The Impacts of Technology on Music Recording Industry and Society

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The Impacts of Technology on Music Recording Industry and Society

By | August 2013
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The Impacts of Technology on
Music Recording Industry and Society

"TV has restored the daily life of family, Photography has altered the way we look at the world, the computer has changed everything.”
(Mark Katz, 2010)

It is true the computer has converted everything into digital. Digital technology has also changed the ways of sound and voice recording. It has gradually led to the changes not only in the production of sound but also in the views of society, precisely consumers and producers. Since the 70's, the computer, music and audio industries have influenced on one another. Nowadays, many people use different digital sound recording equipment and sound recording software to transform recording to get the best quality of sound and the fastest way of recording; and to meet their goals and consumers' needs. This report will focus on how technology has contributed to shape the systems of sound recording, the role or producer, engineer and music production.

History of Sound Recording Technology

Today’s digital recording system has derived from the first sound recording device called "Phonautograph" which was invented by a French man, Léon Scott de Martinville in 1857. The visual image of sound was recorded with a cylinder covered with a soot but it could not be played back. This lead to Thomas Edison, in 1877 to invent; a machine called a phonograph that could both record and play back audio instantly using a tinfoil-wrapped cylinder rotated with a handle. However, it was discouraging because the foil could be used only a few times before it deteriorated, thus creating enormous production costs.

Later, sound recordings have developed as electrical recording (1925), magnetic tape recording (1935), multi-track recording (1943) and finally into the era of the information technology for digital recordings (1972) and multi–track digital recordings (1990s). In fact, digital recordings started in 1972 when Nippon...
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