Thirty-five years ago this month, Stereo Review dedicated its June 1986 issue to a look at good ol’ American-made audio technology.
It’s time to flip through another tattered magazine and look at some vintage tech and music trends of the past. This month, we’ll flip through this September 1974 issue of Rolling Stone, featuring the debut of their yearly hi-fi buyers’ supplement.
If you’re of a certain age (and if you’re reading this, chances are that you are), then you probably owned one of these. And it didn’t do one thing to add to the music, at least not sonically. But it sure looked cool, didn’t it? Hey, don’t bogart that j, man!
Back in the early-to-mid-1990s, there was no Spotify, no Pandora, no Napster. There were albums and tapes and CDs and MTV (which still played music then) and the radio. But what if you liked a particular genre of music and there wasn’t a local station that catered to your tastes? There was an answer on the way.
It’s time to take another look at an old dogeared magazine and look at some vintage tech and music trends of the past. This month, we’ll flip through this February 1966 issue of Playboy which, although not exactly chock full of ads, does have two notable features … HEY! Get your mind out of the gutter.
Somebody came up with the bright idea of creating DVDs that you could rent and not have to return, because they would simply become unreadable after two days and you could throw them out. If that seems like a lot of waste, you have to remember that this was 2003, and you were probably getting an AOL disc in the mail every other day.
Forty years ago this month, the hi-fi industry stood at the edge of the digital precipice. The arrival of the Sony CDP-101, the first consumer compact disc player, was just a year away. But in February 1981, there was still much to be settled. What format would become the dominant means of digital music conveyance in the home? And whose version of that format would win out in the end?
Get together a bunch of recording artists and try to develop a better digital marketplace, one where the music doesn’t sound like crap and where you actually get paid, and whaddaya get? A yellow paperweight, that’s what.
RCA had the bright idea in 1964 to reproduce video in a phonographic format. Great idea. They then took 17 years to develop the idea and bring it to market. Not such a great idea.
That’s right, not rotating platforms for displaying automobiles. Actual record turntables for vehicles. This was a thing.