Defunct Audio Manufacturers - Ti to T9

A Japanese company that made tape recorders in the 60's under the Tobicorder name and televisions and other consumer electronics in the 70's and was quite well known as such at time, the last we heard from them was in the 80's as a large OEM of computer monitors. The name sometimes appears on low budget Chinese made consumer audio and AV products, primarily in Israel and on mainland China but that appears to be without any connection to the original company, in Israel the trademark law allows natives to appropriate foreign trade marks for local use and the use of it in China appears to be as a Toshiba look alike, as is the case with Chinese audio brands as Pieonear and Kingwood, a quite common practice in a country were Roman letters are not the norm. Name translates as Eastern Diamond.

Toft Audio Ltd.
A company founded in Manchester, England in 1997 and run by Malcolm Toft, he did at the same time run Malcolm Toft Associates and it is not known what, if anything, Toft Audio actually made. The operation was de-listed in 1999 but AMH Sales is now using Toft Audio as a trademark.

Small specialised supplier of phonographic products based in Eckernförde in Germany, mostly active in the early 80's and all products with their name on them appear to have been made by others but the company is still around as a store and do supply generic replacement stylii and Ortofon pickups.

Tonegen Co., Ltd
Japanese loudspeaker manufacturer based in the city of Osaka in Kansai, primarily occupied as an OEM manufacturer of loudspeaker drivers and as such you will more often find their products branded as Bowers & Wilkins (B&W), JBL, JVC so on and so forth, than with the company name itself on the second hand market. The company is best known for their high end woofers and ribbon tweeters and were in their time considered one of the best volume driver manufacturer in the world a, but is should be kept in mind that they made products to spec so that in between quality stuff they manufactured budget drivers for concerns such as Bolivar Speaker Works and Radio Shack. The company was taken over by Foster Electric Company in 1986 but they continued to use the Tonegen name for a few years afterwards but have since closed the original factory, the R&D division in Osaka still exists (or did so until recently) and is sometimes referred to as Tonegen colloquially.

The company also had a USA based subsidiary called Culver-Tonegen that operated mostly as a sales office but they did contribute to custom designs of speakers and drivers for their USA customers, after the Foster takeover they were known as Foster-Culver. BTW the name of the company is often misspelled Tonigen.

Founded in 1958 as a collective in Ermsleben in East Germany, initially functioned as a radio and electronic service company but started the manufacture of OEM parts for other East German manufacturers in 1959. Manufactured a range of devices in the 1960's including test equipment and computer components but is best known for record players and in particular for their Radio sets but some of their radio models are sought after by collectors. In 1969 the company had become the main OEM manufacturer of radio components in East Germany and in 1972 the company was nationalised and bought under the control of RFT. In 1993 the Treuhandanstalt restored the ownership of the company's assets to members of the original collective and Tonfunk is now a OEM electronic manufacturer.

Tokyo Musen Denki
Japanese manufacfturer of PA systems and other sound reinforcement products.

Tokyo-Tsushin-Kogyo See --> Sony

Totsuko See --> Sony

Trabelco See --> Hagemeyer N.V.

Transcriber, Inc.
USA based distributer/marketer of phonographic stylii and accessories, ceased operations in 1987 or early 88 and the accessories product lines were purchased by Recoton.

Transcriptors Ltd.
A company founded in London, England in the mid 1960's by David Gammon, a technician from Coventry. First products from the company were a tonarm and turntables manufactured in limited quantities but a proper factory was opened in 1967 and volume production started. The company made for the most part visually exciting turntables and related products that sold to a similar market that buys style systems today, in fact made some of the best looking turntables ever manufactured, many of the designs featuring novel and original features but typically not all that well engineered, the company's products often also suffered from the same fit'n'finish problems that plagued the British industry at this time, this was not helped by the hype that the company made about it's products and more often than not did not manage to live up to. Transcriptors also made display turntables for the retail industry and a few other non audio products. The company had its heyday in the late 60's to early 70's when it received numerous accolades for the futuristic design of their Hydraulic Reference turntable and that design often featured in movies and chic magazines as props. The company began to falter after a move to a new factory in Ireland around 1973, many of the critical machined parts that had been bought in such as bearings were now made in house and the quality control was seriously lacking, by the late 70's the quality of the construction had become so bad that even some of the smaller distributors started to build turntables from unassembled kits rather than buy them delivered factory built and by 1980 the company was no more. More info on the background of the company can be found at the homepage of Transcriptors Limited (2000) although that history is a bit "romantic", for a lack of a better word, spares for some of the original company's products can also be had there.

Tresham Audio
UK based manufacturer of amplifiers and related products for sound reinforcement usage, at the time the company was best know for their power amplifiers but the only products yours truly has ever seen for sale on the second hand market are equalisers suggesting that the lifetime of the amps was not all that great. Tresham Audio was founded by Richard Dunn in the early 70's but he started NVA in 1982 after Tresham was sold to Tannoy.

Trident See --> Trident Audio Developments (Below - D - 1972 to 1995) — Discrete Technology Ltd. (1995 to 1999) — Oram Professional Products (1999 to 2008 - Mixers & Signal processors etc.) — Fletcher ElectroAcoustics (2000 to 2003 - Mixers & signal processors) — Malcolm Toft Associates (1999 - Mixers)

Trident Audio Developments

A company founded in London in 1972 as an offshoot of Trident Recording Studios to commercialise a mixing console design originally developed a year earlier as a one off for use in the Trident Studio “A”, but contrary to expectations the design had generated a firm interest from other recording studios and it was decided to take it into serial production. The company was headed by Malcolm Toft but owned by Trident Studios and initially made recording consoles to order but expanded into live install sound market later in that decade.

The first console was named the A range after Studio A that it was developed for but in 1973 the company released a cheaper version called simply the “B” range, it was electronically very similar to the A range but had fewer options (only one mid band in the EQ for instance), lacks output transformers and much simpler mechanical construction. Trident then introduced their first live console in the form of the Fleximix in 1979 and later that same year introduced an all new console design called TSM that represented a huge step forward for the company, it had primarily IC's rather than discrete electronics in the signal chain and was quad capable (as in quadraphonic).

The Series 80 was introduced a year later and is a fully modular system that although usually much less capable than the TSM uses much of the same circuitry in a simplified fashion and improves on some of the weak points of the TSM for instance by introducing steel bars in the frame (TSM’s tended to sag) and better quality pan pots. The 80 series and the improved 80 B (1983) and 80 C (1987) are by the far most common trident consoles on the second hand market but a large portion of them was not built for recording studio instalment but rather for broadcast and mobile broadcast usage. The management team of Malcolm Toft and Jack Hartfield bought the company in 1981 and moved it to the town of Shepperton in Middlesex, and later that year introduced the Trimix, a variant of the Fleximix that better suited mobile & live multitrack recording applications, it was later released in a studio version that was called S70 (1983) and is basically the same console except that it has a built in stand and an on-board patchbay.

In a move downmarket and following then current trends the company introduced its first in-line console in 1984 with the TIL but at a similar time also released a budget modular split recording console called Series 65. That line was expanded in 1985 with the Series 75 which is the same basic console but has a larger frame, a patchbay and better metring, in 1985 a “budget” option was added in the form of Series 16/24 but that was Series 75 modules in a Series 65 frame.

The most adventurous console company ever made was the Di-An that was sold in 1986 onwards, it was a high end digitally controlled analogue console that unusually enough had all features digitally controlled and featured a virtual front end, i.e. there were more functions on the mixer than are on the control surface. The idea did not go down well and there were only a few consoles sold but the virtual console feature was well designed and did work remarkably well in the real world, in fact to a degree that it could be faster to use than a full interface mixer, something that cannot be said about a number of digital mixers that use a similar virtual configuration. Trident AD was sold to Reylon Ltd. in 1988 and a year later introduced a new in-line console called Vector 432, while suitable for smaller recording studios it proved to be more popular with broadcasters and video post studios and in fac could be had with an LCRS output option. The last console from the company was the Series 90 introduced in 1992, a 24 bus split console design available with 40 of 56 input channels. The company had more or less gone out of business in 1993 and was liquidated in 1995 but Discrete Technology Ltd. took over the manufacture of Trident consoles and introduced the last trident designs in the form of the Ventura 85 which was a replacement for the 80 series that utilised technology from the 90 series. Later some of the engineering staff from the company went on to form Tri-Tech Audio Systems

Spares & service : Spares and documentation for most if not all Trident Audio Development products can be had from William Childs and possibly from Trident Audio as well.
Resources : Trident audio discussion group on Yahoo.

Trio See --> Kenwood

Tri-Tech Audio Systems Ltd.

Company founded in 1999 by S. S. Sidhu & Bill Childs alongside a few other veterans from Trident Audio Developments and was in Bushey in Herefordshire, England. Initially serviced mixing consoled made by Trident Audio Developments and Discrete Technology Ltd. in addition to manufacturing spares for the same but in 2000 started making a line of high end mixing decks that were basically updated versions of the Trident Ventura 85 design, and a little later also announced a line of signal processors but it appears these never shipped. The company sold the Trident spares operation to William Childs in 2003 and went out of business in late 2004, Mr. Childs should be able to provide some spares and documentation for the Tri-Tech mixers.

Tungsram See --> Tungsram

Two For The Road See --> Unitronex (Car loudspeakers - Poland/USA - 1978 to mid 80's)

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The site was last compiled on Sun Nov 10 2013 at 9:15:00am