The Audiotronics 304 A LP Record Player

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History of the LP Record Player

History of the Period

Songs Popular when the LP record came out


Sources for restoration information and parts.



Tour of my LP player

Watch and listen to one play on youtube

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Obtain a CD or other Long Playing media with ordinary tracks. (not long ones)

Play the recording to the end of the track.

Stop the player and everyone get up and walk to the player.

Pause at the player for 30-40 seconds.

Repeat at the end of each track

How long could you have kept this up?

How would you have adapted to this reality?

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As you can see from the timeline below the LP arrived during a time of great technological change and competition.


1940   Production of records halted by the advent of World War II and the lack of shellac due to the invasion of South East Asia by the Japanese.The replacement of the base material was discovered from a plastic resin derivative of petroleum called vinyl

1940s   The first DJs emerge as entertainers for troops overseas. During WWII, persons armed with a turntable, a pile of records, and a basic amplifier would entertain troops in mess halls, spinning Glen Miller, the Andrews Sisters, and Benny Goodman. It was much easier than sending an entire band overseas

1943   The first V-Discs were shipped from the RCA Victor pressing plant in Camden, New Jersey

1944   Working tape recorders brought back to the USA from Germany

1946   RCA Victor releases the very first commercial vinylite record

1948   Columbia introduces the first 12-inch 33-1/3 rpm microgroove LP vinylite record with 23-minute play-time per side it also has a special turntable to play them on made by Philco

1949   RCA Victor introduce the 7-inch 45 rpm micro-groove vinyl single and compatible turn table.

1949   Capitol became the first major label to support all three recording speeds of 78, 45, 33-1/3 rpm

1949   In Jamaica, sound systems develop playing the latest in R 'n' B 45s.

1949   Todd Storz from the KOWH radio station sets up a Top 40
RCA makes the 45 rpm, 7 inch disc available.
Developmental work on the acoustic suspension loudspeaker done by Harry Olsen.
Introduction of stereo tapes to the public.
Edgar Villchur and Henry Kloss begin to popularize the acoustic suspension loudspeaker.
First stereo LP records released.
First stereo FM radio broadcasts.
Philips makes public the compact cassette.
1950   The improvements in sound quality of the new vinyl format encourage record companies to embrace the technology, this marks the beginning of the end for the 78rpm shellac disc

1950   RCA Victor issues records on Columbia 12 inch LP format

1950   Introduction of 16 rpm disks for spoken word recordings

1951   Columbia releases records on the RCA 7 inch 45 rpm format

1951   First Jukebox able to play 7 inch 45 rpm records

1952   Alan Freed starts the influential radio show Moondog's Rock and Roll Party

1954   Bill Haley releases "Shake, Rattle and Roll" and "Rock Around the Clock"

1954   Record companies deliver 7 inch 45 rpm record singles to radio stations instead of 78s

1956   Ska, an interpretation of American R&B develops in Jamaica. Ska is to become the foundations of rocksteady, reggae, dancehall and ragga.

1956   The Chrysler Imperial in-car turntable 16-2/3 rpm record player with 7-inch ultramicrogroove records developed by Peter Goldmark - the man who invented the 33-1/3 rpm long playing (LP) record format

1957   The Recording Industry Association of America chooses the Westrex standard for stereo records. Stereo vinyl is to became the dominant medium of recorded music

1958   RCA introduces its first stereo LPs

1958   Some home systems employ stereo components
1961   RCA Victor release the compact single 33 - a 7inch playing at 33 1/3 - it didn't last long

1961   EMI sign The Beatles

1962   Twist Dance Fever originated by Hank Ballard hits the UK

1963   Andrew Loog Oldham manages the Rolling Stones and they sign a recording contract with Decca

1964   Record sales in the UK up 60% on 1960

The Talking Machine was hit hard by many historical and cultural developments. Radio became popular and movies expanded to dominate leisure time. The depression also hurt. The military had expanded with large vinyl disks. Eventually the music industry would become attracted to the concept of selling a whole album of songs on one record

The long-playing record or LP was invented in 1948 by Columbia Records. It played at 33-rpm and was 10 or 12 inches in diameter. The LP was made from flexible plastic vinyl (vinylite). These records used  microgrooves, and the  records recorded over 20 minutes of sound. In 1949, 7-inch 45-rpm records were introduced.

High fidelity became important in the  1950s. The LP was much more expensive than the 45-rpm disc or 10 inch disk but it became more popular. The hi-fi movement concentrated upon classical music recorded on LP. Movie soundtracks and Broadway show tunes were also important. If recording companies did not issue a 45 then the consumer would have to buy the more expensive LP at about 4 times the cost The Hi Fi movement utilized magnetic tape recording technology to refine the quality of performances which no longer had to be made "live" in the studio..


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History of the Time

Events and trends

* First nuclear bomb

A nuclear weapon is a weapon that derives its energy from nuclear reactions and has enormous destructive power - a single nuclear weapon is capable of destroying a city. Nuclear weapons have been used only twice for war, by the United States against the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki during World War II. They have been used many hundreds of times, however, for the nuclear testing undertaken by many countries.
..... Click the link for more information.
* First cruise missile

A cruise missile is a guided missile which uses a lifting wing and most often a jet propulsion system to allow sustained flight. Cruise missiles are, in essence, unmanned aircraft. They are generally designed to carry a large conventional or nuclear warhead many hundreds of miles with excellent accuracy. In 2001, modern cruise missiles normally travel at sub-sonic speeds, are self-navigating, and fly low in order to avoid radar detection.
..... Click the link for more information.
, the V1 flying bomb
V-1 flying bomb
First modern cruise missile
Role Flying bomb
Crew none
Length 7.90 m 25 ft 11 in
Wingspan 5.37 m 17 ft 7 in
Height 1.42 m 4 ft 8 in
Wing area
Loaded 2,150 kg 4,750 lb
Engine 1x Argus As 14 pulsejet
Thrust 2.9 kN 660 lbf
Maximum speed 656 km/h 410 mph
Range 240 km 150 mile
Service ceiling 3,050 m 10,000 ft
Rate of Climb
Amatol warhead 830 kg 1,832 lb
..... Click the link for more information. and the first ballistic missile A ballistic missile is a missile, usually with no wings or fins, with a prescribed course that cannot be altered after the missile has burned its fuel, whereafter its course is governed by the laws of ballistics. In order to cover large distances ballistic missiles must be launched very high into the air and often to low earth orbit altitudes. Ballistic missiles are generally designed to deliver nuclear warheads because their payload is too limited for conventionally-armed ballistic missiles to be efficient, and because the extreme heat of re-entry would damage chemical or biological payloads.
..... Click the link for more information. , the V-2 rocket

The V-2 rocket was an early ballistic missile used by Germany during the later stages of World War II against mostly British and Belgian targets.

Pre-operational history

As early as 1927 members of the German Rocket Society had started experimenting with liquid-fueled rockets. By 1932 the Reichswehr started taking notice of their developments for potential long-range artillery use, and a team led by General Walter Dornberger was shown a test vehicle designed and flown by Wernher von Braun. Although the rocket was of limited ability, Dornberger saw Von Braun's genius and pushed for him to join the military.
..... Click the link for more information.
* First transistor
* World's first working programmable stunk computer


* Quantum electrodynamics developed by Feynman, Dyson, Schwinger, and Tomonaga
* Mathematics: game theory, cryptology

War, peace and politics

* World War II (ends 1945)
* The shoah
* Beginning of the Cold War
* Independence for some former colonies
* 1948 Arab-Israeli War
* The Irish Free State becomes a Republic (1948)
* Informbiro period in Yugoslavia begins
* Indian Independence and Partition


Culture, religion

* Frank Capra's It's a Wonderful Life
* The NBA begins play, in 1947


World leaders

* President Lin Sen (Republic of China)
* President Chiang Kai-shek (Republic of China)
* Adolf Hitler (Germany)
* Mohandas Gandhi (India) († 1948)
* Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru (India)
* Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion (Israel)
* King Victor Emmanuel III (Italy)
* Prime Minister Benito Mussolini (Italy)
* Emperor Hirohito (Japan)
* Pope Pius XII
* Taoiseach Eamon de Valera (Éire)
* Taoiseach John A. Costello (Republic of Ireland)
* Joseph Stalin (Soviet Union)
* Prime Minister Winston Churchill (United Kingdom)
* Prime Minister Clement Attlee (United Kingdom)
* President Franklin Delano Roosevelt (United States)
* President Harry S. Truman (United States)
* Governor Luis Muñoz Marín (Commonwealth of Puerto Rico)
* President Getúlio Vargas (Brazil)

Sports figures

* Joe Louis
* Sugar Ray Robinson
* Ted Williams
* Jackie Robinson
* Joe DiMaggio
* Sammy Baugh
* Steve Van Buren


* Abbott and Costello
* Bette Davis
* Bing Crosby
* Bob Hope
* Cary Grant
* Clark Gable
* Frank Sinatra
* Humphrey Bogart
* Ingrid Bergman
* James Cagney
* Jimmy Stewart
* Katharine Hepburn
* Lauren Bacall
* John Wayne
* Orson Welles
* Spencer Tracy

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Songs popular When the LP Came out
Note that the LP was an important recording media well into the 1960s


Buttons and Bows-- Dinah Shore
Manana-- Peggy Lee
Twelfth Street Rag-- Pee Wee Hunt
Nature Boy-- Nat King Cole
You Can’t Be True, Dear-- Ken Griffin
Woody Woodpecker-- Kay Kyser
You Call Everybody Darlin’-- Al Trace
I’m Looking Over a Four-Leaf Clover-- Art Mooney
A Tree In the Meadow-- Margaret Whiting
Love Somebody-- Doris Day with Buddy Clark



Riders In the Sky-- Vaughn Monroe
That Lucky Old Sun-- Frankie Laine
Cruising Down the River-- Blue Barron (also Russ Morgan)
A Little Bird Told Me-- Evelyn Knight
Mule Train-- Frankie Laine
Some Enchanted Evening-- Perry Como
You’re Breaking My Heart-- Vic Damone
Slippin’ Around-- Margaret Whiting & Jimmy Wakely
Forever and Ever-- Russ Morgan
A You’re Adorable-- Perry Como



The Tennessee Waltz-- Patti Page
Goodnight, Irene-- Weavers with Gordon Jenkins
The Third Man Theme-- Anton Karas (also Guy Lombardo)
If I Knew You Were Comin’ I’d’ve Baked a Cake-- Eileen Barton
Chattanoogie Shoe Shine Boy-- Red Foley
Mona Lisa-- Nat King Cole
All My Love-- Patti Page
I Can Dream, Can’t I?-- Andrews Sisters
The Thing-- Phil Harris
Harbor Lights-- Sammy Kaye



Cry-- Johnnie Ray
Because of You-- Tony Bennett
How High the Moon-- Les Paul & Mary Ford
Sin-- Eddy Howard
If-- Perry Como
Come On-A My House-- Rosemary Clooney
Cold, Cold Heart-- Tony Bennett
Too Young-- Nat King Cole
Be My Love-- Mario Lanza
Mockin’ Bird Hill-- Les Paul & Mary Ford



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Restoration and Parts Assistance


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Helpful Links

A good History of the LP

Another good history

Preservation of Recording Media


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Tour of My Lp Phonograph

Watch one play on youtube


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