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Audiovisual collections: About the audiovisual collections

The State Library of South Australia's audiovisual collections were established in the 1970s. Formats represented include analogue records (wax cylinders, 78rprm records and vinyl records), audiocassettes, CDs, videos and computer games by South Australia

Finding items

To find items in the audiovisual collection search the Library Catalogue for titles, creator names or keywords.

Staff members at the Information Desk can provide further information or advice about using the Library Catalogue and audiovisual materials.

Retrieving items

The catalogue record will display an original item and, in most cases, a use copy. The use copy can be requested, using your State Library membership (look for the red Request button) or ask a staff member at the Information Desk or by phone. The use copy may be identical to the original (for example, a second copy acquired by purchase, donation or legal deposit) or it may have been produced in-house on blank media, possibly in a different format to the original, and with basic labelling.

Audiovisual items are only to be used in the Audiovisual Room located behind the Information Desk or in the Somerville Reading Room. Staff will advise where your requested items may be used.

Where no use copy exists, a request can be made to staff to produce a copy. There is a turnaround time of 5-10 working days for the copying, depending on the level of technical expertise required. Please Ask Us online or at the Information Desk.

Copying items

Copies of items may be made provided any copyright or donor conditions are met; please discuss with staff.

Some material has copying or publication restrictions and you may be asked to refer to the Donor or Copyright Permission Checklist for requirements.

Special formats

Analogue disc recordings are not made available for public use, due to their fragility, rarity and monetary value. There is no equipment available for members of the community to listen to records. However, the recordings can be heard on alternative media such as audiocassette or CD. You will find the details of use copies in the catalogue record.

Record covers, album sleeves and inserts have a separate catalogue item location and numbering. They are shelved separately and can be retrieved for public use, in the Somerville Reading Room, or in the Audiovisual Room if accompanied by audio media.

A variety of film formats, including 8mm, 9.5mm, 16mm, and 35mm, are included in the Library's collection. There is no equipment available for members of the community to view original films. Access copies can be created, with a turnaround time of up to 10 business days. Please Ask Us.

If a use copy exists it will be in onsite storage, and can be requested via the catalogue. Otherwise a copy can be created on demand, with a turnaround time of at least 5 working days.

Library staff carry out a technical evaluation of CD-ROMs to decide if it can be used within the Somerville Reading Room. You will find a link to the request form in the catalogue record. Requests for CD-ROMs may take up to five business days to process.

Material may be printed unless restricted by copyright or technical constraints.

Developing the collections

The main source of acquisition of audiovisual material is through legal deposit, a statutory requirement whereby publishers are required to deposit a copy of any publication produced in South Australia with the State Library to ensure its long-term preservation.

Library staff members actively pursue older titles through second-hand record fairs and auctions and buy recordings and films produced interstate and overseas featuring South Australians.

The Library welcomes donations of audiovisual material for its collections. The Library is especially interested in recordings and films that have had very limited commercial releases and might be difficult to find. Memorabilia relating to the music and film industry, such as publicity posters, concert programs, sheet music and the specially designed concert tickets that predate automated ticketing systems, is also sought.