Audio! Audio!

Audio! Audio!
By Jonathan Hill

Reviewed By Charlie Kittleson

From Antique Radio Classified

In the world of audio history from the so-called "Golden Era," very few books exist. When I obtained a copy of Audio! Audio! by Jonathan Hill, I was pleased to see a compilation of data and photographs covering Golden Age valve hi-fi equipment. What makes this book even more appealing is that it covers early British audio!

Jonathan Hill has a considerable background in vintage electronics. In 1976, he cofounded the British Vintage Wireless Society, which is dedicated to the preservation of obsolete wireless equipment and broadcasting history.

Audio! Audio! covers over 850 different valve amplifiers, control units and early public address equipment from nearly 150 British manufacturers. The well-known ones like Quad, Leak, Lowther, Radford, Tannoy, etc., are featured, as well as ones I have never heard of. Models are listed with basic specifications, valve complements, power ratings, and years of manufacture. Some companies appeared to have lasted only two to three years, and then faded into obscurity.

There are 71 high-quality black and white photographs of your favorites, including the Leak mono and stereo units, early Quad amplifiers, U.S. export models of Heath, Fisher, H.H. Scott and many more. The book has a glossy color cover and 96 pages.

A few added features in the book are a time-line of audio developments from the invention of the valve to the early transistor era. Hill also has two charts showing the steady rise in valve and valve equipment production from the 1940s to the 1960s when transistors came in.

For vintage hi-fi collectors British audio enthusiasts, and other interested tube heads, Audio! Audio! is an excellent reference book for your libraries. It contains information and photographs heretofore not available anywhere.

The very able technical editor of Audio! Audio! is John Howes. The book is published by Sunrise Press, Spice House, 13 Belmont Rd., Exeter, Devon, England EX1 2HF. It is available for $19.95 in an 11 5/8" x 8 1/4" softcover format from A.R.C. and other A.R.C. advertisers. Please check these sources for shipping information.

-- 1995-1996 Vacuum Tube Valley. All rights reserved.

Charles Kittleson is the editor and publisher of "Vacuum Tube Valley," a quarterly publication for those interested in vacuum tube electronics. For more information, write to him at 1095 E. Duane Ave., Suite 106, Sunnyvale CA 94086.

About the Author and the Editor

Jonathan Hill. Jonathan Hill is a freelance writer and publisher. His interest in radio began in the early 1970s with his college thesis on wireless cabinet design, which led to his collecting receivers of the 1920s and 1930s. Among his many books and articles is Radio! Radio!, now in its third edition, which covers the British wireless set from its beginnings to the 1960s and includes the transistor radio.

Cofounder of the British Wireless Society, Jonathan is also the organizer of the National Vintage Communications Fair held at the NEC Hall 11 in Birmingham, U.K. A.R.C. will be an exhibitor at this event, which will take place on May 10. For information, send to NVCF, Spice House, 13 Belmont Rd., Exeter, Devon EX1 2HF. (01392) 411565

John Howes. John Howes is the technical editor of Audio! Audio! His knowledge of vintage communicatons equipment goes back to 1950 and his father's radio and TV shop in Tunbridge Wells. He studied radio and television theory at Brighton College and later joined the family business Howes of Southborough, Ltd. in which he is still very active. In the late 1970s, he became hooked on vintage hi-fi after receiving a 1957 edition of the Hi-Fi Year Book

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Last revised: October 5, 2017.

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