TEAC Corporation is a multinational electronic equipment manufacturer founded in Japan in 1953 as Tokyo Television Acoustic Company. Later renamed Tokyo Electro Acoustic Company.
The headquarters is located in Tokyo, Japan. It has representative offices in the USA (TEAC America Inc), Great Britain, Germany, China and a number of other countries. The company gained fame in the 1970s, thanks to the production of audio equipment, mainly of the High-End class. In the mid-1990s, the company produced reliable floppy disk drives, and later equally high-quality CD-ROM and CD-RW drives. TEAC produces consumer and professional audio equipment, peripheral devices, and storage devices. The company has several divisions: TASCAM Pro Audio, Esoteric, TEAC Consumer Electronics, Data Storage Products Division. The former division of TEAC Aerospace Technologies, which produces electronics for the military and aerospace industries, is completely separate from the company, but uses its trademark.
Among the leading Japanese manufacturers, the world-famous TEAC company stands apart. For large companies that have first-class research centers and modern production plants in many countries around the world, it is not typical to have one rather narrow specialization, such as the creation and production of high-quality and reliable electronics and mechanics. However, it is precisely this specialization, which has not changed since the founding of the company in 1953, that has brought TEAC the highest reputation as a leader in the production of unique electronic-mechanical systems.
Reel-to-reel tape recorder TEAC TD-102 (1958)
TEAC Corporation, originally called Tokyo Television Acoustic Company, was founded on August 8, 1953, by two brothers Katsuma and Tomoma Tani. In 1956, the brothers founded the Tokyo Electronic Acoustic Company. The merger of these two companies in 1964 created the TEAC Corporation known today. 1939 – TEAS founder Katsuma Tani, a former aircraft engineer, designed the first device for recording and reproducing sound; 1953 – one of the predecessors of “TEAS” – “Tokyo Television Acoustic Company” (development and production of sound recording equipment) was founded. This year is considered the year the company was founded. 1956 – Tokyo Electro-Acoustic Company was founded (production of audio components, measuring instruments, optical equipment, tape recorders); 1959 – both companies joined forces to produce tape recorders; 1962 – Tokyo Television Acoustic Company changes its name to TEAC Audio Corporation. “Tokyo Electro-Acoustic Company” changes its name to “TEAS Corporation”; 1964 – both companies merge to form TEAC Corporation.
Reel-to-reel tape recorder TEAC A-4010 (1960)
In 1957, two Americans visited TEAC’s newly established modest plant. These were the general director and chief engineer of a large radio equipment manufacturer, Lafayette Radio Electronics. When Tani showed them the TD-102 prototype, they said, “Add an amplifier to turn it into a tape recorder, put it in the case, and we’ll take it!” An order was placed for 25 tape recorders. Although everyone was happy to receive such a large wholesale order, at the time there was no one in the company who could set up the amplifier, and as legend has it, the employees worked 72 hours to complete the order on time. But their hard work paid off as the TD-102 hit the American market and quickly became a favorite among audio enthusiasts. This was the first time TEAC technology was shown to the world.
Cassette tape recorder TEAC A-450 (1972)
However, after the first large order from Lafayette, there were few new orders. The reason for this was the extremely high price of the TD-102 (60,000 yen, while the starting salary for a bank clerk was 15,000 yen) combined with the fact that vinyl records were the standard back then. TEAC was ahead of its time and had to wait for the day when the world accepted tape as a playback source and a new recording format. Despite the difficulties in the beginning, TEAC had support from some rescuers from overseas.
Cassette tape recorder TEAC A-360 (1973)
In April 1958, Mr. Bretz, an engineer at radio manufacturer Philco, heard about the TD-102 and visited the plant. After this he exclaimed: “You have such a wonderful product! Why don’t you tell anyone about it?” Bretz invited TEAC to make a presentation at the Far East Audio Club, which was located at the Tachikawa military base. TEAC submitted 50 units of the TD-102, all of which were purchased locally with cash. Tani said later: “After that we were so busy in production that every day you could see foreign cars parked near our ramshackle fence in Sumida to make an advance payment for the TD-102. Mr. Bretz appeared to us as the “God of Fortune.” He taught us what it meant to do business. It also gave TEAC a vote of confidence for overseas buyers, and planted the seed for future overseas expansion.”
TEAC Model-5 mixing console (1975)
Following the initial success of the TD-102, TEAC’s reel-to-reel tape recorders received widespread commercial recognition and were ranked 5th out of 17 audio products tested by American Consumer magazine. When Tani heard this, he said, “No matter how difficult it is to make, if you make a technically flawless product, it will be accepted.” Confidence in this formed the company’s credo: “We exist to make the best products in the world.”
Cassette deck TEAC Al-700 (1977)
In 1960, the average household could enjoy music using a variety of devices, along with the technological boom of record players, radio and then tape recording. The TEAC A-4010 was a 4-track tape recorder that fit well into the American home, being reliable and easy to operate at a price the average family could afford at the time. This focus on the end consumer helped TEAC gain popularity and sell more than 200,000 units of the A-4010, making it one of the best-selling models and ushering in the audio tape era.
Cassette deckTEAC A-860 (1977)
Subsequent tape recorders such as the A-6010 helped TEAC firmly establish itself as one of the best tape recorders in the world. At TEAC’s headquarters in Tokyo, the latest model of the A-4010 series produced is displayed in the lobby with a special anniversary badge. If you’re ever in Tokyo, stop by to see it! Japan hosted the first Olympic Games ever held in Asia in 1964. TEAC Corporation was at the helm of those legendary games with technological innovations that are widely used today.
TEAC A-144 cassette deck (1979)
The Tokyo Olympics took television viewing of sports to new heights. The following innovations were used at the Games: a slow-motion television camera, a satellite channel that connected the continents, color broadcasting and live coverage of the entire marathon race. The Olympic Games have been called “television games.” Today’s vibrant sports coverage would not be complete without time-lapse photography, and we owe it to the technology departments of broadcaster NHK and TEAC Corporation, who jointly developed this innovative technology.
TEAC CX-650R cassette deck (1980)
Technology used for over 50 years still brings joy to the homes of all sports fans today. In 1979, TEAC released the first 4-track recorder using standard audio cassettes. The TEAC 144 had high recording quality, compactness, ease of use and a price that the average musician could afford. Pro Sound News magazine named it the most revolutionary audio product to hit the market. TEAC 144 gave many musicians the opportunity to bring their own music to the public for the first time, which had a huge impact on the world of popular music. Bruce Springsteen made a cool recording of his “Nebraska” album in 1982 at home on his TEAC 144.
In 2000, TASCAM released an innovative new USB audio interface, the US 428. At the time, most audio and MIDI interfaces used by digital audio workstations (DAWs) were controlled via a PCI expansion card. What made the US 428 unique was that it combined a DAW controller and a USB audio interface into one unit. Today, audio interfaces are widely used in the music industry, Internet broadcasting and PC-based audio engineering. Currently, TEAC has three divisions involved in the development and production of various equipment. It produces magnetic and optical systems for recording and storing digital information, sophisticated avionics and instrumental electronics, professional equipment for recording studios and household audio equipment.
Compact Disc Player TEAC ZD-5000 (1985)
All these products cannot be imagined without the precision, high-speed mechanics for which TEAC is so famous. Tape drive mechanisms for reel-to-reel, digital and multi-channel tape recorders, unparalleled in technical and functional characteristics, high-precision cassette systems and high-speed optical reading mechanisms TEAC laid the foundation for a completely new class of technology, which received a special name – “mechatronics”.
Cassette deck TEAC V-7010 (1993)
Whether designed for the home or the recording studio, every TEAC product, including consumer audio products under the TEAC brand and professional audio products under the TASCAM brand, carries the hallmarks of the finest engineering.
Compact Disc PlayerTEAC VRDS-20 (1993)
Many other electronics and audio companies are actively using TEAC’s mechanical advances. But TEAC itself offers a wide range of the same audio equipment, which can rightfully be considered one of the most advanced in the world. The uncompromising quality of CD transports and tape drive mechanisms found in TEAC players and cassette recorders has ensured that they are recognized as the most accurate and reliable equipment that meets the highest standards. Experts from all specialized publications and professional sound engineers are unanimous in this opinion.
CD Receiver TEAC NR-7CD (2017)
The company’s technical credo is an impeccable balance of mechanics and electronics. TEAC’s calling card is the VRDS (vibration-free rigid disc pickup mechanism), used in flagship CD transports, which has won the recognition of audiophiles around the world. The design of cassette decks is unique, dampening the slightest resonances caused by both external causes and vibration of the CVL. At the same time, TEAC engineers are developing their own integrated circuits (for example, ZD-II, which implements the dithering process) to improve the quality of digital sound reproduction.