What a delightful melody of color does this little Emer-
son AU213 tombstone radio render, with its graceful
curves and manifold scintillating tones of golden
brown and honey! Such a harmonious balance of
elements, such genius of aesthetics, such excellence
of execution,... well by now you've gotten the mess-
age and you shouldn't need me to elucidate the
matter of my admiration for this little radio any further.
Besides, I've run out of superlatives to describe the
favorable impressions fostered by it, so I'll simply
conclude this here verbiage by stating that this is
quite one of my favorite sets!
The cabinet was made for Emerson by the E. Ingra-
ham Company of Bristol, Connecticut, a manufacturer
of clocks, watches and other items dating back to
1831. They initially became famous for their magnif-
cent wooden clock cabinets, distinguished by their
mastery of the techniques necessary for contouring
veneered wood into highly curvaceous forms.
Some radio manufacturers, looking for a competitive
edge, saw such beautiful creations as a means to
increase sales and contracted with Ingraham for the
supply of custom cabinets. Emerson was their biggest
radio customer, but GE and Firestone are also known
to have been clients, with the likes of Stewart Warner,
Silvertone, Detrola, DeWald, Sparton and even Zenith
rumoured to have counted amongst their numbers
Today, the Ingrahams represent a distinctive niche in
the radio collecting arena and are amongst the most
coveted of all vintage sets.
The AU-213 was introduced in 1938 with an original
sales price of $29.95. Try finding it for that today!
The AU-213 is an ac/dc-powered 5-tube superhetero-
dyne. Frequency coverage is from 540 to1580 kcs
(standard broadcast) and 1.58 to 4.2 mcs (old police
band). Waveband selection is by means of a rear
switch. The tube line-up for this radio is 6A7 (LO/
mixer), 6D6 (IF), 6Q7G (detector/agc/1st af), 25L6G
(output) and 25Z5 (rectifier). A resistive line-cord
("curtain-burner") is used in the filament circuit.
Although the AU-213 is not explicitly listed in the
Riders manuals, this set uses chassis AU which is
also employed for the AU-190, whose schematic may
be obtained here, courtesy of NostalgiaAir.
For 1938, one of the innovations that Emerson high-
lighted when promoting its new models, including the
AU-213, was their so-called Miracle Tone Chamber.
To the right is a newspaper clipping from November
of 1937 describing this feature.
Emerson Model AU-213 (AU213) Mini Tombstone Radio (1938)
...in a clever little clock-like cabinet ...with the "Miracle Tone Chamber"
|Revolutionary Loud Speaker Put Forward by
Famous Maker of Small Radios
Emerson, for long famous as builders of small
radios, inaugurates the 1938 season with the
introduction of its Miracle Tone Chamber,
which it represents as the most revolutionary
development in radio since the dynamic
speaker. The new development, to use
Emerson's phrase, "recreates the artist in
Emerson's Miracle Tone Chamber is announced
as a refinement that brings true acoustical
reproduction of the human voice and musical
instruments. It eliminates the old "muffling"
cloth of the speaker and by means of a series
of seasoned grooved louvre wood deflectors
brings about a uniform distribution of sound
waves on all frequencies. Thus the full melodic
richness of all harmonics and overtones up and
down the scale are enjoyed.