Western Electric Company | WECo | USA

Western Electric 92A Public Address Amplifier
WE 92A PA Amplifier

Western Electric Company (sometimes abbreviated WE and WECo) was an American electrical engineering company, the manufacturing arm of AT&T from 1881 to 1995. It also served as the purchasing agent for the member companies of the Bell System. In 1929, Western Electric was also a big player in early cinema sound systems. It created the Western Electric Universal Base, a device by which early silent cinema projectors could be adapted to screen sound films. It also designed a wide-audio-range horn loudspeaker for cinemas. This was estimated to be nearly 50% efficient, thus allowing a cinema to be filled with sound from a 3-watt amplifier. This was an important breakthrough in 1929 because high-powered audio valves were not generally available back then. Western Electrics’ reputation for sound management was such that in 1949 President Truman requested that Western Electric manage a major defense laboratory, Sandia National Labs.

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