04 September 2012

Odeon Front Radio

The AC-only Ekco RS3, introduced in August 1931, was the first wireless set to have station names marked on its dial. It benefited also from automatic waveband switching as the cursor is moved between the top and bottom halves of the tuning scale. The Bakelite cabinet, available in walnut or mahogany (pictured) was designed by J.K.White - this architectural style is known as 'cathedral' or 'Odeon front.'

Its sloped and stepped top, stepped-back sides (into which are recessed carry pockets - the radio weighs about 18 lbs), and pollarded willow tree design grille in anodised copper, are classic Art Deco, with a hint of Art Nouveau. The AC/DC SH25 of the following year used the same cabinet, as a factory fire had destroyed the new season's designs. It can be distinguished by the use of concentric knobs, necessary given that the RS3 cabinet didn't have enough holes for the controls.

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