Recently one of our channels had the history of recordings from Thomas Edison to now.
During World War Two the Germans had so perfected the use of magnetic tape recording the Allies could not tell a recording from a life feed. Germany was able to use it to throw off the Allies and yet speak to the troops so clearly it was thought they were getting a live radio broadcast.
Along with the Jets, missiles, subs and every other advanced technically Germany had perfected during the war the Allies brought their Recording Machines and magnetic tapes of Germany back with them as well.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magnetic_t ... _recording
Magnetic tape recording as we know it today was developed in Germany during the 1930s at BASF (then part of the chemical giant IG Farben) and AEG in cooperation with the RRG. This was based on Fritz Pfleumer's 1928 invention of paper tape with oxide powder lacquered to it.
Engineers at AEG created the world's first practical magnetic tape recorder, the 'K1', and first demonstrated it in 1935. Eduard Schüller of AEG built the recorders and developed a ring shaped recording and playback head. It replaced the needle shaped head which tended to shred the tape. Friedrich Matthias of IG Farben/BASF developed the recording tape, including the oxide, the binder, and the backing material. Walter Weber, working for Hans Joachim von Braunmühl at the RRG, discovered the AC biasing technique, which radically improved sound quality.
During World War II, the Allies noticed that certain German officials were making radio broadcasts from multiple time zones almost simultaneously. The broadcasts had to be transcriptions (much of this due to the work of Richard H. Ranger), but their audio quality was indistinguishable from that of a live broadcast and their duration was far longer than was possible with 78 rpm discs. At the end of the war, the Allied capture of a number of German Magnetophon recorders from Radio Luxembourg aroused great interest. These recorders incorporated all of the key technological features of modern analog magnetic recording and were used as the reference for future developments in the field