Most people do not realize that record albums were made in several different sequences of sides, to accommodate different users and record changers. It is instructive here to use the RCA Victor labeling of the sequences on the album covers, since RCA made all of the sequences:
Record 1, Sides 1 and 2
Record 2, Sides 3 and 4
Record 3, Sides 5 and 6
Record 4, Sides 7 and 8
It is obvious that only the two-side changers could automatically play this sequence, but it was much easier for someone with a single player to use this album than any of the other sequences. The Capehart changer would play this kind of album with the alternating guide activated. Other record changers able to play these albums were the Automatic Change Gramophone, the Garrard RC-100, the Lincoln, the RCA Magic Brain, the Markel Duo-Playmaster, and the Fisher Lincoln. When using the Automatic Change Gramophone, the Garrard RC-100, or either of the Lincolns, the user had to rearrange the records back into the correct order before playing them again, because these changers reversed the stack as they went through it in two-side mode.
Record 1, Sides 1 and 5
Record 2, Sides 2 and 6
Record 3, Sides 3 and 7
Record 4, Sides 4 and 8
The user put the stack on the changer and started it. When the first stack was through, the user turned the entire record stack over and placed it back on the changer, and the album was completed in order. The record sides are arranged as they are because the throwoff changer reverses the order of the records as it goes through the stack. The Capehart Turnover changer also played this album in correct sequence with the alternating guide de-activated, but it did not stop in the middle of the album. The Fisher Lincoln and the Thorens TD-224 were also slide-automatic-sequence record changers because they reversed the stack as they went through it.
Record 1, Sides 1 and 8
Record 2, Sides 2 and 7
Record 3, Sides 3 and 6
Record 4, Sides 4 and 5
The user put the stack on the drop changer and started it. When the first stack was through, the user turned the entire record stack over and placed it back on the changer, and the album was completed in order. The record sides are arranged as they are because the drop changer does not reverse the order of the records as it goes through the stack. All record changers that suspend the stack of records over the turntable and drop them one by one to the turntable can play the drop-automatic sequence.
Record 1, Sides 1 and 3
Record 2, Sides 2 and 4
Record 3, Sides 5 and 7
Record 4, Sides 6 and 8
The slide-automatic sequence also worked for DJs, but it was harder for the DJ to find the next side with it. But DJs could not use the drop-automatic or manual sequences, because the next side was often on the back of the side being played, preventing the DJ from cueing it up. So a DJ faced with using an album recorded in the drop-automatic or manual sequence would have to either interpose silence (or commercials) between sides, or get two copies of the album.
This sequence is made of pairs of records recorded in slide-automatic sequence. But if an odd number of records was used, the last three records were recorded to form one slide-automatic sequence.
CDs are a lot easier, because each one has only one side.
It is interesting to understand why an LP or a CD with a collection of songs on it is called an "album." With popular songs on 78-rpm records, each song was on one side of a 10" record, and a standard sized album consisted of 8 songs on 4 records, sold in a book of record-holding pockets that looked like a photo album. Classical albums, with longer musical works, were recorded on 12" 78-rpm records and packaged in books containing the necessary number of sides to contain the entire work. Often they contained two classical works, with one work played on each side of the stack of records. With the advent of the LP, the 8-song album continued for a while, with 8 songs on one 10" 33. Classical music was recorded on 12" 33s. But soon the 12-song album on a 12" 33 became more popular, and the 10" record was abandoned. At the same time, the 7" 45 replaced the 10" 78 for popular singles.
It is also interesting that a few albums were made in slide-automatic sequence during periods when no slide-automatic record changers were being made.
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