PMC celebrates 30 years of ‘Best of British’ loudspeaker design

PMC is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year, marking three decades of ‘Best of British’ loudspeaker design and manufacture.

Peter Thomas, the company’s Founder and Owner, said: “When I started the company with my friend and colleague, Adrian Loader, I had no idea that our audio knowledge and passion for music would one day end up with our small company designing and building universally respected loudspeakers for audiophiles and for some of the biggest artists, producers and audio facilities in the world.”

UK-based PMC was established in 1991 by Mr Thomas, then a BBC Engineer, and FWO Bauch Engineer, Mr Loader, in response to requirements from the BBC for a monitor speaker that could handle the high sound levels required for pop and rock monitoring, but with ultra-high resolution.

The pair created their first loudspeaker, the ‘Big Box’, in Mr Thomas’s garage and accompanying electronics in Mr Loader’s garage. Once refined and renamed the BB5, it was installed into BBC Maida Vale Studios and so started the journey of discovery and invention to perfect the art of loudspeaker design that continues today. Shortly after came their first domestic loudspeaker, the LB1.

Mr Thomas continued: “In terms of music reproduction, there shouldn’t be a distinction between a loudspeaker designed for studio use and one for domestic use – the speaker is either reproducing the music correctly or it isn’t.

“The guiding principle for our R&D team is that the same ultra-high-resolution loudspeaker can be used throughout the entire recording and playback process – from studio to home. The work we do developing new studio speakers directly benefits our hi-fi product development and conversely, some of the discoveries we make when creating a new range of hi-fi loudspeakers find their way into our pro models. This means that domestic users can experience their music sounding the same as it did in the studio and exactly as the artist intended.”

PMC’s core technologies, shared between pro and domestic, include the Advanced Transmission Line, or ATL, bass loading, the aerodynamically designed Laminair vent, dome midrange drivers and tweeter dispersion grilles.

These innovations are to be found in products like the QB1 monitors that have pride of place in studios like Capitol in LA and 301 in Sydney, and the recently-launched fact fenestria and twenty5i series hi-fi speakers, and the high-performance Ci Series.

In recent years, PMC has partnered with Dolby and their loudspeakers have been installed in Dolby Atmos music mixing rooms around the world, and PMC has also engineered Atmos mixes for many music artists.

In 30 years, the PMC workforce has gone from just two to 60 around the world.

Mr Thomas summed up his feelings: “Celebrating a 30th anniversary is a major milestone for any company, and we know that we couldn’t have done any of this without the help of our staff and customers. Their support and dedication have enabled us to build a highly respected global brand. For that we are extremely grateful and would like to say a massive and heartfelt thank you as we look forward to the next chapter in the PMC story.”