Created using Processing, ModelBuilder Library by Marius Watz and a 3D printer, Amanda Ghassaei at instructables managed to print a 33rpm music record that actually doesn’t sound too bad considering the limitations of currently available 3d printing technologies. These records play on regular turntables, with regular needles, at regular speeds, just like any vinyl record. Though the audio output from these records has a sampling rate of 11kHz (a quarter of typical mp3 audio) and 5-6bit resolution (mp3 audio is 16 bit), it is still easily recognisable.
The records were printed on a UV-cured resin printer called the Objet Connex500. This printer has a very high resolution: 600dpi in the x and y axes and 16 microns in the z axis, some of the highest resolution possible with 3D printing at the moment. Despite all this precision, Amanda writes that the Objet still at least an order of magnitude or two away from the resolution of a real vinyl record. Her hope is that despite the lack of vinyl-quality precision, she would still be able to produce something recognizable by approximating the groove shape as accurately as possible with the tools she had.
In this Instructable, she demonstrate how she developed the workflow that can convert any audio file, of virtually any format, into a 3D model of a record.
So, just before you put your old record player into storage you may want to wait a little longer because 3d printing is just about to give it a whole new life.