Hugh Hetherington Hearing Aid Museum
Hugh Hetherington Hearing Aid Museum

The Hearing Aid Museum

Hearing Aids of all types—Ear Trumpets, Carbon Hearing Aids, Vacuum Tube Hearing Aids, Transistor Hearing Aids, Body Hearing Aids, Eyeglass Hearing Aids and much more!

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Click on the "General Information" button (top button above) for an overview and general information on this category of hearing aid.

Vacuum Tube Hearing Aids: 1921-1953

Microtone Model 51 "Century" Vacuum Tube Hearing Aid

The Microtone Model 51 "Century" was produced by Microtone Co. of St. Paul, MN in 1950.

It was a 3 vacuum-tube hearing aid measuring 3" x 2¼" x ¾". It weighed 4¼ oz. without the batteries.

The elegant case was gold-colored  anodized aluminum. It had a fancy microphone grill on the upper front of the case.

The volume control/on-off switch was located near the top on the right side. It was a bit unusual in that it was a wheel that stuck out both in the front and the back. That made it easy to adjust the volume by rolling the wheel between your thumb and index finger.

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Right side view of the Microtone Model 51 "Century" hearing aid showing the plug on the lower part of the right side.

It had two pocket clips—one on each side (right).


 

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Rear view of the Microtone Model 51 "Century" showing the volume control wheel (top left) and the 3 miniature vacuum tubes (top left).

Both the front and the back of the case were hinged at the bottom and folded down to allow easy access to the inside.

 

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Close up view of the vacuum tube compartment of the Microtone Model 51 "Century". It used 3 Raytheon vacuum tubes.

 

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Inside front view of the Microtone Model 51 "Century" hearing aid showing the microphone (top left quadrant), volume control wheel (top right) and the battery compartment (lower two-thirds). The "B" battery went in the upper compartment and the "A" battery at the bottom.

 

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Rear view of the Microtone Model 51 "Century" showing the volume control wheel sticking through to the back and then name engraved into the lower back "Microtone" and "Century 51".

The clip to hold the front and back on is at the top center.


 

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