Kenton Electronics was formed in 1986 by UK musician John Price. "I was a professional keyboard player with a background in electronics and a keen interest in computing. I owned an Oberheim OBX synth, which I very much wanted to get MIDIed. Unfortunately, the only interface on offer cost a fortune, and did very little, so I decided to do make my own. This was not quite the big step it might seem, as I had already built my own digital interface to enable me to play the OBX from the keyboard of my Hammond Organ.
The new MIDI interface was a success, and I soon had several of my keyboard-playing colleagues asking if I could do something similar for their keyboards, so I decided to build a small batch of 12 interfaces and things just progressed from there. From the moment I bought a fax machine, I started to get enquiries for kits from overseas. I was working from my flat in Kingston at that time, but I was rapidly running out of space. In 1990 I found premises in Hook Road Surbiton, an upstairs office with 4 rooms behind a parade of shops.
A singer friend of mine, Karen, offered to help me to prepare the place and make it a bit more welcoming, but as things turned out, Karen stayed on and worked part-time for Kenton for a couple of years.
Quite a few customers had asked if Kenton would make a MIDI to CV converter, and so around April 1992 the PRO-2 was born. I originally thought we might sell 100 - 200 units, but by the time it was replaced by the PRO-2000 in 1997, we had sold well over 2000 units.
People often ask where the name Kenton came from. My father Wylie Price was a bandleader in the 40s & 50s and was a big fan of Stan Kenton, so when I was born, I was given Kenton as my middle name."
2005 March to
Formed Kenton Electronics
Produced first batch of printed circuit boards
Moved to business premises in Hook Road, Surbiton
Introduced Socket upgrades to support PRO-2
Moved to larger premises at Tolworth Rise South
Kenton's first website
Introduced Control Freak Original
Introduced Control Freak Studio
Moved to current premises in South Wimbledon
Introduced Control Freak Live
Introduced stretched version of Live
Introduced Spin Doctor
Introduced LD2 MIDI level display
Introduced UK/EU version of MidiStream wireless MIDI
Introduced US version of MidiStream wireless MID
TR-808 kit redesigned
Introduced AN16 module
Introduced Pro-DCB mk2
MIDI kits redesigned
Introduced Pro-Solo mkII
Introduced Pro-2000 mkII
Introduced SW16 module
Introduced GPIM-16 GPI to MIDI unit
Introduced Pro-KADI mk2
Introduced Thru-5 MIDI thru box
Introduced LD3 variable pedal to MIDI
Introduced Killamix Mini controller
Introduced Pro-DCB mk3
Introduced LD4 variable pedal to MIDI
Introduced Merge-4 MIDI merge unit
Introduced LNDR MIDI line driver
Introduced USB-Solo CV converter
Introduced MIDI USB Host
Introduced Modular Solo
Introduced Pro-CV to MIDI