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78 RPM records

In 2009, I’m going to be posting a bunch of old records from my family’s collection. All of them – so far as I know – are so old that they are in the public domain. Of course, if it turns out that isn’t the case, drop me a line and I’ll take the files down. As far as the actual records go, most of them are in good condition, with some notable exceptions. I’ll be doing some audio patching and noise reduction to make them listenable, while preserving as much of the original sound and tone as possible.

    Here’s a rundown of the hardware and software that I’m using:

  • AudioTechnica AT-LP2D USB turntable
  • Apple MacBook Pro (Intel CoreDuo)
  • Amadeus Pro from Hairer Soft
  • A digital camera to take photos of the record labels.

There are some limitations to the system. The turntable can play back at 33 and 45 RPM, but not 78. I get around this by recording the discs at 45 and then I use the pitch/speed adjustment within the recording software to speed up the playback by 173.3 percent. I generally do two passes of noise reduction, once before changing playback speed, the other after.

If you’re browsing through these files, be aware that some of these songs exhibit the casual racism of the early 20th century. I’m including these for the sake of a more complete collection, as well as for their anthropological value, but I’ll try to flag them so that you won’t get caught by surprise.