The Story Behind the Sony Walkman
我還還是根據sony 官方說法和 日文wikipedia (英文版另外有德國的專利大戰) 之walkman 項目
井深大 Ibuka Masaru, April 11, 1908 in Nikkō City, Japan – December 19, 1997 in Tokyo) was a Japanese electronics industrialist. He co-founded what is now Sony.
- 実際の開発は黒木靖夫指 揮のもと行われ、のちに黒木靖夫はウォークマン開発の功績によりソ
ニー取締役になった。黒木氏は2007年7月に癌のためにこの世を 去り、多くの経済紙な どが「ミスターウォークマン」の訃報を取り上げた 。ウォークマン発売後もさまざまな商品を世に送り出し 、近年ではワールドカップサッカーのフーリガン対策 に開発された「透明な盾」のデザインなども行っていた。また 、自身が開発したウォークマンを脅かす存在のiPodに対しても高い評価
| By the end of the 1970s, stereo cassette tape machines were a cherished fixture in many homes and automobiles. However, truly portable units with built-in speakers or for use with headphones were limited to monaural sound.|
In 1978, Sony added the small TC-D5 stereo model to its well-known Densuke series of portable tape recorders. Although popular among audiophiles, the TC-D5 was too heavy to be truly portable and the cost was prohibitive at 100,000 yen.
Ibuka (then Honorary Chairman) was a regular user of the TC-D5, and he would take one with a set of headphones on overseas trips, so that he could listen to music in stereo on the plane. However, he found it too heavy. One day, before going on a trip to the United States, he asked Ohga (then Executive Deputy President) for a simple, playback-only stereo version of the Pressman, the small, monaural tape recorder that Sony had launched in 1977. Ohga immediately called Kozo Ohsone, general manager of the Tape Recorder Business Division.
Ohsone immediately replied, Yes, yes, I'll do it. He had his staff alter a Pressman, removing the record function and converting the machine to produce stereo sound. They then attached headphones and tried this creation. The resulting sound was actually quite good. Shortly after, Ohsone and his staff were working on this rather strange-looking combination of large headphones and a small Pressman, when Ibuka visited them to discover if they had created what he requested. Always interested in products under development, Ibuka had a habit of dropping in at Sony's various laboratories.
Ohsone suggested that Ibuka try the modified Pressman. Ibuka was pleasantly surprised by the powerful sound that came from such a small device, and he was reminded of the first time he had listened to stereo sound through binaural headphones at the 1952 Audio Fair in the United States.
Ohsone managed to provide a modified version of the Pressman in time for Ibuka's business trip, but it worked with small, special batteries. Ohga presented Ibuka with the unit, together with two batteries that he had an engineer from Ohsone's group rush around Akihabara (an electronics-shopping district in Tokyo) to find and a selection of classical music tapes.
Ohga's relief was short-lived. He received a call from Ibuka in the U.S., who said, The batteries ran out on the plane, and I can't find any replacements over here. Ohga also realized that the tapes he gave Ibuka were blank, and he hurriedly called CBS Records in the U.S. to ask them to prepare a selection of music tapes for Ibuka.
Despite all this, when Ibuka returned from the U.S. he was obviously pleased with the unit, even if it had large headphones and lacked a record function. Ibuka went to Morita (then Chairman) and said, Try this. Don't you think a stereo cassette player that you can listen to while walking around is a good idea? Morita took it home to try over the weekend, and he was also impressed. He agreed with Ibuka that the sound was quite different compared to conventional speakers, and he was excited by the fact that the device could be carried around easily, creating a personal listening experience. Morita's business acumen alerted him to the great potential of this new item.