Soundcraftsmen Reference Site

 

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Updated 6-20-2005

Soundcraftsmen was one of America's most respected audio component manufacturers.  It was established in Santa Ana, California in 1961 by Ralph Yeomans.  At first the company made small tube amplifiers and receivers.  In 1968, Paul Rolfes--a brilliant electronics engineer--joined Yeomans.  Their first joint project was an equalizer that was introduced in 1971.  In the late 1970s, Soundcraftsmen branched out into solidstate amplifiers, pre-amplifiers and other audio equipment.  Then the company introduced a masterstroke of audio engineering, the first preamplifier/equalizer and helped to forge Soundcraftsmen's reputation as being on the forefront of audio design engineering. The company's equalizers were recognized as being so good, they started making their way into recording studios.  

Soundcraftsmen was a relatively small company, but grew quickly during the 1970s. It had business addresses at 1310 East Wakeman, then 1721 Newport Circle, and finally moved to a large facility at 2200 S. Richey Street in Santa Ana.  It remained at that address for nearly two decades.  The founders of the company took great pride in the fact that each Soundcraftsmen component was hand assembled and wired, with its stringent quality control to ensure each amplifier, preamplifier, equalizer or other component left the factory with zero defects.  Rarely was a Soundcraftsmen component ever returned for warranty work.

Every facet of Soundcraftsmen equipment was performed under one roof.  From the design of the printed circuit boards to sheetmetal forming and machining, painting, wiring, assembly and testing.  And each component was proudly marked "Made in USA."

Many of Soundcraftsmen's electronic "first" can be credited to the company's brilliant Chief Engineer and Vice President, Paul Rolfes.  He is credited with the development of signal-tracking multiple-rail power supplies, fully electronic automatic resetting crowbar circuitry, Phase-Control-Regulation power supplies, and automatic low-impedance power supply selection which became known as Class H circuitry.  He held numerous patents as a result of his pioneering work at Soundcraftsmen. 

In 1991, Soundcraftsmen was acquired by MTX and the company then became known as MTX Soundcraftsmen, although the components themselves said Soundcraftsmen.  The Soundcraftsmen line remained in production until roughly the mid-1990s, whereupon MTX chose to cease production of those components.

 

Note:The Soundcraftsmen Reference Site is for information purposes only. Reproduced printed matter, i.e. test reports, advertisements, etc, is cited as to the source.  Photo credit is given where necessary and possible.  Questions may be emailed  to the webmaster given on the Contact page.  This website is the creative work of Anthony Young 2003.

This page was last updated on 06/28/05.