How do record players work?
In the days before streaming and downloads and even before tapes and CD’s, buying a music album was an event in itself. After a visit to the local music shop, you’d clutch your album tight and hurry home as quick as you could to place it on the player and rock out. But how do these beautiful pieces of kit play your favouite tunes?
Also known as turntables, the technology in a record player comes from Thomas Edison’s phonograph. The black vinyl is turned by a belt-drive system driven by a motor. The spinning disc is held in place by a central rod, creating sound vibrations, which are then converted into an electrical signal and sent to an amplifier that makes the volume you hear in a speaker or headphone. To harness the vibrations, a stylus or needle moves along the spiral grooves in the vinyl and records the movements. The subsequent electric signal travels to the end of the arm and into a coil. This coil is surrounded by a magnetic field that creates the electric signals and hey presto, a room is filled with the sound of music.
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