Yamaha is celebrating its 70th anniversary since launching the world’s first audio product bearing the ‘Hi-Fi’ name – the Yamaha Hi-Fi Player – in 1954, with advanced sound technologies and rich aesthetics cultivated through musical instruments, audio components, professional audio equipment, and acoustic design of concert halls.

In celebration of its 70th anniversary, Yamaha participated in special exhibits at audio shows around the world, including the Australian Hi-Fi show, AXPONA in the US and High End in Munich.

1950s: In 1954, Yamaha released its debut Hi-Fi product – the Hi-Fi Player (below) – its first consumer Hi-Fi product and the first product to adopt the term ‘Hi-Fi’ as part of the product.

1960s: Yamaha expanded into Hi-Fi speakers with the release of the NS-20 and NS-30 speakers, largely inspired by musical instrument making. While only two models were released during this decade, the 60s set the foundation for the 1970s with what was to become a decade of some of Yamaha’s most iconic products.

1970s: In 1972, Yamaha released more speakers in the NS-670 and NS-690 and expanded into electronics with the CA-700. The CA-1000 (below) leveraged what was learned with the CA-700 and set a design aesthetic embedded in Yamaha’s Hi-Fi products today, including the same look and feel of the knobs and switches – 50 years later. 1974 is arguably the most iconic year for Yamaha Hi-Fi with the release of the NS-1000, which employed the world’s first beryllium diaphragm.

The 1970s also saw the introduction of the CT-700 FM tuner, CA-2000 integrated amplifier, TC-800GL tape deck designed by Italian industrial designer, Mario Bellini directly followed by the HP-1, also designed by Bellini. Other iconic products included the B Series amplifiers (B-1, B-3, B-5 and the renowned B-6 – 1980), C-1 control amp, YP-1000 turntable, A-1 integrated amplifier and PX-1 turntable. One product that surpasses all the rest in terms of its impact on music is the NS-10M Studio Monitor speakers, which are in most recording studios globally today.

1980s: Hi-Fi was the focus in the early years with the release of the NS-690III in 1980 featuring a 100% grand piano soundboard-grade spruce woofer; a manufacturing technique used in some Yamaha speakers today. An inspiration for the current flagship GT-5000 turntable, the GT-2000 set a new benchmark for Yamaha – a literally gigantic and tremendous turntable for its time.

The 1980s also ushered in the age of digital with home audio products in line with the evolving cinema and music industry, with growing demand for more channels, higher quality and greater levels of convenience. This included CD players such as the CD-1A in 1982 catering to the emerging digital audio market and the DSP-1 digital sound field processor in 1986.

1987 saw the celebration of 100 years of Yamaha, commemorated with the release of the MX-10000 power amp, CX-10000 control amplifier, CD-X10000 CD player, HX-10000 phono equalizer, and NSX-10000 speakers.

1990s: The era of in-home entertainment with the introduction of affordable home theatre solutions including VHS, video game consoles, CD players and DVD players. Yamaha’s home audio product development took a turn from stereo Hi-Fi into multi-channel AV Receivers leading the way with a raft of releases built from the legacy of Hi-Fi and DSP technologies.

Since the turn of the century, Yamaha has continued to be at the forefront in the Hi-Fi space, manufacturing products which exude heritage and craftsmanship. Today, Yamaha’s Hi-Fi offering is wide reaching and adaptable to a range of consumer’s needs, from everyday use to highly niche purpose-serving products.