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Zonophone (HMV) "Cardigan Model"
with Wooden Horn in Oak
Circa 1912

Originally part of the Ian Calderbank Collection of Gramophones.
This Gramophone has been Sold, but the details might be of interest to fellow Collectors.
Gramophones for sale HMV

Notes about this Gramophone

(This is a very attractive Gramophone in Golden Oak)

HMV produced top quality Gramophones that incorporated the latest technical achievements, but they commanded a high price. The HMV Gramophone Factory in Hayes, Middlesex England was capable of greater production than HMV could sell. HMV wanted to tap into the large market for more affordable Gramophones, still keep production going when HMV's were not selling well and utilize any components that had been superseded, but importantly all this was to be achieved without damage to HMV's reputation and peoples willingness to pay high prices for HMV Gramophones. The answer was Zonophone. The Zonophone Company had been bought by HMV in 1903 and they had not advertised any links with the Company. The way was clear for HMV models to appear under the Zonophone label as well as new Zonophone models with "re-badged" HMV components, all to be sold at a lower price than HMV. HMV's reputation remained intact as well as their profits. It could be said that a Zonophone is simply a high quality HMV Gramophone sold under a different name. For some obscure reason several Zonophone Models were named after Castles in the UK beginning with the letter "C". Compton was a basic model named after a Castle in Devon and this rather superior model is the "Cardigan" after a Castle in Wales.

Dimensions Height 8", Width 15", Depth 15". The Zonophone Soundbox (where the needle goes in) was imported from the USA as were all "HMV" Soundboxes before the end of World War 1. It has a 12" turntable, Scissors type brake. The heavy duty motor has two springs in separated 4" by 1.5" Barrels, worm drive with horizontal 4-weight governor. Internal thread bar type winding handle. The gilt plaque of the original retailer states "D J Snell, High Street Arcade, Swansea". Most "HMV" Gramophones started life with a paper factory despatch label stuck underneath, the glue dries out and they fall off and get lost. This Gramophone has its factory despatch label, but unfortunately parts are not readable.

The Oak 22" wooden horn was an expensive luxury for owners of Gramophones, found only as a standard fitting on absolute top of the range models. In 1912 Horns such as this cost 3, when you consider the Gramophone probably cost 4 or 5 you can see why most people stayed with the normal tin Horn. The wooden horn is thought to give superior resonance and depth of Sound. For a Collector, the horn on its own is a much sought after item.

Condition:- The case and nickel plate are both in good condition with the exception of the speed control indicator which has tarnished over the years. The horn is in very good condition with just minor scratches. The rubber feet of the cabinet have been replaced along with the turntable felt. With turntable felt exposed to the sun, dust and atmosphere for over 90 years, it is not uncommon for it to have been replaced.

I have tried to describe the Gramophone accurately. However, it must be born in mind unlike many "Antiques" that have been safely stored against the ravages of time in a display cabinet; the Gramophone was a Domestic Appliance which was a main source of home entertainment.
Realistically the only Gramophones that won't show signs of age are over restored examples, or the reproduction models imported from the Far East.

Zonophone (HMV) Horn Gramophone