Advent Products and Henry Kloss
I have been collecting vintage stereos for a while now and it really is a great hobby because you not only enjoy nice music, but also get to know a piece of history.
About 10 years ago when I moved into my first house I remodeled the kitchen and bought a nice little table radio: it was the Model One by Tivoli Audio, an American company founded by legendary (music hall of famer) Henry Kloss.
It was an amazing tuner and a beautiful design object: nice and functional. It was a commercial success. I bought another one as soon as I moved to the States 4 years ago and I still love it.
I actually started collecting audio equipment from the ’60 and ’70 because of this guy, Henry Kloss, and the products he made. In fact a couple of weeks ago I bought a pair of Advent Large Loudspeakers (Advent was another company the Kloss founded back in the days, then sold to Jensen when he left). They are an amazing set of speakers that can still compete with modern speakers in the $1000 range.
Then it was the time of the Advent 300 stereo receiver. This little receiver is a piece of audio art: a great tuner (with the same tuning wheel as the Model One and other models designed by Kloss at KLH), a great earphones amplifier and an outstanding phono amp. It is still used today in modern setups as a turntable pre-amplifier. The design is completely different from the units that were sold back in 1976. It is black (even if there was a silver faced version), industrial looking, with the unusual tuning wheel, compact, minimalist. The instruction manual is cool to. I would say that Advent dominates in audio of the ’70 like Apple dominates personal computers in the 2000s. And the products were cheap too: Kloss’ main goal was to provide audiophile quality products to the mass. It was saving in components and investing in electronic design. He was a genius.
Henry Kloss died about 10 years ago leaving us not only with his products, but also as an example for managers. He showed us that even in the elitaire market of the high fidelity audio you can manufacture products for the mass and make a profit. He loved his job and his employees: he was giving them stock options and other benefit, knowing perfectly that a happy worker is a better worker. That was not so common in the mind of an average 60′s manager. Actually not so common today either!
You can find more info about Henry Kloss and the companies he founded browsing the internet. The wikipedia page is a good beginning.