Ampex is an American electronics company founded in 1944 by Russian immigrant Alexander M. Poniatoff, based in California. The name AMPEX is an acronym, created by its founder, which stands for Alexander Matveevich Poniatoff Excellence. With technology acquired from German electronics firms Telefunken and BASF, Ampex developed a line of reel-to-reel audio tape recorders in the late 1940s, followed by the first integrated high fidelity movie sound system in 1952, which even earned the company an Oscar for technical achievement.
In the 1950s and throughout the 1960s, Ampex continued to innovate audio and video technology with the invention of video tape recorders or slow motion, but it wasn't until 1970 that the company decided to enter the recorded music business with the launch of Ampex Records. The new label was distributed by Warner Bros. and had its biggest act with Todd Rundren. Ampex was associated with Albert Grossman's Bearsville Studios which led to Ampex becoming the original distributor for Bearsville Records (along with Big Tree) in 1970 and 1971.
Ampex Records started to fade already in late 1971 and was finally closed in 1973.