Easily Modified & Uniquely Designed turntables.
The story begins in 1883 in Ste Croix in the Swiss Jura, when Hermann Thorens had the company entered in the commercial register. The purpose of the company was to manufacture music boxes and musical works. At the beginning of the 20th century, the first rollers phonographs were produced, followed a few years later by gramophones, which remained in the range for several decades until they were replaced by turntables. In the meantime there are also harmonicas and lighters from the factory in Ste Croix. In 1928, the first electric motor for gramophones was introduced, followed a year later by a magnetic pickup. In addition there were newly developed tonearms, even according to the tangential principle, which at that time were far ahead of their time. In the 1930s, the product portfolio was expanded by cooperation with the German Strassfurt-Imperial to include radio receivers and music cabinets, even with built-in turntables (“discophones”). At the end of the 1920s, the company employed about 1,200 people.
World Fame With Record Players.
The Spring-Loaded Sub chassis Becomes A World-Wide Success.
From the 1940s, the production of cutting machines for records and sound boxes begins, followed by record changers and other radio sets. The “Riviera” razor operated by springs was also part of the range for several years. The development of pickups in particular began at a rapid pace, leading to models with interchangeable sapphires and a reduction of tracking force from more than 100g to one tenth in 1952. With the CD 43 record changer, the company succeeded in gaining a foothold on the young US hi-fi market.
1968 The TD 124 is replaced by the completely newly developed TD 125. A model with a seven kg spring-loaded sub chassis, inspired by the small TD 150, and electronic engine control with fine adjustment. Both are new in this class. One year later, the second generation of the TD 150 comes with an improved tonearm. 1972 then the TD 125 Mk II, which comes together with the TD 160, the successor of the TD 150 on the market. Both mounted the new TP 16 tonearm, equipped with precise magnetic antiskating, which in its various versions became the standard arm for Thorens turntables for many years.
At the beginning of the 1980s, several further developments of proven models from the TD 160 family, a studio drive with EMT genes, the TD 524, as well as the two anniversary models TD 147 “Jubilee” and TD 126 “Centennial” appeared. Additional variants of the TD 126 for two tone arms (TD 226) and for a single long 12″ arm (TD 127). All these models have the spring-loaded sub chassis in common. Nevertheless, the Thorens company is in a financial crisis during this time and is undergoing massive restructuring. The production is partly outsourced.