Helmut Becker Biography
Audio Valve is a German company founded by Helmut Becker. It's a family business. His wife, Mrs. Heike Becker, handles sales, customer relations and technical queries (yes - she's an electrical engineer).
Helmut Becker was born in Hessen, Germany where he also went to school. His father and mother ran a small electronics business there. As a child, Becker came into contact with technology on a daily basis. This environment was to shape his life. Even as a 12 year old, Becker would tinker with tube televisions in his father's shop, taking them apart and getting a grip on how they worked.
During this time, he developed a passion for tube technology and everything about it which captivated him his whole life. After his schooling, he trained to become a TV technician, and during his military service, he became a radar technician 'with distinction', where, among other things, he learned to understand and operate 'large tubes' such as magnetrons, tyratrons and klystrons. After this, he completed his studies in telecommunications technology, with distinction, and developed air warning systems. In 1979, he started working with medical technology.
In this area, he worked first and foremost on the development of coagulometers for hematology laboratories in clinics. Driven by a great sense of curiosity and with endless assiduity, after a short amount of time in this role, he was able to prove himself with new production-ready developments and was soon promoted to the role of development manager. Becker's creative mind produced numerous groundbreaking ideas and products. The results of this work can be seen in numerous patents and have fundamentally revolutionized analysis techniques for the detection of blood coagulation times in clinics across Europe.
What made these developments special was the much more precise and exact way of determining blood clotting times in many coagulation tests. As a result, these analysis methods and devices were established by the WHO (World Heath Organization) as reference products essential for survival and are still in use today. The figure of a gifted, visionary and tenacious engineer and inventor can be seen throughout his life's work.
As if his workload and success were not already enough, Becker also wanted to leave his mark on the world of audio tube amplifiers. And so using proven and reliable television tubes, he came up with new ideas and in 1982, and saw his first patented project, the RKV. He devoted all his free-time to the development and realization of special tube and semi-conductor based products for audiophiles and in 1982, began designing the RKV.
The principles of this circuit design can still be found today in the RKV 2 and RKV 3 which remain unrivaled benchmarks in OTL tube amplifiers for audiophiles. There followed many further extravagant developments in the amplifier field, all of which bear the particularly unorthodox and talented hallmark of a brilliant engineer.
Becker often drew on technical symbioses between several generations of electronics and electrical engineering. Today, he is over 60 years old and looks back on his fundamental and extensive knowledge and life's work which go right back to the beginnings of tube technology.
You can be sure of one thing: much of what our forefathers were familiar with was far better than what is being sold to you today as technical progress because today, the industry is only interested in profit.
Why, you might ask, is Becker not withdrawing quietly into a well-earned retirement? Well, the answer is simple. Because without this important and established piece of 'Made in Germany' high-end technology, history and the audio world would be considerably worse off.
And so, together with his former partner and her husband, Becker continues to work consistently and with interminable ambition, even today.