Vintage

You Won't Believe What This 100-Year-Old Machine Can Do

At the 1910 World's Exhibition in Brussels a strange machine was on display that's still impressing audiences to this day.

Its inventor, Ludwig Hupfeld, was known for his player pianos and other musical machines. This one, called the "Hupfeld Phonliszt-Violina orchestrion," is a little more impressive than your run-of-the-mill self-playing piano.

The orchestrion plays the piano and three violins all at the same time. Looking at this antique it's hard to believe it still works, but it sounds just as good as new.

A roll of paper with holes punched through it is fed into the machine, telling the piano and violins which notes to play. Each violin only has one string, but mechanical "hands" can play different notes.

The most impressive part of this machine is the violin bow, which is a round, rotating piece made from 1,300 horse hair threads.

In case you're still trying to figure out what makes everything run, the orchestrion is powered by electricity.

If you're interested in livening up your living room with one of these, there are a few antique musical instruments available online.

Unfortunately, this machine is one of a kind, but you can enjoy more video of it on the restorer Frank Bernouw's YouTube page. No matter how old they get, antiques like these will always blow us away.

Share this great invention with someone you know!

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