Purchased by Les circa 1952-1953, the Ampex 400 is the smaller, more portable version of the Ampex 300 model extensively used in his home studio in Mahwah, New Jersey. Tom Doyle purchased this device during a sale that offered items from the estate of Billy Graham. Les sold this unit to Billy Graham and his production company for his radio program back in 1968, where it was used and resided until Tom purchased it back from Rev. Graham’s estate in 2010.
This 400 model is one of the two Ampex machines featured on a progressive 1953 television series entitled Omnibus. Omnibus aired on ABC and showcased America’s most innovative and articulate musicians, artists, scientists, and scholars. One of the show’s most popular segments featured a special musical act – but with a technical slant. Host Alistair Cooke interviewed guests Les Paul and Mary Ford one evening about their pioneering recording techniques, most notably the overdubbing technique featured in Les’ hit song “How High the Moon.” It also was used in the editing room photograph featured in the centerfold of the 1968 album Phase 4 Stereo -Les Paul Now.
Dimensions: 13 ½” x 20 ½” x 17”