September 21st, 2006

Mechanical alphanumeric flapboard signs have long been a standard fixture of airports and train station waiting rooms, but the technology is rapidly disappearing in favor of more modern (if also more soul-less) electronic displays. Also known as "Solari Boards" (most were made in Italy by Solari di Udine), the signs' familiar "clack clack clack" rhythm is sufficient to trigger an almost Pavlovian reflex in seasoned travelers the world over. This 34 second sample was captured on September 20, 2006 in the main waiting room of Amtrak's Philadelphia, PA (USA) 30th Street rail station as the train status board was being updated. The recording contains considerable ambient room and rush-hour crowd noise in the stereo mix. Equipment used was a pair of MKH-800 microphones in a mid-side arrangement (hyper-cardioid and figure-8) and a Sound Devices 744T digital recorder. This sample has been mixed to conventional A-B stereo. Uncompressed WAV files as well as the unprocessed mid-side audio are also available in the mab-bigboard sample pack.


  • avatar
    1ben7 6 months ago

    Thank you

  • avatar
    HedgehogNL 10 years ago

    Thank you so much! Just what I was looking for.

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