- Philco for 1931 (introduced January 1931, with some changes in March 1931)
Philco for 1931 (introduced January 1931, with some changes in March 1931)
For the new year of 1931, many changes were made to the Philco lineup. Model 41 and the Concert Grand were discontinued. Most versions of Models 30 and 77 remained in the line except for the Model 30 highboy and the Model 77 table model. Some changes were made to the cathedral and console versions of the Model 20. Models 96 and 296 also remained available.
The big news in the New Year of 1931 was Superheterodyne. The Superheterodyne circuit had been developed by one of radio's greatest inventors, Major Edwin Howard Armstrong. Throughout the 1920s, the Radio Corporation of America (RCA) had complete control over the superheterodyne patent, refusing to license other manufacturers to use this superior circuit. Following a 1930 lawsuit, however, RCA began to license other radio makers to use the circuit.
Philco's first superheterodyne, Model 111, was introduced to the public in January 1931. With 11 tubes, AVC and a local-distance switch, this was truly a super-deluxe set in its time; especially the Model 211 radio-phonograph version with its Capehart automatic record changer.
Speaking of radio-phonographs, Philco added another radio-phonograph combination on the lower end of the lineup, using the Model 20 chassis.
In March 1931, Model 20 was discontinued and replaced with Model 21, which consisted of a slightly revised chassis using two Type 45 output tubes in place of the 71A tubes used in Model 20. The new set was available in a completely new Baby Grand cabinet which was the forerunner of the popular Model 70 and 90 Baby Grand models which would follow a few months later. Philco also introduced a new DC-only set, Model 46, which was similar in circuitry to Model 20 and also housed in the new Baby Grand cabinet.
The following 1930 models were discontinued: 20 Baby Grand, 20 Console, 30 Highboy, 77 Console, Concert Grand. Model 96 and Model 30 lowboy remained in the Philco lineup.
Click on a thumbnail to see information and photos for each model:
|20 Revised||Baby Grand Console (20)||111 Lowboy||111 Highboy||211 Radio-Phonograph||220 Radio-Phonograph (Early version)||220 Radio-Phonograph (Late version)|
|Baby Grand (21 & 46)||Baby Grand Console (21 & 46)|
Model 20 Revised
A quilted maple front arch, columns on either side of the lower front panel, and different bottom molding were added to the basic Baby Grand cabinet, giving it a classier appearance at no increase in price. This model is widely known among collectors today as the Model 20 Deluxe.
Original selling price: $49.50
Number made: 343,903 (Note: This figure includes August 1930 Model 20 Original or Plain)
Baby Grand Console (Model 20)
A revision of the original, adding a fancy cutout grille in place of the plain grille opening of the early version.
Original selling price: $69.50
Number made: 16,500 (Note: Figure includes production of March 1931 Model 21 & 46 consoles)
Model 111 Lowboy
The entry-level Superheterodyne-Plus was housed in the June 1930 Lowboy cabinet.
Original selling price: Unknown
Number made: 130,504 (Note: Figure includes production of June 1930 Models 30, 41, 77 & 96 lowboys)
Model 111 Highboy
A new Highboy was designed for the 111. Double doors make their return on a Philco highboy for the first time since late 1929-early 1930.
Original selling price: $155
Number made: 23,440
Model 211 Radio-Phonograph
The successor to the Concert Grand was cheaper than the Grand but still offered more for the money, including the new 11-tube Superheterodyne-Plus chassis and a Capehart automatic record changer. This model sold much better than the Concert Grand, yet is nearly as hard to find today as is the Grand.
Original selling price: $272
Number made: 2,780
Model 220 Radio-Phonograph (Early version)
A "Baby Grand Combination" was made by coupling a single play 78 rpm phonograph with a Model 20 chassis in a smallish cabinet.
Original selling price: $99.50
Number made: 2,000
Model 220 Radio-Phonograph (Late version)
The early 220 radio-phonograph was only in production for 39 days before being replaced by this version. While more examples of the newer 220 were produced, it is also difficult to find.
Original selling price: $99.50
Number made: 11,500
Baby Grand (Models 21 & 46)
The first version of the classic Baby Grand style of cabinet, which is highly recognized and sought after.
Model 21 was a revision of Model 20; it used Type 45 output tubes instead of the 71A audio output tubes used in Model 20. However, very early production sets using the new 21 cabinet used Model 20 chassis.
Model 46 was designed to operate on 110 volts, direct current (DC) only.
Original selling price: $49.50 (Model 21), $60.95 (Model 46)
Number made: 288,620 (Note: Figure includes production of June 1931 Models 35 & 70 Baby Grands, as well as the early version of Fall 1931 Model 50 Baby Grand)
Baby Grand Console (Models 21 & 46)
Illustration is representative of both Models 21 and 46 consoles, as both are identical in appearance.
The Model 20 chassis and speaker was also used in this very compact floor model cabinet, which made a "furniture" model radio affordable.
Original selling price: $69.50 (Models 21 & 46)
Number made: 70,000 (Note: Figure includes production of January 1931 Model 20 Console)