HHB Communications, which was founded on 1 February 1976 as a local live sound company, is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year.
The milestone marks four decades of service for HHB, which has occupied a unique position in the pro-audio industry since its inception.
HHB provides services beyond just that of a reseller, offering customers specialist advice and technical support, while counting some of the world's leading broadcasters, recording studios, post-production facilities and educational establishments as customers.
A number of major manufacturers have appointed HHB in various capacities as an exclusive distributor, and the company has emerged from a crowded marketplace to become Europe's largest supplier of Avid audio production technology, offering product configuration and installation, after-sales support, repairs and training, for Pro Tools and other Mac- and PC-based DAWs.
Its HQ in north-west London houses technical facilities, a service department, warehousing, demo suites and accounts offices, and is also home to the sales team. Located directly opposite is Source Distribution, a division of HHB responsible for the UK distribution of leading pro-audio brands. Scrub is the specialist outpost of HHB located in the heart of Soho, established to serve the needs of the independent post-production community, while further afield, Canadian audio professionals enjoy support from Toronto-based HHB Canada.
The company was started when MD Ian Jones, then manager of Half Human Band, adopted the group’s initials, HHB, as his business moniker. In the 1980s, HHB brokered the introduction of digital multitrack recording in the UK, providing the interface between pioneering manufacturers and an understandably cautious studio industry, recognising the potential in emerging two-track digital audio formats and developing and refining them for professional use.
By 2002, the HHB Professional Recording Media Range had grown to become a comprehensive range of pro-audio recording media, encompassing CD-R, DVD-R, MD, DAT, ADAT and DTRS formats. Indeed, HHB manufactured a string of innovations in digital audio technology, including the PORTADAT range of professional portable DAT recorders, the CDR range of CD recorders and the HHB FlashMic – the world's first digital recording microphone and the recorder of choice for major broadcasters and news organisations worldwide.
“As we enter our 40th year in business, the group has completed another successful year with record turnover. To achieve this has required a huge effort by the team, who are widely respected for their expertise, and for their ready willingness to help with any matter related to audio production,” commented Jones.