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MMD > Archives > May 1999 > 1999.05.20 > 16Prev  Next

Unusual 1950s 45-RPM Record Player
By Mark Kinsler

> It was mostly plastic, of course, played only 45 RPM records, was
> battery powered, and was operated by pushing the record into a slot.
> There was no visible tone arm and the record had to play all the way
> through before it could be started over.

These came out a bit later, actually.  I'm fairly sure that I saw them
in about 1961 or thereabouts (it's easy to confuse the '50's with the
early '60's.)  My only experience with the machine was playing a copy
of Paul Mauriat's "Love is Blue" in one of these at the record store,
only to find that a bum stylus therein did a good job of wrecking the
recording's grooves.  Thus, my one impression of these things is that
they're not kind to records, though the fault was probably with the
particular machine that I tried.

There may have been more than one version of the machine.  I seem
to recall that a much later attempt was made by Audio-Technica, the
Japanese microphone outfit.

Perhaps a better source of information would be the newsgroup  In recent months the group has consisted
mostly of advertisements by rather aggressive antique dealers, but
I suspect that an inquiry about this machine will give you at least
one or two leads.

Be careful with your records, though.  I wouldn't trust any phonograph
that doesn't have a tone-arm and stylus that I can watch.

Mark Kinsler

(Message sent Thu 20 May 1999, 12:03:44 GMT, from time zone GMT-0400.)

Key Words in Subject:  1950s, 45-RPM, Player, Record, Unusual

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