Victor's "RIGID ARM" was a revolutionary invention which supplanted the earlier front-mounted horn phonographs. The heavy weight and inertia of the front-mounted horn led to a great deal of record wear, while the independently mounted tonearm of the new Victor was much lighter. The horn also sat further back over the cabinet instead of jutting out into the room. The reproducer on the Rigid Arm lifted up in a scissor style. Released in late 1902, it was supplanted a mere six months later by the Victor tapering tonearm, which was the standard for the next 25+ years. Only a few styles were produced in the brief period the Rigid Arm was on the market, including the R ('Royal'), E, M, and MS. The MS ('Monarch Special') was the largest and most ornate of the series, with beautifully carved moldings and a full 10" turntable. This model evolved into the well-known Victor IV, in a much plainer case.
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