3D printed record

In order to explore the current limits of 3D printing technology, Amanda has created a technique for converting digital audio files into 3D-printable, 33rpm records and printed a few prototypes that play on ordinary turntables. Though the audio quality is low – the records have a sampling rate of 11kHz (a quarter of typical mp3 audio) and 5-6 bit resolution (less than one thousandth of typical 16 bit resolution) – the audio output is still easily recognizable. These records were printed on an Objet Connex500 resin printer to a precision of 600dpi with 16 micron z-axis resolution. The 3D modeling in this project was far too complex for traditional drafting-style CAD techniques, so Amanda wrote a program to do this conversion automatically. It works by importing raw audio data, performing some calculations to generate the geometry of a 12” record, and eventually exporting this geometry straight to a 3D printable file format.

Amanda Ghassaei graduated from Pomona College in Claremont, CA with a BA in Physics and Minor in Chemistry in 2011. Her research experience includes topics in nanotechnology, solar cells, and electrochemical and optical sensors. She’s interested in developing physical interfaces for the manipulation of digital media. Amanda is currently working at instructables.com in San Francisco, CA.

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