Telefunken "Gavotte" Model 9 Radio (1958)
I like everything about this handsome German tabletop. From the
moment I brought it home, I knew it was destined to become one of
The front of this sleek set is vaguely robot-like, with the speaker
grille forming a high "forehead", the knobs serving as eyes, and the
bank of lower switches resembling a giant, toothy mouth.
With three speakers and four tone switches, the sound of this set is
truly awesome. In addition to the center speaker,
there are two smaller electrostatic speakers mounted behind small ivory
grillpieces on each side of the cabinet.
This radio has two separate tuners controlled by the inner and outer
knobs on the right. The knob at the left controls the power and
Nine pushbuttons at the bottom select the tone, optional
auxiliary input, and tuning bands. The four outermost
switches are tone switches.
Four of the five center switches
select tuning bands—LW (lange welle), MW (mittel welle),
KW (kurz welle), and UKW (ultra kurz welle). The MW band
corresponds to US AM, and UKW to FM (although it
ends at about 100 on the US FM band). The leftmost switch
of the central group, labeled Pickup, selects an external
input if you have connected a phonograph or tape recorder.
As you can see from the rear view, this radio offers various
external connectors, for tape recorder and phono
inputs, external speaker, and antenna. The backplate also has a printed
tube diagram, plus a little paper sleeve inside to hold the
Inside are five tubes (ECC 85, ECH 81, EF 89, EABC 80, EL 84)
plus an EM 80 tube to serve as the green "magic tuning eye."
Just for fun, I took a dial photo in a darkened
room, using only the radio's own light. Although the photo
doesn't truly capture the beauty of this radio in operation, it does let you see
the tuning eye's green glow to the left of the dial.
This set has been well cared for. Apart from cleaning it up, all I had to do was
tighten the setscrew on one tuning knob and lubricate the tuning mechanisms.
The more I look at this radio's construction, the more admiration I have for the
designers. There's even a separate access plate on the radio's bottom, which
lets you clean things like the tuners and bandswitches without pulling out the
Telefunken favored musical names for its radios—Jubilate, Concertino, Largo,
Sonata, Allegro, and so on. Most Telefunken tabletops of this type are worth
something in the range $50-$100.
A few years after I originally wrote this web page, I received the following
additional information from Stefan Rossbach, a German collector:
Your Gavotte 9 is a typical German lower-middle-class radio
of the late 1950s. Its price was 279 DM. It was sold during the
season of 1958-1959. By the way, in Telefunken model numbers of
the 1950s, the 9 meant "Season 1958-1959". After 1959, the models
got a four-letter number. For example, the Gavotte following your
model was the "Gavotte 1063." The 1 stands for table-top
monophonic set with tubes, the 0 for season 1959-1960, the
6 indicates the number of tubes and the 3 indicates number of
speakers. This system was used until 1969.
Thanks for the information, Stefan.
This Telefunken was my first European radio. Since then, I have found
several others, including a Blaupunkt Derby,
a Nordmende Transita de Luxe,
a Schaub-Lorenz Golf-Luxus,
a Danish Arako SU 118,
a Soviet Rekord-53,
and Philips models