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Vinyl Records - What are they?

Just in case you didn't know, a vinyl record is a sound carrier that is played on a record player, also know as a turntable. It is a flat disc in which a spiral groove is pressed on both sides (initially on one side only) running from the edge too close to the centre and incorporating sound information in the form of small horizontal deviations. These can be scanned with a needle on a rotating platter and made audible. To ensure that a record is placed correctly on a player, a hole is made exactly in the centre of a record.

Colloquially, the record is also referred to as an LP, disc or vinyl. The word record was coined during the gramophone era.