A point of clarification: The technical information to which Michael is
referring is not included on the Victor ledgers pages consulted by the UCSB
project staff. Victor maintained two sets of ledgers, one arranged by date,
the other arranged by principal artist.We have access to the former set
only. A sample page from that set will be included on our new website,
about to go online in a few weeks.
I want to add that while I have great respect for the scholars who need the
type of technical information found in the other set of ledgers, I'm not
certain we'd include it even if it were, and that's not because I'm a
librarian. Compilers make choices. Those that don't usually never compete
their work. I'll stick my neck out here and state that most discographers
and the vast, vast majority of users of discographies do not desire the
information. Brian Rust has never included technical data (even master
sizes!), even when available to him, and neither has John Bolig in his
excellent set of Victor discographies. In fact, I can't think of any
discography that has listed lines-per-inch and similar information, so it's
quite inaccurate to single out "librarians and archivists" as the only
members of our community not to include the data in their publications. No
discography or any other reference source is all things to all people.
Those ledgers that do include technical information are still held in the
Sony Music Archives and they remain accessible there to those who want to
BTW, John's Black Label volume of Victor 22000 through 24000 issues, PLUS
V-38000 and V-40000 series is out and it's fantastic.
American Discography Project, UCSB
On Thu, Dec 19, 2013 at 12:40 PM, Michael Biel <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> Dennis' info is important because I think it is part of the technical
> info encoded on the Victor ledger sheets that is being IGNORED by the
> Victor discographical project. Nick Bergh did a presentation at ARSC 2
> years ago which shows that he has gone a long way to understanding that
> ledger technical information. Of course it all means nothing without
> access to the info on the ledger sheets for the particular recording --
> and librarians and archivists do not consider technical info to be
> "discographically significant".
> Mike Biel [log in to unmask]
> -------- Original Message --------
> Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Record equalization
> From: John Haley <[log in to unmask]>
> Date: Thu, December 19, 2013 10:55 am
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Steve, won't your ears tell you whether phono-EQ was used or not? It can
> sometimes be hard to tell which EQ setting was used, when some EQ
> was used, but usually not so hard to tell if no EQ was used. That's not
> small difference. As in many cases of determining EQ, the ears are the
> most reliable equipment.
> Best, John
> On Thu, Dec 19, 2013 at 10:23 AM, Dennis Rooney
> <[log in to unmask]>wrote:
> > When Western Electric brought electrical recording to Victor and
> > several turnover/rolloff combinations were suggested, viz. 300/0,
> > 800/-10 and 500/-13.5. The choice was up to the cutting engineer and
> > examples of all the above were used from 1925. At this point, it is
> > to reiterate that there was no such thing as a "standard" equalization
> > playback of 78rpm discs, although there was some stabilization by c1930.
> > DDR
> > On Thu, Dec 19, 2013 at 12:17 AM, Steve Smolian <[log in to unmask]>
> > wrote:
> > > Do we know if the early commercial electrics by Victor and HMV used any
> > > equalization? Since there was no commercial record player on the home
> > > market that used an amplifier until November, 1925, there’s an
> > > April-October or later period where there is no means of introducing a
> > > circuit that inverts any electronic change from what reached the
> > > head.
> > >
> > > The record companies would not abandon the record market which used the
> > > acoustic playback process for half a year or create a product that
> > sounded
> > > poor on the installed base of home players. Yes the acoustic
> > Orthophonics
> > > were available by then but few could afford them.
> > >
> > > If this is so, such 78s should be played back flat.
> > >
> > > Any hard data on this question?
> > >
> > > Steve Smolian
> > >
> > --
> > 1006 Langer Way
> > Delray Beach, FL 33483
> > 212.874.9626