Some basic 78 identification assistance requested.

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Sequoia225
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Some basic 78 identification assistance requested.

Post by Sequoia225 » 26 Apr 2019 03:41

So I went ahead and got the Rek-O-Kut Ultra Phono Preamp to start out with so I can start playing my 78s with some sort of easy adjustment for EQ (I was asking preamp advice in another thread). The box was 100 bucks so I thought I would start there.

So now I just pulled out a fairly clean looking 78 I have. I am trying to identify it, but Im rather confused.
Its an "RCA Victor" record 12" and is numbered 36094 (A&B). The label says made in Camden NJ, and its Marek Weber and his Orchestra and side A is "Countess Maritza Selection Part 1" (recorded in Europe). When I go to discogs and look up RCA Victor - it says this:

"The RCA Victor brand was introduced in 1945 in advertising and 1946 on actual record labels, where it replaced the Victor and Bluebird (3) brands. Until then, on records, the RCA Victor division of the Radio Corporation of America only used the Victor brand, which was acquired in the Victor Talking Machine Co. takeover in 1929. "

When I go here: http://78discography.com/vic36000.html

I see a list of Victor 36000 series records, and there is no data for my specific number except is says "Germany" under the "RX" column. The chart seems to imply it was made in 1933 based on numbers around it.

The phono preamp says if its pre-1935, the treble should be set to "78", and if its post 1935, the treble should be set to RIAA setting.
So what do I have here? Something from 1933 or from post 1945?
And how long is it assumed these things were pressed from release date?
What is the Rx column on that site?

Bob Dillon
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Re: Some basic 78 identification assistance requested.

Post by Bob Dillon » 26 Apr 2019 17:54

It was recorded in 1933. Your pressing is a later pressing probably made from an imported matrix. I have info for RCA Victor that specifies RCA Victor (European) assuming this was actually recorded by Victor in Europe as using a bass turnover 500 / treble FLAT, no rolloff. Victor sometimes pressed stuff that other labels overseas actually cut.

RX ? You mean MX ? That is the matrix # number listing. Matrix #'s are usually found in the runoff / deadwax area of the records. On some of those on that site it just lists the country of origin, like France or whatever.

One can't assume how long records were kept in print. It varied a lot. Some records stayed in the catalogs for months, some (like some of Enrico Caruso's records) for decades. You can see on the DAHR that most of the Marek Weber sides were recorded in Berlin.

https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/index.php/ ... ical_group

Camden, NJ is the original site of the sprawling Victor Talking Machine complex, later RCA Victor. It had studios, record pressing facilities, phonograph / radio manufacturing, etc. Through the 1940's at least. Much of it was closed by the 1960's.

Bob Dillon
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Re: Some basic 78 identification assistance requested.

Post by Bob Dillon » 26 Apr 2019 21:39

I can't find any Marek Weber Countess Maritza record on the DAHR. Searching by composer, Emmerich Kálmán, yields these results - https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/index.php/ ... h_composer
One reason for that is that the listings for later Victor/RCA Victor issues are possibly not complete. It was only until somewhat recently that they listed any post 1925 issues at all, which are now (pre 1925 issues) marked as complete. The DAHR is continually evolving.

If you scroll down this page, it looks like your record is listed as being issued by H.M.V. in Sweden in 1933 : http://www.45worlds.com/78rpm/artist/marek-weber/all
Still no U.S. issue listed, but that just means that it's not listed here either, obviously it exists if you own it.

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Re: Some basic 78 identification assistance requested.

Post by Coffee Phil » 27 Apr 2019 05:54

Hi Sequoia225,

I’m impressed that Bob Dillon found your record! I tried with no luck.

I think that the phono stage which you bought should satisfy most of your lateral cut record needs pretty well but it does seem to have one omission. Looking at the specs, it does not seem to have provision to sum to mono. With mono and especially shellac 78s you want that. I have yet to find a shellac 78 which does not sound much better in mono. The easiest way to do this is a couple of back to back Y cables between the cartridge and phono stage.

Phil



Sequoia225 wrote:
26 Apr 2019 03:41
So I went ahead and got the Rek-O-Kut Ultra Phono Preamp to start out with so I can start playing my 78s with some sort of easy adjustment for EQ (I was asking preamp advice in another thread). The box was 100 bucks so I thought I would start there.

So now I just pulled out a fairly clean looking 78 I have. I am trying to identify it, but Im rather confused.
Its an "RCA Victor" record 12" and is numbered 36094 (A&B). The label says made in Camden NJ, and its Marek Weber and his Orchestra and side A is "Countess Maritza Selection Part 1" (recorded in Europe). When I go to discogs and look up RCA Victor - it says this:

"The RCA Victor brand was introduced in 1945 in advertising and 1946 on actual record labels, where it replaced the Victor and Bluebird (3) brands. Until then, on records, the RCA Victor division of the Radio Corporation of America only used the Victor brand, which was acquired in the Victor Talking Machine Co. takeover in 1929. "

When I go here: http://78discography.com/vic36000.html

I see a list of Victor 36000 series records, and there is no data for my specific number except is says "Germany" under the "RX" column. The chart seems to imply it was made in 1933 based on numbers around it.

The phono preamp says if its pre-1935, the treble should be set to "78", and if its post 1935, the treble should be set to RIAA setting.
So what do I have here? Something from 1933 or from post 1945?
And how long is it assumed these things were pressed from release date?
What is the Rx column on that site?

Bob Dillon
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Re: Some basic 78 identification assistance requested.

Post by Bob Dillon » 27 Apr 2019 19:17

It does seem that for a nominal extra cost, a mono switch would have been a good thing add to the Ultra. Still, it's nice that there is something like this available at it's price. I was using the Rek-O-Kut Equalizer III (with an added phono pre in the chain) pretty contentedly until I replaced it with the Parks Audio Puffin (for now). The Equalizer III is tucked away, I'm not getting rid of it. When / if I step up to a phono stage that is significantly better than the Puffin I may put it back into use.

Sequoia225
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Re: Some basic 78 identification assistance requested.

Post by Sequoia225 » 27 Apr 2019 20:41

Thanks for the responses. Im trying to get my head around identifying these records as my knowledge of this world is small. Im still not sure Ive learned how better to ID these things though yet through this record, but I will keep trying to learn.

I am recording some records for someone, which is purely for sentimental value - I posted these a while ago when I was first thinking about all this. But the info on discogs cant be correct. I am not sure what EQ would be "proper" for these - but its this set:
https://www.discogs.com/Albert-R-Brand- ... se/9637813

These records cant be "red shellac" as they are a red, transparent, slightly flexible material. That has to be vinyl, no? The grooves def seem to be wider grooves and it plays at 78 speed, but seems to be vinyl. But I still have no idea when these were made. Im not that worried about it - its just spoken word (not great quality to begin with) and some bird calls - not full range music. But it bothers me the info on discogs is wrong.

Regarding the summing to mono, I should clarify, currently - this turntable is going into the phono amp, then into an Apogee Duet A-D interface, and I am actually monitoring it THROUGH Pro Tools tracks (set to "input"), which are easily summed to mono when needed.

Bob Dillon
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Re: Some basic 78 identification assistance requested.

Post by Bob Dillon » 27 Apr 2019 21:02

Yes, the set looks like vinyl. Fairly noisy vinyl as heard in this transfer, maybe the records were worn. Set looks late 1940's vintage : https://archive.org/details/78_1-mockin ... sity+.flac

"Digitized at 78 revolutions per minute. Four stylii were used to transfer these records. They are 3.5mil truncated eliptical, 2.3mil truncated conical, 2.8mil truncated conical, 3.3mil truncated conical. These were recorded flat and then also equalized with Turnover: 375.0, Rolloff: -12.0."

Sequoia225
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Re: Some basic 78 identification assistance requested.

Post by Sequoia225 » 27 Apr 2019 21:31

Oh wow - thanks for that find. Yeah - mine sound about like that - if I switch the EQ on the Ultra to "78" for the treble, its so much worse (surface noise). I have some of the best noise reduction plug ins out there (Izotope Rx Suite - I use for work) so I should be able to clean it up to a degree- esp the clicks - this will be my first time using that stuff on vinyl records actually, but knowing what it already does for other things - I am hopeful. Still, I really appreciate that find - as it has something for me to compare to, and there is good information on there too. Thank you so much!

Bob Dillon
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Re: Some basic 78 identification assistance requested.

Post by Bob Dillon » 28 Apr 2019 00:46

Few of these bird songs sets for sale :D : https://www.ebay.com/sch/sis.html?_nkw= ... +1950+RARE

One claims a 1950 date and another 1942. 1950 would seem more acccurate as I think assembling these different bird songs + studio recorded announcements for each bird might have been tricky to do direct to disc, the way it was done pre-1949. Assembling it on tape seems more likely. Especially since some of the bird recordings sound like they could have been recorded in the field with a disc recorder ( I hear underlying surface noise on some cuts) and some could possibly be taken from wire or maybe tape out in the field. They likely cobbled this together from recordings made over a period of time. Also, aside from V-Discs I don't know of any other vinyl (ish) 78's produced before 1946.

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