2010 Technical Grammy Award, Individual

Jan 22, 2010 2:36 PM


Read about AKG below
Read about Thomas Edison




In Vienna, Austria, in May 1947, Dr. Rudolf Goerike and Ernst Pless began Photophon to manufacture cinema projectors. Eventually, the company name was changed to AKG (Akustische u. Kino-Gerate), which translates as acoustics and film equipment.

Goerike’s innovative approach to microphone capsule design led to the 1953 release of the D12, the world’s first single-diaphragm dynamic cardioid microphone. The D12’s high-SPL handling, tight pattern and excellent low-frequency response made it a popular choice with audio engineers for decades to follow. Also in 1953, AKG engineer Konrad Wolf developed the C12, the first true multipattern microphone with remote pattern control, which featured a dual-backplate design with 10-micron diaphragms and internal shock-mounting, so elastic suspension was required. The mic was re-branded by Telefunken as the M251 and as Siemens’ SM 204. The C24 stereo version of the C12 was created in 1959.

The availability of reliable, quality Field Effect Transistors (FETs) in the 1960s opened the door for replacing tube mics with compact, solid-state models. The year 1969 saw the launch of the first modular capacitor microphone (CMS system), including classic small-diaphragm models such as the C451, CK 1, etc. In 1970, AKG's Karl Peschel took the CK 12 capsule from the C 12A Nuvistor tube mic and paired it with FET electronics, resulting in the C 412. A year later, adding a second bass roll-off position and a fourth polar pattern created the C 414 combo. From 1974 onward, engineer Norbert Sobol supervised the C 414 design, adding numerous improvements and features along the way. With well more than 100,000 sold, the C 414 remains a popular choice whether in earlier versions or the latest models—now updated with LED displays and a fifth (wide-cardioid) pattern.

AKG’s leadership in technology was not limited to microphones. The company debuted the first supra-aural headphones (model K 50) in 1959; 1970 saw the debut of the BX20, the first portable professional reverb; and the multidiaphragm K240 headphones in 1975, which still remain in production today and used in studios everywhere.

From The Beatles’ watershed performances in Shea Stadium in 1967 to Aerosmith, the Rolling Stones, Frank Sinatra and today’s most progressive and successful artists like Jay-Z, Missy Elliot and Kayne West, AKG microphones and headphones have provided great-sounding technologies to support the most demanding and creative projects. And more than 60 years after its founding, AKG’s devotion to excellence remains unchanged.

Visit AKG online.

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