Infernal - keen on disco

Steps were often compared to ABBA in their heyday, thanks to their knack for mixing melancholy pop with thumping dance beats – and that's not as easy as you might think. It's only right, then, that Steps should finally get their hands on an ABBA song – well, kind of, and not including their cover of Dancing Queen, of course. Or their participation in the Top 5 hit Thank ABBA For The Music. 

The first book is a paperback or hardback book, the cover is a naive version of later & Quad get 3 of the 4 front pictures, the Garrard 301 is the other. The first book attempts to be an all-in guide to Hifi covering a lot in one 180 page book. If you've read these facts before, it's not too interesting, but in 1956 it will have been well received. It is aimed at a more well-heeled type of Gentleman of the era, the enthusiast type tired of DIY Hifi & wanting ready-mades. As the years go on, this eliteness fades as readership will have been small. These books are around as age of original owner is now 57 years ago & assume reader was 30-50 then so time brings them out. To us, we found the book a little dull & skipped through a bit. There are 4 pages of Amplifiers with Control Units & Power Amplifiers in the same section. This year appears to only show high quality items & the list is only to be an impressive one, but in 1956 HFYB only listed ones they rated as worthy, actually narrowing their readership a lot, so we'll list the lot.

As noted on the Quad, all was Mono here , Mono preamp & one amplifier was the deal, early days still. Armstrong A10 CU+A 10-12w £29; Dynatron TC10/LF10 12w £38; EMG DCU1/DR24 12w £45; Expert CU+ Master Amplifier 15w £52, or Standard Amplifier 8w £23; BCS2417/18 12w, BCS2415/16 25w KT66 £63; HMV 3050/3052 speaker unit with amp 18w; Leak Point One/TL10 10w KT61 £28; Varislope/TL12 12w £45, TL25 25w KT66 £34, all preamps can be used with any power; Lowther Master Control Mk I/TP10 16w EL34 £60, Linear 10 10w amplifier EL34 £25, Master Control Mk II £24 use either CU with any A; Pamphonic 1002/1002a 25w KT66 £42, 1003 Integrated Amp 10w £28; Pye HF5-8 Integrated Amp 5w £26, HF25a/HF25 25w KT66 £42; Quad 2 CU/A looks very like the Quad II because it is the earlier Mono one, preamp & one power amp 15w KT66 £42; RCA CU/A unnamed 12w £48; Rogers RD Senior CU/A 15-20w EL34 £42, Junior CU/A 9-11w EL84 £26; Sound Sales AZ Senior CU/A 20w £40; AZ Junior MkII 10w EL84 £22, Three Channel setup: CU/A Bass 22w KT61 , Treble ECL80 & Centre(Midrange?) 10w KT61 £115 inc tri-channel speaker. The earliest appearance of this idea we don't like, phase errors abound.; Thermionic Products TP100 CU/A 10w; Whiteley WB12 CU/A 12w EL84 £25.
~~ Abbrevs: CU/PA=Control Unit/Power Amplifier.

That was interesting. Lots of pictures too. Gives the idea only high power ones were sold, but there will have been plenty of the 3w type & Kits in this era. There are 2 early integrated amps & that bad-idea tri-amping that got revived later on. Some of these will now be unfindable & £1k+ sort of items. They will be very old by now & 25w valves will sound nothing like their best or what you'd like perhaps. They will be very musical, but bass light & treble rolled off. A true Retro sound like a big 1950s Jukebox, fun factor high, fidelity soft. Not to buy & try to upgrade, to get working to the old spec is the wise thing on these as buyers won't like you hacking holes for Phono Plugs & 4mm speaker sockets if there are none. One we had was a TV aerial type input, a shielded cable but very early. Buy with care & don't expect it to be modern sounding. The 1957 list is a much broader range, there must have been complaints from makers & buyers.

A Leak Point One TL/12 in untested condition but looking tidy sold for £1900 in May 2013.

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