This 3D printed record actually plays on a turntable

Posted by Shane McGlaun

There are many music fans out there who seem to prefer that old nostalgic vinyl sound to modern digital tracks. 

So I couldn't help but wonder what the reaction of vinyl fans would be to the recent news that a digital track was pressed onto a record using, yes, you guessed it, a 3D printer. 

Indeed, an editor from Instructables has created and documented a process that allows for the relatively easily delivery of digital music by 3D printing a record that can play on a standard 33 RPM turntable.

The individual who created the method of printing the record? One Amanda Ghassaei, who developed a technique to convert digital audio files into 3D printable 33 RPM grooved plastic discs. She also printed several records as a proof of concept.

The 3D printer used for the project has a resolution of 600 dpi on the X/Y axes and laid down layers 16 µ thick. Despite having a relatively high-resolution printer, the audio quality of the records is said to be somewhat low, weighing in at 11 kHz with a 5 to 6 bit resolution.

Sound quality aside, it's very interesting that Ghassaeiwas able to create a process allowing the 3-D printing of a record with embedded audio signals inside.

The video above shows Ghassaei playing the proof of concept records that she printed including tracks from Nirvana, New Order, Daft Punk, and others. If you love vinyl and happen have access to a 3D printer, instructions are now available to help you to make your own 3D printed records.