Edison Opera Phonograph for sale
This item has been sold. Please contact us - we may be able to find you another.
Many collectors consider the Edison Opera (introduced 1912) as the apex of acoustic perfection in the Edison cylinder phonograph. The airtight assembly and wooden cygnet horn certainly yield a distinctively rich sound previously unavailable from Edison machinery. The all gear silent motor and moving mandrel as opposed to moving carriage were atypical of Edison mechanical design. The Opera was offered in oak and mahogany cases, both versions expensive and now quite scarce. The mahogany case is somewhat more ornate, with oxidized copper handles on the sides, and has always been considered more desirable than the oak Opera.
This is a mahogany Opera. The machine is marked Concert because in 1913 Edison was forced to rename the machine following litigation with the U-S Phonograph Company, which produced their own 'Opera' model.
This Edison Opera is in good working condition and is playing strong, as you can hear from the mp3 file below. It is substantially original, but because this model is so rare I want to tell you what we know about it. When we received this machine someone had wiped the finish with a product in the nature of Formby's, so I built the finish back up professionally so that it's absolutely smooth -- it looks great and is very impressive. Case decal is a thin high quality invisible reproduction, not a cheap waterslide. I think you'll be very pleased with the case finish. The original wooden horn has a crack on a seam (not across the grain) that someone had reglued at one time. The elbow is a reproduction that we received with the machine. The automatic stop is present -- it is a reproduction, we were fortunate enough to get the last one available. Oh, and the screws that secure the horn to the retainer ring are not original -- looks as if the horn had been screwed in at a couple of different places over the years. I do have the original oxidized crank, it just doesn't show in the photographs.
A mahogany Opera is the one machine that every collector covets. I've seen these sell for $7500, but I can pass this machine on to a good home for much less.
Inquire about this item
View more from this category