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History of SME

SME didn't start out as a manufacturer of audio components. The original company was formed in 1946 under the title The Scale Model Equipment Company Limited (SME) to manufacture scale models and detail parts for the model engineering trade.

During the 1950's, SME moved away from model making to precision engineering, principally parts for aircraft instruments and business machines. In 1959, Alastair Robertson-Aikman, the Company's founder and Managing Director, required a pick-up arm for his own use and an experimental model was built. It received such an enthusiastic reception from friends in the sound industry that it was decided to produce it commercially and the first SME precision pick-up arm appeared in September 1959. Production was 25 units per week composed entirely of individually machined components. At this time a new factory situated in Mill Road, Steyning was opened and the Company's name was changed to SME Limited, a less committal title to suit its new activities.

SME now has over 60 years experience in high quality precision engineering and the Company's plant at Steyning is now probably the largest and best equipped devoted to the manufacture of precision pick-up arms and turntables. To maintain the very high standards of quality, all manufacture and processing is carried on 'in house'. Facilities commence with design and tool making through all aspects of manufacturing including CNC machining, pressure die-casting, injection molding, metal finishing, electro-plating, anodizing and many other processes.

Inspection at every stage of manufacture and assembly is particularly critical and ensures the consistent standards for which the Company's products are noted. The present manufacturing program consists of three precision turntables and twelve standard pick-up arms which together with special models offer a very wide range of application. SME precision pick-up arms are exported to almost every country of the world.

SME is regarded by audiophiles worldwide as one of the best tonearm & turntable manufactures in high-end audio.

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