs, but we don’t have any means of reproducing these discs, relating to the time when the recording was made. Of course, you can guess the design of the device reproducing the recording, but this will only be speculation.
Via smithsonianmag + ibtimes