Throughout high school, Paul Barton worked part time at a local hi-fi shop where the owner let him sell speaker kits that he built for local university students. Upon finishing high school in 1972, Paul and two friends pooled their savings and started PSB speakers naming the company after Paul Barton. The “S” was added at Paul’s request to include a reference to Paul’s high school sweetheart and future wife Sue. The first factory was set up in St. Jacobs Ontario with Paul splitting his time between attending the University of Waterloo and managing his growing speaker business.
By 1974, the PSB Beta II was released that caught the attention of Dr. Floyd Toole, a prominent researcher with the National Research Council. This meeting turned into a lifelong friendship with Barton regularly travelling to Ottawa to test his speakers at the state-of-the-art acoustics facility. Barton often reflects that the National Research Council played a pivotal role in creating the sound signature for PSB speakers.
In 1985, the Lenbrook Group of Companies purchase PSB along with a Boston-based distribution company that gave PSB instant access to a network of 200 of the best hi-fi dealers in the United States.
In 1989, Lenbrook purchased NAD electronics providing further distribution for PSB in overseas markets. Global expansion, home theatre, headphones, high-end portable Bluetooth speakers and more, marked the next three decades for PSB as the brand firmly entrenched its name as a testament to Canadian ingenuity in a global audio industry.
The fascinating and successful history of PSB has been summarized in the below video. Congratulations to PSB on 50 years!