In addition to its extensive audiovisual and print collections, the Stanford Archive of Recorded Sound also maintains a collection of audio equipment that highlights the development of playback and recording since the turn of the 20th century. At the center of this collection is a magnificent set of historic phonographs, ranging from a 1901 Edison Home A cylinder phonograph to a 1926 Victor Credenza. These machines practically demonstrate the rapid changes in audio playback formats and machinery that occurred during the first quarter of the 20th century. All machines have been meticulously restored and are in full working order.
In addition to the phonographs, the Archive's audio equipment collection also includes examples of later machines that were critical to the development of sound recording and playback technology since the phonograph. These include wire recorders, reel-to-reel recorders, turntables, cassette decks, amplifiers, and other items leading up to modern digital technologies. Click here for a full inventory of the Archive's equipment collection.
See below a list of short demostration videos of some of the Archive's phonographs in action.