The Sound Archive Project

Media Archive


Evan Roberts Cylinder

A heavily damaged cylinder was recently scanned using the non-contact method. This cylinder is held by The National Screen and Sound Archive of Wales, and contains the voice of Evan Roberts, a famous Welsh preacher. The cylinder was broken and in very poor surface condition, but had been reconstructed by an American dentist. It has since been played back by a stylus system. In addition, the sound has been recovered using the non-contact method. Below are the stylus and optical transfers of the same recording.
(More information about the Evan Roberts cylinder)

Mass Produced Cylinders

Below are examples of the recovered sound from various cylinder recordings, measured via the non-contact method. It should be noted that no noise reduction or correct equalisation has been applied to these examples. In all cases, the raw groove displacement signal has been band-pass filtered in the audible range of interest. Stylus transfers of two cylinders were kindly produced by Will Prentice of the British Library Sound Archive (BLSA).

Other stylus transfers of these cylinders can be found by searching here.

Test Cylinder

Sinewave reproduction from the non-contact and stylus reproducition methods can be found here.


An interview with BLSA and The Sound Archive Project, including tinfoil replay (mp3 podcast)