The ‘6 revolvers’ by Nicole Frères is truly a one of a kind music box. Without the need for heavy lifting and with a steady alignment, the new revolver mechanism would change cylinders seemingly on its own.
Although music boxes of the revolver type were produced by Paillard, Baker & Troll, Cuendet and other makers, the total number produced remained small. This is one of the reasons why the revolver box makes for such a highlight in our collection today. The cylinder music boxes by Nicole Fréres in Geneva, Switzerland, are among the finest cylinder music boxes built in the mid-19th century.sources
The charm of revolver boxes does not so much lie in their musical excellence but rather in the innovation of the mechanism and the fact that it made them easier to operate.
The difficult action of manual exchange of the cylinders was replaced by a set of plates that carry 3 to 6 cylinders which rotate them around a center shaft. A lever turns the group and fixes the selected cylinder when placed in front of the comb.sources