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Victor Co. Announces Plans for Radiola
Installation in Victor Talking Machines
Important Arrangements Announced at Meeting of Radio Corp. of America and Victor Co. Officials Provide for Radiola Super-Heterodyne in Combination with the Victrola

The talking machine trade throughout the country has already been made aware through daily newspaper stories of the announcement of the Victor Talking Machine Co. on May 19, to the effect that the company has contracted with the Radio Corp. of America to install Radiola super-heterodyne radio receiving units in Victrola machines, promising shipments of the new combination in the Fall.

The importance of the announcement was evidenced by the interest shown by the newspapers who regarded the completion of the new arrangement as a matter of general public interest. There had been for months a flood of rumors concerning what the Victor Co. was going to do and not going to do in the matter of entering the radio field, it being hinted that when announcement was forthcoming it would be of revolutionary character. The fact that the Victor Co. finally decided to install the RCA equipment, embodying such improvements as are promised in that direction affords recognition of the standing of the Radio Corporation's products in the radio field and at the same time gives to the Victor dealers throughout the country something definite on which to base their merchandising plans for the future.

Executives Met at Dinner

The formal announcement of the new arrangements between the Victor Co. and the Radio Corporation was made at a dinner to the press at the Hotel Pennsylvania on May 19, attended by many notables in the radio field as well as a number of Victor Co. officials.

E.R.F. Johnson, vice-president of the Victor Co., and son of Eldridge R. Johnson, president, presided at the dinner and the guests included David Sarnoff, vice-president and general manager of the Radio Corp.; William Brown, vice-president; E.E. Bucher, general sales manager and a number of other officials of the same company; E.T. Edwards, manager of the radio department, and Adam Stein, Jr. production manager of the radio department of the General Electric Co., and General Guy Tripp, chairman of the Board of Westinghouse Electric & Engineering Co., together with E.H. Herr, president; H.P. Davis, vice-president, and E.B. Mallory, manager of the radio department.

Among the Victor Co. officials present were W.J. Staats, treasurer; A.W. Atkinson, director of power building, etc.; E.E. Shumaker, general purchasing agent; C.G. Child and W. W. Clark, directors, Frank K. Dolbeer, sales manager; Ernest John, advertising manager; E.J. Dingley, assistant sales manager; and J[ohn].G[regg]. Paine, counsel for the company, who after a brief introduction by Mr. Johnson made the official announcement.

Paine Speaks for Victor Co.

Mr. Paine said that by special arrangement and in collaboration with the Radio Corp. of America, the Victor Talking Machine Co., this Fall, will market Victrola instruments combined with the newest and most highly developed super-heterodyne receive set which can be manufactured under the Radio Corp.'s patents.

"There are two services which the talking machine performs which radio does not," Mr. Paine continued. "Similarly there are services which radio performs and the talking machine does not. To take an obvious example, when one hears a remarkably fine performance through the phonograph he may repeat it as often as he pleases—the same artist, the same song, the same quality. One may hear the most excellent performances on the radio but he may never hear the same program again by the same artists under the same conditions. That is the part played by the talking machine.

"On the other hand a great speech, sermon or football game have their highest interest at the moment of their giving. That is the part radio plays."

Mr. Paine said the Victor Co. plans to take a part in actual broadcasting. "It is not our intention to withhold great voices or great artists from the air," he said, "but this phase of the situation is not without difficulties. A first requisite is that artists will be willing to co-operate and co-operate at such compensation as may be commercially practicable."

David Sarnoff's Statement for RCA

David Sarnoff, vice-president and general manager of the Radio Corp. of America, in speaking for his company, welcomed the Victor Co. into the radio field and declared that there were two leading talking machine companies with their banners "now unfurled in the radio field." He said:

"The Radio Corp. of America welcomes into the radio industry another great factor of public service.

"While it is quite natural that we should be gratified that the Victor Talking Machine Co. has adopted the Radiola super-heterodyne for its combination talking-machine radio sets, the considerable extension of service to the public, which this contract assures is the phase of the matter that gives me the most satisfaction.

Under this contract the Victor Talking Machine Co. will combine its notable achievements in the talking machine field with the Radiola sets developed by the Radio Corp. of America into a combination instrument for which a demand has already been created throughout the music trade.

"We are pleased with the association which adds another great channel through which radio will flow to the home. It will help stabilize the talking machine business and adjust it to the changes wrought by radio. It will lengthen the strides of radio itself. It will enable the public to select either the combination talking-machine and radio, from the music trades, or standard radio receiving sets now sold through the electrical channel of trade.

"That the Victor Talking Machine Co. plans to contribute as far as possible to the broadcasting service of the country is another factor of public congratulation.

"With the banners of two of the leading talking machine companies now unfurled in the radio field, with the great facilities at their command, with their established contacts with the American home, through thousands of local dealers, and with the service that these companies are rendering and can render to broadcasting through their association with the great artists of the day, the solution of many of the problems in a new art and a new industry is brought measurably nearer."

General Guy Tripp, chairman of the board of the Westinghouse Co., also had a brief address along general lines during the course of the evening.

No Change in Brunswick Status

Mr. Sarnoff stated to The World [a New York newspaper] that the new contract with the Victor Co. would in no sense affect the arrangement entered into between the Radio Corporation and the Brunswick-Balke-Collender Co. a year or so ago, and that the Brunswick phonographs would continue to be equipped as heretofore with Radiola Super-Heterodyne receivers.

B.E. Bensinger's Statement

Following the Victor announcement, President B.E. Bensinger, of the Brunswick-Balke-Collender Co., made the following statement in a letter to the company's dealers:

"The announcement of the Radio Corp. of America of their having consummated arrangements to sell to the Victor Talking Machine Co. Radiolas for use in the manufacture of combination instruments is regarded by this company as having a most constructive influence on the radio and phonograph industries.

"The Victor Co. is to be congratulated in the wisdom displayed in selecting the Radiola, manufactured by the Radio Corp., which is unquestionably the best radio receive set manufactured, and, by so doing, followed the procedure adopted by this company one year ago, and the Radio Corp. is also to be complimented upon its having successfully completed negotiations with the Victor Co.

This arrangement will in no wise affect the agreement between the Radio Corp. of America and the Brunswick-Balke-Collender Co., which will be supplied by the Radio Corp. with the same receiving sets as those contracted for by the Victor Co."

The Talking Machine World
New York, June 15, 1925
For more on early phonographs in the San Francisco area, see:

"Where Our Ancestors Bought Phonographs and 78s,"
"To Open Victor Plant on Coast"
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