Different Types of Music Boxes | Music Box Types

Musical boxes were becoming far and few a decade ago but now these vintage pieces are making a comeback. They make the ideal gifts and memorabilia, and they can be treasured and passed down as heirlooms. The first music box is said to be invented in Switzerland, they came in the size of pocket watches and was gradually built to be larger and larger. It’s no wonder that renowned swiss watchmakers were the innovators of this wonderful automata. Since it’s inception, the music box has gone through evolutions and now come in different shapes and sizes and have also undergone some technical changes.

Also Read: Best Speakers for Classical Music

Here are a few different types of music boxes:

Reuge Music Box

Reuge boxes are named after their inventor Charles Reuge. He crafted the first of its kind in 1865, and these beauties stand apart from their contemporaries as they are made of the finest wood. There are two other variations of the Reuge musical box; The lounge and studio Reuge boxes. The Reuge boxes have truly mastered the art of mechanical music. They can be highly decorative and come in sizes large enough to be considered furniture and small enough to be a pocket watch.

Cylinder Music Box

This model is the most popular among music boxes and they were a common sight during the late nineteenth century. The music was created by the pins on a rotating cylinder plucking the prongs of a steel comb. The cylinder rotated because of a spring motor wound by a ratchet lever. It could play music for a few seconds to almost an hour.

The trouble with these boxes was that it could play only one melody that was programmed at the time of its manufacture. You can buy such music boxes online at websites like Music Box Attic.

Thomas Kinkade Music Box

He called himself, “Thomas Kinkade, Painter of Light.” Kinkade was an American painter who depicted idyllic and pastoral scenes in his paintings. He also was very keen on music boxes. So much so, he designed his a type of his own. The Thomas Kinkade box is beautifully adorned and takes you away to a beautiful snowy place. They are elegant and you will be tempted to showcase them to all your guests.

Disc Music Box

The Reuge music boxes were made of fine wood with many decorations in Switzerland. Not too far from there, in Germany, something similar was being invented, but it was made of cheaper materials. The Disc Music Box, unlike the Cylinder music box and its pre-programmed tune, could play different melodies and kinds of music.

These music boxes where dexterous and could play different music if the owner were to go out and buy a new disc. The disc production and music box production boomed after this invention. However, this rapid growth was cut short when pianos, phonographs, and nickelodeons began to be mass-produced.

Sankyo Seiki Music Box

Sankyo Seiki has been dominating the music industry since World War II. They have more than 50 % of the market share in the digital age for a reason. They are well crafted and can be used as jewelry boxes and toys. But above all else, they have very exclusive tunes, that add to their allure. Different figurines can also be attached to them. And you can customize your musical box.

Modern Music Boxes

Though nothing could beat a classical music box, an heirloom passed down through generations, the modern music box has its perks. For starters, their sound quality is far more exceptional, thanks to the leap in technological advancements man has made after the World War. Custom musical boxes like these can be found online. Though it lacks the nostalgic value of its traditional counterpart, these pieces have more features and utility. And if you hang on to one of these, and pass it down to your children, then these too will one day be cherished just like an original Reuge is revered today.