The motivation behind every stage of our research, development and production process comes from the wish to create exclusive products with exceptional sound quality and longevity, which ignite passion in the user, and reflect the true spirit of Stellavox while embracing the technologies of today.
Stephan Schertler, CEO of Stellavox SA, shares a personal reflection on the motivation,
inspiration and philosophy that lie at the heart of Stellavox brand.
TD88 with the original Trolly
Stellavox was founded in 1955 by Georges Quellet, a genius inventor, engineer and photographer. He was continually searching for the ultimate in quality, whatever it might take to achieve. The products he created remain unmatched after many decades. Timelessly beautiful, they are still considered “state-of-the art” examples of their kind. The TD9 recorder for example, conceived forty years ago, continues to be regarded as “royal blood” in the field of music recording, whether digital or analog. This legendary machine sells for up to 10 times more than any other tape recorders still in use, always provided you can find one for sale in the first place! Very few owners are actually prepared to part with their precious TD9.
In 1966, when Georges Quellet set about designing the SP7 as an attempt to salvage the Stellavox brand, (a move, which, in the short term would prove successful), he put the key points of his strategy on paper:
The fact that other people have been “taking care of business” has not made for an easy or obvious way forward. I have therefore made the decision, with great respect, not to let the Stellavox story end. Having said that, it will definitely not be a walk in the park. Many sleepless nights are endured when taking on a task of this magnitude, but the Stellavox team is ready for a lot of hard work – and hopefully some fun in the process.
As a musician and engineer I have spent over half my life working exclusively in the analog audio domain, exploring ways in which audio devices can be made to sound better. My first contact with Stellavox was in 1988. It was the day before Christmas, on the evening of December 23rd, when my father and I visited Bernhard Weingartner, the founder of NEUTRIK, to see his new factory in Schaan (a few kilometres away from where we were living).
On the workbench where Bernhard developed his new AUDIOGRAPH modules (a later inspiration for my modular mixers), I saw a Stellavox SP8 for the very first time. Bernhard told me that he and Georges had exchanged the recorder for an AUDIOGRAPH module a few years earlier. I immediately fell in love with this little machine, but first bought the AUDIOGRAPH that I needed urgently. Later on, I bought the SP8 and two brand new TD9s.
32 years later I find myself taking responsibility for Stellavox. Wow!
During the past two years of project planning, a clear Stellavox philosophy has emerged, alongside a detailed strategy. Interestingly, this philosophy is pretty much in keeping with Georges Quellet’s original from 1966. But here are some additions from me:
To sum up: The motivation behind every stage of our research, development and production process comes from the wish to create exclusive products with exceptional sound quality and longevity, which ignite passion in the user, and reflect the true spirit of Stellavox while embracing the technologies of today.
Stephan Schertler, August 2019