Production: 1993 - 06/2004
Designer: David Lewis
BeoSound Century was a free-standing, portable CD and cassette playback machine which incorporated FM Stereo and its own built-in active loudspeakers controlled by separate power amplifiers for bass and treble. It also had an automatic cut-out control in case that the system became overloaded, when being played back at high volumes.
Although relatively heavy and quite bulky, the music system could either be placed on its own wall-support or on a table/stand when it sat in its own very simple plastic stand. It was produced at the time that Beocenter 2300/2500 was being manufactured although was a cheaper, all-in-one variant. Similar to its more expensive family members, the Century also had its own variation of sliding door which glided to the left when a hand approached it. As useful as the doors on the Beocenter 2300/2500 were, the doors did nothing to protect dust from entering the control panel area or from settling on the cassette tape heads. In a greasy kitchen environment, for example, regular cleaning of the tape heads was necessary.
The unit itself was nice-looking with the big area that the two speakers occupied covered in a coloured cloth which was easily replaced. Good sound was obtained, and using the unit with a remote control, the impression was gained that a ‘proper’ hi-fi was being listened to. In reality it was a very simple machine with only the simplest of commands necessary to get it to do something. The radio covered the FM waveband only and the machine was void of any further connections for extra speakers or for Power Link. There was also a lack of a heaphone socket. Of course MasterLink was omitted and the unit was sold without a remote control terminal - although the electronic eye which made this possible was already built in. On the cassette section (itself rather a flimsy affair), only ‘normal’ and Chrom Dioxide tapes could be used (there was no facility for metal tapes). Although Bang & Olufsen made no reference to Dolby NR circuitry being fitted (preferring to state the form of noise reduction was just ‘NR’), it was actually Dolby ‘B’ NR. Decent sound could be obtained (around 15W on each channel) so the Century was powerful enough to be used in a kitchen, study or bedroom, for example.
Extras included a wall mount, a combined handle/FM antenna and of course a remote control handset.
At the time of its withdrawl from the Bang & Olufsen range, BeoSound Century / 2000 was relaced by the non-cassette decked BeoSound 1.
The Danish Design Centre’s IP Prize was awarded to the BeoSound Century in 1994.
Speaker cover colours:
In addition a special 70th Anniversary edition of BeoSound Century was available in all-black in 1995.
Pretuned radio programmes: 30 FM (or AM according to type)
Radio ranges: According to type
Compact disc: Built-in
Disc sizes: 12 cm, 8 cm
Frequency range: 20 - 20,000 Hz
Signal-to-noise-ratio: > 91 dB, A weighted
D/A converting: Bitstream
Tape recorder: Built-in
Recording system: HX PRO
Tape transport: Auto reverse
Noise reduction: Yes
Frequency range: 50 - 14,000 Hz
Signal-to-noise-ratio: > 64 dB, noise reduction, chrome
Power amplifier: built-in
Loudspeaker system: Built-in
Sound pressure level: 95 dB
System frequency range: 70 - 20,000 Hz
AUX (input only)
FM aerial, 75 ohm
AM aerial (Dedicated)
Recommended remote control: Beo4
Type No. 2088 Wall bracket
Type No. 2036 Handle/antenna, FM
Type No. 2035 Handle/antenna, FM, Japan
Dimension W x H x D / Weight: 75 x 37 x 17 cm / 12 kg
Cabinet finish: Front cloth; green, red, blue, yellow, grey, black
Power consumption: Typical 20 W, standby <1 W