This article needs additional citations for verification .(May 2007)
|Founded||as Akai Electric Company Ltd, Tokyo, Japan |
|Parent|| Grande Holdings (1999–present)|
inMusic Brands (Akai Professional)
|Website|| www.akai.com |
Akai (Japanese : 赤井, pronounced [a̠ka̠i] ) was founded originally as Akai Electric Company Ltd in Tokyo, Japan, in 1946. Grande Holdings in Hong Kong purchased the Akai brand, and now distributes various electronic products such as LED TV, washing machines, clothes dryers, air conditioners and smart phones, through collaborations with other electronics companies bearing relevant expertise. inMusic Brands in the United States took over Akai's brand, starting the ‘Akai Professional’ label, that distributes high-end audio electronics products.
Akai was founded by Masukichi Akai and his son, Saburo Akai (who died in 1973 (赤井電機株式会社, Akai Denki Kabushiki Kaisha ), a Japanese manufacturer in 1929 or 1946.) as Akai Electric Company Ltd.
The company's business eventually became troubled and it left the audio industry in 1991. At its peak in the late 1990s, Akai Holdings employed 100,000 workers and had annual sales of HK$40 billion (US$5.2 billion). The company filed for insolvency in November 2000, owing creditors US$1.1B.It emerged that ownership of Akai Holdings had somehow passed in 1999 to Grande Holdings, a company founded by Akai's chairman James Ting. The liquidators claimed that Ting had stolen over US$800m from the company with the assistance of accountants Ernst & Young who had tampered with audit documents going back to 1994. Ting was imprisoned for false accounting in 2005, and E&Y paid $200m to settle the negligence case out of court in September 2009. In a separate lawsuit, a former E&Y partner, Christopher Ho, made a "substantial payment" to Akai creditors in his role as chairman of Grande Holdings.
Akai's products included reel-to-reel audiotape recorders (such as the GX series), tuners (top level AT, mid level TR and TT series), audio cassette decks (top level GX and TFL, mid level TC, HX and CS series), amplifiers (AM and TA series), microphones, receivers, turntables, video recorders and loudspeakers.
Many Akai products were sold under the name Roberts in the US[ citation needed ], as well as A&D in Japan (from 1987 after a partnership with Mitsubishi Electric), Tensai and Transonic Strato in Western Europe[ citation needed ]. During the late 1960s, Akai adopted Tandberg's cross-field recording technologies (using an extra tape head) to enhance high frequency recording and switched to the increasingly reliable Glass and crystal (X'tal) (GX) ferrite heads a few years later[ citation needed ]. The company's most popular products[ citation needed ] were the GX-630D, GX-635D, GX-747/GX-747DBX and GX-77 open-reel recorders (latter featuring an auto-loading function), the three-head, closed-loop GX-F95, GX-90, GX-F91, GX-R99 cassette decks, and the AM-U61, AM-U7 and AM-93 stereo amplifiers.
Akai manufactured and badged most of its imported hi-fi products with the Tensai brand (named after the Swiss audio and electronics distributor Tensai International[ citation needed ]). Tensai International was Akai's exclusive distributor for the Swiss and Western European markets until 1988.
Akai limited its consumer hi-fi product line in the United States and Europe towards the end of the 20th century[ citation needed ].
Akai produced consumer video cassette recorders (VCR) during the 1980s. The Akai VS-2 was the first VCR with an on-screen display,originally named the Interactive Monitor System. By displaying the information directly on the television screen, this innovation eliminated the need for the user to be physically near the VCR to program recording, read the tape counter, or perform other common features. Within a few years, all competing manufacturers had adopted on-screen display technology in their own products.
This section needs additional citations for verification .(June 2018)
In 1984,a new division of the company was formed to focus on the manufacture and sale of electronic instruments, and was called Akai Professional.
The first product released by the new subsidiary was the MG1212, a 12 channel, 12 track recorder. cm per second) or 20 minutes at half speed (9.5 cm per second). One track (14) was permanently dedicated to recording absolute time, and another one for synchronization such as SMPTE or MTC. Each channel strip included dbx type-1 noise reduction and semi-parametric equalizers (with fixed bandwidths). The unit also had innovations like an electronic 2 bus system, a 12 stereo channel patch bay and auto punch in and out, among others. The unique transport design and noise reduction gave these units a recording quality rivaling that of more expensive 16 track machines using 1" tape. The MG-1212 was later replaced by the MG-1214, which improved the transport mechanism and overall performance.This innovative device used a special VHS-like cartridge (a MK-20), and was good for 10 minutes of continuous 12 track recording (19
Other early products included the Akai AX80 8-voice analog synthesizer in 1984,followed by AX60 and AX73 6-voice analog synthesizers ca.1986. The AX-60 borrowed many ideas from the Roland Juno series, but used voltage controlled analog oscillators (VCO) as a sound source as opposed to Roland's more common digitally controlled analog oscillators (DCO), and also allowed the performer to "split" the keyboard (using different timbres for different ranges of keys). The AX-60 also had the ability to interface with Akai's early samplers through a serial cable, using 12-bit samples as an additional oscillator.
The S612 12-bit digital sampler in 1985, was the first in a series of (relatively) affordable samplers already in 19-inch studio-rack format but in black color. kHz) was one second.It held only a single sample at a time, which was loaded into memory via a separate disk drive utilizing Quick Disk 2.8-inch floppy disks. The maximum sample time at the highest quality sampling rate (32
The introduction of a "professional" range of digital samplers began with the 12-bit S900 in 1986,followed by the X7000 keyboard sampler in 1986, and the S700 rack-mount version in 1987. Unlike the single-sample S612, however, they allowed the use of six active samples at once, had a built-in disk drive and could be extended with six individual outputs via cable and a flash memory extension which added another six samples to the memory for multisample playback. The S700/X7000 sampler series were light-grey colored, which didn't change throughout the whole "professional" range of Akai samplers.
The 16-bit Akai S1000 series followed in 1988, adding the option to read CD-ROMs and write to hard disks via SCSI. This range was superseded by the S3000 series in 1993, with optional built-in CD-ROM drive, followed by the S5000 and S6000. Additional releases of note were the Z4 and Z8 24-bit 96 kHz samplers.
Akai also produced several Digital MIDI sequencers and digital synthesizers such as the MPC range, a line of integrated drum machines, MIDI sequencers, samplers and direct-to-disk recorders.
In December 1999, one year before the application of Civil Rehabilitation Act to Akai Electric Company Ltd., the brand of its musical instrument division, Akai Professional was acquired by a company of the United States. The new company was dubbed "Akai Professional Musical Instrument Corporation".(AKAI professional M.I.) was established in the same year, however it was bankrupted in 2005.
In 2004, following a US distribution deal, the Akai Professional Musical Instrument division was acquired by Jack O'Donnell, owner of Numark Industries and Alesis. In 2012, inMusic Brands was formed as a parent company for O'Donnell's companies, including Akai Professional.
In early 2003, Grande Holdings began undergoing a re-exposure of Akai's brands by marketing various audio visual products manufactured by Samsung. In the same year, Grande began to distribute Akai home appliances such as air conditioners, vacuum cleaners, and refrigerators. In 2010s, it began to distribute Akai smart phones collaborated with some Chinese smart phone manufacturers (Gionee, etc.), in India and some other countries.
Akai Professional is not affiliated with Akai (a consumer audio and television brand). Akai Professional changed ownership in 2004 and is an inMusic Brands company, based in Rhode Island, United States.
Roland Octapad is a range of MIDI electronic drum percussion controllers produced by the Roland Corporation.
Steinberg Media Technologies GmbH is a German musical software and hardware company based in Hamburg with satellite offices in Siegburg and London. It develops music writing, recording, arranging, and editing software, most notably Cubase, Nuendo, and Dorico. It also designs audio recording, MIDI hardware interfaces, controllers, and iOS/Android music apps including Cubasis. Steinberg created several industry standard music technologies including the Virtual Studio Technology (VST) format for plug-ins and the ASIO protocol. Steinberg has been a wholly owned subsidiary of Yamaha since 2005.
Emagic was a music software and hardware company based in Rellingen, Germany and a satellite office in Grass Valley, California. On July 1, 2002 Emagic was bought by Apple Computer. Emagic's Windows-based product offerings were discontinued on September 30, 2002.
Kawai Musical Instruments Manufacturing Co., Ltd. is a musical instrument manufacturing company headquartered in Hamamatsu, Shizuoka, Japan. It is best known for its grand pianos, upright pianos, digital pianos, electronic keyboards and electronic synthesizers. The company was founded in August 1927.
Ensoniq Corp. was an American electronics manufacturer, best known throughout the mid-1980s and 1990s for its musical instruments, principally samplers and synthesizers.
The EPS was one of the first few affordable samplers on the market. It was manufactured from 1988 to 1991 by Ensoniq in Malvern, Pennsylvania, USA. The EPS was a 13 bit sampler and replaced the Mirage - widely regarded as the first truly affordable sampling keyboard.
The Akai MPC is a series of music workstations produced by Akai from 1988 onwards. It combines sampling and sequencing functions.
The Yamaha TX81Z is a rack version of Yamaha DX11 and rack-mounted (keyboard-less) frequency modulation music synthesizer, which was released in 1987. Unlike previous FM synthesizers of the era, the TX81Z was the first to offer a range of oscillator waveforms other than just sine waves, conferring the new timbres of some of its patches when compared to older, sine-only FM synths. The TX81Z has developed a famous reputation, largely based on some of its preset bass sounds. A keyboard version with more onboard editing abilities was released the following year as the Yamaha DX11.
The Roland Corporation has manufactured several keytars.
Cheetah Marketing was a United Kingdom-based company that produced electronic music-related hardware products and software for home computer systems during the 1980s. They later changed their name to Cheetah International Ltd.
The Akai S3000XL is a sampler with 32 polyphonic voices, and 2 MB of built-in RAM.
The Yamaha SY85 is a digital music workstation introduced in 1992. Unlike other Yamaha synthesizers of the time the SY85 does not use FM synthesis. Instead, its sounds are based on samples, which can be layered and modified to create new sounds.
The R-8 Human Rhythm Composer is an electronic drum machine introduced in 1989 by Roland Corporation, using PCM voices. The R-8 features velocity- and pressure-sensitive trigger pads, and the ability to create loops of beats. The device has eight individual outputs, 12-voice polyphony, and four-part multitimbral MIDI.
The Korg DS-8 is two oscillator digital FM synthesizer released by Korg in 1987 which used the Yamaha FB-01 FM synthesis engine.
The Akai S1000 is a 16-bit, 44.1 kHz professional stereo digital sampler, released by Akai in 1988. The S1000 was among the first professional-quality 16-bit stereo samplers. Its abilities to splice, crossfade, trim, and loop sound in 16-bit CD quality made it popular among producers in the late 80s through to the mid 90s. The S1000 used 24-bit internal processing, had digital filters and an effects send and return, and came with 2MB of RAM.
The Studio 440 was a sampler, sequencer, and 32 sound drum machine manufactured by Dave Smith's Sequential Circuits (SCI) and released in 1986. The sampler's core is similar to that of the Prophet 2000 and Prophet 2002. There is a 3.5" floppy disk drive to store samples and data.
The Roland S-50 is a 61-key 12-bit sampler keyboard produced by the Roland Corporation in 1986. It featured a 3.5-inch DSDD floppy disk drive and had external CRT monitor support to facilitate editing of samples. It could hold up to 32 samples. A rack-mounted version was also available, which featured expanded memory.
The Dynacord ADD-One is a German-manufactured, American-designed drum machine that was first released in 1986. It uses recorded samples to produce its sounds through analog voltage controlled envelopes and analog filters with resonance, to self-oscillation per voice. It comes with 1Mbyte of memory and can be upgraded up to 8Mbytes.
Akai Professional entered the electronic musical instrument world in 1984 with one purpose – to give artists the tools they need to express and explore new musical ideas.”, “In 1999, Akai Professional Musical Instruments Corporation (APMI) was formed.
民間信用調査会社の帝国データバンク横浜支店によると、音響機器製造のアカイプロフェッショナルエムアイ（横浜市都筑区北山田、駿河道生社長、従業員十七人）は七日までに、東京地裁から破産手続き開始決定を受けた。... 同社は一九九九年十二月、赤井電機（東京都）の電子楽器部門のブランドを買収した米国系企業が、製造・販売目的で設立した。[Abstract: according to the private credit research company, Teikoku Databank Yokohama branch, by the 7th (December 2005), Akai Professional M.I. received a bankruptcy proceedings decision by the Tokyo District Court. ... Akai Professional M.I. was established in December 1999 to focus on the manufacture and sale of electronic musical instruments, by a company of the United States who acquired the brand(s) of musical instrument division of Akai Electric Company Ltd.]
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Akai .|