Philco Model 95 Highboy Radio (1929)
Philco 95 highboy
The Philco model 95 was a product of Philco's strategy of manufacturing radio sets that were truly beautiful "articles of
furniture". In this I believe they were highly successful, for the 95 Highboy is as remarkable in it's appearance as it was in 1929
as an electrical receiving apparatus. Below, I have reproduced two articles, found in 1929 newspapers, that describe the
features of the model 95's Highboy cabinet as well as the Philco philosophy of producing cabinets that were quality furniture
pieces.

The model 95 "
screen-grid-plus" 9-tube radio was released in the fall of 1929 in three cabinet styles, the lowboy, highboy and
highboy deluxe. The model photographed here is the 95 Highboy, which had an initial sales price of $169.50 including tubes.
Each of the three cabinet styles could also be purchased with either Philco's 6 or 7-tube screen-grid chassis, for some savings
in price.

With what had become typical Philco flare, the 95's introduction was accompanied with an advertising blitz and much media
fanfare. To top it all, a jumbo version of the 95 Highboy was produced as a sales tool. It was 16 feet high, 8 feet wide and 5
feet deep. This giant radio was hauled around the country between Philco dealers, who displayed it prominently in public
places for several days at a time. Inside was a production model 95, connected through booster amplifiers to a large speaker
placed behind the jumbo's speaker panel. Radio programs and phonograph records were played through the giant set, with
almost a continuous program issued forth to entertain those who gathered to listen. What a spectacle it must have been! The
campaign was successful, since almost 100,000 of the Highboy radio models using this cabinet were eventually sold. Some
ads showing some of the Jumbo Philcos can be seen at these links:-
1, 2, 3.

On the technical side, the model 95 was a remarkable radio. It incorporated Philco's screen-grid plus chassis which embodied
all of their latest radio advances, including (with words from their original advertisements shown in italics):- "
automatic volume
control"
(to combat fading of weak stations and blasting by strong ones), "new super-sharp selectivity" (helped by the use of
double tuned circuits in the front end), "
almost auditorium volume" (using two of the new type 245 tubes in push-pull along with
an electrodynamic speaker), an "
entirely new circuit to automatically reduce background noise and static", all this combined
with "
enormous power, making it easy to get distant stations".

The screen-grid plus chassis has the following tube line-up:- 224 * 3 (three stages of RF amplification), 227 (2nd detector/AVC
diode), 227 (detector amp)*, 227 (1st AF), 245 * 2 (push-pull AF output) and 280 (rectifier). The 224s used as RF amplifiers
are the screen grid tubes of the chassis' namesake. These tubes had the benefit of not needing to be neutralized, unlike the
earlier type 26 triodes used by Philco's older neutrodyne-plus chassis (see my
511 page). One point of additional note is that
the model 95 was the first radio to combine the function of the 2nd detector and automatic-volume-control, using a clever
circuit developed at the Hazelitine Corporation. The schematic can be found
here, courtesy of NostalgiaAir.

I found this wonderful old radio at a flea market in 2005 and one day soon I hope to hear it playing again. Definitely one of my
favorite consoles.

* - see the foot of my Philco 111 page for an explanation of the Philco "detector amp".
Philco 95 Highboy
The Highboy Cabinet

I came across the following 1929 newspaper article
describing the features of the model 95's highboy cabinet.
Perfect matching of beautiful
wood, forming a reversed
diamond design, has gone into
the manufacture of the Philco
standard balanced-unit highboy,
to make the radio receiver one
of the most attractive yet to
appear in any radio store.

American walnut, used as
veneer wood on top and ends of
the cabinet, butt walnut used
in the front side panels,  and
striped oriental walnut in the
doors, are used to make one of
the most ornate combinations
of cabinet work exhibited this
year.

In addition to these features,
the instrument panel has been
done in warm brown highly
figured birds-eye maple, and
decorative overlays on
side-panels, door and apron
serve to add to the
attractiveness of the job.

Perhaps the most outstanding
feature in the new Philco
Highboy is a speaker
  opening covered with specially
designed genuine tapestry
"autumn tints" made
exclusively for this Philco
model. This is a woven
tapestry and not the usual
cheap printed design. This
feature already is one of the
most talked of innovations in
radio cabinet making.

The entire cabinet is stained
and, contrary to the making of
some radio cabinets, all grain
is filled, the entire cabinet
being blended with a shading
stain to achieve a rich brown
tone.

High grade shellacs and
lacquers used in finishing the
cabinet insure the permanence
of its fine finish. Hardware is
of bronze of the highest grade
which has been richly oxidized
and antiqued.

Strength and rigidity of the
set are insured by glue blocks
and solid full frame
construction.
...genuine tapestry  .."autumn tints" made exclusively for this Philco
Radio Sets to Become Articles of Furniture

A second article, reproduced from another 1929
newspaper, provides insight into Philco's strategy
regarding production of their early radio cabinets.
It is the belief of the makers
of the Philco radio set that in
the future emphasis is going to
be put upon the radio as an
article of furniture. This is
because the radio set today is
becoming so perfected that all
makes have some merit.

The radio set seems destined
to parallel the progress of the
phonograph. At first, every
effort was put forth to
perfect the mechanism. After
this had been widely
accomplished and the public was
quite certain to get a good
instrument whichever way it
turned, the interest turned to
the appearance of the cabinets.
It is so with radio. The
all-electric feature has
revolutionized radio. While
there is still room for degree
of excellence in tone,
sensitivity and volume control,
as shown by the conquests we
have made in these
  fields, the general character
of the set has so advanced
that finer cabinets are in
demand where the excellence
of the instrument is taken
for granted.

We amongst others are taking
note of this trend and are
emphasising the beauty of the
consoles we are making. We
utilize the art of such
masters as Hollingsworth
Pearce and Albert Carl
Mowitz. We show too that the
high art need not be
expensive. We have
anticipated the public's
desire also by putting out, for
the first time colored metal
cabinets in tints and designs
to harmonize with color
schemes in the home. We have
also taken steps to prevent
unscrupulous dealers from
putting our sets into inferior
cabinets and palming them off
as our own.
Philco 95 screen-grid plus - HOLD and ENJOY programs from other cities!
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