Leema Acoustics, the much-loved Welsh hi-fi manufacturer, is celebrating 25 years of British-made audio equipment in 2023, with some exciting plans for the company’s celebratory year incorporating The Bristol Hi-Fi Show.
Originally founded in Wales in 1998 by two ex-BBC sound engineers, Lee Taylor and Mallory Nicholls (Lee-ma), the company has stayed true to its roots and remains one of very few British hi-fi companies committed to the time-proven benefits of UK hand-building.
2023 will see the company formally introduce an entire product range (Quantum) through its global dealer network, having unveiled prototypes at several audio shows in 2022. Quantum comprises the new Electron CD player, Positron streamer, Neutron DAC/preamp and Graviton power amp, with full details to be announced in due course.
Under the watchful eye of co-founder Lee Taylor, Leema Acoustics will also be working on a number of technology projects, as part of its 25th anniversary celebrations.
February 2023 will see the company return to the UK’s biggest audio event, The Bristol Hi-Fi Show, with a full Tucana-based demonstration system in the main Leema Acoustics room (412, fourth floor), plus Quantum range systems in other locations, including the ELAC suite (room 228, second floor).
Commenting on the company’s quarter-of-a-century milestone, co-founder Lee Taylor said, “Leema started as a hobby project in a small metal shed, bought from a Littlewoods catalogue back in 1998. The fact we are still doing what we love 25 years later, although thankfully, now in a much bigger shed, is a constant source of surprise to me. It seems the old adage, ‘time flies when you are having fun’ is true.”
Leema Acoustics’ 25 year of UK design, engineering and manufacturing
From its inception in 1998, Leema Acoustics began as a means of further exploring the fanatical interest in audio reproduction of its two founders Taylor and Nicholls. Their first project focussed on pushing the boundaries of loudspeaker design, so they began four years of intense work, culminating in the Xen micro monitor loudspeaker. Xen was originally only available to the professional audio market, but as audiophiles became increasingly aware of the quality of Leema Acoustics’ products, the Xen spread into the domestic market.
Following the success of the Xen, the company turned its expertise to audio electronics. Leema Acoustics’ second product, the Tucana integrated amplifier, was released early in 2006, shortly followed by the Antila CD player, products that live on in contemporary guises.
In 2007, Leema Acoustics began working with a local Welsh manufacturer, Davlec (est. 1983), in order to meet the increasingly high demand for its award-winning products. Davlec’s precision engineering extends to a wide range of demanding disciplines including automotive and metrology, and the companies’ synergy was fitting.
After working together closely for a number of years, in 2014 the two companies made the decision to join forces. Housed under the same roof, in Welshpool, Powys (Wales), the production and design teams bring together decades of experience to continue to hand-build products to the highest standards.