Ducretet radios
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Eugène Ducretet was born in 1844 in Paris. When he was about twenty years old he founded a factory for electrical equipment that brought him international acclaim. His clients were laboratories, schools and universities. His catalogue contained batteries based on the Leyden jar, Barlow's disk, experimental electro-magnetic engines, Whimhurst machines, Tesla apparatus, and a high frequency current generator. His

factory also made voltmeters, ampere meters and equipment for telegraphs and telephone. The name Ducretet is associated with the early development of wireless in France; he was an early experimenter and maker of wireless apparatus. On November 5th, 1898, a year after Marconi's experiments, Eugène Ducretet started his own experiments, using a mast on the third level of the Eiffel tower. A radiotelegraphic signal in Morse was transmitted and received using the receiver with coherer pictured above, placed in the Panthéon, a distance of 4 km. Thus started TSF - Télégraphie sans fil - wireless - in France. Descriptions of his experimental transmitters and receivers were shown in Electrical World and Engineer in 1899. Ducretet wrote a wireless telegraphy guide in 1901. Ernest Roger was a collaborator in the Ducretet experiments as early as 1898.

Ateliers Ducretet, rue des Ursulines 21 in Paris

Ducretet died in 1915, leaving the company in the hands of his son Fernand and partner Ernest Roger. During World War One, the Ducretet and Roger shops were devoted entirely to the manufacture of military communications apparatus and special equipment for the Navy such as periscopes and microphones.
The first radios were made from war supplies. Receivers were made by combining devices like tuners and high-and low-frequency amplifiers. For practical reasons these units were later stacked and the "piano" form arose.
In the years 1920-1930 the development of radio broadcasting in France really began with brands like Ducretet (continued under the name Société des Etablissements Ducretet, S.E.D.) and others, like Péricaud, Lemouzy, Hurm and Vitus. They were the more traditional makers. SEC, SET, Bouchet et Aubignat, Omégadyne, Planchon and Defay, sometimes chose very original designs. Brands like PHAL, Huet, Radio-Techna and Irradia made radios for the more expensive segment of the market. When Philips started serial production of radios around 1930, many of these brands disappeared. Ducretet was taken over by Thompson in 1931.

An advertisement from 1929 of the Dutch importer of Ducretet, Ph. J. Schut in Amsterdam

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