Emile Berliner, German-US inventor

Emile Berliner, German-US inventor


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Emile Berliner (1851-1929), German-US inventor, with his gramophone. Patented in 1887, Berliner's gramophone was a significant improvement on the original 1877 design by Thomas Edison, because it used a horizontal disc instead of a cylinder, producing less sound distortion. The metal disc (lower centre) reproduced sound by means of a series of undulations inscribed on its surface by a stylus. The disc was rotated by hand and sound was amplified through a conical horn (upper right). Plastic replicas of the discs could be made. Berliner was born in Germany, and emigrated to the USA in 1870, becoming a US citizen in 1881. This photograph was taken between 1910 and 1929.

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