Unger, Amy. “Anatomy of a Record Player.” The Klipsch Joint. N.p., 01 Oct. 2014. Web. 06 Nov. 2016. <http://www.klipsch.com/blog/anatomy-of-a-record-player/>.
“How Long Will My Stylus Last?” How Long Will My Stylus Last? N.p., n.d. Web. 06 Nov. 2016. <http://www.gcaudio.com/resources/howtos/stylus%20life.html>.
This source was from not necessarily the most reputable website. However, it isn’t about the most factual like stuff and laid it out extremely well. The source talked about the anatomy of modern record players. Modern record players consist of the rotating part, the turntable. This is driven to guide the record player in a circular motion so the next part, the needle can work. The needle or stylus is what produces the vibrations that are amplified to emit sound. This whole process connected extremely well with previous research about how phonograph’s and other technologies worked. The phonograph was pretty much the exact same, only differing in the aspect of the phonograph tried to record sound as well. While this added another aspect the modern record player doesn’t have, it also held back the technology. It was trying to do something that was difficult with the tools it had, while the record player by itself was a much easier task. The sound is produced the same the only difference is that with vinyl the record can be played back many different times. The second source lays out specifically the lifespan of record player parts. The article says that the only thing that is necessary to change if you’re properly caring for the player is the needle. This needle while diamond does eventually wear down over time. The source stated that the general time frame is about 1000 hours of usage. You also unlike other technologies don’t need to completely buy another whole product. The ability to change out just the needle is what makes this technology seemingly have such a long planned obsolescence. The technology rarely goes bad. Other newer technologies aren’t meant to last which is mainly due to the companies that produce that product trying to do this. Record players while demanding on the environment, are not as demanding as other technologies. This is since if they break or become obsolete it’s because of improper usage. This led me to an important research question. Where do we get our parts for record players and who is affected by this production? This is crucial to understand the culture behind record players and looks at how people are affected by not just the music produced but other ways as well. Having a multi-dimensional analysis of the entire scope a technology has is crucial to examining its culture.
Bloomberg News. “China’s Exports Jump Most in a Year, Boosting Growth Outlook.” Bloomberg.com. Bloomberg, 12 Apr. 2016. Web. 06 Nov. 2016. <http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-04-13/china-s-exports-rebounded-in-march-boosting-growth-outlook>.
“United States Imports.” United States Imports | 1950-2016 | Data | Chart | Calendar | Forecast. US Census Bureau, 2 Sept. 2016. Web. 06 Nov. 2016. <http://www.tradingeconomics.com/united-states/imports>.
These two sources identified the recent trends of increasingly high import rates from foreign countries. This is mainly relevant in the fact that some of the raw materials identified in the article such as steel, aluminum and others are from foreign countries specifically those considered third world countries. China is one of the largest companies on the rise in one of the articles. This doesn’t seem like a huge issue on the surface but connects quite well with the environmental impacts. First, since record players are made of lots of plastics, woods, and metals, these can come from all over the world. The cheapest place for raw materials is in places where the materials are most abundant. This is a simple law of economics and the places where there are most raw materials is where people have been developed the least amount of time. These places are almost always in third world countries that haven’t developed their entire land. So, foreign countries to them, like the US, will come in and pay for them to gather the resources and then be paid for the materials. To continue to try to develop they want the largest profit margin possible so they’ll pay workers very little. Since the country isn’t developed this is all workers can get and this creates an unfair cycle of mistreatment to workers and foreign countries. This thought process makes me want to further investigate questions such as, are products going straight from the third world to first world? Is there any evidence of companies trying to not do this?
“Open Sourcemap.” Open Sourcemap. Sourcemap, n.d. Web. 07 Nov. 2016. <http://open.sourcemap.com/>.
Sourcemap as a website is difficult to pinpoint specifically for record player materials and companies because of the diversity of companies and diversity of raw materials. However, this website was very valuable to confirm the idea of third world products to first world. First world products might be transferred around, however the raw products are the ones that are important to look at. The reason for this is because workers in developed have a harder time being taken advantage of than those in less developed countries. This source was very important to helping tie up the loose ends that went with where did the materials come from. The final question that I had was, now that I know how third world countries get taken advantage of, how do first world countries get taken advantage of? This is also important to examine because a large part of the production process is the distribution as well as the production and manufacturing process.
Poulter, Sean. “Record Player Resurgence Follows Boom in Vinyl Sales.” Mail Online. Associated Newspapers, 04 May 2015. Web. 06 Nov. 2016. <http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3066744/Record-player-resurgence-follows-boom-vinyl-sales-Number-sold-2015-far-240-compared-period-2014.html>.
This source is something that is in incredibly interesting trend that has been developing lately. The source basically gives some statistics that show that record sales are increasing and that players are also increasing. The resurgence of the record player and vinyl record has been on the rise. The number of people getting into vinyl and buying record player products is increasing. While this is significant in the aspect of a shift in cultural attitude towards record player’s it also has significant environmental impacts. The number of people that are buying new players is increasing. Most new people will buy a cheaper player as they aren’t sure if they’ll like it. The idea of perceived obsolescence is something that is very real here. People will buy a cheap player and decide they need a new one, because lots of other people are too. This has a significant impact on the environmental issues. This increases the amount of waste as well as the interaction between raw materials and third world countries. To fully figure out this trend I’d need to do more research on why it’s happening. This attitude is obviously one that is changing and is important in the analysis of the technologies culture. The technology was essentially assumed dead after the CD player came out. So, this new-found increase in usage is one that affects the environmental issues and presents new questions and dimensions to the culture of the record player.