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Based on the success of the VV-XVI (Victor's first phonograph with an internal horn), the company decided to market a tabletop version of this revolutionary design. The VV-XII debuted during the summer of 1909 with a price tag of $125.00, which equates to $3,600.00 in today's money. Although the XII was $75.00 cheaper than the floor-model XVI, this price differential was not sufficient to entice customers to purchase this relatively small and plain-looking machine. To make matters even more challenging, the XII had a very small horn which produced far less sound volume in comparison to the XVI or virtually any of the less-costly external-horn models. Due to the poor public reception, the XII was discontinued after only one year of production. It is possible that a discount was offered by dealers after the XII was officially removed from the product catalogs. 
Due to their rarity and relatively early manufacture, these machines are prized by collectors today.  Most XII's were produced in mahogany, but several types of oak finishes were also available. Early production versions have a very plain cabinet (left); some trim and filagree detail was added to models produced after January 1910 (right).  The underlid decal was changed from "Victor-Victrola" to just "Victrola" at that time (see "decals" description page). Factory data indicates that 4,913 Victrola XII's were produced before it was discountinued from the product lineup in the fall of 1911; however based on large samples of surviving examples, the actual total production figure is more likely to be closer to 4,700 units produced.

The survival database currently shows the earliest existent VV-XII to be S/N 504 and the latest to be S/N 5121

Serial Number Range Feature Notess
1909 501-3170    
1910 3171-5200       Trim details added to cabinet. "A" suffix added

Do you own a Victrola VV-XII? Please take a moment and enter some basic information about your machine into the collector's database by clicking here. No personal information is required.


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