ATC Acoustic Engineers was formed in 1974 by Billy Woodman to manufacture custom drive units for the professional sound industry. ATC quickly made its mark with the 12″³ PA75-314 driver, a design capable of handling more power and producing less distortion at a higher sound pressure level than any other unit on the market.
1976 saw the first production of the ground-breaking SM 75-150s soft dome midrange driver, a technical tour-de-force, whose innovative up-scaled design reproduced a more uniform dispersion, wider bandwidth and much lower distortion than was thought possible at the time. It revolutionised studio monitoring and has since become recognised as the ultimate mid-range transducer for both domestic and professional applications. Utilising exotic materials and precision tolerances, the latest version of the SM 75-150s represents the apex of drive unit technology. It is often copied but never equalled.
The next decade witnessed the introduction of complete speaker systems and further versions of the high power PA drive units used in OEM form by many leading manufacturers and performers – Pink Floyd and Supertramp were early customers. During this period ATC researched and developed the first active system elements, introducing the EC23 Active Crossover with built in phase correction. A contract with Danish Radio for an active portable monitor provided the opportunity to integrate the new SCM50 and SCM100 speakers with a Tri-amp pack and electronic crossover to create the industry standard SCM50A and SCM100A, the first reliable and accurate active systems. With regular fine tuning they remain as popular today in both professional and hi-fi applications.
Having established a market for reference quality precision-made monitors, a succession of smaller ATC speakers then evolved, ranging from SCM7s through 10s and 20s. Available in both active and passive versions, they offered elite ATC performance and reliability to many new customers.
1996 welcomed the launch of ATC’s first stand alone audiophile electronics. Both SCA2 pre-amplifier, SPA2-150 power amplifier and later the SIA2-150 were built according to ATC’s no compromise philosophy, achieving performance figures that still rank as among the best available. In their latest versions they continue to offer unrivalled precision and performance.
In the same year Billy Woodman and his research team developed an innovative new driver topology designed to eliminate the effects of magnetic hysteresis as a significant source of distortion in loudspeaker drive units. Utilising a new material from the communications industry, ATC’s Super Linear (SL) driver reduced third harmonic distortion by 10-15dB between 100Hz and 3kHz. Arguably the most significant development in transducer design in the last 15 years, SL technology epitomises ATC’s commitment to sound quality. The SL drivers’ accuracy in reproducing piano and male vocals remains unique.
Through ATC’s commitment to multi-channel mastering and its direct involvement with leading players in the professional audio industry including Sony Music and Telarc, ATC’s products are installed at some of the world’s most prestigious multi-channel studios and auditoria. Where ever the best is required you will find ATC.