It’s scratchy, lasts only 78 seconds and features the world’s first recorded blooper.
The modern masses can now listen to what experts say is the oldest playable recording of an American voice and the first-ever capturing of a musical performance, thanks to digital advances that allowed the sound to be transferred from flimsy tinfoil to computer.
The recording was originally made on a Thomas Edison-invented phonograph in St. Louis in 1878.
In July, Hunter brought the Edison tinfoil recording to California’s Berkeley Lab, where researchers such as Carl Haber have had success in recent years restoring some of the earliest audio recordings.
Haber and his team used optical scanning technology to replicate the action of the phonograph’s stylus, reading the grooves in the foil and creating a 3D image, which was then analyzed by a computer program that recovered the original recorded sound.
Soundtrack to History: 1878 Edison Audio Unveiled
Filed by October 25, 2012on