It all began over 150 years ago in 1862 with the D.H Baldwin Company of Cincinnati, Ohio. By the 1890’s the Baldwin Company became the largest piano dealer in the Midwestern United States. Baldwin vowed to build “the best piano that could be built” and that dedication to excellence is still the core of every instrument built at BEI Precision’s Maumelle, Arkansas manufacturing plant today.
Baldwin’s work in electronic organs led to the development of an optical technology to generate harmonics. Accurate patterns put down on glass and read optically were the “Tone Wheels” that made organs sound like particular instruments. This technology became the foundation and birth of the optical encoder.
BEI Precision’s 60+ years of experience has provided a broad heritage in optical encoders, scanners, accelerometers and subsystems for use in ships, vehicles, spacecraft, missiles, tracking radar, telescopes, and avionics. Over 90% of all optical encoders operating in space are from BEI Precision. Military and space programs depend on BEI Precision for reliability where it counts.