[78-L] 16 2/3 RPM

Michael Biel mbiel at mbiel.com
Mon Aug 5 17:16:19 PDT 2013

Vox did a series of 12-inch 16 2/3s of classical along with a few
popular discs like George Feyer Echos. All were re-issues. I have three
of them, and The Long Player catalog listed them in a separate section
for a year or so starting in 1958 not 1952.  They did one release and
that was it. There were commercial issues by a company called Talking
Books on 7-inch large hole discs of things like Alice In Wonderland and
The Bible.  They sold a little speed reducing attachment which I have.  

Highway Hi-Fi was developed by Peter Goldmark in 1955 -- his one real
achievement -- and used 7-inch standard hole discs with grooving that
was finer than even the Edison Long Play -- 550 threads per inch.

I question Lenneck's contention that there are some 16 speed discs in
the Program Transcription discography in the ARSC Journal.  Point them
out to me.  RCA never made a player for that speed.  Also, regarding the
Gates turntable Sammy's friend saw.  Gates never made a turntable with
16 speed, but radio stations have been known to do some rather stupid
labeling and/or modifications to equipment.  He might have been confused
by a label that might have said 16 transcriptions, which would have
refereed to the size, not the speed.  It could have been made in an
pre-LP era where the only 33s a station would come across would be ETs. 
Or else this dumb station might have modified their cutters to have a 16
speed and they themselves made low fidelity ETs.  

Mike Biel  mbiel at mbiel.com

-------- Original Message --------

From: David Lennick <dlennick at sympatico.ca>

For sure..record players had 16 on them for years in the 50s and
probably into 
the 70s, since Listening Library lp sets were in circulation in public 
libraries for that long a time.


On 8/5/2013 7:14 PM, Sammy Jones wrote:
> Thanks for the info. I've passed it along...
> Was 16 2/3 ever available as a consumer format except for those in-car
> turntable systems?
> Sammy Jones
> David Lennick wrote:
>> 16 2/3 was used for spoken word recordings as well as for some really
>> long-playing jazz and popular albums from about 1952 (even some classical,
>> I
>> think) but certainly not for radio transcriptions. However, Victor
>> recorded a
>> few discs at 16 in the early 30s, and these are in the ARSC discography of
>> 33rpm masters. So the speed must have existed at the time. The Talking
>> Books of
>> the 30s played at 33rpm although England cut them at 24.
>> dl
>> On 8/5/2013 1:09 PM, Sammy Jones wrote:
>>> Somebody over on the International Jack Benn Fan Club Facebook page asked
>>> me if I had any radio transcriptions cut at 16 RPM. I told him I did
>>> not, and that 16 would be a pretty uncommon speed for radio recordings.
>>> He said when he worked at a radio station they had Gates turntables that
>>> could play at 16, and the speed was marked "transcriptions." What would
>>> have been the purpose of that? Compatability for recorded books for the
>>> blind?
>>> I'm reminded that there were records intended for in-car use cut at 16
>>> 2/3...
>>> DL, were those Sherlock Holmes radio shows/talking books from the early
>>> '30s cut at 16 2/3?
>>> Sammy Jones

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